USA July 2013
I’ve been fortunate to spend the last few weeks training and racing with the Super Kate and GMan. The plan for ‘my holiday’ was to race Lake Stevens 70.3 one weekend, and then do Tri at the Grove, an Olympic Distance race in Oregon the following weekend.
I met Kate in Denver immediately after her 2nd place finish at Muncie 70.3. The following day we spent 12hrs driving from Denver to Boise. This allowed me to have 4 days to taper in Boise before we all left on Friday for Lake Stevens which involved another full day of driving. Adding to the excitement of my first overseas race, was the fact that the pro list included big names like Crowie and Meredith Kessler… it was a novelty to see them wandering around. Saturday was a busy day, registering and getting familiar with the course. It soon became obvious that the bike course is brutal… there was relentless climbs, fast descents and it was generally more technical than I was used to (a problem when I’m not that good at turning my bike!)… I was out of my comfort zone.
The expectations I had for my race went from achieving certain goal times to ‘getting off the bike in one piece’. I’m not proud to say that most 70 year olds descend faster than I do! Bike handling is something I need to work on. Visibility on the swim wasn’t great, but fortunately for me there was an underwater rope which you can follow between each buoy. The bike course was picturesque when I wasn’t watching the 70 year olds pass me on the downhills. I think I was so relieved to get off the bike without eating dirt that I didn’t stop running. It’s nice to have some legs that are willing to run! I was excited to hear that SK had managed third place and Guy 7th in a stacked field.
After the race we left for Seattle and spent a few days there before heading to Eugene Oregon, the home of the famous runner Steven Prefontaine. It was great to see the ‘Pre’ tourist spots, and hear the tales from the locals. It took a few extra days for my DOMS to subside… my quads hated me. We did something everyday to get the body ready to go again 5 days later. Before I knew it we were on the start line again. This time, I found good feet on the swim and actually felt a bit tired on the bike despite the course being a lot flatter. Similarly I had tired legs on the run, but it was nice to know I didn’t blow up completely! I was surprised to take 2nd for my AG. SK made 1st place look easy (3 races in 3 weeks for her!).
We celebrated an action packed few weeks back in Boise with some great dinners, a few cocktails, plenty of laughs and a few pieces of chocolate (I went 50days choc free prior to hitting the US – a miracle!). Huge thanks to SK and Gman for having me tag along. We covered 3500km and crossed 5 states. Now I’m looking fwd to getting ready for Mandurah 70.3, Challenge Melbourne and IMNZ.
Happy training :)