Sunday, May 12, 2019

Folsom Lake International Triathlon (Troy)

April 13th, 2019 – Lake Berryessa, CA
1.5km S – 40km B – 10km R

2:26:57 (25:55 S – 1:13:26 B – 47:36 R)


2nd 45-49, 20th o/a


OLY – Dave Campbell, Keith Hansen, Dominic Pollizzi

AQUA BIKE - FCA: Troy Outman

SPRINT – FCA: Ariel & Anna Soares; Josh Cagney

Anna, Ariel and I arrive at Granite Beach.  Robin is sick and not able to do the Super Sprint as planned, so Ariel is doing it in her place!  It will be Ariel’s longest race event.

There’s a lot to get ready and we get to the start barely in time but we always stop to pray beforehand.  We want to remember there is so much more going on here than just seeing who is fastest.  Triathlons are about persevering and giving your best even when things aren’t going your way – which is perfect training for “life”.  This is something I need constant reminding of.

I’m doing the Olympic distance which starts an hour after the Super Sprint so I have time to swim with Ariel in her race before doing my race.

The Super Sprint starts!  Anna’s in the middle. Ariel’s near the back.  And I’m still putting my wetsuit on – with help from others near me.  I jump him and catch up to Ariel.  Thankfully she had a different color cap (due to changing Robin’s entry to her) so I could find her. 

Ariel is doing terrific, swimming straight.  I swim alongside talking to her peridically.  The water feels great.  Usually I’d be concerned about getting cold before my race but it’s nice.

Near the end of the swim I see Anna get out and struggle with her wetsuit.  I have a new water-level view of my girls racing.  Ariel gets out next and I get to watch her, too, while standing in the water beside her.

I watch their race while in my wetsuit, cheering through transitions, and even seeing Anna sprint to her finish before I have to run to the start of my race.

Go!  Into the swim.  And into the sun.  So hard to see.  It takes so long to get to the first buoy.  Finally, after the turn, I can see again.  We seem a long way out in the lake and the wind is making the water choppy.  Coming back in, I try to get some glide out of some of my strokes.  I see Dave Campbell just ahead as I come out of the water about 16th in the Over-45.  I struggle a bit with my wetsuit and run for the bike.

T1:   It’s a perfect day so I don’t need a jacket.  Keith Hansen is a couple minutes ahead.  I leave T1 before Dave somehow.  And my friend Troy Outman is probably not far behind because he starting a few minutes back in the Aquabike division.

Bike:  Biking out of the park, Dave Campbell, goes flying by.  He’s really biking strong lately.  I start pushing harder.  I was really concerned before the race because I realized I had the wrong 11 speed cog set on my wheel for my 10 speed bike.  But thank the Lord, it’s working ok.  I catch and pass Dave.  It was really helpful biking most of this course in a practice tri workout with Troy Outman a week ago.  It felt good then and today is shorter so I have no reason not to push hard.  I get different pains in my glute, foot, legs.. but each time I focus on the Lord and try to trust Him and not get anxious.  Each pain goes away and I’m riding pretty well.

On the way back (a long descent down Auburn Folsom), I catch up to Keith Hansen and go back and forth a bit.  Another rider passes me and drafts off Keith for along time.  Does he not know that drafting is not allowed in triathlon?  I remind him not to draft as I push hard to get by him.  Eventually Keith and I get far enough ahead.  It’s really hard staying in front of Keith.  We always make sure to keep the required 7 meters between us.  Keith goes by one time and even says, “Don’t worry, I wasn’t drafting”.  And I say the same to him when I go by.

I’m really tired and sore for the last climb up Twin Rocks Rd but now I’m almost done with the Bike


T2:  I roll into transition with a great dismount.  Anna and Ariel are cheering for me.  Such great supporters. 

Run:  There’s someone right behind me so I start off pretty fast.  I hope I can hold it.  My achilles has been bothering me lately and I pray the Lord will hold it together for me.  It’s a pretty course, winding through single-track under a lot of shade.  It is getting hot out.  On the dirt road it’s continuous up and down.  It’s tough on the legs.  Many racers who started earlier are coming back.  One says, “watch out, there’s a snake on the road”.  I wonder if it’s a rattlesnake coiled up on the side of the road.  I keep my eyes open.  Then I see a runner coming towards me reach down quickly and PICK UP the snake and move it off the road!  That’s when I notice it was only a King Snake.  At the turn-around, I make a move and end up passing 3 strong runners.  I don’t know the course at this point.  It’s a new trail which winds around and down and then up a steep climb back to the levy.  It’s really hard work but I’m able to stay ahead of the others.

