Age Group Nationals Race Report

I’m gonna start out this race report by saying I had NO expectations coming into this race. I had just come off the biggest weekend of Ironman Wisconsin training, and I knew my legs were pretty fatigued, even with a fair amount of recovery leading into the race. I also knew that there were going to be LOTS of fast girls here, who’s focus is primarily Olympic distance, and who are trying to get their pro-card. I just wanted to try to beat my best Olympic distance time so far. The last true Olympic distance race I had done was in 2010. I finished in 2:30:53. And although every course is different, and based on my swim time at that race, and where my swim was at, at the time, the swim course had to have been short, but this was the last “true” Olympic race I had to compare my times to. So, I just wanted to beat it, even if it was by a second. My second goal was to actually RACE the bike. I am still working on this, and this was a chance to practice RACING the bike.

Since I had flown into Wisconsin a whole week before to hang out with my family, train on the IMWI course, it made race day/weekend really easy. My parents live 10min north of the race venue, so that made everything even easier.

PRE-RACE

Friday – wake up – do shake out run…

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My mom and I then headed down to Discovery World for the pre-race swim window, to do a shake out swim where the swim is actually taking place.

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Picked up my packet, and then headed back home for a shake out bike ride with my mom.

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I was really excited to be racing in my hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I grew up 10min north of the city in a suburb called Fox Point. Milwaukee doesn’t really have triathlons, there are triathlons just south in Racine (Racine 70.3), there are triathlons out in other little outlets of Milwaukee, but not one in my true hometown. So, this was an opportunity I didn’t want to miss.

RACE DAY

My wave was not supposed to go off until 9:18am, but transition was only open from 5:30am to 7:30am. Bikes had to be racked the night before, so I really didn’t have much to do race morning. So, I woke up at 5:45am, left the house at about 6:45am, got to transition at about 7am, set up transition, and was good to go by 7:15am. Now it was time to WAIT for 2hrs. I didn’t mind waiting, per say, but it just increases your anticipation and anxiety race morning. When I wake up race morning, I just want to GO! There was a 15min delay on the start, as they had to make sure all cars were off the Hoen bridge, which is a part of a major highway. So, now my wave wasn’t going to start until 9:33am. Fortunately, it was a VERY pleasant day. Perfect conditions, if you ask me. So, it wasn’t too bad to wait and just chill out in the shade.

Swim – 1500m – 26:51 – 1:40/100yd – 68/170

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The swim was beautiful. The water temp was perfect, around 68 degrees. It was in an inlet, so there wasn’t much wind or much current to wrestle with. I started out hard, and just tried to find some space, I ended up on a girls feet, who was sighting pretty well, but I felt like I wasn’t pushing hard enough, so I passed her, and then found more feet. I started drafting off this girl, but this girl was making us zig zag like crazy, so I dropped her, and started doing my own thing. Unfortunately, I think I spent more time drafting, and deciding if the person I was drafting off of was going fast enough, and if they were doing a good job sighting, and whether I should keep following their feet, that I ended up going slower than I know I can go. Like A LOT slower. Judging by my Garmin 910XT, the course was a bit long by about 100m or I swam an extra 100m because I was following that girl who was zig zagging for too long, so according to my Garmin I swam 1:38/100yd. STILL, not the best swim, but it wasn’t a BAD swim either.

T1 – 2:35 – This pretty slow for me, I was struggling getting out of my wetsuit, pretty sure I forgot to put glide on my wrists and ankles.

Bike – 40k – 1:11:32 – 20.8mph – 54/170

Finally a good bike split for me! The bike had about 800ft of climbing in 40k. So, not a ton, and not pancake flat. Most of the climbs were steady where you could still maintain a good pace. I just told myself, like I do on the run “you are stronger than you think you are”. I just kept pushing. I got passed by a few girls, but I passed a lot of girls too. This bike course is UNREAL. They shut down all the roads, so there was no traffic at all. Plus, the waves were really spread out, so it wasn’t too crowded either. I LOVED the bike. I also bought a new aero bottle for my bike, and it doesn’t make any noise, and I’m not worried about my water bottle falling out of it’s cage. And I actually drank from it, because you just have to lean forward a bit and take a sip. I think it made a huge difference.

T2 – 1:40 – just threw my shoes on and off I went

Run – 10k – 47:36 – 7:40min/mile – 60/170

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My goal was to run 7:30min/miles – according to my Garmin I ran 7:35min/miles. That’s what I generally compare my progress to, because it’s the only thing that’s consistent for me. I wear it on training runs and races, and so I have to judge progress of it. So…based on off that, I’m not too bummed. My legs were just super tired, and this was all I could muster. It wasn’t even that they were in pain, they were just DEAD. It’s like I couldn’t get them going. So, I just tried to fight with them, and tell them that we are going to go as fast as we can, and that I really wanted to do 7:30′s. Overall, I’m proud of my run effort, given the fact, that I’m training for an Ironman, and the training is very different compared to training for an Olympic, and that I didn’t come in completely fresh, I’m saving my freshness for IMWI in 4 weeks!

Total Time: 2:30:15 – 38sec PR! – 63/170

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Am I happy? HELL YES! I accomplished my TWO goals. I RACED the bike, in fact that is where I placed the highest in the rankings. AND, I got a PR! So overall, I’m stoked on my race performance. I definitely want to come back and race here again next year and do even better! I HIGHLY recommend this race to anyone who qualifies next year.

I think the thing I loved most, was overhearing all the positive comments about Milwaukee. Most people have never been here, and everyone had such nice things to say. It warmed my heart.

