I ignored the number one piece of racing advice – never use anything new on race day – during my 2016 season opener. And, while I was never planning on “racing” Saturday’s Liberty 70.3 thanks to feeling off (hello, period headache), a brand spankin’ new tri bike and just coming off five weeks of no running, I’d be lying if I said I was pleased with my performance. When you have high expectations of yourself no matter what, it stings a little when you’re not where you want to be.
But, head down, do the work and onward! There are two more 70.3s on this summer’s schedule, and you can bet the results will be better :)
Inaugural outdoor ride on the new Argon.
Pre-race with Coeur Sports teammates, Michaela and Kendra.
Walking down the steps to Lake Rebecca.
Go, Team Coeur!
Swim // 35:27, 1:41/100 yd
So, this was my first open water swim since IRONMAN Wisconsin last year, and it shows. I’ve been working my ass off at masters since November, so I expected my swim time to be faster than it was at this race last year. Maybe the course was long? Maybe I didn’t swim as hard as I could have? It sure felt like I swam faster, especially considering I drafted the entire back stretch on the speedy feet of eventual race winner Diane Hankee – and, even more so that during runout up the giant hill from the beach I had to stop momentarily to almost puke.
Ready to swim in my new ROKA, which I proceeded to tear in three places. Boo.
Trying not to puke.
Nutrition: chocolate coconut Gu about 20 minutes before go.
T1 // 1:26
Nothing exciting here… got my bearings and it was go on the bike.
Bike // 2:37:02, 21.4mph
When coach gives me target watts, I hit them, always – except for today. Three minutes into the bike I knew those watts wouldn’t happen for two reasons: 1) my legs didn’t feel all there; and, 2) the new Quarq with a shorter crank needs some time to break in. Talk about humbling to feel like you’re pushing 200 watts to only have it register 160! So I settled in and told myself to do my best and keep pedaling.
The majority of the ride was uneventful with minimal wind, fun rollers, some fresh pea gravel and crazy heat + humidity (91F!). When I put my head down, I could feel it radiate up off the pavement, reminiscent of last year’s IRONMAN CdA 106F inferno. Around mile 30, oof… I was already counting down the miles until I could get off the saddle – something that rarely happens. Going from riding a road saddle for 2.5 months to riding aero on a tri saddle probably wasn’t the smartest decision. Nonetheless, the new Argon is fast and so much fun to ride (Di2 for the win!), and I know once it’s dialed in and I’m comfortable in aero again, watch out ;)
This is how I felt for much of the ride. Ouchie.
But, smiling always, even when it hurts.
Nutrition: 44 ounces PhD Nutrition raspberry battery +/-, 16 ounces water, two packs Skratch raspberry energy chews, two Core 4 Nutrition Charge! tablets.
For the second year, I purposely DNF’d this race – last year because of CdA and this year because I just started running again after a stress reaction. And, though it was weird to just stop and walk out of T2 – because ego! – it was a smidge easier thanks to the heat + humidity and my pounding headache.
High-fives to my rad team, Coeur Sports and supporting partners ROKA Sports, Smith Optics and Argon 18 – I couldn’t race without you!; to pure clean powder for keeping my NO levels in tip-top shape; and to Sound Probiotics for keeping me healthy. You all rule.
Onward to Toughman 70.3 on July 24!
Walking out of T2, covering up the tears of frustration and pain (I had to lift my right leg up to take my shoe off).
Race rehashing with friends + teammates before a stretch from Orthology.
My number one. Couldn’t race without him ♥ (he gets all the photo cred, too!)
Recovery of champions: Mexi Coke + potato chips.