Race morning...never have I had such gnarly butterflies in my stomach. I prayed to every God I could think of to have my knee hold up and let me finish the race- just get me through the bike and if I can't do anything but walk the run, so be it, but at least then I'll know I can finish.
I was uber excited for the swim, after all that's all I've basically been doing the last few weeks. I decided to "pull" as much of the course as possible to not irritate my knee at all. I loved the swim, got 3 different guys' feet at roughly 1/3s of the 1.2 miles which allowed me to get out feeling great.
T1- my main concern here was getting my strap done right because if I put it in such a way that didn't wrap comfortably or hold the right stuff in place it would mean stopping, unclipping, etc.
That was done good. YAY.
Bike- Well, I defintiely went slow :) 5min slower than 2 years ago. The flat and downhills I was able to hit my HIM pace watts, but the climbs my watts had to be on a certain zone to make sure I didn't ruin my season. So that was humbling experience #1.
T2- ehh same as always.
Run- First, it was waaay hotter than 2 yrs ago. That or the extra layer of insulation that defintitely didn't burn off my body the last 1.5 months or so as I had hoped really did me in. That will change for October- dramatically.
OUCH and humbling experience #2. My first thought "holy crap I'm out of shape". This was the toughest 13.1 miles, actually no, I lie, the toughest run I've done training or racing. I'm thankful to have had the opportunity to dig this deep. Granted, in Arizona the last 10ish miles were the worst pain ever on my quads, but that was an IM and I went a slower pace here than in that marathon. Not cool. Expected, but very hard to swallow.
It was like I was running on a treadmill- not going anywhere. My knee held up, I had slight niggles and the only bummer was when I got soaked after a couple aid station water guzzles, my strap would come loose every now and then so I had to tighten it. I only had to walk 2-3 ascents on the golf course because one little umph too much and it could be the start of an even longer day.
Finish- so so so glad to see it.
I ended up winning my AG but had a terrible overall finish- 26th. that's about 21 lower than what I had hoped for in my training pre-injury. I knew when I flew down here that such a race was out of the question. Even with my knee fairing really well like today. This is where the major sucking it up comes into play. See, yesterday, I would have been thrilled at the thought of finishing practically running (aka jogging) the whole time, but like a good ol' human, once I had that, I wanted more. I wanted to be here healthy, I cringed as I saw other girls ahead on the out and backs, and I took a major stab when I got online after the race- actually when I crossed and saw the time because I knew right away.
I know it's ridiculous, greedy, whatever, but it still kills. I even feel bad that I have this sort of let down feeling (kinda like when you wanted a certain birthday present but then your friend got an even better one and suddenly yours sucks).
I have to be appreciative of the fact that I could walk just fine after, and that I know in 3 weeks of proper recovery and weight room time I'll be full swing for Kona-gearing.
That's it. On the super bright side, I had an incredible time with Cassie up at the Fairmont. We stayed there Thurs and Fri night and she was awesome company. Both nights we had the best dinners by the ocean and some good long chats.
I'm now back at the house, it feels good to be in the slightly cooler temps up high. Tomorrow we're gonna go paddleboard with her son Cash, and then Monday might go south as I've never seen that part of the island.
Then I fly out the 2nd and move to my condo the 3rd- yikes!
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