4 WEEKS TIL IRONMAN WISCONSIN!

A BIG thank you to my parents who are the most amazing fans/sherpas in the world! I LOVE them to death, and I couldn’t do this sport without all of their encouraging words and support.

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Also, thanks to my friends Kelly, Lisa, and Claire for being the best cheerleaders ever! You girls rocked it!

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My friend Jason, also flew in from New York to race. We had a huge crew of us. It was amazing! We all hung out post-race at Claire’s lake house. It was the perfect way to end the day!

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The crew post race.

Post-race gnosh fest and mimosas!

Post-race gnosh fest and mimosas!

Beautiful sunset at the lake!

Beautiful sunset at the lake!

High School Besties

High School Besties

It truly has been a special time here in Wisconsin! Looking forward to coming back in just a few weeks!

San Diego International Triathlon Race Report

I had signed up for this race because tons of people I knew were doing it, and I had heard great things. It’s always nice to throw some speedy triathlons in there, to check in and see where your speed is at. I hadn’t done any tapering for this race, and in fact had had two BIG weeks of training going in. So, I wasn’t expecting crazy results. But, was just excited to put in a good solid effort.

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Standard race day braids.

SDIT is a 1000m swim, 30k bike, and a 10k run. Kind of an odd distance race, but I thought a short swim, and shortish bike, and a longish run, would definitely suit my strengths, or so I thought…

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Beautiful morning!

SWIM – 1000m – 16:07 (1:30/100yd) – 6th AG

This is RIGHT on point. My swimming has come a loooong way. I couldn’t believe that I finally had a good swim. When the gun went off, I stayed right with the front of the pack. My friend Jené had told me that our other friend Christine was a good swimmer, so I tried to stay with Christine. She was wearing a sleeveless, so it made it easier to keep her in sight. There was a girl between me and Christine, and rather than try to swim around, I thought I would just sit tight, and draft. So, I did, but then suddenly as we made the first turn, Christine was gone. Seriously? No wonder I felt like I wasn’t working as hard anymore. So, I quickly separated myself from the girl who’s feet I was following, and tried to chase Christine down, although I never ended up seeing her again. So, I focused on just swimming hard.

I think I’ve finally learned how to swim HARD. In master’s (which I go to 2-3x/wk), I push myself outside of my comfort zone. Chasing feet, or leading our lane, and having people chase mine. I have totally gotten comfortable going really hard in the pool. And I finally was able to translate that into the open water on race day.

T1: 1:49 – no major mishaps, got my wetsuit off, threw on helmet, shoes, and off I went.

Bike – 30k – 55:21 (20.2 mph) – 11th AG

All I can say is dang it. I really don’t know how to bike hard. It’s just the truth. When I “think” I’m biking hard, I’m really just “grinding”. That’s the only way I feel like I’m working. So, I need to work on this, because clearly that isn’t how you bike fast. Also, when I should have been tackling hills (p.s this course has 1000 feet of climbing in 18.6 miles), and getting up out of the saddle, I wasn’t. Scared? Maybe. I get up out of the saddle in training, when I do Torrey Pines Hill Repeats, but I don’t “tackle” hills, when I’m just out riding. I need to get comfortable with being uncomfortable on the bike. I need to push outside that comfort zone, just like I have done with swimming. Beth is going to have me work on cadence and tackling hills starting this week. Clearly need to take maybe some bike technique classes or something? I’ve always just functioned off fitness, but now, I think I need to learn how to actually ride one.

T2: 1:26 – racked my bike, threw on my shoes, and took off.

Run – 10k – 52:33 (8:29 min/mile) – 11th AG

The first two miles my legs felt DEAD! Seriously. I could barely move them. At around mile 3, they started to pick up, and feel better, but my stomach was starting to feel wacky. Oh no. Not good. This run, turned out to be somewhat disastrous. With a 3min pit stop, and just overall stomach issues. I was totally bummed, because at mile 3, I was running 7:30 pace, and I knew if I kept that up I would catch at least two girls in front of me, because I could see them. But, then suddenly, without any notice, it just went to pieces. Bummer. Somehow no one passed me, even with the 3min pit stop, so I feel very fortunate about that.

Total Time: 2:07:18 – 11th AG

I have a lot to work on. And most of that is pushing myself harder in training. Not being scared to “hurt”. I know how to do it in running, I’ve learned how to do it with swimming, now I need to learn how to do it on the bike.

Am I pretty bummed with 11th AG, and a 52:33 run. Yes. But, I’ll take it given the circumstances of my run. And without bad races, we wouldn’t know what we need to work on. So, I’m thankful for not having the race of my life on this day, I’ll save that for the BIG one coming up in 10 weeks. :)

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Post-race cuddle! It was FREEZING post-race. Who knows where that sun went when the race started.

Props to Jené she had a FANTASTIC race, and got 1st in our AG! Congrats

Side note: Crazy Story…

I went to this triathlon happy hour two weeks ago, and was meeting a bunch of new people. And then there was the typical, where you from, etc. I met this guy Chris, who said he was from Wisconsin. I was like, “me too! Where in Wisconsin?” He says, “Milwaukee”. “Me too! Where in Milwaukee?” He just so happens to have grown up in Fox Point, which is the same suburb I grew up in! We grew up 5 blocks from each other!!! Crazy! #smallworld. So, here’s a pic of Chris and I below after the race. Fun Fact: his mom even taught my bro in 2nd grade. So fun! (Chris also rocked it, and got 3rd in his AG!)

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Cheeseheads ;)

Boise 70.3 Race Report

Boise 70.3 = My 10th Half Ironman

Pre-race

My dad had flown into San Diego on Wednesday, and we road tripped to Boise. We got in on Thursday at about 4pm (mountain time). We had fun telling stories, and laughing, and of course jamming out to some good ol’ country music.

