I competed in the Shaver Lake Olympic Triathlon on Sunday 9/18/11. All I really have to say about the event is that I finished. It was the most brutal event I've ever participated in. Needless to say I was prepared for the distance, but not for this particular course. It took place in Shaver, CA at 5,500 ft elevation in the middle of the Sierra's.
I woke up that morning my BG was hanging out around 120, I ate a piece of toast with peanut butter and a banana for breakfast and headed over to the site to set up. The race started at 8:30, and my BG was 220 by the time I went down to the water. I had set my basal to -80% of normal, and in retrospect I would've been better at -70 or -60%.
The swim was awesome. There were only about 30 people participating in the oly distance and so no body was in my way when I started. I started very slow and very calm. I did not want a repeat of my June sprint distance swim when I was panicking and out of breath the whole time. So I relaxed and settled into a easy pace, regular rhythm for 2/3rds of the swim. For the last 1/3rd I started to pick up my pace and really start pulling with my arms. I had been about 50 yrds behind 2 people, but ended up passing them about 100 yrds from the shore, so that felt good.
The bike was brutal. The course was out and back and the climb out was so steep. I was literally going 4mph up some sections, and coming down was hitting speeds of 38mph and averaged 12mph for the whole course. My legs were shot by the time I got to T2. (I ride hills during training, but more for fun, and at a leisurely pace, I was not prepared for that kind of elevation gain at race pace). My BG ranged from 120 to 200 during the ride. I had a clif shot at the start and about an hr into the ride.
The run was two loops of 3 miles. The first 1.5 miles was all trail and pretty much up the side of the mountain. About 3/10 of a mile into the run I had to start walking. After the bike trail running up hill was not even possible for me. The outside of my quads were burning so badly, and I was having trouble catching my breath at that elevation. I had to settle into a routine of walking up the hills and running down the hills. My BG never strayed far from 200. I increased my basal to -70% (from -80%), but was afraid to bolus any insulin. My BG didn't budge, until after the race was over.
I was the last person of the whole event to finish. My time was 4:09. However, I was the only female in my age group, so I also came in first. I'm rather disappointed with my performance overall, but the three positive notes are 1. I felt great about the swim, and actually enjoyed it 2. I finished my first olympic 3. It can only get better after this right? The only other thing was one of the women in the race had just finished 9th in her age group at Nationals in Vermont and said this oy is the toughest course she's participated in. So I suppose that's worth something.
So now my plan is to try and increase my speed and really work on my running. I'm hoping to do one or two 5k and 10K runs during the winter so I can start finishing in the middle of the pack instead of at the back.