Sada had it right, except the night before the race I ate a small pizza and a large beer and there was no poop that was going to stop me.
It was a rough week:
1) I lost my wallet (great anxiety) (Monday PM)
2) I found my wallet, but only after going to the DMV and getting a new license (less anxiety) (Tuesday AM)
3) I got my stuff locked in my desk at work and somehow the keys were locked in the desk too (Wednesday)
4) My training partner and very good friend Ian was diagnosed with cancer of the blood (Multiple Myeloma). (Thursday)
5) My wife was gone for 2 days on a business trip and I missed her a lot (Tues/Wed)
6) My wife threatening in a COMMENT to write a blog post about choosing the right nail polish gets more responses than my hours of heart-wrenching blog posting.
There wasn't much to my strategy except go as fast as I could - I sort of stuck to that plan. Also racing with me was Chris in his 2nd tri!
The Swim - started ok, but when I got into the middle of the pack it got choppy and I slowed down to just go my own pace. I held back until I could get into a spot where it wasn't choppy and then the paddlewheels kicked in. Turns out I was better than mid pack- finishing around 34 out of 100. The spirit of Courtenay was out there getting me through it. I clobbered a few folks out there - so I would stop with each clobber to see that I hadn't killed anyone. I think I swallowed a small fish at some point. The swim exit was a little rough (gravely) and Chris and I had put shoes at the exit to put on and wear up into T1. When I got out of the water I figured I'd mess with him and leave my shoes there right next to his, making him think I was still out there wishing I was Mr. Limpet.
The bike - it started SO SLOW. I'm a bit of a diesel motor - so it takes me 15-20 mins to get rolling (which is relevant). I grabbed a 2x caffeine GU (Espresso LOVE) to help (actually 2 of them). The road was as bumpy as Desiree's muffins - but it was flat for the most part - I think I shifted 4 times. I left my Garmin Edge 305 at home, so I only had HR to give me some quantitative indication of pain. I caught a few folks and kept going hard hoping to get the #1 bike split. I saw the race leader(s) on his way back and found I was in 4th and they had about 2.5 mins on me. I pushed a bit harder on the way back and made up at least 1.5 of those minutes and was in 3rd overall about 2 miles from the finish before I got passed! I held the gap at about 100m because I knew I could transition quickly (which I did) and he had 20m on me heading out after T2. It turns out not only could he bike, but he could run.
The run - realizing I was in 4th meant I had to run harder than I had before - mostly because I've been running like a little baby girl and stopped pushing when it hurt. I knew I could push 190+ on the HRM, so I used that as a guide rather than pain in my power sticks. There was one guy behind me by about 30 seconds that I was hoping I could hold off - but he was skinny and didn't look slow, so I would at least make him earn those 30 seconds. Around mile 3 he passed me and I held him about 50m. I definitely felt better in the final mile but didn't have the mental guts just yet to push it harder - leaving me 5th overall.
I finished 2nd in my age group, 5th overall and had the #2 bike split. My goals were to be top 5-10, top 3 in my AG and have the top 1-2 bike splits - so I got pretty close.
Chris finished 8th in our AG and 23rd OA. Kelly was 2nd in the Olympic distance race and Sarah 4th! I'll have to post the pictures I took tonight.
Keep Ian and his family in your thoughts as he starts his chemo treatment tomorrow AM (Tuesday).