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We drove until we couldn’t drive any longer, stopped off in the middle of nowhere to catch some zzzzz’s…and then woke up Thursday morning and hit the road again.

When we got to Boise, we immediately started exploring. We went to Lucky Peak Reservoir to check out where the race start was going to be.

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Not a bad place to race ;)

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The water was soooo clear too!

The water was soooo clear too!

The water was a bit chilly, but because it was 95+ degrees, I was actually excited that the water was so cold. It was refreshing. After checking out the swim start, we went downtown to grab dinner. We found 10 Barrel Brewing, which is a company out of Bend, Oregon, and just so happens to be Heather Jackson’s brother’s brewery. Pretty cool.

Drinking some beers after a looong two days in the car.

Drinking some beers after a looong two days in the car.

We got back to the hotel and hit the hay. Friday morning…went to packet pick-up, and then headed back to the reservoir for a pre-race shake out swim, bike, run. It was hotter than hell! The water was about 58 degrees. To me – PERFECT. The water felt great, but on the bike and the run even on my shake out workouts, I could feel the sun zapping my energy. So, after the shake out workouts, I got out of the sun, and back in the air conditioning to conserve energy.

Friday's Swim, Bike, Run, shake out session. Yes, I biked in my swimsuit, it was that hot, and well might as well work on getting rid of some of those tan lines ;)

Friday’s Swim, Bike, Run, shake out session. Yes, I biked in my swimsuit, it was that hot, and well might as well work on getting rid of some of those tan lines ;)

Later Friday night, my sister met up with us. She had driven up from Fort Collins, Colorado. I was stoked to see her. I’m not gonna lie, I was impressed with the food in Boise. We ate at a delicious italian restaurant right downtown again. Perfect pre-race meal.

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RACE DAY!

Key Notes:

- Boise 70.3 starts at noon

- My wave went off at 12:39pm

- Transition closes at 11:45am

My mom and my sister!

My mom and my sister!

Swim // 1.2 miles // 38:15 // 1:49 per 100yd // 11th AG // 52nd Overall Female

After sitting out in the heat for at least 90min, it was time for my wave to hit the water. I was soooo excited to get in the cold water I cannot even tell you. I knew it was going to feel so good, and it did. It was 58 degrees. For me, it was PERFECT. My wave included the 18-24 age group, and the 30-34 age group. So, there were about 125-150 of us in our wave. The good news is my family counted white caps, and said I was 21st out of the water. I may have had a slow time, but I was pretty stoked about that. I’m used to being almost last out of the water.

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Highlights of the swim:

- It was COLD! :) I’ll say it again…I LOVED it!

- It was choppy. With the 20mph winds, it made for a VERY choppy and slow day out there.

- The swim was about 250yds long, which is why the times were all a little slow.

- The course is a clockwise triangle.

My thoughts during the swim:

Within 100yds I had my own space. I loved it. And the water was sooo clear. I just kept thinking the whole time how much I was loving it, even though it was choppy, and I had a few large gulps of the water. It was one of my favorite swims ever. I just kept thinking, I’m experienced, just keep pulling hard, and you will have a good swim compared to the rest of the field. Which, honestly, to come out of the water 11th in my AG…that is REALLY good for me. As I rounded the last turn buoy, there was a girl drafting off my feet. I didn’t mind at all, except that for the last 500yds, she was hitting my feet. She just kept hitting them. I kept thinking, you can draft, but you don’t have to be that close. Another highlight of this swim, is this is the first swim in a long time that I didn’t do breaststroke ONCE. Often, I get frustrated with the chaos at the beginning and I swim breaststroke to calm myself down. I decided it wasn’t worth it to slow down. And I need to work on pushing it on the swim. Even though my swim time doesn’t quite reflect it due to the choppiness and the longness of the course, I really tried to gun it on the swim. I almost wanted to stay in because I knew wind and heat awaited me. Seriously, I would have been happy to go around that triangle again.

T1 // 2:30 – nothing special here…got to my bike…threw my sunglasses and helmet on, and took off. This is a perfect course to leave your shoes on your bike, and put your feet in as you are riding. It’s flat, and then a slight down hill for the first 2 miles.

Bike // 56 miles // 3:02:47 // 18.38mph // 7th AG // 48th Overall Female

Within minutes, I could feel the heat. My coach, Beth, had sent me instructions before the race to push it on the swim and the bike. I tend to be conservative on both, and we wanted to see what I could do on the swim and bike, by really challenging myself and getting outside my comfort zone. So, I did. I didn’t look at my watch once, and just told myself, if your legs aren’t burning, and I mean BURNING, then you aren’t working hard enough.

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Bike Highlights:

- 20mph winds

- Having a headwind all but about 6 miles of the course

- Only managing to take in two bottles of First Endurance EFS drink. (I always put two scoops in each bottle, which is about 180 calories per bottle)

- IT WAS HOT!!!

- Average HR – 90% of my max

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My thoughts during the bike:

“Keep pushing”. “Everyone has to deal with this wind”. “Like mom said, the wind is your friend, not your foe today because of the heat”. About halfway into the bike, I tried taking my bonk breaker like I always do, and I threw it up. Oh no…this is NOT good. I couldn’t take in any solid calories. And I only had those two bottles of EFS. I managed to get both down, but that’s only 360 calories. And it’s HOT. I took water at every aid station, but there were only 3. So, to get my mind off the disaster that probably lay ahead on the run, I focused on passing as many people as I could. There is a point where you can see every single person ahead of you, after they hit the turn around, I started counting every female in front of me. There were 94, that I had counted by the time I hit the turn around. After the turn around, I started chasing them down. I ended up passing 28 women on the bike after the turn around. NOT BAD. It helped me keep my mind off the wind, and the fact that I felt nauseous.

