Thursday, September 15, 2011

Cedar Point September 11, 2011

Revolution 3 put on another fantastic race in Ohio at the Cedar Point Amusement Park. This race is special to me as it was my first race as a pro last year. I wanted to come back and have a great day and definitely make improvements on last years race. Leading up to the race the weather was not cooperating. Lots of rain and very strong winds to blow things around, including the water making it very mucky! But that was not going to stop the Rev 3 crew or the participants from a great race. Fortunately by race day the storms had cleared and the weather looked to be great. Ready for a fantastic day of racing.

After getting everything ready in transition I headed back down the beach with my husband to go get ready for the swim. When we got closer to the swim start we noticed a sea of American flags and a tribute to our fallen heroes. It was a very quite scene around the display as people moved to the swim start area. My mom and son had made it out to the beach so I was able to get hugs and kisses from everyone before the start. While I was lined up ready to go I heard my son yell "I love you Mommy". At the end of the day, that's all that matters!

We were off. The first 100 yards or so was running through the sludge from the storms so I wanted to get to a swimable spot as soon as I could. I made it to the first buoy feeling strong in the water and all by myself. As soon as I turned the buoy I noticed two swimmers right there so I made a push to get close and settle in. I felt strong during the swim and was happy to finally feel like my strength was back. As I exited the swim I realize the person I was swimming with was Kate Major. I was happy to be in the position I was in.

Heading out of transition on the bike I learned I was in 4th place behind Malika, Hillary and Kate. I felt strong on the bike and was confident in my training and nutrition plan. My heart rate was very high compared to my power output but I kept it steady and tried to stay focused. I passed Kate about 15 miles in and was so focused on staying steady and controlled I missed a turn. Oops. It was only a minor detour and within a few miles I was right back with her. Kate and I switched places quite a few times throughout the course and then at about mile 90 I passed her and assumed she was there the whole way to the finish. When I got into transition I realized she was not there and I knew I had to take advantage of this because of her awesome running abilities.

Coming out of transition I learned I was about 2-2 1/2 minutes off the lead. I was thrilled to be in this position. My running during my training had gone really well so I was confident in my marathon. My legs started coming around earlier than they had in the past around mile 1.5-2 and my pace was right where I wanted it to be but my heart rate was still a little high. I settled in and focused on my turnover and nutrition and things were great. Until about mile 7! My stomach started feeling awful. I needed a bathroom immediately. But that wasn't going to stop me. I remember reading my teammate Chris McDonald's blog from IM Louisville about having to stop for a bathroom break a few times but being fine after and that's what I kept thinking. But it got to a point where I could not wait for a porta potty. I needed the bushes. It just got worse and worse. Kate passed me about mile 12.5 and just after that point I couldn't run anymore. I walked through the turnaround and kept telling myself I could do this. Things would turn around. After nearly 8 miles with no fuel and over a dozen bathroom stops I couldn't go on. I was devastated to say the least and also very embarrassed. I dropped out around mile 14. I know days like these are bound to happen but why does it have to happen on a great race day?!!!

I ended up in the medical tent with 3 IV bags. I have to thank the entire medical crew and the REV 3 crew for having such an amazing set up. They took great care of me and the others that were in there as well. First class operation.

So now its time to move forward and concentrate on the many positives from the race. I have been so fortunate in my 4 previous Ironman races that I have never had to deal with these issues. It's bound to happen at one point or another. I look forward to figuring out what went wrong and fixing the problem. I will take my fitness and move forward to my next adventure. After all if it doesn't kill you it will make you stronger!!!

"Give your dreams all you've got and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you." William James

I want to thank all my awesome sponsors for their support!

Trakkers/Rev3 for putting on amazing races and being so good to me and my family! These are the best group of people who truly care so much!

TYR for making such a great wetsuit. I love my Hurricane cat 5. And for all the great training tools to help me prepare!

Kestrel for my awesome ride and the fastest bike split of the day. Even if I do go off course!

Zipp for my awesome wheels!

Cycleops for my awesome trainer and power meter to keep me honest!

