Where to even begin? What do you say when training has been great, lead up into the race was good and you get an unprecedented 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep race night eve? And then you have a massive crap of a race...
I'm at a loss. Everything "should" have been great. I felt awesome saturday and even the swim was an improvement over LY at the longish swim at worlds. I had all of my super supporters there and although not over the top excited, was ready to have my way with a course that I had suffered on so badly last year. Scratch that, last year was a cake walk compared to the suffering for me this year.
I am not going to be Debbie Downer here, I was sad yesterday. Today I am hopeful that just as last year went so too will this year. I had a pretty poor showing in Vegas last year, in contrast to what I knew I was capable of and this year was no different. Hopefully just like last year, this will turn into a very good Kona!
So leaving what happens in Vegas here in this blog, the details are below.
I was SUPER pumped to be staying with BFF Kebby and another team mate from back home Willow and their men. Low key ladies, who I love hanging with make going to races fun.
I was feeling good up to the race and and race morning, I had the usual big bowl 'O (gluten free) cereal, a banana with almond butter, and a Big Gulp of cytomax. perfect! Now let's go race.
Swim: it was 83 degrees in the water and 85 when we started...immediately upon starting the swim, I remember thinking to myself, "good God I'm hot!", and not in the In Vegas at the club hot. Last year the swim was LONG and I was out in 32:40, which is about 3 minutes slow for my average. This year I was out in 31:30 so seeing that as I exited, I thought "OK, time to get to work on the bike, you are headed in the right direction for the goal".
T1: 4 minutes...it was long but this was 1 minute slower than LY...there goes my swim improvement!
Bike: I was watching my heart rate and it was pretty high for me and I was feeling it from the beginning. I took two bottles at each aid station, one to fill my bottle and the other to cool me off. From the get go, I felt like I was being cooked like a baked potato! Hot can't describe how I felt yesterday. I was dreaming of ripping my helmet off just to cool off a bit more. Those hills were never ending and I never seemed to be able to get and stay aero. My lower back was talking to me which isn't normal for such a short ride. Gals that don't normally pass me until the run/maybe not at all, were passing me EARLY on the bike. I did my best to say, no worries, it's still a long day, but pretty early on I knew it was not going to be the day I had hoped for.
Nutrition on the bike: 2scoops cytomax, 1 1/2 bags of Cyto energy drops, 3 Crank e-gels and 4 succeed salt tabs. Total kcal for just under three hours 850. About right on target...maybe could have had another gel at start of ride instead of waiting 20 minutes.
Run...can we call it that? I haven't moved this slowly (for me) on a run in years. 8:53/mile. There was walking, there we're tears, thoughts of pulling out ran through my mind. Again, queue people passing me still and my having a big ol pity party for myself on that first loop. Why is my body letting me down?!! Thankfully, Mark and Kebby were in strategic places on the run and were there for me every step of the way telling me to just keep moving, loads of folks looked like poo and to just gut it out and get to the finish line.
Around mile 7 I began to come around. The side stitches were going away and I was constantly "running" as opposed to running for a few steps and then walking. At each aid station I was taking double cups of coke, as much ice down my shirt as possible and then would rally for a few minutes. Ever feel like a mile is too far inbetween aid stations? This race makes me think that. And by my final loop, ice was no where to to found, they had run out of coke and the sponges were filled with hot water. SO glad I wasn't in a later start wave as it would have been even worse a bit later on. I was so hot, I had my shorts rolled down and my race tank doubled over to look like a sports bra. When I first started to roll my pants down, the guy behind me must have thought I was about to pop a squat as he was like "woah". Then when I tried to explain myself, he started talking to me in German. That was my lost in translation moment of the day.
I was very thankful for one gal on the run who when I was
Total damage? 5:30 and 40th place. 24 minutes slower than last year and 22 places south. I think it was overall slower than LY, but this was definitely a sup par day for me.
From here, we have fun, prep for Kona and put this day in the bank. A day to be called upon when other lows are happening and to tell myself that this too shall pass and I will get through. No quitting allowed. When the day is rough, you see the true state of your mental tool box and mine still needs a bit of work.
Thank you to all of my team mates, family and amazing support team for getting me to the line. I couldn't do it without Cytomax, TYR, Argon18 and Gray wheels.
See you all in Kona!