T2 // 1:18 // Nothing special here. Racked my bike, threw on my sneakers, my soas trucker hat (which I never wear a hat anymore, but I needed to keep that sun off of me as much as I could), my race belt, and grabbed my EFS liquid shot, and I was off.

Run // 13.1 miles // 1:59:18 // 9:06 min/mile // 7th AG // 47th Overall Female

I headed out on the run, and within 1/2 mile I was feeling BAD. REAL BAD. I tried to take in a squirt of EFS liquid shot, but I just threw it up. After I threw up. I told myself I could walk for 10 steps, and then you have to suck it up and get moving. And so I did. The run was PAINFUL. I was in the serious hurt locker. I hadn’t felt this bad, since my Boston Marathon experience. I mean I just felt awful. The only thing I could keep down was water. I was grabbing ice and stuffing it down my sports bra at every aid station. Every time I would try to move faster, I would just throw up. It was NO BUENO. So, I settled and just told myself, do not let one girl pass you. This sucks, but you can do this.

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Run Highlights:

- IT WAS HOT!

- I threw up

- For the first time ever I didn’t smile once, or speak a single word. I could barely look at my family. It just seemed like it was going to take too much energy. I needed every ounce of energy I had to get through this run.

- Average HR – 90% of max

- The run course is beautiful, along a river, and is flat, and has some great shady parts.

In the HURT LOCKER

In the HURT LOCKER

Run Thoughts:

I told myself after mile 7, I could start drinking coke. I took coke at every aid station. It helped, but not enough. I think I was already just too deep in a mess, that coke was not going to fix my problem. But, I’m pretty sure it’s why I was able to keep running and not walk. I didn’t walk once after those 10 steps, and I’m pretty proud of that. And I didn’t let one girl pass me. Again, proud of that. It was a TOUGH day.

It was a TOUGH day. This picture shows exactly how I was feeling.

It was a TOUGH day. This picture shows exactly how I was feeling.

Overall // 70.3 miles // 5:44:08 // 7th AG // 47th Overall Female

Overall thoughts:

- To place 7th on one of my worst race days ever, I’m pretty happy with that. 7th is the highest I’ve placed at a half ironman. The last time I placed 7th was at Vineman in 2011 with a 5:08.

- I was pretty bummed that I had the run I did, and that I couldn’t keep anything down, because my motivation was high, and I knew I could have had a faster day. It just sucks when you feel so helpless.

- I think starting late in the day, set me up to get heat exhaustion. I’m highly susceptible to it, and have had it multiple times, and sitting out there in the heat waiting for my wave to go off, was no bueno.

Thank you sooo much for everyone’s encouraging words! You guys are amazing. I thank my mom, dad, and sister soooo much for being there. They are the BEST sherpas. They found me at least 6 times on the bike course, and I saw them at least 4 times on the run course. It was always a boost of energy when I saw them.

Post-Race //

Beer cures everything! Let me tell you this...I felt A LOT better after trying all these beers ;)

Beer cures everything! Let me tell you this…I felt A LOT better after trying all these beers ;)

We went back to 10 Barrel Brewing, and I wanted to get a taster. :) I was SUPER happy after this.

Post-race drinking fest photoshoot

Post-race drinking fest photoshoot

Sunday, it was time for a big brunch and mimosas!

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Best Mango Mimosa I’ve ever had!

Then, we rented bikes and went for a family recovery spin…

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One more night out on the town in Boise…

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My sister and I outside Bittercreek Ale House (where I tasted more beers :)

Thank you to Oakley Women and the Oakley Women family for all their support! And thank you to Soas Racing and Rehab United!

It was an amazing weekend with my family, and I can’t believe I have completed my 10th half ironman.

Up next: San Diego International Triathlon on June 30th.

Leadman 125 Race Recap

Truth is…I have been feeling sick to my stomach, about the bombings in Boston. And for the past two days, I couldn’t think about anything but the people who were injured or killed. Or how many people I know who were running it, and how close they were to it. Sending lots of LOVE to Boston.

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So, there was no way, I could even think about posting about my race recap of Leadman, Monday or Tuesday, but I think I’m ready…

Here you go:

Leadman 125 – April 14th

2.5k swim (1.55 miles), 109.5k bike (68 miles), 13k run (8.1 miles)

Tempe, AZ

Pre-Race

Included a lot of shenanigans. Literally.

Packing up Night Rider and Kiddo with Jené

Packing up the kids “Night Rider” and “Green Machine” Little did we know we were about to enter a homemade sauna (apparently my car’s AC is dunzo :()

We left at noon on Thursday, stopped at Whole Foods (obviously) for lunch. :) Jené took the first shift, as I had work that I needed to tend to, and yet, “girl talk” ended up happening anyway. We drove for 6 1/2hrs straight, and not once did we play any music, nor did either of us nap. Yes, we literally talked for all 6 1/2hrs. #typicalgirls

My driver ;)

My driver ;)

When we arrived, we hit up CVS for some sunscreen, etc., but we were a little delirious. So…this happened…

Checking out potential new race goggles ;)

Checking out potential new race goggles ;)

Then this happened…

Must haves...wine and dark chocolate acai berries

Pre-race party must haves…wine and dark chocolate acai berries

Then we really got going, and this happened…

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ok ok ok…bed time happened eventually…

We got there early because Jené was covering the USAT collegiate nationals. Which was pretty amazing to watch. Not gonna lie, I teared up seeing all the excitement of all the teams, and teammates cheering each other on. It just warms my heart, when I see people supporting others, and being a part of a team. It’s just super cool.

