Thursday, January 27, 2011

2010 Year in Review

Here we are, almost a month into 2011 and I still haven’t written my annual year in review! Guess I ought to get on the ball... For 2009 I wrote a fairly lengthy review: I think I will be briefer and more to the point this year, focusing strictly on my year of racing.

The year began as normal with several running races. I performed on par with previous years, no indications that 2010 would be any better or worse than previous years. I happened to get my first win of the year at a small 5k on February 13th, the “Erase Hate 5k” with a time that was nothing to write home about, 18:50. The next race for me was an opportunity to race a long course duathlon in Phoenix AZ. My results in that race were average at best, only 6th in my age group, but I think the almost 2 hour race experience helped with my early season fitness. This race was followed by an off road team triathlon and then a weekend bicycle training camp with Big Shark in Nashville. I didn't realize it but all these early season experiences were setting me up for a break through stretch!

While I competed in a triathlon as a kid in 1989, I only did one event; my next was 13 years later in 2002! So I consider 2002 as my start in multisport and 2010 was my 9th year competing. That first multisport event I did in 2002 was the Buffalo Wild Wings Duathlon which later became the Shakespear's MaxTrax Duathlon. I did the shorter sprint race, came in 2nd overall and I've been trying to win that race ever since! It has been oh so tantalizingly close with 3 2nd place finishes and 3 3rd place finishes. Finally, 2010 was my year as I was able to grab the lead in T1 with an 8 second transition and extend my lead the rest of the way for a 2 minute win.

Following this win, I got a free entry to the St Louis half marathon and ran a disappointing race there. In reality, I wasn't trained for as fast as I tried to run and hadn't been doing the long runs that would justify even running a half marathon, the allure of “free” had gotten to me! The following weekend was much better with a 4 mile race for the win in the “Cigs” race and a 1 mile win for $50 the same day. It was an early peak for me in 2010 as I went on a 5 win streak in April and early May culminating with winning the TriZou Triathlon(non-elite). TriZou (formerly Race for Sight) was another race I had been competing in for the past 9 years; my previous best there had been 5th overall.

I wouldn't repeat any of those early season successes through the rest of the year, though I did continue to race throughout. By the end of 2010 I had raced in over 40 races, the most for me in one season by far. It was probably a little too much, because while I was having fun, my training lacked depth as did my performances as a result. Eventually, I got a bit burnt out and decided I had too much money tied up in multisport, especially since I had some debt accumulated. A “tri-gear liquidation” sale ensued, even going so far as selling my beloved “tripod”, the teardrop trailer I had purchased the previous October. I continued to race multisport on my road bike and discovered trail racing which began to re-invigorate my competitive drive.

So here I am, just about one month into the 2011 season. I’m running faster than I was at this point last year, this has the potential to be my best season yet! However, by taking the time to write this, I hope to avoid repeating the mistakes made in 2010. My seasons are marathons; I've got to pace myself so I don’t burn out and drop out half way through...