I'm looking forward to doing the Y Freedom Tri next weekend and, at the risk of seeming a bit self-serving, I wanted to do a review of the only triathlon that I've during every year since I've started with the sport. This is a small, low-key race on the other side of Houston from me, but it is also a lot of fun! What they lack in having a pretty unremarkable course, they more than make up for with a first class post-race celebration--including an ice cold towel waiting for you at the finish!
In 2009 the Y Freedom Tri was the second triathlon I ever did and came just under 2 months after my first triathlon. I seem to recall doing at least as well as I expected and finished in 1:33:08.
In 2009 this became the first triathlon that I repeated. I was back with a new bike and more confidence as this was now my sixth triathlon over all and my second for the year. As I recall I had just registered for Ironman Texas 2011 the week before the race. I improved across the board and finished in 1:18:06.
In 2011 I was coming off Ironman Texas and was a bit unsure of my complete recovery for this race at the time of registration. In addition, my friend Karen was becoming interested in triathlon. Karen and I did this as a relay where I did the swim and bike and she did the run. Together we finished in 1:05:55 and got first place in the relay division.
This year both Karen and I are returning, though as individual triathletes. Karen will be doing her second triathlon and I've stopped counting but am probably around 18 by this race (Wow! Life sure has changed in many ways in that time for me.).
That bring us to this year. Like last year, I am not completely recovered for this race. Although I am certainly recovered enough to complete this race decently well, I can't be sure at this point that I will be able to keep up a race effort for the entire race (though I will try).
My comparisons to the previous race are as follows:
Swim....7:25......6:43.......6:30 (swim times include a run to transition)
So, what are my goals? First off I would like a big PR over my 2011 time of 1:18:06, and quite honestly I SHOULD do that barring injury or equipment troubles. I estimate that I probably could have finished in the 1:08-1:10 range if I had done a solo race. I'm also reaching a point of diminishing returns in terms of improvement. Maybe I can drop 30-40 seconds off my swim time and I could possibly drop a couple minutes off my bike time from last year. Realistically, however, my run is where I have room for the most improvement and could still drop a good number of minutes from my 2010 time that I last ran the course.
I'm going to take the unusual (for me) step and lay out all my hopes and expectations for this course here we can see how it all shakes out.
Total Race Time: 1:05:00
I'll be back next week to report how things went.