I grabbed lunch with my friends, Anabel and Elizabeth.

Orange Table was AMAZING! Definitely will go back when I'm in Tempe for IMAZ in November. :)

Orange Table was AMAZING! Definitely will go back when I’m in Tempe for IMAZ in November. :)

Shake out run…#twinsies ;)

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Practicing our bike mounting skillz ;)

ok ok ok…enough with the pre-race fun…on to the race…

Pre-race warm-up run with Jené and Anabel.

Pre-race warm-up run with Jené and Anabel.

Swim

Distance: 1.55 miles (actual distance 1.81 miles)

Time: 50:28 (pace based on actual distance 1:35/100yd)

Recap:

I woke up revving to go. I wasn’t too nervous, because I really had no expectations for this race, not just because of the odd distance, but because I really just wanted to test my fitness. I didn’t care about placing. I just wanted to check my nutrition plan, experience Tempe, since I’m doing IMAZ in November, and see how hard I could push.

The swim course was a rectangle. It was a wave start, and my wave started at 7:12. The sun was up and it was shining like nobody’s business. We hit the water, which was balmy. Seriously it was 68. Swam out to the buoys for the in-water start. I placed myself in the middle of the pack. Which I decided I really hate. I’m not the best swimmer, but I like being at the front. I would rather have people swim over me and into my feet, than me trying to navigate through others. Anyway, honestly, I was pissed off for the first half of the swim. Every time I looked up to sight, I couldn’t see ANYTHING, because the sun was soooo friggin’ bright. That was super annoying. And then, I was annoyed, because you can’t see anything in the water. Seriously, you can’t see feet in front of you, I swam into three people breast stroking a few times, and got kicked in the ribs. No bueno. When I turned the corner, I was relieved to not have the sun in my eyes anymore, but I still was annoyed at swimming right into people, because I couldn’t see them. The water is seriously that murky. But, I’m soooo glad I experienced the swim, because I will be prepared for IMAZ, and hopefully will be less frustrated and annoyed since I will know what to expect.

Anyway, I didn’t really have a plan for the swim, except to just pull hard every stroke. And so I did. My time technically sucked, but when I saw that the course ended up being 1.81 miles not 1.55, then I was happy. :)

T1: 2:13 – nothing special – they had wetsuit strippers which I always love :) Threw on my bike shoes and took off.

Bike

Distance: 68 miles

Time: 3:29:35 (19.5 mph)

Recap:

When I got on the bike my quads felt like bricks. They were burning, and we weren’t even doing much of anything. The bike course was 4 loops with LOTS of turns, and u-turns. There were 5 legitimate U-turns on every loop. That’s 20 u-turns. It really did slow down the pace a bit. But, I didn’t mind to be honest. I like the four loops and all the turns, it kept you entertained the entire time. There wasn’t really a dull moment, because as soon as the sprint and Olympic distances hit the course, it was pretty crowded, and there was some navigating, but definitely made for an entertaining ride. It was nice to see the competition to, and see how far they were ahead. It took me the whole first loop to warm up my legs. The first loop I averaged about 19.2mph, loop 2 19.5, loop 3 19.8, loop 4 20.3 (according to my Garmin). The good news is my HR stayed the same the whole time, so I guess my legs just took a while to warm up? But, good to know that my effort was the same but my speed increased once I settled in. Makes me think that maybe I really could have pushed and went 20.3mph the whole time, if I was doing just fine at the end.

Nutrition: 2 bottles of First Endurance, EFS, 1 bottle of water, 1 bonk breaker, and 1 “squirt” of EFS liquid shot wild berry

T2: 1:48 (dropped off the bike, threw on the run shoes, and took off)

Run

Distance: 8.1 miles

Time: 1:09:29 (8:32 min/mile)

Recap:

Let me start off by, I do not do well in the heat. Never have. I have had heat exhaustion a few times growing up, and so I always get nervous racing in the heat. My stomach always starts to get nauseous, and it sucks, because my legs want to RUN! And this run did not disappoint. By mile 3, I was nauseous, and pretty much throwing up in my mouth (graphic, sorry). I had never taken coke in at races on the run, but I had heard great things, and at this point I had nothing to lose. So, there was coke at the mile 5 aid station, and I decided to down some. MAGIC!

Within seconds, literally, it felt like someone had put jets on my feet. My stomach settled, and I was running! Unfortunately, in an 8 mile run, 5 miles is a little late to feel good, and to try to chase anyone down, but it was great to figure out that my body can take the heat, if I just drink some coke. It is now my new addiction/obsession. My last mile was sub 7, and I felt great. So, was I happy? YES!

Overall time: 5:33:32

Sprinting in to the finish

Sprinting in to the finish

Post-race with Jené

Post-race with Jené and my new obsession

More of my new obsession

More of my new obsession

Post-race party time! BRUNCH! Eggs, toast, potatoes, ham, and a side of apple cinnamon pancake please :)

Post-race party time! BRUNCH! Eggs, toast, potatoes, ham, and a side of apple cinnamon pancake please :)

eh...one more won't hurt...

eh…one more won’t hurt…for the 6 1/2hr drive home

The coke was so magical, that I was able to put this together with Jené…

Next up is Wildflower!

