Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Oceanside 70.3 #10...sticky wheel and wonky GI

This was my 10th Oceanside 70.3!  Oceanside was my first 70.3 and remains my all-time favorite.  This year was the added bonus a beach start,  real ocean swim and I loved it!   

I was fired up and excited to race-  with 6 of my athletes on the course, my coach and 30+ other D3 racers, 4 of my Nytro Women's Team and so many local friends, it was going to be such fun!    I was mentally in a good space, my confidence was about 90%, a bit lacking due to a sub-par Desert Tri, a not  so successful 1/2 Marathon and a botched TT.  But the rest of my training was good, the race sim was where I wanted it to be, so the day was about execution, positive mental space and being able to gut it out, suffer and get it done!                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The swim start was simply fun, surrounded by my Swim Masters lane mates, friends from years of racing, it was relaxing and social.   Off we went into some legit waves but managed to get out past the break without an issue. Ii felt strong swimming and did not look at my time- 29:39, slowest swim ever at this race, But with the new start it is hard to compare and I never look at my split mid-race, so I did not see this until the end.

pretty clear how I was feeling 
Onto the bike, which is really my jam.  Early on the watts were not coming easy,  but I have been there before and I have to trust my legs and hit the watts.  By mile 10 I was thinking my brake was rubbing so I opened up the front brake and still it was like I was riding through sand.  I kept it up and by mile 25 I was in a full-blown fucking panic attack, worried I was 8 min slower at this point than the last 8 years. WTF? I was wondering if my PM was off but my effort felt right, so I just went with it, knowing my bike split was likely 10 min slow. Or let's call it 12 min- The last 8 miles where I usually am aero and jamming home I was struggling to hit the watts.  My brain is all over the place wondering if I am now just over the hill and old and slowed down? But more the mantra was WTF is going on.  I did my best to stay calm, which was mildly successful,  and lots of self-taking that there was nothing I could do now but focus on the run.  The run is not always my best part of racing. My head was spinning and I was working hard on the mental gam I hit the end button and see 2:58.  Times are all relative  -other than my first year at Oceanside I have clocked 2:42-2:48 EVERY year and now I see 2:58.   I am not going to lie, full panic was setting in, but I crushed T2.

I reeled it back in and had to get out on the run.  I got my first run split about my competition and the delta was not what I was hoping for, so clearly, my bike split was very very slow for me.  I had work to do if I wanted to hold onto the lead.  The women behind me were too close for comfort.  So I got to work and was feeling pretty good, holding back and running steadily through mile 6.  I was able to leave the bike split in T2 and get 100% focused on the run.  Mile 7 it got hard, as in okay we go to counting to 20, finger tapping and staying in the moment. Run to see my coach, then up the ramps, down the ramps where Hillary and crew were,  more support at next mile, then the turnaround.... Mike sees me again and says I have to pick it up if I want the Win.  Meanwhile, I am negotiating that I will be slowing down 20sec per mile but ok, I pick up it to a 7:50 and well let's just say that did not last.  I am now at mile 10.5 and worried, everything hurts and the aid station gets stingy 1 oz of coke, I wanted to pull a Patrick Lange and grab the whole fcking bottle and chug it.  I took 10 cups and am guzzling it all.   And then it gets better, my gut flips, as in need a porta potty now.  Now I am trying to pick up the pace, clench my cheeks to prevent a literal sh#tshow.  I see another friend who says 2nd place is 20 sec back - Fck me.   So the idea of a quick porta potty stop means I lose the race. Do I want to win enough to poop my pants.... well yes.   Let's just say I don't feel any better and am losing it.  So it was get to the finish line - count to 10, repeat, what's that smell? oh it's me, OMG will I have diaper rash, stay focused and get to the GD finish line, did they move the finish? , where is Mike Reilly?, why is this mile never-ending, OMG is it running down my leg, ok no, thank goodness... cross the line and wait. With the rolling start, you don't really know your placement until the others behind you finish and well let's just say I won by 5 seconds. Holy Shit- literally! 

It was not pretty, it was not fast - 1:49 but it got the job done on that day.  

And FWIW I had a full tune up on my bike UGH  pre-race but I did not spin the wheels.  My front wheel was gummed up with Gatorade and who knows what else but when I went to spin it I got 3 slow revolutions and then it stopped vs a whizzing of a clean wheel.    Took the wheel in yesterday and Nytro took it apart, cleaned it, more oil and now it spins freely.  Mechanic says "good thing you brought this in as you would not want to race on it, would cost you time for sure"  So there you have it...   

I did a practice ride pre-raceCoulda, shoulda, woulda and I did not.  So lessons learned!!!!   I should be happy with the W but I set really high standards for myself and to be 100% honest with that time I did not deserve the W, that is how my head works.   I am trying to be arrogant just being real.
but was with other people not focused!  that is on me...

Who knows how much time I lost on the bike, but it was a lot, 14 min slower than last year with the same Power is A LOT.  2017 my max speed 45.2, 2018 max speed 44.5,  2019 max speed 38.5.   I don't passed descending except by  BIG guys and I was getting passed left and right.  Ok Dunkle, LET IT GO! 

Wheel is fixed!   and onward to Honu we go.

I still love this race and was actually thinking I would sit out in 2020 but Fck I have redemption now!