Last weekend I raced my final triathlon this season at Redman in Oklahoma. While this was undoubtedly, my most successful year in this sport, I came home from that trip totally spent. Everything hurt, including my brain from thinking so much. A sign of a good effort for sure.
The most critical portion of your success when you travel to a race is the people that help you along the way. I knew that this would be a little dicey, heading to Oklahoma, while school was in session. Thankfully, the Ryan was able to rearrange his schedule and be home and the kids were excited for three days of Ramen noodles and ice cream. There was a fair amount of planning, lists and arrangement of some serious babysitting along the way.
The second reason for my success, was the two people that traveled with me to help me. No joke, I have the BEST friends! Shaun put my bike back together and Tara drove all over helping me get checked in and race ready.
We arrived on Thursday and then Friday we met up with the Texas crew. Scott was racing the half with me and Charlotte and Susan were racing the full. We had lunch at a great sandwich place and headed over to rack our bikes and get everything settled.
Race day came quickly..the predicted temps climbed slowly throughout the week so it was nice and warm for race day. We did not have the winds that we could have so I thought the conditions were good.
The Swim: There were two waves of women, I went off the in first. We were behind all the men, which is always a bummer but such as life. The plan was to go out hard but hang with the girls from the wave and draft off some feet…
Sometimes the plan does not happen….the horn went off and we bolted off the front line…hard for about 400 yards and then..there was no one…I finally found another pink cap and we began our swim through all the previous waves…the swim was both crowded and long (I think). Somewhere along the way, I passed Scott…who had ripped his wetsuit right at the start. YIKES. The water was really too warm, 73 so by the time we were done I was ready to be out of the wetsuit.
As I headed out of transition….I tried to turn my Garmin on so it could find the satellite. I did not go on right away, so I figured I would get it on when I got on my bike. Once we mounted, I tried again and again..No GARMIN. I had started my Timex at the beginning of the race, I knew my swim was just shy of 30 min so I ran my nutrition off the Timex…and then I just got to ride. I do not LOVE data, so secretly I was okay with this. I lost my salt at mile 8, but luckily I had a few salt tabs in the bottom of my bento box
The course was flat for the most part with some smaller rollers, nothing crazy. I was actually not that worried about the Garmin. Sue had me ride my target watts in so many different rides that I knew what they felt like and so I went off of RPE. Scott blew by me at mile 8 or so…I told him I had no Garmin. I asked people every now and then what mile we were at so I could try to gauge speed and how long it was going to take me.
apparently, I had a tea party in transition. Really I am not sure what took me so long but I wanted socks on for the run and I needed to shove about 1000 gels in my pockets and off i went for the run
I LOVED this run course…it was an out and back two times. Most of it was along the water and there was a slight breeze…the last mile went inland and it was hotter and more stifling there. I thought the aid stations were well stocked and there were plenty of them. While it was not a run PR for me, it is slowly getting closer and this will be my focus this winter.
All in all it was a GREAT day with a 13 min PR for the distance. I felt solid throughout the whole race!
A FEW THANK YOUS!
Tara, Shaun, and Ryan – for making the trip happen…so much work on either end but it was worth it. Thanks for being my support system and keeping me smiling!
Sonic Endurance crew – I am lucky to coach and race beside some of the best peeps! Scott it was a blast and hanging out with the TX crew was a ton of fun.
Sue -It is not about one race but the journey, you have been integral in my success as an athlete this season and I am lucky to work with you.
Guys Bikes – seriously the best staff and service ever. Thanks Bob for continuing to be there every step of the way! Your team is incredible.