I don’t know what my place or time is but I feel like I’m pushing hard and making the best of every part of the course.  I know God wants my best effort with a smile, not my best time with a medal.  On the way back, I’m not seeing anyone ahead of me to chase, but I try to push as if there is someone.

We round the water-tower hill and I’m so glad we didn’t have to climb it.  Finally down the finish stretch, there’s my girls, I thank the Lord, and I’m done!  I gave it my all and my body hurts.  Good effort.  Dave Campbell, 10 years older, finished just 30 secs behind me, which means his run was almost 2 min faster.  Another mile and he may have caught me.  Or the next race.. 


God is good and with His strength I can keep persevering in Triathlon and more importantly in life.  God Bless.


Saturday, May 11, 2019

Folsom Super Sprint–Anna - 2019

Location: 5/11/19, Granite Bay
Distance: 400yr S – 6.5miB –  2mi R
Time: 48:20
Place: 1st, Overall Female + 14 & Under  Girls

We are at the triathlon and I am setting up my transition. I am running out of time but I feel ok. I finish and need to hurry. I then realize I need to be body marked. I go over and wait in line. I thought they would let me go ahead because my race starts in about 5 minutes. They didn’t body mark me right away and after I finished, I had to run down to the water. Ariel went to get something from the car and didn’t get body marked. She will be fine though. It is now 2 minutes until I have to race. I get on my wetsuit with dads help and get ready to go. The race director gives a 30-second countdown and I run over quickly and ask him a question. Ariel was going to do a relay with mom but mom was sick so that Ariel is now doing the whole race by herself. I ask him if Ariel should swim in this heat because she has a different cap and originally was supposed to be in a different heat. He said for her to be in this heat. I quickly tell her and dad this. My Dad was also going to swim with her because it was her first sprint. I line up and there is 5-seconds until the race starts. 5, 4, 3, 3, 2, Go!

I start swimming and feel good. It is a 400-yard swim, but seems longer. After swimming for a while, I look back. Ariel and Dad are swimming close to me. I start to pick it up. I pass the first buoy and am about halfway. It is choppy and I start to feel dizzy. I keep swimming and try not to slow down. I keep looking ahead to make sure I’m going the right way. I finally get to the second buoy and head for the shore. I swim strong but still feel a little dizzy. I swim to shore and look down. I watch as the ground appears and gets closer. I hit the shore and start to take off my wetsuit. As I am taking off my wetsuit everything looks like it is spinning. I try to stand up and take my wetsuit off but I fall over. I try again but I fall over. I take off my wetsuit in the water and then start running. As I run the dizzy feeling goes away. I get in transition and get my bike and bike gear and head to the bike out.

I jump on my bike and start biking. I bike out of the set-up area and start to slip my feet into my bike shoes. It takes me a while to get the shoes on. When I try to put my foot in the shoe, it would move. I finally get my feet in the bike shoes and take off. I get to the levy and start to bike hard. Because I was slow in the swim, I wanted to pick it up and get farther ahead in the bike. I get off the levy and start riding through the trees. It is a winding but relaxing bike course. There is some uphill but not too much. I keep biking. I fly down one hill and take the corner tight. The bike course is fun and I thank God for getting me this far. I remember that I am doing this for him. After biking for a while, I make a turn onto a road I have never been on before. I bike for a little bit and then realize that I am in a campsite, no one is camping though. I then turn around and go back. I bike and look for Ariel. Before I get to the road where I turned in to the campsite, I see Ariel. I continue on the road and come to a parking lot where a guy takes my picture and I turn around and head back to transition.

I see people biking as I am biking back and I am surprised to see many adults behind me. It is the super sprint though, so the adults doing it aren’t as experienced. I get to the hill I had flown down and now I have to climb it. I get to the top and I am close to the levy. After a little bit, I hit the levy. It is windy as I bike across but I keep my head low. I get to the other side and get ready to unstrap my feet from my bike shoes. I see a biker ahead of me starting to take his feet out of his bike shoes. I take my feet out of my bike shoes and pedal down to transition. I get in transition and jump off my bike.

I put my bike and bike gear by my wetsuit and put my running shoes on. They were a little tight and it was difficult to slide them on. I finally get them on, grab my visor and run out of transition. I see Dad as I start running. He cheers me on. I also see the guy that was ahead of me on the bike. I focus on him and gain ground.

