Normally, I don't write a race report on the day of a race. Today, I will. For two reasons: first, because I go to Malawi on Monday, and I won't otherwise have time. Second, because I feel like I have to explain.
Honestly, sometimes I like to think that I have "fans" that follow my times while I'm racing, or look up my results... And, when I have a race like today's, I feel... Well... Embarrassed. I'm better than today's results. You know it. My coach and my teammates know it. Even I know it.
But here I am. Saddened, because I had a beautiful opportunity in a beautiful location, and the world was my oyster. Had I done a personal best time, I may have even qualified for Mt tremblant. If I di what I have the potential to do, I certainly would've. But today was not my day for that. And, I'm sad.
I will be better. And I'm optimistic. Calgary's race is far enough after my trip to Malawi for some awesome training, with the Penticton grand Fondo in there as well! They also have a boatload of qualifying spots!
A superb athlete that I know, Sonja told me after the race today, that her coach had said: sometimes your the hammer, and sometimes your the nail. Today, i was the nail, Let Calgary be my day to be the hammer.
Pics to come.
Soooooooo. First time I have ever sat on the side of a course and cried. That was lovely. Today is also the slowest half iron that I have raced since 2010. My third slowest EVER.
Good things of the day:
Strong swim in cold, choppy water. This actually went way better than anticipated, with no moments of feeling breathless. That was nice, never got a good set of feet, but I tend to swim better with out, I think.
Bike: this actually felt awesome for 80% of the ride. Honestly, very little I would change in terms of output and effort. I (obviously, with the results from later), should have consumed for salt and solid nutrition. It was dry and dusty, but a great course with good diversity!
Run: I improved throughout the course. I finished, when I wanted to quit. Great great spectator friendly course, with lovely shaded trees, and awesome support from fans and volunteers.
Bad/terrible things of the day:
Slower and messier transitions. Its the first race of the year, I think I could of done a bit better. I even forgot my race bib in my run bag. Ran without a number (no photos will be available... Maybe that is a great thing."
I got a flat at about mile 15. Luckily, it was a)the front wheel and b) close to an aid station, so I could use a hand pump, rather than co2, & someone was there to help me. It still sucked as I watched my competitors ride by.
The wind was a bitch. 80% of the ride was into a head, or a scary cross wind. But that, everyone had to deal with.
I must not have done nutrition well, because I did not pee at any point. And that scared me. I felt like I was drinking enough, but, not enough salt... As we will see in the run.
I transition to the run, and legs feel the "norm." I think, boy they are a little worse than normal, but it will remedy itself by 3km.
Boy, I was wrong... Within the first mile, I got a jabbing stabbing cramp in my right quad. I tried to run it out... More cramping. Stretched, and my hamstring would cease up. More attempts at running, no go. Sat on the side of the course, massaged my leg, and cried. I knew that the run was going to be terrible. Honestly, after a few more tries at running, I thought I was going to have my first dnf.
I also got gastric cramps.
My attitude was crap at this point and I was feeling very defeated.
It took my first 5 miles of basically walking & watching 15 of my age group competitors pass me by, before I felt capable of running again. I cried a bit more, ate chips at the aid stations, and determined that I would finish one lap before I made a decision to quit or not. I'm glad I did, because I was able to pick it up, and maintain a moderate pace. Except for the time I had to use the portapotties, because I thought I was going to shit my pants, but then when I tried to go, the were occupied, my intestines shut down, and I only had gas. I still barely had to pee.
So there we have it. The slowest 70.3 for me since 2010.
And frankly, that sucks ass. I Definently was the nail today, and not the hammer. But, I'd be more sad/pissed if I dnf'd
Oh well. Forward ho to Calgary. Let's figure out nutrition, shall we?