Tri Training for Bend’s Leadman 125: 5 months til launch

leadman-tri-bend-mountainI completed my first three-sport event last year at the Portland Triathlon. It took a lot of dedication, training, and guts to make it up to, and through, that day. The mental challenges were as bad as, if not worse than, the physical component. You may not remember, but my two brother-in-laws and myself were supposed to compete together, but I was the only one that made it to the event as they both broke their collarbones in separate bike accidents (one with a kid and one with a raccoon).

When that race ended and both of them (in their respective arm slings) congratulated me, we decided that our next challenge would be the Leadman Tri (125 distance) in Bend in September 2014. I felt good about it at the time, but I can’t believe we are now only 5 months away. And boy, do I feel unprepared!

For those of you unfamiliar with the event, it is held around the Mt. Bachelor area and features 3 distances: and 85k, a 125k, and the uber-amazing 250k. For the 250, participants swim a 5K in Cultus Lake, ride a 223K bike course around Mount Bachelor, and finish off with a two-loop 22K running course around Tetherow Golf Course with a finish in NorthWest Crossing. The Leadman 125 cuts those distances in half. The 85 shortens them even more. I did a post on the courses in early March, when they were first announced.

Now I have been putting in some solid miles this year, averaging right around 100 miles/month. I really don’t have any concerns about my running ability. Actually, at the Portland Tri last year, my run times placed me in the top 5th of times and I felt pretty quick despite my tired body. It is the swim and bike portions that give me pause.

Up until a few months ago, I was a 3 day/week swimmer with one brother-in-law. I was feeling like I was improving each day. However, real-life work hit causing me to be on the road for significant periods of time since February. When I am home, I am spending more time with my kids and am unfortunately ending up too tired to really get in a 530a swim like I should. My travelling is wrapping up at the end of May, so I think I will be able to fall back in line and get a solid few months of work in.

leadman-tri-buckleMy cycling ability is pretty average. Both brother-in-laws are avid and fast cyclists and I have no doubts that they will dominate me in this leg. We went for a ride last week and though they rode along with me for the majority of the time, it remains evident that they are doing this out of courtesy and could speed ahead no problem if they chose to. I have come to grips that my cycling won’t live up theirs, and I’m OK with that. I really do need to get in some more rides with them and maybe forgo some long weekend runs to make it (boo!).

Here’s to hoping we all make it to race day in one piece! Even though it will be nearly impossible for us, we are all striving for that amazing and elusive Leadman Tri buckle that is given to those with the following times:

Finish the Leadman 250 in under 11 hours and get a buckle.
Finish the Leadman 250 in under 9 hours and get a big buckle.
Finish the Leadman 125 in under 5 hours and 15 minutes and get a buckle.
Finish the Leadman 125 in under 4 hours and 30 minutes and get a big buckle.

Leadman Tri Bend
When: Saturday, September 20
Where: Cultus Lake
Register: Online here

Epic 85 $150

Epic 125
Individual $225
Relay Team $250
Active Military $125

Epic 250
Individual $300
Relay Team $300
Active Military $200

About Author

Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching hockey, going to as many breweries (618) and wineries (152) as he can, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010.