Bicycles Plus for keeping my bike in top shape and getting it race ready!

Avia for my Bolt running shoes that made me run a great steady pace for the first 7 miles!

First Endurance for making such quality nutrition products for training, racing and recovery!

Recovery Pump for helping my legs recover faster so I can get onto my next session. And for no kankles after racing and long training days!!!

Fleet Feet Sports for all their support!

And last but definitely not least my family and friends. I couldn't do all the training without my awesome husband and his support. This means more to me than I can even express. My son who inspires me everyday to be the best mommy I can be. Hopefully I can teach him that anything is possible if you believe and to chase your dreams. To my mom who travels to my Ironman races for support and quality time with Brady! And to all my friends for your constant support and encouragement. Until next time...

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Quassy 2011

I want to start off by saying Rev 3 did another amazing job putting on another great race. If you have races Quassy you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't it's definitely a race to put on your schedule for next year. Not only do the staff and volunteers do a great job but the course is unbelievable. Very challenging and beautiful. When you register you get free passes into the amusement park. My son had a blast. This is one of the many reasons I love Rev 3 races. So family friendly. And then to top it off my 4 year old son got to run through the finish line with me. He's still talking about it.

I was very excited to be back racing. My hands have taken a lot longer to get better than I ever imagined so this was my first race since Costa Rica in February. I got my transition area all set, took my First Endurance PreRace, went for a short jog and then headed down to the swim with my husband and son and took a quick shot of my First Endurance EFS Vanilla. The water was 69 degrees so no wetsuits for the pros. I had been in the lake the day before and the water temp seemed fine. I wore my TYR Torque and was very comfortable in it and no chaffing!!! The race started and I tried to catch on to the lead group but couldn't find the turnover. I settled in around the first buoy and just tried to keep up my arm speed and make to shore. I came out in just over 30 minutes and was happy to be heading into transition to race on my Kestrel 4000 for the first time.

I was quite cold from the swim and just tried to spin fast to get my legs warm. Fortunately the first few miles are pretty much downhill. I felt very comfortable on my Kestrel thanks to Aria Velo and my Retuel fit. I started settling into the race and loving the climbs and feeling very hesitant on the descents. I have really tried to work on my confidence descending since my accident and it's getting better but still needs work. I was sticking to my race plan and felt like it was working. Around mile 20 I had a problem with my chain. When I shifted into my big ring it fell off on the outside of the rings and had 3 twists in the links. Hmmm. No quite sure how I managed that one but I ha never done that before. I got of my bike and thought I had broken the chain. I tried to stay calm and just get it untwisted. After a few minutes I finally got one of the links untwisted and tried to figure out I did it. Finally it was straight again and I was able to get it back on and get on with the race. I knew I had lost time but didn't want to hammer my legs too much knowing what was ahead on the run. Throughout the bike I had 3 bottles of First Endurance EFS grape and part of a flask. I wanted to make sure I was plenty hydrated going into the run. I worked out great

Transition was a happy sight. I got my Avia Bolts On and headed out. My husband and son were there cheering me on and they always give me a boost especially when I'm having a mediocre day. I tried to focus on my turnover for the entire run and just roll with it. It's such a beautiful course and people were all over giving encouraging cheers which kept me very positive. I sipped on a flask of First Endurance vanilla EFS and had water and Gatorade at every aid station. As I climbed the last hill I kept thinking how lucky I am to be racing and what a wonderful family I have a nd how great my sponsors are to me. I rounded the last turn to the finish and my husband and son were there waiting. My son was so excited to run to the finish with me he practiced for a hour before I got there!!! He was so fast I couldn't keep up. I ended up 11 and was happy to be back at it. The Recovery Pump was calling my name to get my legs back before our cross country flight but my son had the rides in mind. So off we went. He had a blast. We all had a blast!!!

