This was my sixth 70.3 race and my measuring stick to see if I’m ready to step up to the full distance races next year. My goal for this race was a sub 5:15 or better. My previous PR was a 5:23, but I felt that on the right course and on a good day that time was well within reach. In April I completed Oceanside and felt that I had done very well, after another six months of training and coming into this race injury free I was really excited. I felt that I had made drastic improvements on my swim and my run from last year.
My fueling plan for this race would be very crucial since I really planned to push the pace on the revised single loop bike course and on the run. For 12 months I have fueled exclusively with Base Performance products. I know there are a lot of contributing factors to having a successful season but, I don’t think I’m exaggerating the affects Base Performance has had on me. I take Base Performance products daily including; Base Multi Vitamins, Base Amino, Base Salt and Base Recovery Activator. These products have kept me healthy and injury free, have made my cramping issues a thing of the past and have eliminated my “stomach woes” during my runs.
The weather leading up to the race was very mild all week, averaging in the low 70’s and cloudy conditions till noon on most days. On race morning the conditions were perfect and the swim was by far the most enjoyable of any other race I’ve participated in. I was really comfortable in the water; I pushed really hard the first 400M. By the second buoy I settled in to my rhythm and started to think about my strategy for the rest of the race. Before I knew it, I was at the last buoy and I pushed the last 200m to the shore. After exiting the water, I stripped my suit, entered T1 and was at my mat in less than 50 yards. My transition was less than thirty seconds, grabbed my bike and was heading to “Bike Out”.
In the past this bike course was known to be technical and tough (hilly). They revised it from a two loop to a one loop course recently which made me optimistic that I could hammer this course in a decent time. One week before the race, due to “emergency repairs”, we were back to the old two loop course. In the end in my opinion this is a tough course, very technical, with a lot of traffic on single lane roads. I lost a lot of precious time stuck behind cars, trucks and even an eighteen wheeler unable to pass safely. At about the 50 mile mark I consumed every bit of Base Amino/water and food I had on my bike and in my race pockets. I pushed as hard as I could on this course, just short of burn out, and still missed my goal time by 19 minutes, Ouch!
I couldn’t believe my time coming into T2 and on top of that my legs were spent. I was a little demoralized, thinking I was in for a tough run. I thought there was no way I would be able to put together a decent run and for the first time in three years I would regress on my finishing time. I racked my bike, threw on my shoes and left T2 as quickly as possible. Surprisingly, once I started running my legs recovered quickly. Considering that the first mile is usually the toughest, maybe there was some hope. The temperature and conditions were still perfect, 70’ with over cast, but the course was still a challenging two loop course with a few good hills. I have to give credit to my training, tapering and fueling, because I felt really strong considering the effect the bike course had on me both physically and mentally. By the time I got to the finish line I had tied my PR and I was ecstatic that I did it on a tough course.
I was very happy with my performance in Lake Stevens and I can’t wait to start training for next year. This race made me realize a lot of things, “again” that I always seem to forget leading up to each and every race.
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