It is now Thursday and I am finally starting to feel a little bit normal again. There is no denying, the race on the weekend worked me over. But I guess the reality was that was the plan!
It was exciting to be back in Cancun after 8 years! The last time I had been there it was 2002 Age Group world champs where I did okay…..but the highlight of the trip was the amazing people I met and new life long friends I made! One of which is getting maybe next year!
This time I traveled solo but was so lucky that some amazing girls from London, Charlie and Catherine, felt sorry for me 🙂 and I spent some fun times with them leading up to the race including dinner at the Shrimp Bucket and Catherine being proposed to by Louise!
Race morning my alarms were set for 4.30am but I thought considering I was in a hotel I might as well get a wake up call as well. Sunday morning the phone rang and I answered it to hear a friendly voice claiming “this is your wake up call!” I quickly glanced at my clock to see it flashing 3.45am!! What the????
I replied to her with “sorry this is not my wake up call!” and after hanging up I heard the phone ring up stairs and realised she had accidently rang the wrong number. The damage was done though, and I was up! So there was plenty of time for a shower and a good stretch now and I was down in the lobby for the bus transfer to the transition area with plenty of time to spare.
Mentally I was ready to go! Training had been great, tough, tiring, fatiguing, the last month and I was looking forward to putting it all into action. The body unfortunately had different ideas and although coach Jeff had told me you will be tired, you will be fatigued and the goal was to do what I could and finish off a great block of training, I was still hoping for more!
It was a gorgeous start to the morning and after walking down to the swim start with Luke and Amanda and warming up I was ready to go.
Swim – Unfortunately another frustrating swim. After nailing it in Lake Placid I couldn’t wait to get out there again and swim fast, but as much as I love non wetsuit swims, I realise I do need to work on my beach starts (Nat!!) and be more aggressive at the start. I tried something different in Cancun but obviously it didn’t work and my lesson was learnt by not getting myself in the pack about a minute faster than me which is where I should have been.
Onto the bike and I was ready to ride hard! I felt great the first 20-25km but it didn’t take long for the fatigue to set in (more than usual anyway!) but the goal was to go hard so I continue to push. I was able to gain some ground and pass a few girls after my slow swim but was looking forward to getting out on the run.
The last 10miles of the ride the wind picked up and pretty soon after the rain came! It bucketed down hard! The roads were beginning to flood as I pulled into transition.
My awesome K-Ruuz were on in a flash and the first mile I felt like I was flying! The rain continued to fall and I was ready to run strong! The next minute the rain, clouds and wind were gone just as quickly as it came and the heat and humidity replaced it! Exactly what I was after I guess…!
Halfway through the run it became a matter of survival and having seen that I was pretty safely in 5th position with 4th over 5 minutes up the road, the mental game began and it was aid station to aid station and loading up on water, gatorade and coke. The aid stations were amazing, one every km was totally needed. The water was give out in little bags that you could rip a corner off and drink some, pouring the rest over yourself. I would grab 2, use one at the aid station and the other half way to the next one.
That finish line could not have come soon enough. I was spent! I had to find someone to help me cross the line to the medical tent where constant wet towels and fluid were helping so much.
After spending time lying down I slowly began to feel better. Onto the bus back to the hotel and it was perfect timing for lunch with Luke and Amanda then cocktails in the pool bar with Wattie, Heather, Catherine and Charlie.
After little sleep it was actually a 3.45am wake up call the next morning and 3 flights to get me back to Boise. Since being home there has been lots of sleeping stretching and reflecting.
The reality is, I got out of the race exactly what I was going there to do. Racing in the heat and humidity and finishing off a big block of training with a good hard race hit out. The big picture is Hawaii and an easy week this week followed by a couple of big training days on the weekend then the taper will begin. I am definitely looking forward to that!
For now, I am glad I don’t have to unpack because I am off again to Kona in 4 days, so really there is no point!
The immediate big decision I have to make though is who to barrack for this weekend in the AFL Grand Final. Collingwood or St Kilda! I have never really liked Collingwood, but do like Mick Malthouse as a coach, plus his former association with the West Coast Eagles! When it comes to the Saints, knowing that Tony Bence is a die hard supporter, means I may have to just go for Collingwood!!
Lucky for me it is being shown on ESPN live, but at 1am! May have to tape it instead!