I got up at 330 am, when the storm started. Ate and got moving to the race site to park. With 2300 athletes btwn the OLY and the Sprint it would be a busy parking area in the neighborhoods around Lake Nokomis. Got parked around 445 and waited. and waited. and waited. The rain continued and the lightening and thunder were ongoing. The Lifetime group did a great job communicating " STAY IN YOUR CARs" till the storm passes yet it didnt seem like the storm would pass.
Transition was to close at 645, Pros at 7 and my wave the Elite Master wave was going off with the Elites and was at 716. I think i got into Transition around 645, and obvously it didnt close! It was ongoing rain and at least the thunder seemed to stop. We had a few updates from race officials and at 745 am we got the final word that we would be starting the race at 9 am. UGH. Pros would go off and do two loops then we would go off in a TT start, no more waves for the elite, which was fine actually just get us moving. The big change was that bc of the flooding we would all be doing the Sprint Course. I had "HOPED" that we would get to do the OLY swim and OLY run but no luck. It was a full on sprint and honestly it was the best decision to keep us all together and to get the race safely underway.
It was actually fun. To hang out with some fellow racers, do a warm up run ( I wore my kiwami skinsuit to warm up!) and get to know a few of my fellow rack-ees ( those who racked near me) a bit better. Right before we started we sorta all said "oh dang that was fun, girlfriend time." :)
Race was not wetsuit legal which was GREAT. I just wore my kiwami race suit and prayed for a good swim. We went off in 2 sec intervals with another racer. Very well done. I think i covered the 400 M in 6:55, which was decent. Sorta funny it was so wavey that we all were getting thrown around. The storm had kicked up a wave pool. I was super thankful i had not worn my wetsuit at all in the last 2 open water swims. Sure makes a difference. I felt great, just hard to see where i was going but cleared the water fast and got moving.
Here I am looking like i am trying to get my move on thru the LONG transitions! I looked at how slow we all were but that is bc they moved a few things around to make it fair, bc they had to change the bike course ( extended the sprint) to avoid flooding.
So onto the bike. The roads we were to ride on were the better of the course, which honestly i was thankful that we didnt have to ride the backside by harriet bc they are rough and with standing water it would have been really really hard and dangerous. The night prior I had a broken cable on my bike so I had to make an emergeceny stop back at the Expo where Kevin, the great owner of my sponsor GEAR WEST BIKE AND TRI, helped me out. What a nice guy. He said " this is easy!" and i was in and out in a flash. I had been told by none other than Hunter Kemper, ( I want to blog on him tmmrw!) to lower the pressure in my wheels if wet. I Was really glad i had. I heard Hunter talk at a Sports Medicine Conference the day prior to the race. He really made my day, what a great positive guy, a great family man and a great athlete as well. More on the adversity he has faced later. Anyways.....
Bike was GREAT. UNtil i heard this "flapflapflapflap" about 4 miles into the ride. I thought i had a flat. Then it just sounded like something was hitting my back wheel. Well i slowed and didnt fully stop but I wasnt flat and i didnt see anything on my disc so i thought " as loud as this is I am moving on!" And then it stopped. It must have been my number form the seat post, it was so wet that the number had gotten so wet it fell off. I also realized the cover i have on my disc valve was gone, that little hole, you know if you have a disc what i mean. So btwn the two of those it surely didnt cost me too much time but i had to get it back up to speed pretty fast or lose the girls i was hunting down. Ended up riding legally with 2 girls i know, we took turns taking over the front( again legally as the moto went by us as well) and anotehr girl was dangling off the back never taking the lead so...?? anyways. I just rode my race she did whatever she thought she had to do to hold on i guess.
We all came in together and ran out together other than danging girl on the back who was from New York, and later i learned was 47, so phew on that that we dropped her like a hot potato on the run.
Ran out with Two girls and we pretty much ran the entire time together. Sorta fun actually and i was breathing SO LOUD I decided I had better pipe down since i know heavy breathing isnt really a sign that you can GO if one of them goes! :) But suddenly around mile 2 I sorta started to pull ahead. I didnt really mean to pull ahead i just sorta did, and maybe they slowed down but as we got about 1/2 mile from the finish i realized i was alone. Not by much but enough that I "thought" I could just keep it going and not have to sprint anyone at the finish. I am 100% ready to do that but for the sake of recovery I would rather not!
So as I got closer and more familiar with where i was on the lake and closing in on the finish i just picked it up, and heard people cheering and cowbells a ringing and turned around quickly to be sure there wasnt a stealth non heavybreathing kid in my shadow. There wasnt and I just got on home. And felt really Ill afterwards:) The timing of the race sorta messed with fueling. But as you can tell the gel for my run is sitting in my top. There was NO Way i could swallow that during a 5k, and it was a good thing I didnt take one thing on that run bc coming out of T2 I had a sidestitch. Shut it down, nothing going in for 20 minutes and it worked.
Ended up 1st Master Elite, 6th OA i got beat by like 6 seconds by a 16 yo. Ha, that is funny. Last weekend it was a 22 yo, they keep getting younger! The reason we arent near each other is that we TT started the swim:) I Also realized the girls i was running with started the swim about 6-8 seconds ahead of me, so i realized when i was running at mile 2 that i need to just stay close and that if worse came to worse finish with them.
What a day. The post race food was sorrounded by a mud pit, getting my award i had to take my shoes off, and the shower i took after the race was pretty full of mud and dirt. Im really amazed we got to race!
I am super thankful for the chance to race every single time i do it. And thankful for people like Cathy and Liv to push me. Liv and I talked about that after how if done legally riding together ( she and I exchanged legal riding pulls at Waconia as well.) is really awesome bc you just make each other go faster. And you know what I mean with LEGAL exchanges of the lead, no drafting in my playbook.
Not wishing for a sprint yesterday, but I never think getting some extra speed work is a bad thing. I wanted an OLY to practice for nationals but at the same time other than the swim, the bike was SOLID 17 miles and i blew my watts out the sky roof, run too, was great, much faster than i expected. So all good.
Makes me wonder why i think i want to do IM next year:) I am really loving the short and fast right now!
Thanks for reading and I do want to blog about Hunter Kemper, he just really had some great take home's that Id like to share! Have a good week!