Well I have had a week to think about my race and it was all very fresh in my mind this morning when I decided to ride for the first time since racing.
Coach Paulo has given me some time to enjoy my folks who are still out visiting me. So with trips to NYC, and Atlantic City, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia,soccer games and football games....tours to the Statue of Liberty,kayaking,swimming,biking and other fun things this ....this has hardly been a recovery week.....but it has been filled with lots of fun and little training!
REV 3 race week started with a 10 hr drive to Ohio. We arrived in Sandusky Thursday morning. Things were pretty quiet but it was cool driving into the Cedarpoint Amusement Park and seeing where our race venue was going to be. What an amazing park...I have never seen so many large roller coasters.
Race week went so smooth and there was such a good vibe around the park. That is one thing about the Rev 3 races that I love. They have a warm feeling like you are among family. Seeing all my Trakker's peeps around, and the whole Rev 3 team was amazing! A lot of my friends were racing too which also made it fun!
All week I felt great and I really enjoyed the taper after having a big week of training. I was feeling very good about racing and had come to peace with the idea that I was going to race with low running miles.
Race morning arrived and we all gathered on the beach waiting for the sun to rise. It was a stunning morning and we were all happy as the water had finally calmed down due to a wind direction change. The water had been pretty crazy all week, like a washing machine.
My dad and I
One minute to go...
Us pro women all lined up anxiously awaiting the start. We were trying to figure out the course as the sun was coming up.
Soon the gun went off and we ran and dolphin dived for a long time. Shortly after we all started swimming, one of the pro girls was yelling help....it was confusing and a few of us stopped to check if she was ok. I then proceeded to swim hard to catch a few of the other girls who had not heard the screams. The next strange thing that happened was I was working so hard to catch my friend Lauren when I noticed that the kayakers told her not to go around the red buoy. Turns out when I reached the red buoy they told me that we had swam about 200 meters too far, to the second loop red buoy......AHHHHHH! I could not believe it. So once again I put my head down and swam as hard as I could to make up time. I felt good about my swim as I managed to catch a few girls in the second loop. My eventful swim was not over. At the second turn around I had caught up to one of the pro girls. I was just about to pass her when I got kicked so hard in the nose. I heard a crack and I thought my nose was broken. My nose was swollen and my teeth even hurt. I back stroked and breast stroked and contemplated the situation. But I had had this same thing happen on my very first Ironman in Lake Placid and I went on to finish the race. So with or without the broken nose, I once again swam as hard as I could to the shore.
I was totally dissapointed with the 1.09 swim........but put things into perspective as I knew I felt really great the whole swim and I felt totally fine as I ran out of the water.
Once on my Kestrel I reassessed my nose. It hurt like hell and it gave me an intense headache but thanks to Advil it definitely helped the pain. I had driven the bike course two nights before and I loved the course. It was pretty flat with beautiful apple farms and quaint little towns. This kind of course I love. Rev 3 had marked it very clearly and it was an out,two loops of roughly 35 miles, then a back section. This gives you riding both into the wind and with wind at your back. I knew the last 35 miles were going to be in our face so I did not want to push too hard too early.
I was feeling so good and I was very confident about my nutrition plan. Robert from First Endurance and I, had sat down a few days earlier to go over the perfect plan for me. I followed the plan to a tee....water first half hour, then 2 bottles EFS mixed with EFS liquid shot. At the 50 mile mark I had finished my nutrition just as planned and waited patiently for my replacement bottles at special needs. Losing a minute or two can save you later in the day by sticking to your nutrition plan.
The next 40 miles ticked by and I finished my next 2 EFS bottles pretty quickly. I think the heavy wind was making me extra thirsty. I started with my last bottle of water and EFS liquid shot and then sipped on Cera Sport for the remaining 20 miles. The last hour was pretty brutal wind wise and without any company on the ride I was really feeling it. I kept refocusing but my speed/power definitely slipped the last hour. Bike time 5hr 18 min.
I was thrilled to see the amusement rides in the distance and received a nice welcome back into transition by my folks. I then ran out feeling pretty good and ready to get the last section of this race over. I am always relieved and happy to start the run.
The first few miles went well and then I turned into the wind. It was like I was biking again....a big effort. My pace slowed and pretty much stayed even for the rest of the marathon. The course was flat and fast in sections with the wind at your back...but unfortunately my pace just stayed steady. I needed to finish and get the work done so I used all the energy from the great volunteers and competitors and pushed ahead. I ran to the finish ending up in 7th place in a time of 10hr 12 min.
I was truly happy to finish this race. This distance is so mentally tough and so many obstacles can get thrown your way...but you have to persevere and always challenge yourself...and push your limits. My achilles held up and I am so thankful for that!
Huge congrads go out to James Cunnama who won his first big IM distance race....and fellow PS athleteand friend, Lauren Harrison who had a huge PR race. My Trakkers teammates out on the course also were very inspiring. Lastly the Rev 3 team did such a great job out there cheering and working hard all day and into the wee hours of the night. A big thanks goes out to Charlie, Heather and Todd, Krista, and Carole and the whole Rev 3 Team! You guys are amazing!!!!!
After a few hours of rest a bunch of us headed down to the finish line to cheer the last competitors in. This is always a good way to laugh,cheer, cry and feel good about the whole day.
I was happy to learn the next day that I got 3rd Overall in the Rev 3 series. Pretty awesome! I am thrilled that I chose to race in all the Rev 3 races as each one was better than the first! This race series is here to stay and is well worth putting into your 2011 schedule!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
I have been slack about updating as life has been crazy. So before I update on Rev3 Iron distance race I wanted to fill in the time between my last post which was August 8th. (One month ten days ago. )
With a calf strain very much present I managed the week after I last posted to start building up my run mileage. My longest run going into Timberman 70.3 August 22nd was a 6 miler. Of course this for me was not a confidence booster knowing the stellar field of girls that always show up for this race. I knew despite the low miles that my fitness was good as I was preparing for Rev 3 Iron distance race and had been getting some good biking and running in.
In good spirits I headed out with Sydney to New Hampshire, picking up my parents at JFK, who were traveling from South Africa to visit with me for 6 weeks. What better than a trip to New Hampshire, some sight seeing, and a race on top of it.
My families presence kept things nice and relaxed and fun and I felt no pressure.
Race day came....and I raced with what I had that day. On the swim and bike I pushed hard but felt the big weeks of Ironman training in my legs. On the run I surprised myself with how good I felt and ran hard for a 1.31 split on some good hills. So I came away with a little boost of confidence that despite my low miles of running I still could run the distance.
With Rev 3 3 weeks away this was an important race for me.
We then all jumped in the car and headed back via Boston then New Haven for a little more sight seeing.