I thought maybe a race deserved a post here for once. Scheduled this race a couple months ago when I know I had the week of for vacation. Scheduling racing is NOT easy in residency. Was able to get 4 friends and colleagues to make the trip with me and it was a ton of fun! A quick and early note of appreciation to Without Limits Productions who put on a first class race in the face of a bit of adversity.
Given the awful weather I realized on Friday that I hadn't taken my tri bike on the road in 2 years. 2 YEARS! Friday I went out on the Cherry Creek Trail and could only stay aero for about a block at a time before my upper body was screaming. That was not going to work...
So I went out yesterday and did 30 miles with 3 x 10 minute zone 4 in aero position and things were slightly better. Sent a picture to a friend of mine for a position critique and his response was "You look really weird in that position". Awesome.
Last night I did a very formal carb loading dinner consisting of a lot of cheese and 3 bottles of wine between 3 of us. I find the 2am frantic wake up after having a nightmare that I'm dying of thirst aids in pre-race hydration.
Left for the race ridiculously early in the morning per my inner neurotic drive to never be late. Oatmeal wasn't sitting super well, but being my first race in 2 years I was nervous. And a touch hungover...
Notification was made 2 days ago that the swim was cancelled. E. coli levels were such that illness was all but guaranteed to anyone who jumped in the lake. This was the 4th race that I've done with a cancelled swim so I know the drill. Not being much of a runner it's always a big let down. And it would have been a phenomenal day for a
swim. Lake was like glass.
Racing in Colorado observation #1: 99% of the field, including those that could probably stand to lose 50-100 pounds, have sponsors.
Racing in Colorado observation #2 (also the same with racing anywhere): The more expensive your bike, shoes and kit the cooler you are. Or at least the cooler you think you are...
Run #1: I don't run well cold. My triathlon runs are always faster than my open runs. I was in the fourth wave and by the time we left there were already men back and starting the bike. The buzzer sounded and I immediately regretted the intervals from yesterday. Quads felt like rocks. I am also a very awkward runner. Have you ever seen that Friends episode where Phoebe takes up running? Kind of like that. The course is about 3/4 mile flat then a 1/4 mile hill. Going up that hill I already passed some people walking. Looked like a pretty good idea to me. I was in a state of utter hyperventilation at this point.
Coming back down the hill was better. Settled into a bit of a groove. Getting excited to get on my bike in my "weird" position. My time for the 2 mile run was somewhere in the 16 minute range.
Into transition I was sloppy. Didn't bother trying to start with the shoes on the pedals. It's been too long since I've practiced that move and I'd probably end up eating pavement. Took me an embarrassingly long amount of time to clip in, mostly because I was so anaerobic I couldn't seen straight.
Bike: The bike course is fast and flat and goes through a neighborhood. Unfortunately no good excuses to get out of the aero position for the entire race. I don't race with a watch, bike computer or HRM for anything shorter than ironman. I just know I'm going hard enough if I sound like a high school girl running from a serial killer in a horror flick. I guarantee I did not sneak up on anyone today.
It was a three loop course. Coming around finishing the first loop I was pretty sure I was in trouble. Muscles were screaming. Ah well, you don't race cause it's easy. The next two loops were fast. Passed by a lot of people with disc wheels. Passed a lot of people on hybrids. Had a second or two of doubt and fear as I made the turn back to the
transition area. I did 3 laps, right??? Total time 35 minutes (21mph).
Run #2: To me, running off the bike is SOOO much easier than running cold. Feels good. Feels right. But my lack of fitness definitely showed going up the second hill. The only thing that saved me was seeing all of the fast girls gaining on me as I made the turn on the out and back. You may be sponsored but you are not beating me, dammit! I'm quite sure the last mile took half a day. My lungs were starting to burn from the 1.25 hours of hyperventilation. I just wanted it to be over so badly. And then it was. Total time was I think 23+ minutes. I heard the cheers from the peanut gallery (Sankoff, Breyer and Jason) as I went across the mat. And I managed to not puke for once. Not that I didn't want to.
Total time 1:17, Unofficially 4/33 in the female 30-34 age group. So close!
Overall happy with the day. It hurt really bad. It's not my fastest race but I went as hard as I possibly could and have no regrets. And it reminded me how much I absolutely LOVE to race. Congrats to the rest of the crew who raced today. Great times had by all!
A pic of the whole crew after the race:
Me and Dr. Breyer before the race
Smashing it in San Antonio
6 hours ago