When we hit the trails, I pass him. I run through the trails and enjoy the view. The trail hits the road and I see two people ahead of me. I pick up my pace slightly. I hope I can catch up to them and maybe get first woman overall. I feel content with whatever place I get. About half way down the road, I catch up to the man who was ahead of me. We say good job and I keep running. I can now see the lady in front of me. I think I am going a faster pace meaning that I should catch up soon. We are getting close to the end of the road and I am closer to her. I pass her right before we turn. There is an aid station at the turn and I grab some water. I accidentally cut her off a little bit, but say sorry.

It is all trials now. I zip along on the trails feeling good. I start to recognize the trails now and know that I am close to the finish. I cross a road and then I am back on the trails. I then come out of the trails and hit a dirt road. I know this dirt road leads to the finish. I smile as I run down the path. I turn the corner and see the finish. I sprint in. I finish strong. Ariel also finishes strong getting 2nd place in her age group. We watch Dad later and he too finishes great with 2nd in his age group.

Praise the Lord for He Is Good, His Love, Endures Forever.


Folsom Super Sprint–Ariel–2019

Location: 5/11/19, Granite Bay
Distance: 400yr S – 6.5miB –  2mi R
Time: 1:00:17
Place: 2nd, 14 & Under  Girls

(Robin was too sick to race so Ariel raced in her place.  This was her longest triathlon!)


The race director says 10, 9, 8, 7, and I am still getting my cap on. Finally, I get it on right, when he says 2,1, go! I start to swim. This is my first super sprint (longest triathlon) so I'm kind of scared. The water isn't that cold and it's kind of warm. Dad says that this is like four 100 yd swims in the pool which should be easy. I keep swimming straight and keep looking up to make sure that I'm not going the wrong way. I try to stay with the people I'm swimming with, but I'm not doing that well. I hope I can catch up to Anna on the swim. She's really fast so I don't think I will. I see Dad swimming with me. Dad told me that he was going to swim with me because it was my first super sprint (longest swim). Dad is doing the Olympic which is an hour after mine so he was going to do a practice swim with me and help me. It is a win-win!

I go around the first buoy and keep swimming. I'm swimming in like a rectangle. I can see that the other race is going to start soon so I try to swim faster. I'm trying to swim as fast as I can so no one from the next wave will catch up to me. I go around the second buoy and I'm starting to feel good. I can see the finish line now. I see that there's a person in front of me I wonder who that person is. And then I realize that that person is Anna. I swim to the finish line just as Anna is finishing getting off her wetsuit. I take off my wetsuit and then quickly run transition.


I get on my bike and bike out of transition. I bike up a hill. I am biking the same bike course as the Happy kids' Duathlon series. In the place where I usually do a U-Turn, I keep biking onto a course I have never been on. I keep getting passed which doesn't feel that good.

I get to a really big hill. People are still passing me. The bike has a lot of up and downs and it’s winding. There a lot of spots that are not flat but are like hills. There are a lot of winding spots and up and down rodes and some with both.

Then I turn and go around a small turn-around in a parking lot. Then I bike straight. I’m heading back to the start now. There is a guy with a camera who is taking pictures of people.

And now I am back onto the course I was on before and I finish the rest of the course that I did on the Happy kids' Duathlon.


I get into transition and I take off my helmet and start running out. I keep running. This course is also like the Happy Kid's Duathlon. On the course, I see these people in orange outfits. I wonder if they are friends or if they are on a team. I like their group. I keep running.

I see a path of the Happy Kid's duathlon but I turn off onto a road which goes straight until the turnaround and then goes on to a path. As I pass some racers, a girl says “that girl is amazing. She used normal shoes on her bike!”

I keep running. I come to the turnaround and get a drink of water then I keep running and running. I'm on the path now. I keep running on it. I see the people on the road. I keep running and start to recognize this part of the course. I remember the boulders from the last race I did here. Again, this is part of the Happy Kid's duathlon course. I go through the boulders and now I'm on the straight away. I run as fast as I possibly can and finish.

Then I realize that Dad hasn't left yet for his race. Anna and I run down to Dad's race start as fast as we can run. We get down there right as they are starting to say 10, 9, 8, .., 2, 1, Go! We cheer Daddy on as he starts to swim but I don't think he hears us.

I finished in 2nd place in my age group. Anna finished 1st place in her age group. And Dad finished 2nd place in his age group.