I'm looking forward to starting my ramp up for Cedar Point in September. This race was a great stepping stone for me and I know what I need to do to get ready for a great race in Ohio. Thanks to all my awesome sponsors. Rev 3/Trakkers, TYR, Kestrel, Avia, First Endurance, Recovery Pump, Bicycles Plus, Aria Velo and Fleet Feet sports. I couldn't do it without you. And a huge thanks to my awesome husband and son. Races aren't any fun unless they are there with me!!! Until next time...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Costa Rica 2011

I had the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica for the Trakkers/ Rev 3 camp and Rev 3 inaugural race in Costa Rica last weekend. What an amazing experience it was. I got to spend some time with all my awesome teammates and train and race in an amazing country. For me this was an opportunity to "get back on the saddle" after my bike accident in October. Leading up to Costa Rica I had been outside a total of 6 rides and only 2 on my time trial bike so I felt very hesitant when it came to bike handling and honestly just a little scared. I finally was able to get back into swimming about 4 weeks ago and it's been SLOW. I didn't realize how much strength I had lost until I tried swimming again. Humbling to say the least. Fortunately I was able to ride on my trainer and run as soon as I recovered from the surgeries so I felt like my fitness was descent. Olympic distance racing is foreign to me. I've raced this distance once in the last 7 years so I approached it as an opportunity for a high intensity training day. The morning started out with some First Endurance PreRace and Grape EFS to get the motor running. I decided to start on the far right side away from all the other girls to protect my hands from being hit. The field was very strong and the girls took off leaving me literally in the dust. At least the scenery was amazing! I ended up 3rd to last out of the water and was looking forward to the bike and run. The first few miles were filled with lots of hills,some very steep and a small section of gravel to cross. Once we left the resort area the roads were fairly flat and windy. The course was well controlled by local police and the roads were smooth. It was hot and humid so I wanted to make sure I stayed hydrated. I drank a full bottle of First Endurance EFS Grape and had a shot of liquid Vanilla EFS on the bike. When I hit the gravel section coming back into transition I tore a hole in my front tire. Fortunately I was able to stay up and dismount without any major problems. The run course was beautiful. It started along the beach then went up and through the golf course two times. The aid stations were very well supported and had everything we needed. I took another shot of Vanilla EFS about mile 2 of the run and hydrated with fluids from every aid station. I ended up 6 with a total time of 2:20. I really enjoyed the race and I am already looking forward to next year. Thanks to TYR and my Torque speedsuit, KESTREL for my superfast 4000, ZIPP/SRAM for my speedy wheels,components and bars, AVIA for my flashy Bolt racing flats, FIRST ENDURANCE for keeping me hydrated and energized, BETTY DESIGNS for our awesome outfits and TRAKKERS/REV 3 for bringing it all together. Looking forward to Costa Rica 2012!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

REV 3 Cedar Point on September 12, 2010 was a huge success!!! Big shout out to the REV 3 team on a fantastic race and venue. First class all the way! This was my first race as a pro and what a great experience it was. The people of Sandusky and Cedar Point were so supportive, the venue was lots of fun and the cousre was awesome and very well supported. REV 3 truely did a fantastic job. The water was quite rough the days leading up to the race but race morning the winds changed and the water was calm for the day. The course was 2 U shaped legs with a beach run half way. My swim time was slow but I felt strong throughout the swim and great when I got out. As soon as I got on my bike I knew it was going to be a windy day. The bike course was very scenic and well supported with aid stations every 10 miles. There were people all over the course cheering the racers on. I came into T2 in third and knew I had my work cut out for me. Heading out on the run I had people everywhere cheering for me. My family was right there when I came out of transition and I was able to give my son a high five and it gave me an extra umph. I have never had so much support from other triathletes out on the course. Again, the course was very well supported with aid staions every 1-1.5 miles. I stayed in 3rd place until about mile 17 and then was able to make a pass and move into 2nd. I was able to stay there until about mile 21 and then got passed. I ended up 3rd and was extemely happy with my first race as a pro. I want to give a shout out to my TRAKKERS teammates who were rockstars on and off the course. If they werent racing they were volunteering and helping make the race a huge success. I look forward to the next chapter...Whatever that may be!!!