Desert International Triathlon 2013 Race Recap

Pre-Race

My friend, Jen, and I woke up early Saturday morning, and left Cardiff at 6am, in fact I think we were even 5min early, due to the fact that we both are morning people and love to be on time. haha. So, we packed up the bikes and bags real quick and headed out to the desert. We got there at about 8:30, exactly a 2 1/2hr drive, but then we couldn’t get to the race site, because roads were closed while the sprint distance race was going on, so we headed to IHOP (where I haven’t been since probably high school) for a good hearty breakfast. We both got the “Healthy and Fit Two x Two x Two” – 2 whole wheat pancakes, two eggs, and two strips of bacon. It was the perfect balance between sweet and salty.

We then headed to the race site, to pick up our packets, and then head out for our long rides that we needed to get done. I had to ride for 3hrs, and Jen, 5. We decided on a route – Box Canyon Ride.

Box Canyon Ride

There was a steady climb, and a bit of a headwind which made for a fun day ;)

The view coming down from the canyon was breathtaking.

Jen caught me taking a pic of the view...

Jen caught me taking a pic of the view…

After my ride, I headed to the “swim practice” at the race site, while Jen went out for another two hours. I always love getting in the water at the race site before a race. I just feel more comfortable on race day. So, I swam about 700yds, just to get a feel of the temperature of the water, which was perfect! And, put my wetsuit on for the first time since SuperFrog.

I met up with Dawn, who is also on Team Soas, and pro triathlete Rob Lea.

I met up with Dawn, who is also on Team Soas, and pro triathlete Rob Lea.

I was feeling good after my workouts, but hungry. So, while I waited for Jen to finish up, I headed to the grocery store to pick up an Odwalla, a Chocolate Milk, and who knows why, but I bought a lunchable (GROSS!), but it tasted so good. haha. I’m not sure why I bought it, or ate it, I probably haven’t had one in years, but seemed like a good idea, and it was.

I headed back, picked her up, and we went to our hotel. We were a little nervous when we saw the sign:

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But hey, we just needed a place to lay flat for a bit, no need for the glits and glamour for one night of sleeping. As long as there were beds, and a bathroom, and a lock on the door, we were happy. :)

Chipotle was for dinner (this tends to be a typical pre-race meal for me for some reason), and it didn’t fail.

There's a first time for everything ;)

There’s a first time for everything ;)

RACE DAY!

Pre-race sunrise - NO FILTER...It was unreal.

Pre-race sunrise – NO FILTER…It was unreal.

Breakfast – Almond Cherry Chunk Bonk Breaker and water – ate it about 1hr before the race start

During my warm-up jog:

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Seriously, one of the most scenic races I’ve ever done.

Pre-race with Anabel, who was 3rd in our age group!

Pre-race with Anabel, who was 3rd in our age group!

Swim: 22:06 (I’ve heard different distances for the swim, so let’s go with 1400yds) – which is an avg of 1:35/100, which would make perfect sense, as that is what lane I swim in at master’s.

I LOVED the swim. I usually hate the swim, but I knew my swim has come a long way, so I was actually excited to see how I would do. I still feel like I could have gone harder, but it was a huge improvement. I felt like my siting was great, I drafted off a few feet, and I have gotten so much more confident in my swimming ability which made for a more enjoyable start to the race. :)

Bike: 1:09:00 (24 miles, avg. 20.8mph)

It was a perfect day for a bike ride. We had some great cloud cover, so it didn’t get too hot. I took in 200 calories on the bike from my First Endurance EFS Liquid Shot (flavor vanilla). The bike is SUPER flat. Some roads were a bit bumpy. It is too loops, and I played cat and mouse with this one guy, which kept me pushing. Loved it. We had some headwind, but nothing obnoxious where I was getting frustrated or annoyed. I definitely feel like I pushed it as hard as I could on the bike. Although, every time I finish, I always wonder if I could have gone harder. Again, major improvement, and it’s just the beginning of the season.

Run: 43:42 (6 miles even, so they say on the site, I think it was even a bit shorter than that, but I averaged 7:17min/miles)

Overall a rockstar run! The run was two loops around the lake we swam in, and it was totally flat. We ran on some dirt trails, and I had to dodge some rocks here, and there, but overall, I felt really strong on the run. I paced a few people, which was kind of fun, as I was feeding off their energy, and felt the pressure to stay at my pace, because I definitely didn’t want to get passed. haha. I took in the rest of my First Endurance EFS liquid shot, which was 200 calories. I definitely feel like I rocked my nutrition. It’s one area that I feel like I’ve gotten down, surprisingly.

Sweet photo by Tyler Olson. My first badass professional photo during a race! Thanks :)

Sweet photo by Tyler Olson. My first badass professional photo during a race! Thanks :)

Total Time: 2:18:34

4th in AG (25-29)

AND a 12min PR! Even though the course is super flat, I’ll take it. There are always discrepancies with Olympic distance races, and I know the other two Olympics I did, had their own discrepancies in accurately measured distances. So, I’ll take it! :)

Post race:

Pool Time at the Esmeralda Hotel in Palm Springs with Jen, her husband Mark, and Keith who won overall!

Pool Time at the Esmeralda Hotel in Palm Springs with Jen, her husband Mark, and Keith who won overall!

And of course the bikini was accompanied by one of these…

Post race adult bevvie is a must!

Post race adult bevvie is a must!

Jen and I post race. Jen got 2nd in her AG!

Jen and I post race. Jen got 2nd in her AG!

So besides the awesome weather, the 12min PR, and the awesome scenery, I also had a BLAST!  It was so much fun to race, and put swim, bike, run together, and see what I had in me. Now it’s time to get back to business, so that I can have just as much fun at Wildflower in May.

