Race....not really....here is how it went down
Swim was good- close to last years time and considering the 6 week break due to my shoulder injury I am happy about that! Great start and I immediately was looking for feet but there were none....I swam the entire way alone. No feet to drag off and no yellow caps in front of me. Not always good as there were definitely bodies close behind. But no pain in the shoulder and felt good.
Hopped on the bike and the plan was to push the ride. And well.....just did not happen. I was flat. Hard to describe the feeling- not necessarily tired, just not explosive. It was as if I was on a training ride, cruising along and doing my ride. I would look down, power was low, I would pick it up and then before I knew it, it was low. Just no motivation. I am usually holding back, it is all I can do to keep the power down and today I was just riding. I knew it was slow and I knew it fast when I was passed early but 1 and then 2 people. Soon thereafter a 3rd! WTF I can ride and ride well....this is a strength in IM for me, but people, not today. So I just cruised along and made it what it was. Around mile 40 after the last climb I began to feel it, my legs responded and I was flying, Passing a lot of people and making time up the girls who passed me. I was feeling great. So good in fact that I would have been happy to take another loop, as in another 56. I am telling you, I must have thought it was an Ironman. I should have done a few club races to get the fast twitch muscles firing again, or something. Just not sure.....My HR was fine, maybe even a bit low (as it should with the marrying along I was doing)
So when I got off the bike, I was feeling great. I decided to take the run moderate, not push it and make this a strong training day. I was thinking I could resume serious IM training in a few days. After a few miles thought I thought come on girl, this is a race after all so I decided to pick up the pace and go for an even to negative split run. Pulled off a decent run, same as last year, but actually slower as there was no sand to run through this year. And I felt great. Really strong finish and that is always good.
So we look towards IMSG. 5 weeks! Talking with coach about the race, what happened. He asked me if I flatted? Did I have a mechanical? In other words, what the hell happened? Sleeping was the best answer I could give. He reminded me of the serious block of work that I did the week before last, this was a moderated taper, I was really tired etc....all good and rational but I still want to PR.
Okay, over that and onto IMSG - seems I have the pacing down for that :) Recovery....ugh! Recovery is okay after an awesome race, after a mediocre race well it is not as fun. But I understand very necessary if I want to do a serious block of work before IMSG. And being the glutton I am am, of course I do. So I follow the plan and recover! Work hard, taper and hope for a better race!
So I should not be all down....3rd place is good! The one place I have not achieved in this race- well other than the magical 1st. I have to say I am most proud of my buddy Amy.....I am going to call her the sleeping lion or the queen sandbagger :) As she hopes she will do well, maybe this will be a long training day, blah, blah, blah. She rocked it! 1st place, Kona slot! Awesome, awesome race. The other special mention goes to Tracy- she crashed at mile 3, pretty bad crash, yet has amazing will and she persevered and finished. Not a quitter but a fighter! And to everyone else who raced with heart and suffered in Oceanside today- well done! Have 2nds at dinner you earned it!
I have to say before I go....4 years ago I raced out there knowing no one, no cheering on the course, no one on the sidelines (except my husband and my brother who arrived for the finish) And compare that to today and there was love everywhere.....from my 2 Erin Baker teammates, the many SanDiego Tri Clubbers and all the other great friends in this sport! Good people you all are.