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Xterra Real Triathlon

April 14th, 2014 Newsletter Director Posted in General | No Comments »

LantrelBy Lantrel Stockton

I’ve always enjoyed mountain biking.  I use to race BMX in the nineties so it was a natural transition. Last year, I did a couple TBF mountain bike races.  So, I decided Xterra Real would be my first mountain bike triathlon.  I checked out the weather forecast for March 29th.  100 percent chance of rain. Great!

I arrive at Granite Beach.  It wasn’t raining yet.  I racked my bike and set up my transition.  I covered everything in plastic and headed down the water, which was about a fourth of a mile away.

This was my first beach start. The gun went off and we ran into the water.  The water wasn’t too cold. Since it was only half a mile, I was being a hit the entire swim.  We seemed to stay in a pack the whole way.

I finished the swim and made the run up to the transition area.  It was sprinkling now and I had one of my slowest T1 ever.  My mountain bike shoes are not as easy to put on as my road shoes. Finally, I start the bike course.  On the first turn, I see a rider who miscalculated the curve.  He ended up 10 yards into the trees. It is very different from the bike portion of a road triathlon. The course was full of single track sections, sand and gravel.   You are constantly thinking of what line to take and what gear to be in.  It’s intense.  I made it through the first 8 mile lap.  I was dead tired and now it was pouring! I totally under estimated how far 16 miles on a MTB was.

The second lap was dangerous. Because of the rain, my brakes were useless. I wrecked three times. During this lap, I walked my bike up most inclines. I broke my right cleat on mile 12. The next four were brutal.  I finished the 16 miles and limped into T2.  Everything is soaked!

The run was pretty uneventful. I ran through the course with little problem.  Even with all the crashes, broken cleat and rain, I have an awesome time.  Can’t wait for next year!

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April Member of the Month: Kurt Mellick

April 2nd, 2014 Newsletter Director Posted in General | No Comments »

KurtHow many years in Tri?  I think my first triathlon I raced was in 1991, so that is nearly 23 years ago now. I was working at an athletic club in Carmichael and someone mentioned to me about the Fleet Feet Fair Oaks Tri 4 Fun race series (this was more than 7 year before TBF’s first race in the area).

Do you remember your first Tri event? I recall there were very few bike racks at the race and the transition area was not in the parking lot at Rancho Seco (moved from Folsom Lake due to drought), but instead on the grass. Many athletes had to prop their bikes up agianst picnic tables or trees. It was also before wetsuits were popular triathlon equipment and most men did the entire event in just a Speedo, and maybe added a mesh singlet for the run. Cool huh!

How did it go? I can’t remember many details of that first race, probably because I wasn’t much of a swimmer (I’m still not) and I think things went downhill from there. I enjoyed the challenge and wanted to get better though.

What other hobbies are you into? Camping and Hiking with my wife, Christine, and two boys. Coaching Cross Country and Track & Field.

What goals do you hope to achieve before you hang up your wetsuit? Complete a few more Iron/Half Iron distance races., and see if I can improve my bike and run splits in the process.

Occupation?  Risk Consultant – Franklin Templeton Investments

Some little known facts about me?
1.) I love Pizza – and think it’s the best pre-race meal.
2.) I was a sprinter in college, running the 400 meters, and rarely ran over a mile at a time, and then only as a slow warm-up.
3.) I broke my right foot/big toe while racing the 2011 Run to Feed the Hungry 10K (@ about mile 4) and somehow still managed to set my current 10K PR.

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March Member of the Month: Chris Tucker

March 18th, 2014 Newsletter Director Posted in General | No Comments »

Chris

Photo by Scott Ligare

How many years in Tri? 12

Do you remember your first Tri event? How did it go? In 2002, there was a tri in Pymatuning State Park in eastern Ohio. I only had a mountain bike, so I put some slicks on and raced in the MTB division. I was DEAD LAST out of the water, and fell on my butt in the foot bath at the end of the beach run. But I got on the bike, rode across the lake, visiting Pennsylvania for the first time in my life (without ever setting foot in the Commonwealth), got back to Ohio to do the run and came in second. I’d have been second in age group too!

What other hobbies are you into? I’m a passably good rugby referee (excellent high-intensity fitness), and I’m gradually improving my 19th century high-water Victorian home in midtown.

What goals do you hope to achieve before you hang up your wetsuit? This year it’s all about Tahoe, my first IM. Next year I aim to qualify for the Boston marathon. And if I can keep going until everyone else drops out through old age, I’d love to do Kona. We can dream, right?

Occupation? I run the state of California for National General Insurance.

Little known fact about you? I’ve summited the highest point in 25 out of the 50 states.

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I Bought a Road Bike

March 10th, 2014 Newsletter Director Posted in STC_Blog, Training, Triathlons | No Comments »

By Michelle Reaves

The bike is probably my weakest of the three sports. It makes me very nervous! I have visions of falling, scraping all of my skin off and breaking my teeth. I don’t feel like I have very good bike handling skills so I don’t like other riders near me. For my birthday a few years ago my parents got me a hybrid bike so I could participate in triathlons. It’s been a great bike and even though I am ready, I am hesitant to move up from it.

In January I went on two of the STC coffee rides. I felt really good about the first one. I was the only one not on a road bike and not clipped in, and yet I was able to keep up with the middle of the pack. That was also the first time I had ridden with a group, ridden on the roads, and ridden that far. The next ride, for whatever reason, I wasn’t able to climb hills I had climbed before and I alone, was the back of the pack. Booth was the sweeper that day so we spent a LOT of time together chatting as he “Pooled” me, or as he calls it ‘’being touched by an angel.” He assured me that once I had a lighter bike and was clipped in, I would be able to keep up. Fingers crossed!

Aside from my general bike fear, getting a new bike meant shopping and I hate shopping, especially for something I know so little about. Lucky for me, Coach Tim really likes bikes so he and Rich Burns of Rocklin Endurance Sports worked together to find the perfect bike for me and my budget – a Kestrel Talon. When it arrived, Rich had it ready to go and he worked on fitting it to me. Rich filled me in on the plan to slowly get me going on the bike. I am starting with flat pedals while I get more comfortable with the gearing, etc. Coach Tim raised the handlebars so my back can adjust. My next purchase will be shoes and pedals so I can clip in, and when we think my back is ready, Coach Tim will mount the aero bars on it.

DSCN0068My first ride I made it 2.99 miles and managed to make the chain come off. The gearing is totally different than my old bike and I really don’t know what I am doing. I ended up walking my bike to a point that I could have my parents pick me up. It was such a disappointment and not the start I was hoping for. I took the bike into Rocklin Endurance Sport and explained what happened to Rich. He suggested we go for a ride together so he could give me tips and watch me so he could figure out what I had done.

Rich and I met up the next Sunday and went for a ride before he opened his shop.   I was actually able to make the chain come off again, which was good because we now know what I am doing to cause this to happen, and hopefully I won’t do it again. Rich assured me the bike isn’t that delicate and showed me what to do in the off chance I do manage to do it again. I am feeling a lot more confident after riding with him.

I got some final tips from some STC friends this past Friday night, and Saturday I hit the trail.  At one point I did exactly what I wasn’t supposed to do and made the chain come off AGAIN, but this time I fixed it myself and was able to continue with my ride. I made it just over 21miles!

 

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