Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Gatorade Elwood Sprint

Sometimes the week of an event rolls around and  I start to think what I'm going to write to you lovely folk that read this, and I start to worry that I haven't done much exciting except ride, swim and run. But silly me life in The Reid Castle always likes to throw up something special on a race week, in fact now if something doesn't happen I'm almost disappointed.


Baby gastro, that mighty stomach bug that zaps the body in an instant, I roll in from my group ride Sunday week prior feeling good and full of coffee ready take on a great Sunday with the family, super wife turns to me with the look of I need a couple more hours sleep. No worries I say taking Z-Girl downstairs for a bit of playtime, I hear the toilet flush not once, not twice but it's a hatrick inside 30 minutes. Oh no. Sunday Family Day just ended right there.

Monday comes around and poor Super Wife has recovered slightly to get herself to work, I'm feeling like I may of dodged a bullet. Z-Girl is still not 100%. 3pm Monday afternoon and I feel like $hit, my lunch smells awful, the coffee tastes bad while the computer screen begins to pulse at my eyes, the drive home is a mixture of cold sweats and trying to down some water. It was straight in the house kiss the wife, cuddle the baby and straight to bed.

By Tuesday morning I felt much better, a little empty on the inside but some water and plain food had me right again, in fact I was back on the bike by Wednesday morning. My training week had been disrupted but a light swim on Thursday night felt great, coming into my last lap of my session I got a cramp, the lifeguard laughed at my antics but I was in a fair bit of pain so much so I pulled the muscle a little and it was tender the next morning. Two days off for recovery, no real activity except a slow ride to work, the calf was still quite sore but I figured come race day I would just ignore it and hope it goes away.

Sunday morning and the AM Family wake up call begins, first I get in my kit and prepare breakfast to get out the door, next is to nudge the wife who always seems to negotiate another 20mins and finally leaving Z-Girl till the last minute so she is well rested.

Love the big event nature of  the Gatorade Series Events, but it's not super friendly for families with super young kids and sleepy wives, the early cut off for Transition had me at Elwood for 7:15am which is mighty early considering I wasn't due in the water till 9:40am! It makes a for a long morning and staying focused and not drifting off with everything going on around you, can find yourself becoming a spectator and forgetting you too are diving in the water.

Hooter goes off and I rush into the water, the group has a nice pace about it and I settle into an ok rhythm, with a habit of getting a little lost in open water recently staying with a couple of swimmers meant hoping they had better internal GPS than I do. All goes well I make the turn and my swimming gets better, getting out of the water I don't feel like I have spent all my tokens.

A bit of yelling from Team Reid as I make my way up to the transition, which by the way at Elwood is almost as long as the Run leg! The bike, I was careful and maybe took 30secs longer than I wanted but it was a busy transition a bigger race and wanted to get it right. Hitting beach road I felt great and started to really pick up the pace, I ride this way to work most days and the wind wasn't blowing hard and my pedals were rolling nicely as I held my TT Position until the turn around points (my race goal was to stay locked in) The bike course was hectic! with cut down single lanes and a strong Elite group racing around us wanna be's made for some tight lines and I won't lie some drafting was involved but it was intended.

I heard post race of a terrible accident involving a spectator and cyclist from the super wife, I hope both came out ok, but my biggest concern for the organizers is cleaning up that bike course too many cars crossing the course as well as people was bound to be an issue.

Into the run and my time was looking good, under 4:30 km/min range, another race goal ticked. I really wanted to avoid the mid run slump and pushed mentally to stay focus on my stride, I started to pick up on a couple in my age group as I headed to towards the finish line, turning down the finishing chute I heard a couple of friendly shouts as I got to the line very well spent on energy, but a quick time check and I just knew it was a PB, I hoped for under 1:12 and started to dream of 1:08 but the reality was 1hr 10min 54sec not a massive PB but 1hr 10min had me feeling great! an almost 20 min difference from the same event a year later.

 Again this year I was able to share the result not just with my pregnant wife, but my beautiful little Z-Girl (who seemed more impressed by the colour of race hat) training buddies and triathlon friends. 1 year on and I certainly feel like I can claim the word triathlete, before I always felt like a guy who 'did' a triathlon, you know the guy who likes to go for a run now and then. When I get to an event I feel like I know how it all works, where to go and what to do as it becomes more comfortable I want to make it as uncomfortable for my PB's as possible.

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