2 weeks prior I signed up for this race. Nothing like another last minute race to get into shape. Oh wait, not even that could give me motivation to run. I keep wondering why I sign up for events with no real training or preparation. And then I remember why - work. I cannot plan anything in advance, as I find out my work schedule for the upcoming week on Thursday. Sometimes Friday. Let's not get into it.
So the last time I ran 6.2 miles was SDIT. The last time I ran was Carlsbad. Do we see a trending pattern here? I'm really going to have to actually start training here soon if I want to remotely do well / finish Panama 70.3; Friday is the 6 month mark.
Okay, so. Vacation palooza - arrive in Goleta, check into the race and hotel and have dinner with the San Diego peeps. Not a good night sleep as the room above us must really like redecorating, as they were moving furniture all night. Kyle bolted early, as his start was an hour and a half earlier than mine, and he needed to find some valve extenders to get some air in his tires, as he left his in Oregon [along with the climbing rope.] Steve, Erin and I got out of bed, chocked down a part of a dry sourdough english muffin and got on our bikes for the 1.5 mile ride to the start line. Aerohelmets with long tails and backpacks on a tri bike don't mix.
Setup transition, found Kyle, and ran around the race area as he was in the first wave. Yelled [very loudly] for him as he exited the water walking. Not cool. Yelled [very loudly] as he sat down to take off his wetsuit. Yelled [very loudly] as he mounted his bike in the transition area [not legal] and somehow managed to miss taking a picture of that. Yelled again as he went out for the run and very quickly when he ran through the finish line.
He's done, and I haven't even put on my wetsuit yet. Proud of him for getting back into racing. Hoping his ankles/knees will hold up for more years of being able to race together.
My turn - Get a quick warmup in - water is cooler than San Diego. The sprint runners are now crossing in front of the beach start for the swim. It was like 3, 2, 1....[wait for it]...GO! So random. Jump on Erin's feet for the first two buoys and lose her for the long haul across to the far buoy. Turn on the far end and all I want is to be done with the swim. Still 2 more buoys to go and I'm wondering why I don't swim masters/long distance more often. 1500 is quite long. Out of the water 2nd in my wave and into transition. p.s. I didn't get new goggles for the race. Need to invest in a stockpile of sweedish goggles. They are more valuable than my retirement plan right now.
Opted to wear the road cycling shoes (Sidi's) because well, they are more comfortable. I have custom insoles in them and my toes aren't hitting the edge. Not sure what happened to the old Nike's, but I feel like my feet have swollen since my beginning triathlon days. No I'm not preggers. Hop on the bike and onto the bike path. Narrow and bumpy but not as bad as expected. Not really sure what to expect on the road. A pretty flat/fast course with a couple of false flats [especially going out to the strawberry farm, where all I wanted to do was stop and eat strawberries]. Was pretty alone for most of the bike. I had 1.75 bottles of water and .75 bottle of calories [blue gatorade]. I think I had a GU and some salt tabs and a puff of the good 'ole inhaler.
Into T2 and feeling surprisingly ready to run. Out on the course I'm feeling okay on the path section and then comes the sand and the okay feeling is gone. High tides made for a very interesting 2 lap run course where it felt like over 4 miles was on the soft sand. [LOOK AT COURSE PROFILES BEFORE REGISTERING FOR RACES...didn't I learn anything from that whole St. George experience?] Only had a couple of ladies pass me on the run who weren't in my age group and I was actually passing people!
Into the finish chute and heard the announcer say, "it looks like we have a race coming!" Great, someone is going to pass me...put on the after burners...or something like that. I make my best attempt to sprint as I hear the footsteps behind me. I manage to hold her off, only to find out it's a 50 year old lady. Awesome. Everyone from SD had finished by then, and said that was an awesome finish. And here's the photographic evidence. Nice face, Rachel. And how about those hands? Yeah, not sure where that came from.
2nd AG behind Erin, who won the women's overall. She's going to kill it at Vegas for the 70.3 World Championships. San Diego had a pretty decent day at the races as well. Here's the posting from Facebook: Moment DOMINATION @ Goleta Triathlon yesterday. Stephen Banister - 1st overall, giant trinity adv. Erin Hunter - 1st OA, Felt B2. Brannen Henn- 1st 35-39 2nd OA, Felt DA. Riikka Aramo - 1st 40-44 3rd OA, Parlee TT.Brian Wrona - 3rd in Steve's AG, Ridley Dean. Rachel Wills - 2nd in Erin's AG 5th OA, Guru Crono. Ian Storer - Sprint, Felt B14. All dynamically fit by Moment. Wanna get fast? Get Fit - 619-523-2453
After the race we hung out for awards and then packed up the car for Torrence in LA...for a bike race. 6 hours after finishing an Olympic distance race I thought it'd be a good idea to try and race a criterium. Report to follow.