It sounds pretty cool, and it feels great. I had three goals coming into this race prioritzed as follows: 1) win my AG 2) get top 10 amateur F 3) break 10hrs
One out of three accomplished. You could say it was a really fast year, but I experienced the most wind out in Hawi than in 2007 or 2009, and the swim was back to regular suits. So, really I think each year just gets more competitve. If you look at the top AG women, the times are sick. Frankly, it's a lovely testament to the growth/future of women in sport.
I'm not going to give a race report detailing EVERYTHING because that takes too long and there's really nothing out of the ordinary to mention. In short: I swam hard, got different good drafts the whole way, swallowed some water but didn't get beat up...awesomely forgot to take my speed suit off in T1 tent so had to slip it off running along transition :)....on the bike I felt great, had a few tough patches, big head and cross winds in Hawi and some drizzle....the run was a mental struggle through mile 6, then awesome to mile 13, then a struggle through the energy lab, then just "get er done" coming home the last 10k. I bumped up my salt intake by a lot which helped tremendously, I discovered walking some aid stations helps more than it hinders, I still can't help stopping to pee a couple of times on the run.
What goes through your mind at certain lows of the race is intriguing. At mile 5, I thought I could still pick up the pace by about 20sec/mile and get myself in the top 10, and sub 10:10. By mile 15 I realized my legs had not and were not going to give me any more so suddenly it's like I let go, or gave up, on goals 2 & 3. Counting girls and miles, my mind settled and instead of getting disappointed at what I could not achieve, I embraced the fact that I was in the lead for my ag and could cross the line a winner.
We learn to crawl before we walk, and walk before we run. Thus, reflecting on my progress the last three races in Hawaii, I see that it was fruitless to set my expecations so high since 2007 and skip steps. I needed to win my AG first before I could move on and complete the other two goals. Each Ironman humbles me in a different manner, and I emerge with a stronger and smarter head, and ready to make necessary changes to execute the next one better. I will not get my pro card for next year. I will climb that ladder patiently and make the most of my last year in the 18-24 AG. For 2011 my plan is to crack top 10 overall in all the 70.3s and possibly one early season Ironman I do, get top 3 in as many local races as I can fit in my calendar, and go to Kona repeat my win and NOW check off goals 2&3.
I was overwhelemed by the congratualtions from friends and family. The love and support played an enormous role in helping me be stoked, not just content, with my achievement, and not beat myself up for having "failed" in other ways. It's twisted, demented, whatever you want to call it. But, part of what makes athletes push so hard, and be so determined, is that constant need/desire to do better- the temporary
satisfaction with recent accomplishments, that quickly turns into a blueprint for the next race to go faster. It's the endless "not good enough" that follows a couple of days of winner's high.
I had my cloud 9 feeling. I stood proudly on stage, alongside 4 incredibly talented girls, and held up my first place award. I partied my ass off that night at the Kswiss after party, and had a blast.
Now I'm home, sleeping countless hours, trying to shake off an oncoming cold, and ready to start prepping for Ironman Cozumel. I want to push harder, go faster, and beat more people.
A huuuuuge shout out to my girl friends that had amazing races: Beth Walsh who smoked the run, posting the fastest amateur split at 3:10...Susanne Davis who anihilated the field cmoning in 2nd amateur with a 9:50...Caroline Gregory, who bounced right back after an epic race in IM Canada, and PR'd yet again with a sub 10:10... Rhae Shaw who cracked 10hrs and podiumed in the super competitve 35-39AG... Sierra Snyder, who also set a Kona and run PR...Julie Dunkle who tackled her Kona demons and finished with a beaming smile...& many more peeps that are slipping off my memory right now!
I want to thank my family, my training partners, my coach Paul Regensburg,Newton Running, Nytro, Beaker Concepts, TYR, & Powerbar.
'Till the crystal clear waters of Cozumel :)