Coronado 10k Race Report

I flew in late Saturday night. My flight got in at 10:18pm, and I didn’t even get my bags until about 10:50pm, then I had to go pick up my car at the parking garage that was off site. I didn’t get to my friend Hannah’s until 11:30pm, and didn’t fall asleep until midnight. Between my late night Karaoke venture in Colorado, travel and little sleep before the race, I was creating a not so great recipe for race day success. I already was starting to come down with a cold too (P.S I haven’t been sick once since moving to CA, apparently all the travel has finally caught up with me). It was no bueno. I woke up at 6am, race was at 8am, fell back asleep, and woke up again at 6:30am, and started to get ready. Already, my throat was killing me, I was exhausted, and my legs felt dead. But, I told myself, it’s a 10k, it’s just fun, go out and give it your best shot, and that will be the best you have today given the circumstances.

vday race

 

I look mega tired in this photo. Hannah and I before the race. I then took off to warm-up. My legs felt pretty tired, not gonna lie. And my motivation was you can sleep all day in your bed if you want after this race.

So, the gun went off, and I started out strong. I remember thinking after mile 1, I totally forgot to have any water this morning. Damn. The race is super flat and fast. And I was thinking my goal is to just carry the same pace I did two weeks ago in the Cardiff Kook, or even come in a second faster. I was doing alright. Here were the splits:

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The 7:45 split killed me. Not sure what happened there, I think it was pretty windy on that mile, but still. So, I believe I ended up averaging 7:27min/miles and finished with a 46:30 which isn’t too shabby, and not too far off my run two weeks ago given the circumstances. Well I get to test my 10k speed off the bike in two weeks!

Oakley Align Bra

 

Since the race had a Valentine’s Day theme, I rocked my pink and white Oakley Women’s Align bra. I had a lot of ladies asking about it at the race, and after the race on facebook and twitter. You can find it here. I then grabbed a scramble from Seaside Market, went home, put my feet up, ate, hot shower, and took much needed nap.

Super stoked to get back to a routine, and kick this cold!

This medal is pretty rad for a 10k!

This medal is pretty rad for a 10k!

Nature Rocks and the Cardiff Kook 10k

I LOVED this week! Seriously. I may have been tired. And it was my fourth straight week of training without a rest day, but this week rocked! My week started out with this…

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Seriously, the sky was unreal. It looked like a water color painting. For some reason, when nature is so rad, like in this moment, it just makes me super grateful for life :)

I also did a run along the coast and got to see this…

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It was just such a peaceful, beautiful week to be outside…

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Thursday night I met up with some friends to celebrate some birthdays, one of which was my coach’s! I just love how triathlon social gatherings start early and end early :) It’s the best.

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Beth and I at Beachside celebrating her bday!

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Beth, Me, The LEGEND – Mike Rouse (who just ran 36 miles for a friends 36th birthday), and Tatiana

Then Friday, it was up early for Master’s swim at the Y. And boy did Hux have a workout planned for us. I seriously thought I was going to throw up. We did the following for the main set:

25 fast, 25 fast (which ended up being 50 fast), 100 easy, 50 fast

25 fast, 25 fast, 100 easy, 100 fast – repeat the 25′s and the easy 100, followed by a 150 fast at the end, then 200 fast at the end, then back down the pyramid 200, 150, 100, 50. All I know is I was CHASING feet, and I was pretty sure my arms couldn’t pull another stroke after this workout.

Friday night, I seriously fell asleep at 7:15pm, and I slept all the way until 9am Saturday morning. Tired much? But, I LOVED every second of snuggling in my bed, and closing my eyes felt soooo good. You know that feeling when your eyes start to burn, and then you close them, and it’s like a relief. I love that feeling.

Saturday, I went for a 3hr ride along the coast. I was gonna go inland and do some climbing with a group, but my legs were tired, and I knew I was racing the next day, so I kept it simple and just rode the coast. I’m sooo HAPPY I did, because I was very fortunate to see FOUR different pods of dolphins on my ride. I couldn’t believe how many dolphins were out playing. I stopped twice to just watch and enjoy. Dolphins are by far my favorite animal, (although monkeys are a close second), and I can’t remember the last time I saw dolphins off the coast.

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Unfortunately, the iphone zoom sucks, so you can’t really see the pod of dolphins, but I shot one of them coming to the surface for a hot second. The water is NOT this blue here in SD, I wish it were. But, I made it this blue so that the dolphin stood out, and to make the photo pretty :)

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The view of the ocean from my ride.

I headed out for a short shake out run, and then it was time to head to the master’s swim party of the year. I was super excited to hang out with my new lane mates, Jene and Jenn.

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Lane 5 ladies – Jene, me, and Jenn. Jenn won “hottie” of the year award.

Today, I woke up, had my usual pre-race “meal”:

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Bonk Breakers are my fave. I ALWAYS have one before I race. Although, I always change up the flavors.

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New shoes for the first race of 2013. Saucony Cortana. LOVE it!

Let me preface how this race went with, I have not done a straight 10k in probably 5 years. I knew it was gonna hurt. I had no expectations. I was actually expecting to see 8min/miles on my watch. I was sore, my legs were tired, and well, I haven’t done a single speed session pretty much since September. So, this was gonna be interesting. I remember thinking, just go hard, and whatever pace that is, deal with it, you will get better as the season goes on. The first half is mostly downhill, and the second half is all uphill.

Screen Shot 2013-02-03 at 8.42.34 PMNot soooo bad. Lots of improvement to be made. I like thinking…I can only get better :) The best part though is I ended up getting 2nd in the 18-28 age group! Who knows how that happened, but I’ll take it!

