So recently I have raced a number of events including my first half iron race at Challenge Saint Andrews, the Timmins Heart of Gold Triathlon and the Multisport Canada Bala Triathlon. I have also made a big life decision resulting in a cross country move.
Challenge Saint Andrews was my first half distance race and I went into it confident in being able to execute the bike but slightly tentative about the run and swim. The plan was to swim strong and hopefully grab a solid pair of feet, then bike at 225W NP followed by a run where I was going out at 1:20 pace and tried to hold it. On the swim I executed well and held on to a group of 3 pro men through 900m. At that point a bad habit ive been working on shone through and I got lost but still had my best swim of the year swimming 30:34 in my Xterra Vendetta wetsuit. Then after a long 500m uphill run to transition I jumped on the bike and got to work. This run up was actually a struggle for me as my feet were numb from the cold water and I sort of waddled up the carpet. On the bike I went out at 233 watts and ended up fading a the end to an average normalized power of 223 watts. I think a big factor in this was that I pushed too low of a cadence with an average of 82. Furthermore although the bike was not that hilly some winds left over from the tropical storm that came through the day before definitely made me hang on for dear life a couple of times. I ended up biking a 229:45 on my incredibly comfortable Felt DA2. I have (will) attached a screen shot of the data below. Onto the run I had decided to wear socks and I forgot to loosen the elastic laces from when I run a 10km barefoot. This worked out for the first 10.5km where I went through on 1:18 pace. However, on the second lap as my feet swelled I began to get intense hot patches under my feet and sharp pains. This reduced me to a shuffle between 15 and 19km where I stopped, took off my socks and hammered home. Coming into the finish up a 500m hill I saw the 5th place pro up the road and hammered to try to catch him. Unfortunately he beat me by 4 seconds but I gave it everything I had being forced into the medical tent and given an IV to recover. I ended up running a 1:22. I 100% loved the distance though and am going to do everything I can to get back next year.
Nutrition:Waking up 4 hours before the start I had a bagel with jam and peanut butter and tea. I then sipped a bottle of Gu brew until the start finishing it off. I took 2 gels at 30 and 15min before the start. Onto the bike I had 2 200 calories bottles of Gu brew which I drank as well as 5 orange vanilla Roctane gels. In hindsight I would have liked to drink 1 more bottle but thats a lesson. Then onto the run I only took 1 Roctane gel at 6km and sports drink at most aid stations. For next race ill stuff 2 in my race suit and take them at 6 and 14km.
1 week after Saint Andrews I raced the Timmins Heart of Gold Triathlon. This being a home town race I was able to stay at home which was a really nice change of pace. I managed a win with a really solid bike with a normalized power of 260 watts. I definitely felt that on the run I still had accumulated fatigue from Saint Andrews but all in all in went well and it was really nice to see some faces I havnt seen in a while.
Then 2 weeks after that I raced one of my favourite Ontario courses at the Multisport Canada Bala Falls triathlon. This was an interesting test being 2 weeks out from 70.3 steelhead and being in the midst of a big training week. Thus I approached it as simply a hard training day to see what my body could handle with some accumulated fatigue. However it ended up going very well. The plan was to go out strong on the swim, average 255 watts NP on the bike and then play the run by feel. What ended up happening is I swam a poor tactical swim but still swam a pb, rode my first race in my Rudy Project Wing 57 helmet and biked over 40kph and 259 watts on a hilly 30km then tempoed a solid, fun 7.5km in my Skechers go run speed. This ended up getting me third place overall behind 2 amazing athletes. This definitely gave me good confidence going into 70.3 Steelhead where I’m going with almost a full taper.
Next up is
70.3 Steelhead on August 10th
Sprint Non- Draft World on August 29th
Olympic Non-Draft World on September 1st
Now that I’ve updated my recently completed races I’m going to announce a really big change for me. Ive decided to move to Edmonton for the upcoming season. This is for a number of reasons.
1) Triathlon: To have a training environment with other athletes around and a coach in town I believe will be a change which will correlate with improvements.
2) Schooling: I have heard really good things about the University of Alberta schooling. I ended up transferring to a slightly different program which will allow me to specialize in coaching.
3) My family is moving to yellowknife so I will be closer to them.
4) I just need a change in training environment as I have been doing a lot of my training here alone for 2 years.
I am really excited about this and I think it will allow me to optimize my training and make a step to the next level.
I really appreciate all the help I’ve gotten in Sudbury from Buddy Green of Northern Ontario Triathlon Squad who coached me for my first year here and still gives me some great advice, Phil Parker of Laurentian swimming who gave a lot of time to me over the fall and winter this year on my swim. James Holden who spent 2 months working on my swim technique 1 on 1, all the Laurentian University Staff and coaches, Allison Godwin who gave me the privilege of racing for Laurentian Varsity Nordic Team, Eric Leishman for giving me a great running partner and everyone else I missed.
I also wanted to thank my great and supportive local supporters who I will be leaving including Carman Construction, Duoro Roofing and Klohn Crippen Berger. Without your support I wouldn’t be here or be able to dream and plan to get up there.
Thanks for reading Devin Wittig