Crap. I would really like to write a lot MORE on here than just race reports! I write an awesome blog post in my head at least every other day but I just can't seem to get my act together to actually write it down. That's going to have to change. Not that you want to read about ALL of the random stuff going on in my life but this is about SO MUCH MORE than just racing and I would like my blog to reflect that. And I really enjoy writing! So I should do more of it before I have killed off any and all remaining brain cells...
Love sunrise in the desert!
Having missed out on Ironman Lake Tahoe because of the smoke and Silverman 70.3 due to sickness, I was pretty excited to finally race again after Vineman Full in July! That's almost 3 months of NO racing in the middle of the season. Yikes!
I was also a bit worried. After 3 weeks of being sick, training was finally going well again and I sort of didn't want to interrupt it for a race. Not with Ironman Arizona just around the corner! I was having fun biking and running* again and what if I wasn't going to have fun racing? What if I didn't even like racing anymore? Haha! Who am I kidding?!? I can't believe that thought even entered my mind! Of course I love racing! I was loving every second of the SOMA Half and I am so glad I didn't miss out.
*I am not even going to mention swimming. It's been a while since I have used swimming and fun in the same sentence...
None of the pre-race stuff went quite the way I like it to but that was ok. It was more of a soccer than triathlon weekend which meant logistics for 4 soccer games in 2 different locations and 1 triathlon were a bit challenging with 1 car but we managed. Only thanks to Karl, the husband, who pretty much took care of the kids and soccer stuff. The only bummer was that I missed all of the 7! goals Noah scored while also being goalie for 2 halfs. Yep. Proud mom!
Swim in Tempe Town Lake - Photo by Life Time Tri
Hotel was closer to soccer than triathlon and I like to be early to races, so the alarm went off at 3:30. Why am I doing this?!? Good thing Tempe is in the desert and I LOVE race morning when it's already warm by the time I get to transition!
This race had a few professionals and the lady at check-in the day before informed me that most of the other pros preferred to start with the first wave of men rather than our own wave. Fine by me. In hindsight, I should've asked how many female pros were going to race. (Answer: Only me. But I didn't find that out until we lined up at the start on race morning.) Then I should've requested to start in the first wave of women. But I didn't want to ask for any sort of special treatment and so I racked my bike among everyone else and enjoyed the camaraderie of strangers and friends. At heart, I am and always will be an age grouper. Let's face it: I am really NO different than they are.
If you just want the stats, here they are:
If you like some more details, here we go:
I am among those men somewhere! In a red cap front right. I think. Photo by Life Time Tri
Once I had waddled to the start of the line in my awesome Wetzoot, looked around for a second and noticed nothing but men, I was pretty sure I was the only female pro. Oh well. Same thing happened at Leadman Tri earlier this year and that race was a ton of fun! Worst case scenario: I get beat by an age-grouper for the first time since turning pro. Big deal. I always knew it was going to happen sooner or later and I wasn't worried about it.
Swim was rather uneventful except for a whole bunch of coughing. The cough is sticking around even now that I feel much better and is probably here to stay until March or so. Fortunately, I have learned to swim WHILE coughing and, although it's not fun, it works ok. Starting with the boys wasn't bad at all and I swam in a little group until the turn-around. Not sure what happened after that but I swam solo on the way back. Definitely not a great swim but, considering how crappy I have been feeling in the pool the last few weeks, I'll take it.
Bike course is not my favorite. Flat, a gazillion u-turns, and even more corners. But I LOVE riding my bike, so even on a so-so course I have a lot of fun on the bike! And the hamster in me doesn't mind 3 laps at all. As a matter of fact, I was a bit bummed I didn't get to go out for a 4th lap like I did at Leadman! I just can't get enough of my Fuji Norcom Straight!
I did manage to piss off a couple of guys that were blatantly drafting because I kept calling them out on it. I couldn't believe it! I have seen my fair share of drafting over the years but never have I seen anything like this! And I wasn't about to just sit there and let them do their thing. So at every u-turn I would yell something among the lines of: You guys are cheaters!!! At one turn, admittedly, I got a bit too close to the guy in front of me myself, so then they were yelling back at me. It wasn't pretty. And after maybe 8 miles of that I decided, while the distraction had been nice and all, I needed to get back to focusing on my own race. So I did... Until mile 54 when I realized that I was about to pass one of them. Solo. I came up with a bunch of snarky remarks to throw at him while passing, but then decided: What the heck. It's not worth it. I'd rather be friends. So I told him SORRY for yelling at him. To which he responds: I am sorry too. And gives me a big smile. Ok, so you are nice and cute. But you are still a cheater! At least until you tell me your story and convince me otherwise!
Thank you, Kerry Yndestad, for the photo!
Coming off the bike I was really hoping for a lead bike on the run. And I got one!!! It's SO FUN to have and, although I knew all along that I might not ACTUALLY win the race, I wasn't going tell the girl to stop. She did an awesome job! Thank you!
My goal was to run sub 7:20 pace. That's definitely not very fast but these legs haven't seen speed work for a while and I had no idea what they were capable of. So I am very happy with a 1:33 and 7:08 pace! Sure, it would've been nice to go sub 1:30 but I am pleased with how I felt. It seemed comfortably hard, my mind was in the right place, no rough patches, and I was ENJOYING the run. This gives me a bunch of confidence heading into Ironman Arizona in a few weeks!
Then I got to break the tape. Which hardly ever happens because either I don't win or there is no tape! Ha! Again, I realized that there might be faster girls behind me but what was I supposed to do? I am still not sure. So I acted as if I had won the race! Only to find out later that the awesome Cathy Yndestad had beaten me by a few minutes. Second it was. Which was a bit disappointing but I was still very happy with my race, so it didn't affect me much. It could've (should've?) been embarrassing but I choose not to feel embarrassed because I don't think there is anything to be embarrassed about! And if people think otherwise, well, that's their problem.
Cathy and I both agree that it would be nice to have an elite wave or an open wave where anyone contending for the title needs to be in. That would've made the race a LOT more fun for me and maybe for her too! And who knows what would've happened... Either way: Congrats to Cathy!!!
Coeur is the BEST!
There wasn't a lot of time to hang out or be social afterwards (or even go to awards, unfortunately) because I needed to bring the car back to the boys as soon as possible. I did, however, still manage to chat with some old friends, make some new friends, and get a picture with fellow Coeur girl, Bree, who WON the Olympic distance that day. Huge congrats!
Overall a great and very fun day at the races! I am SUPER excited for Ironman Arizona in a few weeks at the same venue! I can't wait!!! Coeur Sports just put up a helpful little course preview here, if you would like to check it out.
A huge Thank You to my fantastic sponsors:
Coeur Sports - The BEST in women's athletic wear
T3 Triathlon - My FAVORITE triathlon shop
Fuji Bikes - In LOVE with my Norcom Straight
Cobb Saddles - Most COMFORTABLE saddle ever
Osmo Nutrition - Hydration at its BEST