|Pre riding part of the course in a sweatshirt. #cold|
I’d just like to be completely honest with everyone and come clean right now…. At the beginning of the year, I went to Mitch Hall to help advise/coach me. He immediately had me doing copious amounts of PERFORMANCE ENHANCING workouts. The secret is out now. Thanks for being patient, tolerating my nonsense and helping me, Mitch. I’d also like to give the speedy Beth Walsh a huge ‘Thank You’ for being a top-notch training partner. Her run workouts are a game changer!
|South Congress Street Food Trucks, ftw|
The city of Austin is pretty cool. After my past two experiences with Texas, I wasn’t the biggest fan of that state. (Collegiate Nationals in Lubbock, 2010: cold as balls, hypothermic water, stormy and out of control wind. Galveston 5150 2011: out of control wind and heat.) Besides the weather, Texas has been fairly unimpressive to me. However, Austin was redeeming. The city seemed to have a good pulse on awesome food, good music, and a fairly artistic culture. I never really had a chance to mingle with common folk in the city so I can’t really say whether Austinites were actually on this planet or in their own world. They seemed aight tho.
Yet again, my wave was one of the last to go off, which was an hour and 20ish minutes after the pro men. After they kicked us out of transition around 7, I had plenty of time to freeze my loins off in the low 40-degree air. I stuck around to witness the pro men & women exit the swim & frigidly jump on their bikes. Quick side story: The day before the race, Beth had been joking about shoving newspaper into her tri kit to stay warm on the bike along with various other outlandish antics in attempt to keep warm. Again, I thought this was a JOKE. Low and behold, here comes Beth into T1…. & chaotically starts cramming newspaper everywhere into her kit. Priceless.
So after I witnessed some more bizarre methods of people attempting to cover up, I decided enough was enough and something had to be done about the bone chilling breeze that was making me regret my decision not buy an Eskimo suit for this race. Desperate times called for desperate measures, so I headed to the porta-potties, put on my wetsuit then put my morning clothes over that, fully closed the toilet seat and took a nap for 30 minutes (yes, in the porta-potty). That may have been the best decision of the day, actually.
|Trying to find the string... &|
|Forget that, I'll get a volunteer to do it|
Not to sound like a douche, but I could tell as we were lining up in the water for the open water start, the competition wasn’t going to be too thick. I seemed to be the only dude (along with my buddy, Marco from SD) wanting to be at the front, pushing the invisible line between the start buoys. After the horn sounded, I believe there were two dudes on my feet at the 1st buoy. I did another check around the 2nd buoy, around 4-500 meters out, and had a pretty sizable gap going on. I arrived at the conclusion that there was a good chance I’d be on my own for the rest of the day. I did my best to keep pressing the pace in the swim despite running into countless people floating about on the course.
|Don't do this.. TT position uphill. Totally unnecessary.|
I’ll try to limit my whining here, as my time didn’t turn out to be too bad, but I’m still not very happy with the way I rode. It took me around 25 miles to “find it” on the bike. Like I had mentioned earlier, it was a bit nippy out, so getting my legs going took a while. The condition of the roads and headwind weren’t helping anything either. But, once I found “it”, somewhere between miles 25-30, no one was touching this ish. The last 20 miles I was on fire and wish I’d have been riding around some faster guys because I was craving some competition.
It may have taken 3 years of failing 70.3 runs, but I’m beginning to figure it out. I love going fast and I’m excited to keep working hard and see what I’m capable of next year & on...
This course was slightly rolling with a smidgen of dirt trail, so sticking to a particular pace wasn’t really doable. So I just picked, what I thought, was a hard yet sustainable pace and kept it. Apparently that pace was sub 6. If you’re interested, I’ll post the mile splits from my garmin (if that’s what you’re into). The last 2 miles I was feeling really lazy and lost a bit of motivation to keep a hard pace going. But I cruised in feeling pretty good about my day.
Total: 4:04 (1st Overall Amateur, 7th Overall, 1st 25-29ag) Full results
Stoked to take a little break and get some surfing in before picking up a fresh bike and run game and building for next year. I’ll post something later when I know what my plan for next year is…
Being (probably) the last post for the year, I have to thank some people. The first of which being my parents; I love you guys more than you know. Thank you for supporting me from the 1st day I decided to do one of these ridiculous things. Thanks to all my friends and family for the encouragement throughout the year; I wouldn’t be able to keep a positive attitude towards racing without you guys. Mark Palmer, you’re as tough as nails and I know you’re going to recover from your crash and only become stronger. Thank you for providing a job for me at the best tri shop in SD (B+L Bikes) and supporting my racing. And last but not least, Ramon. My friend, I’ve never met anyone as passionate about life as you. You help me realize how awesome something as simple as running for 45 minutes down the coast is.