Kingston is one of my favourite races and is therefore always a premiere race on my schedule. Maybe it's because it's the hometown race, maybe it's because it always brings out some of Ontario's best or maybe it's because I love the long but not long course feel of the distances. Nevertheless, one thing is for sure, for as long as I am racing triathlons I'll be making the trip on the long weekend to Kingston to do the long course triathlon. Last year, Kingston was my first long course race. This year my training was a lot more conducive to long course racing and I was excited to tear it up.
I had a bit of a tumble on my bike last Tuesday and wasn't quite sure how it would affect my race today. I'm not exactly sure how it happened, but I forgot to clip in on my left side at the start of a ride and slid off my pedal. I scraped up my side and hands pretty good, but the main problem was that my ribs on my left side got pretty beat up. This made it pretty difficult to swim and makes it difficult to breathe while I run.
Luckily I was able to do the 2k swim with no issues. The plan was to start out steady and maintain good form throughout the swim. My pace felt pretty good but I ended up being a minute slower than last year. I'm not sure why I am swimming so poorly this year but it is definitely a weakness I have to correct. It's a long race but it's tough to make up 7 minutes on the leaders out of the water. Pulling myself out of the water onto the dock was pretty painful on my ribs, so I entered T1 in a considerable amount of discomfort.
For the bike we had a headwind on the way out and a tail wind on the way back, which I prefer. I really like the 56.2k distance on the bike. It requires a considerable amount of endurance, but you still get to bike at a pretty fast speed. I was able to pass a few people and did the bike in 1:27:19 (~38.6kph); 30 seconds faster than last year, which I was fairly happy with.
My run was going to be the big question of the day. I have been running exceptionally well this year, but feel like I haven't had the chance to display this at races yet, and was determined to make Kingston the race where I showed what I can do on the run. My first 3 races this year (Woodstock, Guelph Lake, Welland) were extremely hot so my run felt like a jog. I had a fantastic run at Gravenhurst 3 weeks later, but went off course and ended up adding 2 minutes to my overall time. I was fit and motivated to have a big run at Kingston, but I was unsure how I would feel with my bike crash 2 weeks ago, especially after swimming 2k. Unfortunately as soon as I started my run I knew it wouldn't be great. I got that familiar cramp right under my bruised rib that I have been dealing with the past 2 weeks and didn't feel like I was able to open up during the run. Despite this, the run actually ended up going not terribly, but I finished the race feeling like I had tons of energy left that I wasn't able to unleash because my ribs were preventing me from running as fast as I could have. I ended up in 6th place overall behind some pretty fast dudes, so I have absolutely no shame there.
The weather turned out and this race was a ton of fun. Thanks to Multisport Canada for doing a great job at this iconic race, and thanks to LPC for providing a great group to train with leading up. I've got 4 weeks to heal up before Multisport Canada Wasaga Beach Olympic Triathlon and am looking forward to some solid training with LPC in the meantime.