Posted by: stefanycritelli | June 28, 2011

Tupper Lake Tinman

(Picture Disclaimer: Not from Tinman – this is from Musselman last year. Tinman would’ve been cloudy with rain!)

Another whirlwind of a weekend! I finished up at school and hit the road by 1:00pm on Friday afternoon. The car was packed and the bike was racked. Oh, the bike with the new Shimano Dura-Ace c-50 race wheels!!!! Driving to Tupper was not exactly fun. I hit no less than four rain storms! I think it was following me. In hindsight,  I should have put the bike inside the car, I kept thinking about it the whole ride!

I got into town about 6:00pm and headed to packet pick-up. I then met Greg and Amanda at the motel (or shall I say cabin) and then the three of us headed to the pasta dinner. We got back to the room and set up some stuff but then hit the bed early, I think it was still light out and if I forgot to mention it was pouring!

The alarm went off at 5am and I got up to take a quick shower and have breakfast. It was pouring…still! I headed over to the transition early as I wanted to get tires checked and filled. Normally I would do this task myself but I don’t know I just felt like I wanted a “professional” to do it! I set up transition and found Mark (friend from BTC). We hung out and got ready for the swim start. I did my 1/2 bar one hour before and then a gel 15 minutes before race start. I was the second Tinman wave (8:15am). As always I surveyed the buoys and tried to mentally navigate the course. The water temp was great, maybe mid 60’s. Sirens went off and I just started swimming! That’s what I do. Maybe I should go out faster, but I like to settle into my rhythm early on and just try to stay with it. Pretty good swim for me – no concerns, some slight navigation issues but nothing crazy. I had no idea of time because I didn’t have my watch, but later found out it was a 48:54 (2:18/100 yds) good for a 70.3 swim PR!

Transition was fine – maybe a little longer than I was hoping but got in and out in 3:39.

Bike – love this course! Well paved roads and an out & back on Route 3. Did a gel as soon as I got started. Nutrition throughout the bike was spot-on! Finished all three bottles (2 carbo-pro, 1 perform). I was passing a few and getting passed by a few riders in the first hour, which is normal. Some riders were passing on the right! Really!!! Apparently not well-versed in USAT rules (or common sense). Where was the Ref then? After the first hour I was averaging 18.1mph, did I mention it was raining? At one point I had to take off my glasses because I couldn’t see. Another time the rain was hitting me in the face, it actually hurt!.

I hit the turn around (28 miles) at 1:32 – I was well on my way to a bike split PR! With the bit of tail wind on the return I was hoping to get this time under 3 hours by a minute or so until…mile 43. I heard something and then I felt it, a flipping flat rear tire! Right away I was like “shit this race is over I can’t change it, not the rear tire!” I remembered the Vittoria I carry on every race but have never used. (I wonder if there is a shelf-life for this stuff because I have had it for over two years). I rushed to just pump the stuff into the tire (I don’t even know if it went in) and then immediately fired up a CO2 cartridge to add to the pressure. Of course, it went everywhere but in the tire! At this point (maybe 3 minutes has gone by) I feel like I am losing it. A gentleman rode by and asked if I was alright and I said probably not. He turned around (yes, even in a race). I told him no, I would be ok this is a race. His response was “we are all out here together!” I love him (I think his name was John but spelled Jean maybe french Canadian?) So anyway he helped with another cartridge and after two more attempts we seemed to have it so off he went and I followed. All together, it was about a 7-8 minute loss of time. I know knew I wouldn’t go sub 3 on the bike, but could still have a respectable PR from Musselman. Everything held fine until mile 53.5! We slowed down due to the Harley convention of riders so traffic was tight and I felt like I was losing pressure and sure enough the tire was. I could see the transition so I just kept going. I wasn’t completely flat so I figured it was ok because I hadn’t lost a lot of speed. I dismounted and ran through the mud puddle to my spot in T2. My bike split was 3:08:30 (17.8 mph). Still a 9.5 minute PR!

Other than the guy next to me who so nicely hung his wet suit to dry on my bike rack number (which is why I couldn’t find it!) T2 was quick – 2:33.

Started the run and it was sunny and warm – what a crazy day of weather. Still not knowing my swim time I noticed the finish clock said 4:17 and I was wondering if that was from the start at 8:00am or just for the start of the Tinman at 8:10. Anyway, I realized that if I do well on the run I was going to net a big PR. Mary wanted me to get the first mile under my legs and hold the HR and pace steady from there. My first mile was a 10:04 (which is pretty nice for me). I felt good so I kept everything steady. My HR was hovering between high Zone 2 and low Zone 4. I ended up with an average of 158 Zone 3. There was really no part of the run I was not liking. I met a few people along the way and had a good time. I grabbed powerade at every aid station and some water to throw on my head! I did a total of 6 shot blocks. In hindsight this may have been a little light on nutrition, but I went heavier on the bike so that helped. At about mile 11 or so my stomach got funky after the last gulp of Powerade so I skipped the last aid station. I was running with a guy from Amherst at this time and slowed up a bit so I could let out a little whizpopper  and not be linked to the lingering effect! Then I caught back up and felt great!. When I realized that I was going to finish this half marathon in ~20 minutes better than Musselman and snag a huge PR I was psyched to kick it up for the finish!

Final Results 6:17:49 (PR by 33 minutes over Musselman)

AG 19/30

After the race I saw Greg and Amanda and congratulated Greg on an outstanding finish. I hung out with a few people and got my Lake Placid Brewery Moose something beer! I went to my cabin , showered and headed to April’s to spend the rest of my weekend!

Next up…Tri in the Buf Sprint, some solid training weeks, a taper and then…LAKE PLACID 2011 in exactly 26 days!!



  1. Woot!! Congrats on a great race AND a PR!!

  2. Great Job Stef!!! COngrats on your PR!!!!

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