I finally feel like I am back from my training/racing hiatus. I have really enjoyed the last two races I have done and I am mapping out my plan for 2014 (it may seem early but my plan require a lot of time).
That’s right, I am ready to tackle the Ironman again! I had so much fun being a Sherpa for Quadrathon at Ironman Arizona and that race is a good one for me to do (close to home and plenty of training opportunities); if all goes well I will be volunteering this year so I can sign up for next year! It is amazing the amount of planning and forethought it takes to do an Ironman.
In order to get in shape for that race I need to start planing now. So here is the bare bones plan so far…
- Summer 2013 Tour de Big Bear (70-100 mile bike ride in the mountains near Big Bear California)
- Summer 2013 Tiki Swim (2.4 mile ocean swim) in Oceanside California
- Fall/Winter 2013 Half Marathon (to be determined)
- Spring Marathon 2014 (to be determined, suggestions welcome!) – Hoping to do something in Aprilish
- July 2014 Vineman 70.3 – got guaranteed entry by doing the Monte Rio Olympic Tri in June 2013
- November 2014 Ironman Arizona!
I know it is early to put it all out there but I find that makes me a little bit more accountable!
I had so much fun at the Monte Rio Olympic Triathlon at the beginning of June that I quickly signed up for another one that was close by in Ventura (30 miles away). My friend Leo also wanted to do the race so that was as good enough reason as any. This was where I did my first sprint tri in 2012 so I was very comfortable with all aspects of this race. Quadrathon and I came up the day before for packet pickup and I slipped (pulled) on my wetsuit for a quick test swim. I need to remember to do this for all races because it really looses up the suit for the next day.
So we drove up race morning and got to transition about 6:30 (a little later than many other people). When I found my racks they were pretty full. I did my best to find a spot but some of the other girls were not racked very well. I ended up in an argument with a couple girls because they didn’t want me racking my bike because there was no way for me to fit in and not have my handle bars facing the same way as one of their bikes. They had taken up a lot of space (3 bikes in the space for 5, ALL their transition stuff laid out NEXT to their bikes. I tried to argue that they had taken up too much space and one of them should switch their bikes but they wouldn’t back down. I was shocked. I had never experienced such rudeness at a race. I ALWAYS make space and have switched my bike frequently to accommodate another racer. Whatever… I found a new spot and got set up, got on my wetsuit and looked for my Sherpa (Quadrathon). But I have to admit the whole thing put me in a bad place. I don’t like confrontation like that. (it really was an accident that I knocked one of their helmets off as I moved my bikes but I was smiling on the inside a little).
Stuart and I made our way down to the water so I could get wet and warmed up a little. The race ended up starting about 20 minutes late because they were waiting for the ambulance. The swim is two loops and you have to get out in the middle and run over the timing mat. I stayed far to the left on the course for much of the swim so I could avoid the swimmers. I would much rather swim a little long than get caught up with others. Swim went well except for a little seaweed. I was out and on my way to the bike.
The bike is pancake flat and for the Olympic you end up doing three loops. Because of the looping and a simultaneous sprint I was having to pass a lot of people. Good for my confidence but I spent a lot of energy passing people. I was able to stay aero for most of the ride and I was very aware of my heart rate and my cadence. The ride was going very well.
I cruised back into T2 to start the run and I was very worried that I had burned too many matches on the bike and was going to blow up on the run. I started running and had no idea what my pace was. My goal had been to run and 8:45 pace since I had run a 9:00 pace at Monte Rio. When the first mile clicked off at 8:43 I was very pleased. After another 1/2 mile I settled into the run and felt great. I even mustered up a nice kick at the end (and was complemented on it by another racer) and finished very strong.
After the race we grabbed some food then grabbed our stuff and got out of dodge. Stuart had a 4 hour ride to do so he was riding home so we said good bye to him and we were out of there. Overall I was very happy with the race. I was in control and pushed myself and that is all I can ask for right now.
