Wanted to say hi and congrats to all Zooters for some great races in the last few weekends. As always, thanks to all of our wonderful sponsors for helping us accomplish our goals and continue to train and race at higher levels.
I also wanted to give a training update and Vineman re-cap.
First off, training has continued to build since my late season start. With the help of ALCiS cream and continual maintenance I have been able to keep plantar fasciitas at minimal on the pain front. My Orbea is treating me amazingly well. As it took a couple weeks to become accustomed to the aero position and a great bike fit here, I feel more comfortable than any bike I have ever ridden. I continue to use trial and error with my nutrition as I think it is a fine dance and am really enjoying the GU products especially the Chomps and Chocolate and Espresso Love gels. My fuel belt has saved me on continuous long runs in the sweltering heat and dry conditions we have been having lately in CO. As always I continue to enjoy my Zoot attire particularly the tri shorts which seem to be the only ones I own that don't give me chaffage.
On the race front my last race was Vineman 70.3. An absolutely amazing and beautiful race course, I went out 1 1/2 days early to get settled in and do a day of training/registration etc... I'm really glad I got to go out early and enjoy the scenery where I'd be racing. It's hard to enjoy the view in the TT position. Anyhow, I knew it would be a solid test and great challenge, as the competition was deep and the day would be toasty.
Race morning turned out to be fairly chilly, and my Zoot compression shocks which doubled as 1/2 tights with my carpris and Zoot longsleave with fleece inside helped keep my muscles nice and warm. After a warm up and T1 organization I pulled on my Zoot Speedsuit and was headed toward the start. A quick warm-up and we were off into the water for our start. It was men and women all at the gun and funny to see how the men really enjoyed inching forward as much as possible. After the gun went off and the sprint began, I found myself in a bit of a cluster, as we continued forward and spread out I was next to then behind some guy. He cut over and I ended up loosing his feet and swimming in a familiar place called no mans land. This is something that I'm going to work very hard with my coach on over the next few months. Holding that high intensity pace for as long as it takes to either get ahead or hold on to feet and stay there. Inevitably everyone settles into a pace, but it is always key to get on feet a bit faster than your comfortable with and push yourself with their help, I need to get better at this.
I came out of the water and in to T1 about 1:30 back from the leaders of Joanna Zeiger and Pip Taylor. I knew my bike would have to be solid as I headed out on the course. The beginning seemed to go well. I did drop my salt container, so that was a bummer, but I knew I couldn't worry about it as I was certainly not turning back. My electrolyte drink and gels had enough to bget me through until the run. As I have been training and getting accustomed to my new Orbea, and with the Zipp race wheels was super fast. I think I had not prepared as well as I should have to be down in the aero bars for a very extended time period. My lower back really acted up a bit. All factors that could be ellivated with little fit adjustments (which I have since made). Anyhow, time wise the bike was not as wonderful as I had hoped for, but it was good all in all and my nutrition and mechanics went well so that is a major plus. I also had great reminders of when to check in with my body and refuel thanks to my suunto. sometimes it is easy for me to forget to eat when I get in the zone. Off the bike and on to the run.
A very toasty course and not too much shade. I got my long awaited salt at the first aid station. The first 1/2 of the run felt very steady, painful but steady. The back 1/2 was more of a challenge. The heat really began to pound down and I felt a bit of the shuffle. It is always so important for me to think positive and get proper and continuous nutrition and hydration. I'm glad I had gotten proper nutrition on the bike and early in the run b/c by the end I felt a bit nauseous. Luckily it was near the end and the crowd was amazing and all of the energy drew me to the finish line for another amazing experience and block to build from. It was amazing to have so much support on many bits of the course, not only by volunteers and spectators but all of our fellow teammates! Thanks so much to all of the other Zooters and sponsors.
As well a big thanks to the Zoot Ultra team including Suunto, Fuelbelt, FU, Orbea, Zipp, ALCiS for so much support through this 2009 season!
Another great race and test. Continually I can see myself coming back around and improving. I'm learning patience more and more every day and enjoying this sport and everyone involved!
Hugs and be well everyone.
Good luck this weekend and happy training!
Hope to see you if you're in Boulder for the 5430 1/2 Sunday!