A lot has happened in the last three weeks since finishing the inaugural 70.3 in Raleigh. Most of them have presented me with some sort of unexpected hurtle to overcome, but that’s just life. In the last three weeks I’ve:
1. Had to replace my Garmin Edge 500 after it fell off my bike and got ran over by a car. I ended up getting the Garmin 910xt (spending my winnings from the Raleigh race in a much different way than I was hoping).
2. I started feeling some Tendinitis in my left knee during the race at Raleigh on the bike. I noticed for the first few miles of the bike, but after about mile 15, I never felt it again. I went to Occupational Kinetics for some treatment. I was amazed at the rate that the tendinitis healed. Hopefully it stays at bay and won’t bother me again.
3. My bike started making some crazy popping sounds just before needing to leave for Syracuse. I also broke a spoke (a sign that maybe I need to drop a couple pounds, maybe?) while on a training ride. The wheel is fixed now and Cycle Smiths took great care of me pushing my bike to the front of the work load. The basically stripped my entire bike down to figure out where the creaking sounds was coming from and built it back up. After taking it out today for a some short intense intervals, the bike is riding smooth and quiet again.
I arrived with my girlfriend in Syracuse after 11.5 hours of driving. A long haul, but we started early and only hit a little bit of traffic in Cincinnati. Our host for the week, Shirely, a member of the Central NY Tri Club, has been great. She left her house open for us since she wasn’t going to be home and let us help ourselves to whatever we needed. She gave me a ride to the pool this morning and the race venue to check it out. She also gave Leslie and I some ideas on some fun things to do together. We ventured to an indoor high ropes course to a crazy big mall called Destiny USA. It was a stretch for both of us, since neither of us are a huge fan of heights. After a short afternoon brick, we made our way to a local park to hang out of the evening. I have to say, it’s been nice to have some company to help keep the nervous energy down.
But, of course, I’ve thinking about this race since getting in last minute. Playing it through in my head over and over again. I feel very confident of my abilities. Taking a look at the pro start list, I think I have a very legitimate shot at walking away with a some money from this race. But, I want to do better than a 5th place (what I placed in Raleigh). To do this, I really need to push the bike a bit more. I have to find a new level of discomfort and be okay with that. I know that my run may suffer a little from it, but if I can gain 3 or 4 minutes on the bike and only run a minute or so slower, that is still a net gain of time. The trick is balance and pacing, and nutrition. I’m going to follow the same nutrition plan as I did for Raleigh, since it seemed to work out pretty well. Infinit will be my main source of calories and electrolytes. I will supplement with water and salt stick tabs throughout the ride to stay hydrated. When the run comes up, I’ll use NAPALM highly caffeinated to fuel the rest of my race.
So what are my goals for this race? I would like to exit the water in 26 minutes, ride the 56 miles in 2:13 to 2:14, and run about a 1:19. These times won’t be quite good enough to break 4 hours, which is my long term goal… but it will get me closer. Placing… I’d like to land 3rd if possible… which I think it is. Only time will tell.
Cya at the starting line…