August 25, 2019 - This is my last triathlon of my season as I had started racing early in the year and now it is rest, recover, and family time. So I really wanted to end on a good note, with no regrets. Nailed it!
Our morning started out at 0400. The triathlon is held up at Priest Lake Hills Resort and this would be the 10th year. It is, however, a 2hr30min drive from home though which means coffee, roadtrip, date day! Adam was to be racing the MTB sprint tri and myself, the olympic. I was to race at 0800 and Adam 0900.
The swim was going to be great! It is a one lap course with calm and warm waters. I know my swim fitness has dropped recently as I have been more tailored to my bike races, but I was going to have fun and push it. I like the challenge of racing OW this year becasue I feel that I am more confident and don't hesitate when I get around people. I hold my pace and stay calm. I pushed it on this swim, taking note of my breathing and stroke. My arms were on FIRE! They burned from the strong pull. My siting was spot on, but sadly the bouys were pushed out a bit which made the course long. I pushed through, kept swimming up until my fingertips touched the sand. Stood up and booked it! I heard Adam hollering at me!
T1 was awful! I had to run up a good hill and distance just to get to transition. I went to sit to strip my suit which was not coming off easily. Helmet clip wasn't stretching enough so I had to take it off to reevaluate, then the sunglass visor popped off! WTF. I put my helmet back on and said screw it to my visor. I ran out like a bandit!
I know I am solid on the bike. I didn't know where I was coming out of the water, but I knew I can make gains on the bike as long as I stay smart and mind my power. Sadly there is chip seal on a cpl miles of the course. The course begins with a good amt of uphill, getting out the resort. I push a comfort Z3-4 going up the 2 hills, already making gains on some cyclists! I was taking note of my HR which was 172. I am feeling nauseated; is it due to HR or some of the water I drank on the swim? I knew I had to relax, calm down, and settle in. I took a sip of my UCAN and I burped it right back up so I knew I wasn't going to eat/drink on this ride. But, I'm passing people consistently. Feeling solid and smooth. HR coming back down into mid/upper 160's. I am just 1.5 mile away from the turn around and I am seeing return riders. I'm looking for females, and none yet. It's about 0.75 from the turn and there is the lead female who has gone Pro this year. We smile and offer words of encouragement! So fun! I turn and now I know who is behind me and how far. I knew the #3 girl is a solid runner, so I was going to hold my pace on the bike as I was comfortable, continuing to make gains, giving me a bigger gap on the run. I hold steady on the bike. I avg 22.2 mph on the bike. Running into T2. Transition is much smoother; rack bike, drop helmet, socks, shoes, and I run! I put on the rest of my gear running out of transition.
Stomach is still unsettled. I hear bubbling sounds on the LLQ. At this point, it is a mind game as I have lost quite a bit of fitness with my running. I just hope I gave myself a good enough head start. It is a gradual uphill on the way out, but at least it is an out-n-back course. I know my HR is elevated, but I wasn't going to look and sike myself out. I knew I had to try and push it as it is only 6 miles. The hills hurt. I wanted to walk so bad. I was getting frustrated as I couldn't hold a fast pace at all! So frustrating! I am about 3/4 mile from the turn around and the lead female is coming at me! Again, positive words of encouragement and a high five! She is so badass. It is my turn at the turn around, I analyze who I pass. #3 is not that far behind me, and I know she is a runner. I try and hold her off as long as possible, but I just didn't have a lot in my tank. She passes with 2 miles left, she is smooth and steady. Now, in my head, I am pushing and telling myself, "this is your race to lose! Knock it off! Lets go!" The last mile has a bit of an uphill leading into the finish. I pushed hard, HR up to 176. Sounding like a bear! I push straight through to that finish! Got mine! Taking #3 Overall. The 1st and 2nd place are there waiting. I get to talk with #1 which was a real treat!
I left it all out on the course! In hindsight, yeah, I could have swam better, T1 could have been a ton better, run fitness should have been up.....etc. However, I finished knowing I gave it my all. Only losing 2nd place by ~1min30sec nags at me. I finished my tri season a great note! I find my husband and find he took 2nd Overall in his MTB sprint and that is just icing on the cake! What a FANTASTIC date day!