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Beth, me, and Katya. Congrats to Beth on a new PR! Rockin’ Oakley :)

Then quickly showered, changed, to go get interviewed for a documentary that is being made on my brother. My brother has a crazy life, a crazy story, and I’m super pumped for it to get told, because ultimately it is a story about never giving up on your dream. Inspiring.

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Then met up with Beth and Jene for a recovery swim, and then it was time for some SuperBowl bevvies to wrap up a solid week!

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Guess who ordered the Bud Light? Yup…the Wisconsin girl ;) Gotta have a beer OR mimosa when watching football.

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Thanks everyone for a solid and fun week of training! I’m BIG TIME looking forward to my first rest day in a month on Tuesday:)

Finally! Tri Indy Race Report!

This should be an interesting race report.  My body was/is still recuperating from the half ironman I did a little over two weeks ago.  It’s interesting, my body feels fine but I could easily sleep all day!  Anyway, I headed down to Indianapolis Saturday morning.  It was pouring outside for most of the drive which made for a slower trip.  It should have taken about 3hrs from Chicago, and instead took about 4hrs.  This was fine on the way down because I just jammed out to some good country music, and since my sister’s car doesn’t have air conditioning it made for a cooler ride.  I didn’t have to put the windows down which was nice.  Side note: since Scott (my bf/private professional photographer) couldn’t join me, I’m lacking on pictures right now on this race report until I get the race day photos of the company that was at the race.

If you missed the preview to this race report read this first: Tri Indy

Kim, Jay (her husband), their little baby girl, and I all woke up at about 5am, and got ready to head down to the race site.  It was interesting seeing everyone’s race morning rituals.  I had my usual peanut butter and honey sandwich, and they each had oatmeal and coffee.  The caffeine in gu’s and power gels are enough for me, so I never have any coffee.  I’m super sensitive to caffeine, so I have to be mindful about how much I have.  When we got to the race site they prepared their bikes with their race wheels, and I stood around pretending like I had a lot to do to prepare, haha.  I really was standing their wishing I had a tri bike and race wheels.  I was super jealous!

As I entered the transition area, all I saw where tri bikes and race wheels.  I thought to myself, “Really?”, “Seriously?”.  There were more tri bikes and race wheels at this race than at Racine 70.3 I did two weeks ago, and this was an Olympic distance race!  Yes, I know it’s a lot about the person on the bike, but I know I would be faster if I had a tri bike and race wheels, if it weren’t faster people wouldn’t buy them.  I have officially decided I need both of these things after this race.  I headed to the swim start and like usual hopped in the water to let my body get used to the temperature.  It was wet suit legal, yet only a few people were actually wearing them because the water temperature was actually pretty warm about 75 degrees Fahrenheit.  So, I opted to not wear a wet suit, although if I could do it again I think I would have worn one.  Even though my body did warm up after about 200 yards.  It was another slow swim for me.  I was thinking about how excited I am to do master’s swim class on Monday!  It also felt like one of the longest swims ever, and I was so happy when it was over.

I then headed off on to the bike and like usual felt in my element and was very excited to be pedaling!  I pedaled my butt off, I would try to keep up with people who were passing me on their tri bikes with race wheels, but it was almost impossible!  On the other side of things, I was passing everyone who was on road bikes:)  The roads were awful!  Lots of cracks and pot holes and we had to go over terrible railroad tracks multiple times!  There was lots of potential to get a flat, I was very thankful to not get one.  The bumps caused a lot of people to lose their water bottles, or some people’s chains came off, no joke.  Made for an interesting bike race.  It kept me on my toes.  I went through about half of my pack of power bar gel blasts on the bike, I drank about half of my water bottle and half of my gatorade bottle.  I felt good heading out on to the run.

The run was my favorite part as usual!  It was a beautiful well paved run, with some ups and downs but mostly flat.  It seriously was perfect!  I held a good pace for me, sometimes I wonder if I could push myself a little more, but I think it will just take time and experience for me to know just how fast I can run off the bike and have plenty of juice for the whole run.  I sprinted as hard as I could the last 200 yards, and I don’t know maybe that’s why my chip didn’t read at the finish line?  haha…if only that were the real reason.

Stats for the Race:

Swim: 32:25, 2:09/100yds, 253/463

T1: 1:13, 47/463

Bike:  1:13:49, 20.2 mph, 289/463

T2: 1:00, 60/463

Run: 46:37, 7:30, 99/463

Total: 2:35:04, 167/463 Total

Age Group: 8/27

So, you are probably wondering if my chip didn’t read how I crossed the finish line how did they calculate my total time, and my run time?  They asked me what my run time was.  Most triathletes use a watch during a race, so it was a safe bet that I had my run time.  It was surprising that they asked me if I knew my run time, my pace, or if I saw the clock when I crossed the finish line, but I guess that was the only way they were going to get those stats.  So, there you have it.  Not the best race, but it was fun to get my motivation back after Racine, and to race again.  I probably would wait at least 3 weeks before I race again next time after a half ironman because this week I’m absolutely exhausted.  Like I said, I probably could sleep all day every day this week, and because I feel this way, I know I haven’t fully recovered from the 70.3.  I have to keep reminding myself that as much as I love the intense training, and I’ve been fit my whole life, I have never put this many hours into training, ever, and my body has only been training like this since May.  I’m sure people who do Ironmans and half Ironmans year after year, their bodies usually adapt and they become less tired than the first year or two that they trained.  I’m hoping that next year, I won’t be so exhausted as frequently.

Next race is Branson 70.3 September 19th!  I’m getting super excited to get back into some intense training here the next few weeks!