Monday, September 23, 2013

Going With the Flow This Fall

Sometimes in life things happen that alter our plans no matter how awesome those plans might be. Unfortunately I am experiencing one of those "shit happens" moments myself this Fall. Having been sick on and off for the last six weeks and visiting the doc again last Friday it seems I need to alter my fall plans. While this sucks tremendously I need to get healthy. I cannot focus on getting healthy with a fall marathon and ultra marathon hanging over my head. So, I will not be doing them. And I am okay with this. My health is more important.

My plan is to go ahead and  run the Lake Health 1/2 marathon. Since I have already paid for the full and am basically trained to run a half, I think I can do this without much intense training. It may not be a PR but I can still give the best that I have to give right now.

The only other scheduled races on my calendar now are a trail 5K this weekend and 5 miler at the beginning of November. I think I can do these with no issues. The ultra will have to wait until I am 100% healthy. I plan on being around for a while so I am confident that this will happen when the time is right.

I am very happy to have had a successful 2013 season including the Rev3 Cedar Point half. Being sick and still being able to push myself to a new 70.3 PR on a tough day is something I am proud of. In retrospect maybe I pushed a little harder than I should have. Hoping these next few shorter races are a little easier on me and looking forward to winding down for a nice, long off-season and getting healthy for a strong 2014 season!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Never a Dull Moment at the 2013 Rev3 Cedar Point Race

I am happy to say that another Rev3 Cedar Point 70.3 is in the books! It was a tough day out there this year due to rough winds and a moved swim but I was able to come out with a PR anyways! As always there was never a dull moment for this race!


Teammate Kate McDowell & Me
Steve and I had pretty much wrapped up our packing Friday night after work and we headed out Saturday morning around 11 to Sandusky. It was a short 1.5 hour drive. We stopped for a quick lunch and headed over to Cedar Point for the Rev3 race expo. When we got there I ran into my sweet teammate Kate who was working timing. It was great to see her and then we quickly started running into other Rev3 folks including Laura Mount, Race MC Sean English and the Rev3 man himself Charlie Patten. 

Steve and I visited the Bike Authority tent to have Sean Gilbert check out our bikes and we got all setup. We headed over to the Hotel Breakers and got checked in then headed out around 5 to meet my teammate Jaime Dix and her husband Andrews for a delicious, carb-heavy dinner at Wezey's Italian Eatery. The food was excellent and it was fun catching up with Jaime and Andrew before their race. They were both doing the full rev. 

After dinner we stopped for a couple snacks and headed back to our room. Much to my happiness there was a Harry Potter movie on so we vegged out and watched the movie and I proceeded to eat leftover pizza until I could no longer move. Think we were out around 10:30 for the night. Woke up around 3:30 and fell back asleep until 5. 

Race morning:

Waking up I was bummed to hear that the swim had been moved to the bay due to a weather advisory with high winds. I had never done the bay swim before and wasn't sure what to expect. We got up, had coffee and breakfast and headed out to transition around 6:30. We were setup before 7 and had plenty of time to snack, use the restroom a few times, get our wetsuits on and head over to the swim start. 

Swim: 1.2 miles in Lake Erie, Cedar Point Bay

I am almost always nervous before the swim. It is the thing I like and practice the least and doing a "new" swim was even more nervewracking for me. After talking with some friends it was time to line up by waves. My wave (women under 40) was the last wave. I lined up with teammate Heather Oravec and went in with her on the timetrial start. The swim felt long to me. We had to swim out and around an island through a shallow channel with rocks on the left side (which I hit a couple times) and boats to the right. I actually did not mind that part. After coming around the island it was much tougher for me and it seemed to take forever. I am sure I was off course with the buoys to the left. My goal for the swim time was 45 minutes but I came in a little slower at 52. One of the slowpokes in my wave placing 35/42. Fortunately I don't bank on my swim time but looking at my time from 2 years ago I see I was better then.


We had a long T1 with about a 1/3-1/2 mile run from the swim start back to transition. I had brought my flip flops to run in. Maybe not the best shoe selection but I did not want my running shoes to be wet for the 13.1 miles. My T1 was 8:59. Wow! Compared to my 3:36 for T1 last year. Big difference but again we were all slowed down this year and I did stop for a potty break after the swim too which may have added a couple extra minutes.

Bike: 56 miles along Hellaciously Windy Lake and Country Roads

On the bike. Can u see the wind?
I was excited to start the bike; however, heading out of the park along the lake it was clear this was going to be a tough day for biking. The winds were brutal especially the stretch along the lake. Starting out I felt wobbly in my aerobars and with my race wheels so I alternated between aero and road position. My energy level was definitely better for the first bike split and I averaged just under 20mph at 19.86. The second split was brutal with wind and my slow split of 16.94 shows that. The final split was 19.52 with a final bike time of 2:55:12 (average speed of 19.18). This was very comparable to my bike time last year of 2:56. I had hoped to do better than 20mph this year but with the winds I am happy that I was even able to be a tad faster than last year. I was 6/42 in my division.


Leaving T2 Checking the watch!
I was very happy to get off my bike and out of those killer winds. My back and neck were hurting so I sprayed on some topical spray, changed into my running shoes and visor and headed out. T2 was 1:54, which included a super fast potty break.

Run: 13.1 Mile Half Marathon

Starting the run I was unsure I would PR. My watch said 4 hours. I thought I will have to push it to break 6. Fortunately I was able to do that! My first 5-6 miles I was running okay at an average 8:30-8:40 pace but didn't feel too great. Then around mile 7 or 8 I had a burst of energy and felt terrific so I was able to average 6:55-7:55 pace. This was my fastest run of the past couple of years where I had sustained foot injuries. In looking at the results I was 4/42 in my division. I felt steady and strong on the run and the finish.

The Finish: 

I had a little kick left at the end and finished in 5:52:55. I was excited to hear Steve cheering for me and Rev3 MC Sean announce my name and he played the Ramones for my finish, which was awesome! My results were good for 9/42 in my division and 56/246 females. It felt great to PR although my goal had been 5:45. I think I will get there soon. I may have even been there this year with normal T1 and less wind. 

Post race celebrating with the hubby :)
Postrace Steve had ice cold IPAs at the finish. What an awesome hubby! Steve also had a good race. Not a PR but a comparable time to last year.

It is great being able to train together day in and day out and then to share the ups and downs of racing together! 

This was a great race for me and my last triathlon this season. I am looking forward to making some forward progress for next season!