First of all, congratulations to all who competed in yesterday’s Cap Tex Triathlon in Austin yesterday. A gorgeous sunrise made way for a super hot race, but from the looks of it, most people had smokin‘ fast times! (something about wanting to get off the course before they melted!) It was a pleasure hosting my bud TriGreyhound and his coach Kris for the night! Both kicked some serious booty out there! Congratulations aplenty go out to so many of the T3′ers who raced and placed in their respective age groups…Sometimes we wonder if this training really pays off. You don’t really know until you take a test. Guess what? You all passed with flying colors and set the curve for so many!!
I had a blast out there volunteering at the swim start dealing with nervous energy, paranoid first-timers, overbearing mothers, intense pros, hilarious and energetic age groupers and people who wanted to hand me their shoes and snot rags before jumping into the lake. Part of me wanted to be racing right along with them, but I’m glad I didn’t…Gotta save every ounce of energy for IM CDA, which is now a mere 4 weeks away!
This past weekend was the annual “T3 Practice Man” race and 40/13, 40 weekend. Friday night started off with my open water swim at the Quarry with Michelle. We both got off work early for the holiday and after a few coaxing texts, convinced each other to meet at the Quarry BEFORE Happy Hour(s). It was my first swim in the Quarry and I loved it…Good change of scenery from Barton Springs. It’s awesome that the buoys are set up and you can do continuous loops without stopping. Plus, 5 loops seems so much faster than 10 laps at Barton Springs. We successfully completed our mission and the successfully completed our Happy Hour Mission with some Mexican Martinis!!
Saturday’s workout is the test run brick. Coaches put up bike racks and T3 volunteers had set up “aid stations” along the run course making it as “race ready” as it could be. How cool is that?! We did a mind-numbing 5 South Mopac Loops for about 42 miles. Like everyone, I went over my race pace and averaged about 19.5 mph overall. That loop lends itself to pretty speedy times and I wasn’t pushing it to threshold. However, I did want to feel some fatigue to simulate actual race day. (these days it’s not hard to simulate any kind of fatigue).
After my quick “transition” (i.e. putting bike in car and grabbing water), I headed out on the 13 mile run, which was two 6.5 mile out and bikes on Escarpment from LaCrosse to William Cannon. We’ve ridden on this road a million times and I loved it for the run because it has a good mixture of climbs and downhills, without being too severe. I started off at a very comfortable 8:20 pace and gradually just kept picking it up throughout the run. I was so nervous about my right leg numbness issues, but they caused me no issues whatsoever—thank goodness. Landon and Nancy were parked at the right spot with water and ice for everyone. Alisa was staged on another part of the course with oranges. So thoughtful… It was so great getting and receiving energy from the other people who were out there also training for IM CDA and other events. It certainly gave me a little taste of the energy I’ll feel on race day. I tried to give encouragement to everyone I passed either coming or going. Sometimes that’s all you need, right? Apparently, it worked because I ended up averaging 7:52 overall for the 13 mile run. I was certainly getting fatigued at the end, but channeled that quick finish as best I could.
Afterwards, the T3 coaches had set up a picnic-style party with pizza, cookies, beer, soda, water, etc. Renee and Michelle from Performance Wellness also set up their massage tables and gave everyone a much-needed rubdown. Many people made wonderful desserts (from which I abstained). I was actually quite the dork and brought my own muffin with PB and Jelly. I did have one piece of pizza–sorta. I took off the cheese. Still workin’ the Engine 2 diet my friends!! I’ve been 99% vegan for over 3 months! I say 99% because there has been occasional dairy intake via gelato and a couple of pieces of sushi.
Overall, it was an awesome training day and wiped me out more than I ever thought it would!! We learned that one of our teammates Maggie had taken a freak fall on the bike course and was taken to the hospital for an EKG and cat scan. Fortunately, she ended up being ok…Another reminder and testament to wearing your helment and remembering how fragile we are.
I was brutally tired and sore when I got up the next morning to head to the Training Center for my Computrainer ride. I told Coach Mo that I was depressed because as I was leaving, all of my neighbors still had their newspapers on the front porch which meant that they were still sleeping happily as I was heading to hop on the bike AGAIN!!….Choices, Carrie…Choices…Needless to say, my Computrainer ride turned into a 2.5 hour recovery ride and dismal performance on the CDA course. I got through a few of the hills and Jesse, Val and I all said, “Enough for today.” My legs weren’t having it, but I felt like I had certainly accomplished the mission. (FYI–our computrainer for the house is still in the box!) Sometimes you just have to listen to your body!
Well, I for one, plan on listening very acutely to my body for the next four weeks. I’m putting it on cruise control and just focusing on staying healthy and eating right. I would also include, “getting plenty of sleep,” but I never feel like I get enough sleep these days.
It wasn’t much of a Memorial Day, BBQ weekend, but it was complete and gratifying just the same. It was spent with great friends (and husbands) doing what we truly love to do. What more could you ask for?!