Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Rookie Race Report

My first race of the season was The Rookie. An annual favorite of mine since it is a good chance to work out the transition bugs in a race situation and get comfortable with all those crazy emotional and physiological race day moments that are impossible to recreate in any other situation. (Yes, I go to the bathroom 3-5 times between the time transition opens and my swim wave starts..... and this is down from th 5-7 range...oy.)

I had a great race...beginning with only using the bathroom 3 times before my swim wave (the last was right after the national anthem was sung -- which begs the question, what should you do if you are in the potty when they start the song???)

After watching the elites enter and exit the water in something like 4 minutes(!), I sauntered over to the swim start with my partner-in-crime, Shorey. So as our swim wave was lining up, I did my typical perusing of the competition and said another thank you for Glenda's birthday (she's now out of my age group! hooray! XOXOX to Glenda!)

I seeded myself in my favorite spot, front row outside lane. (I'd much rather swim farther than have to swim amongst the masses). Took a couple glances at the turn around buoy so I knew what color to look for through my foggy goggles (no matter what I do they fog...) Ducked under the water to get a good feel for the temp (I do not do well in cold water...but that's another blog), felt pretty good.

So here was my race plan: swim hard 300M, bike hard 11.1 miles, survive the run 2 miles. Sometimes it good to just focus on the basics, you know. So, I just put my head down and swam hard...rounded the bouy and kept plowing ahead. Looked up around 250 meters and was weaving through traffic from the wave in front of me...quick glance around...no other green caps ahead of me...what?? I was gonna be first out of the water!! Cool! Especially since I knew that would be the only time I was in first! But it was also helpful in that I would know exactly my position in the age group as the rest of the race went as I watched my age groupers pass me on the bike and run.

And sure enough, I felt more than saw Milissa fly by me on her bike (note that she was recovering from Ironman Arizona still). I tried to just keep her in my sights, but I couldn't even do that...so I just kept low, aero and kept on peddling. So intent on peddling that I forgot to drink...anything.

So, I get started on the run and immediately feel my calves starting to cramp. So, I just tried to keep running through it. Felt like I was heel striking, but it was the only thing that seemed to be working. So I just kept on chugging away and checking out the ages of all the folks passing me on the run. Felt a blast of air as Glenda went charging by...said another thank you that she had a birthday and kept running. Then I saw a 38 go by, Rachele....I tried to keep up with her but couldn't.... I figured I was still in the running for 3rd...I just couldn't let the next age grouper pass me. Kept on running.... fortunately the next gal back was a couple minutes behind me. (Turns out it's a girl I know from jr high! Now she's going to be gunning for me!)

So I ended up placing 3rd in my age group! I was very, very excited about that! More fired up about my swim and run paces:
Swim: 1:48
Bike: 18.5
Run: 8:12

Other than my bike, they have been my best so far, so I'm happy with those. Now, the bike on the other hand...needs work. So if any of you guys see me lolligagging around on my bike and not working hard, please feel free to yell at me to get my ass in gear!!

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