For the results by division click here (female, 35-39)
Swim 28:29 (1st in my AG) (click here for Garmin data) (discrepancy between the race time and my Garmin is because there was a long run up the beach before you crossed the mat into T1
Bike 1:20:04 (click here for Garmin data)
Run 52:30 (click here for Garmin data)
Total 2:45:22 (6/15 for my AG)
HUGE thanks to Stuart for all the great pictures. I had hundreds to choose from! <3U!
I use social media to socialize. It has put me in touch with many like minded people who share a common interest. I have met my best friend and my soul mate through social media. It is a fun place for me.
Now I do realize that social media is a place for business as well. Or a place to spread your message or beliefs. And while social media is an open place where many different people can come in and out of your circle you don’t have to accept everybody if you don’t want to.
Case in point…Darin Armstrong. This person has requested to follow me many times. I have accepted his follow request and then I get a message asking for a follow back. I find this rude. I don’t want a super busy Twitter feed. I don’t need 1000 followers and I can’t follow thousands of people. It is overwhelming. He then sent me and email and a comment on my blog asking for the follow back. I have deleted his comments and denied his Twitter requests multiple times. I finally am so irritated by it that I am writing this post.
Darin, I am sure you are a nice and knowledgable guy and you do good work. But you are not the person I am on Twitter or blogging for. Good luck in your life but I am really not the person you want to follow.
So recently my partner and I were in the market for mountain bikes. We had each spent the better part of the last two years on road and TT bikes and we were both looking for a change. We hit all the local bikes shops in town looking for the perfect bikes. We rode a bunch; Trek, Giant, Scott, BMC, etc… Then we hit up a small shop in Camarillo (about 20 minutes from where we live). They had Orbea’s. The bike was great don’t get me wrong; but what sold me was the shop. They took five extra minutes to get my contact information and then sent me an email that day saying they hoped we would be coming back. NONE of the other shops took the time to do this. A couple of them just came off pretentious and nobody offered that type of service. It was the fact that this shop, US Bikes, took the time to say thanks for looking that made the sale.
The reason I write this is because the guy who helped us with the Mountain Bikes just called me to see who we were doing with the bikes. Little did he know I might be in the market for a new road bike… 🙂 It is worth it to add that extra personal touch now a days.
I did an Olympic Triathlon last month and had a great time. I even did pretty well! One of the reasons I think I did well and had fun was because I had zero expectations for myslef. All I wanted to do was put forth my best effort and not walk! I think because there was no expectation for a specific finish time or placing it really took the pressure off of me and I just enjoyed the day.
My 2011 year of racing was awesome! I did 2 70.3’s (both under 6:00), I qualified for the Boston Marathon with a marathon PR of 3:34, and I completed a trail 50K. I felt invincible after that. I thought I could only keep getting faster. But my body disagreed with me. Specifically my IT band. Then I crashed my bike. Then I barely finished my first Ironman. Then I did a 70.3 in over an hour slower than the year before. It was not a great year for me racing wise.
I got very discouraged and just tried to maintain some level of fitness. Almost all the hard work that I had been doing for the 3-4 years preceding just disappeared. This became very evident when I tried to train for the Boston Marathon and my body couldn’t handle it.
So I took a step back. I have been trying to train around 6 hours a week and hit all three disciplines if possible. And within the disciplines I have been mixing it up quite a bit. I am hoping that this and the fact that I have NO expectations will help me get back to where I was.
I am racing this weekend. I have no expectations except that I will finish strong and have fun.
Motivation for racing has been pretty low ever since I did Ironman St. George over a year ago. Injuries and over training had caught up with me and I just didn’t really care about it or even need it any more. About 2 weeks ago I did an Olympic distance triathlon up in Sonoma California. I had so much fun! And I didn’t even do that bad! When we got back I decided to sign up for the Olympic distance version of the first Tri I ever completed, the Breathe of Life Tri in Ventura California. I also went back and looked up my results from my first ever Tri. Not to shabby for my first time out!
