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Toronto Island Triathlon – August 2011

I survived the Toronto Island Triathlon – 2011. This is by far my most favourite triathlon event in the GTA, but was one of the toughest races I have done due to the sub-optimal weather conditions (thanks to hurricane irene for the stronger-than-normal winds and water current). Nonetheless, this race has everything you could ever want in a race experience – gorgeous scenery, flat terrain, close proximity to the city, spectator friendly, spirited event, and excellent post-race food – thanks to the new race sponsors. I believe this is my 3 year doing this event and every year starts off with the same routine – prep for the race the night before, wake up ridiculously early to catch the first ferry over to the island, and set-up in transition. That is predictable year after year. On the other hand, I could not have predicted the race and how it would turn out until I entered the water and swam the first 100m. I had watched a ton of other swimmers go off in waves before me. I watched in agony as tons of swimmers went off course due to the waves/current.  The current/waves were worse than usual and so was the temperature. The race director/team did a great job of putting sighting markers on course (high green and orange buoys), but failed at providing swimmers with a landmark back on shore (they used to have a tall inflatable structure) as the entire shoreline looks the same and it can be difficult to sight the correct exit area. After I finished the swim, I was actually looking forward to the bike. The bike course was the same predictable 3 flat loops of 10km each. The bike course was affected by the winds – definitely slowed me down this year (34 vs. 31km/h – last yr to this yr). I took comfort in knowing that it was only 30k and that the run was to follow. The run course is 2 flat loops run on both grass and pavement. This is my strongest discipline and thankfully so. I had an excellent run off the bike and the cool temperatures provided the perfect running conditions.  This race experience proved to me – that no races are ever the same and things are bound to change from year-to-year. You just have to keep your chin up and try your best! I will be back next year with more resolve and spirit to erase the memory of this years performance 🙂

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