*first post from my iPad mini.
So let me catch you up a little bit on where I have been for the last couple months…
Had IT band issues and pulled out of the Boston Marathon (still feel very lucky for that)
Bought a house with my partner in all things, Quadrathon
Bought a mountain bike and started hitting the trails
Finally got some motivation back to get my a$$ in shape
Then all of the sudden we realized we had a race coming up
that we had signed up for months ago. Neither of us were very well prepared but for some reason I was pretty excited to do an Olympic distance tri. After spending the last couple years doing longer distance events, an Olympic sounded perfect!
This race was a new race in the Vineman series and was up in Sonoma on the Russian River. If you have never been there I HIGHLY recommend it. Great place to race and visit! Back to the race. We drove up on Friday but got to the hotel late because we stopped and visited with some Facebook/Twitter friends on the way up (so glad we stopped!). Saturday was spent working in the morning (things have been very busy at work lately) and then we made are way out to the course to check in and drive the ride and run. After all recon was done we headed back to the hotel for some rest, dinner, and packing.
Race morning came early (I kind of remembered one of the reasons I wasn’t doing this much anymore) but we got up and out and to the swim start. We had bought the VIP entries so we had great parking (and guaranteed entry in to the Vineman 70.3 next summer). We didn’t have a ton of time to goof off so we set up and got to the swim start. Stuart started one wave ahead of me so the plan was that I would pass him on the swim (my strength but not his), he would catch me on the bike, and then we could race together after that.
Swim started and I was off! I swam hard and had a good swim. I saw Stuart as I passed him but just kept going hard. The water was pretty shallow and there was a lot of walking by some of the racers but I stayed in the water the whole time.
I got out of the water and walked up to transition. The distance to transition was really far and the path was very rocky so I took my time. My new wetsuit came off sooooo much faster than my last suit and I was on my bike in no time. I have NOT spent anytime on my Tri bike in the last couple months so I wasn’t really sure how it would go. Luckily the mountain biking was paying off. I was still getting passed a lot (something I am used to) but I felt good and by the end of the ride I was passing people! I kept waiting for Stuart to catch me but I didn’t see him until I was a couple miles on the way back from Jenner. At this point I started to get excited that I might be having a decent race. I love you Stuart but now it is every racer for themselves. If you want me you better come get me!
I got into transition and thought I had ridden a 1:20 (about 10 minutes faster than I had hoped I could ride it). I was thrilled! I got out of transition ASAP and got on the run. This was my chance to finally use my super awesome Garmin 910 XT and all of it’s cool features like multi sport with transitions. It seemed like it was working fine but when I looked to see my running pace there was no distance. Later I will find out that when I transitioned I actually was transported all the way to the coast of Africa! (known bug in the 910 after using multi sport with and open water swim)
Anyway, the run was really flat and very shaded; it was perfect! I did my best to run hard but stay in a comfortable place. I used the mile markers and the elapsed time to monitor my pace. I want to run a 9:00 mile pace and I was doing that for the whole run. I finally saw Stuart again a mile after the run turn around. He looked great and told me to keep hauling. I just kept moving and tried to pick it up for the last 2 miles (Wish I knew my splits but since I was running in Africa it was hard to tell!
I made it into the shoot and finished strong. I was thrilled. I had no really idea of my time but I felt great about how I had completed each leg feeling strong! I would have been happy with something between 3:00 and 3:30 so when I saw I did 2:54 I was thrilled and I was even more thrilled with 9/34 for my AG.
Here are the details and data
On our way back down we met up with a couple more Twitter/Facebook/Dailymile friends (so glad we made time to do this!)
I had a great race and two days later I signed up for another Olympic distance here in Ventura. I race again in two more weeks!
So life is busy but good. I have never been happier and I promise to try and get back to this blog a little more frequently.