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Race Report: LEADMAN TRI TEMPE 2014



First triathlon of the year is in the books and it was a good one!

Let's make this short and sweet since there will be many more race reports to follow this year!

Pre-race


Love sunrise in the desert!

Highlights
  • Being in the warm and sunny desert! While I don't want to live down in the Phoenix Valley, I love visiting. Racing in the desert is my favorite! Especially when it's hot... 
  • Staying with my good friend, Paul, his wife, Tess, and buddy, Keith, the night before the race. The condo is a block from the start/finish and it's always great to hang out with PLB and listen to his great stories. Thanks for letting me crash on your (super comfortable) couch! 
  • Seing old friends and meeting new ones. Always the best part of racing! So fun to meet Coeur teammates and take a picture in our awesome kits! 
  • I love, love, love racing! And it seems like a long time since my last triathlon (HITS Lake Havasu Full) back in November. Racing season is in full swing and I am excited! 

With my Coeur teammate and new friend, Jeana.


Lowlights
  • Being all excited (and nervous) about racking my bike in the 'special Pro section' only to find out that there is a good chance that I am the only female Pro at this race. There were about 10 total last year so it never occurred to me that I might be the only one this year. Oh well, you can only race who is there, so I spread out and took advantage of all of that space! 
  • The race was wetsuit legal. Barely. The only reason this was a bummer is because my wetsuit is ancient and has a bunch of (rather large) holes in it and I really didn't want to wear it. But it looks like I will get a new one before my next race! Hooray! 
  • I was reminded again that I need to get to the race super early! There are just too many things to do, too many people to talk to, to many little details to fiddle with to ever get bored. No matter how early I get there! 

The Swim
2500m, 0:38:45, 1:34/100m


Me and the boys. 

Highlights
  • I did what Coach said! I tried very hard to find a group to swim with and I did! There were 5 of us and I drafted nicely all the way to the turn-around buoy. 
  • The start wasn't nearly as bad as I had feared. The Pros started with all men 18-34 and so I was the only girl in a sea of guys. I didn't mind one bit but I thought things might be a little rough at the beginning. But they weren't. Not like at 70.3 Worlds in 2011 when I got into a fist fight. 
  • Not sure if this is a highlight or a lowlight. Once we got to the turnaround buoy I figured I'd better be paying attention, take a good line, and speed up so I wouldn't get dropped. You know, things can get a bit crazy at the buoy. Well, turns out I went around that thing a bit too quickly. When I looked up to see where everyone was, they were all gone. Because now they were drafting nicely behind me. All the way back to the finish. Haha. I wasn't sure what to do, so I just kept swimming thinking they would come around me because I was too slow. But they never did. 

Lowlights
  • I didn't swim as fast as I was supposed to. But luckily still a full 2 minutes faster than last year. So I will take it. Still. I had the 8th fastest swim out of all of the women. Compared to the fastest bike and run split. So, clearly, the swim is my weakness
  •  PLB, who ALWAYS sits at the back of the lane at Masters and chats during EVERY kick set, outswam me by a few seconds. Go figure. I have no problem with that EXCEPT that I am now wondering why in the world I am busting my butt at the front of the lane so often. I think I am going to join PLB at the back more often. 
  • Scraping my toes bloody at the swim exit. Happens every time I get out of this darn lake. 


T1
1:02

Considering that I still insist on putting my shoes on in transition and BEFORE getting on the bike, I think having the 2nd fastest T1 among all women is pretty good. I know. It's not the cool thing to do but, after 17 years of racing triathlon, I know what works best for me and what gets me out of T1 fast, safe, and ready to ride! 

The Bike
69 miles, 3:09:05, 21.9 mph


Highlights
  • My new bike! With my new race wheels! With electronic shifting! And a borrowed aero helmet! I mean, really, this thing basically rode itself. 

  • It didn't seem to be nearly as crowded as last year. Yay! 
  • I definitely got passed by some guys but not by as many as I thought! It's the little victories that count. And you'd better believe I was celebrating every little victory out there today! Partly to keep myself entertained, partly because you never know when/if things will go south. 
  • 4-lap bike course. Yes. I am part hamster. First lap was kinda boring and I didn't feel great. Second lap was ok. Third lap was fun. Fourth lap I was having a blast. Go figure. 
  • Seeing and hearing my friend and Utah Pro triathlete, Ali Black, cheering for me like crazy at the beginning of lap 3. I love that girl!



Lowlights
  • A total of 16 u-turns. 4 per lap. 4 laps. Plus a whole bunch of tight corners. Too many to count. It's not my favorite bike course. At all. I need to work on my cornering and bike-handling skills. 
  • That's it. Because - no matter how much my legs are screaming at me - I love to ride my bike!

T2
0:45

This is my claim to fame. Fastest T2 of the day! That includes the male Pros. Bam! 
Some credit definitely goes to my favorite Zoot shoes. No laces at all and no socks needed. 

The Run
8.1 miles, 0:57:47, 7:20/mi

Love the little black Coeur kit!

Highlights
  • I charge out of transition and this guy starts biking next to me and then pulls ahead saying stuff to people who then cheer me on. It took me a few minutes and then I realize: I have a lead bike! Which basically means that the race organizers appointed a guy to ride in front of me for the whole run! How cool is that?!? I know, I know. Being in the first wave I had a 12+ minute head start on all of the other women. So, although I was the first girl out on the run, we wouldn't know who actually won until about 15 minutes after I finish. But who cares?!? Another little victory to celebrate! And I was determined to use that lead bike to my advantage and run for my life so that none of the amateur women would beat me. 
  • It was only 8 miles. At least that's what I kept telling myself. 
  • This run, unlike the bike, never gets boring. Road, single track trail, smooth dirt trail, ups and downs. Fun!
  • I didn't get passed at all on the run and managed to pass a handful of guys. 



Lowlights

There really is only one. And I am not even sure I consider it a lowlight anymore. But at the times it was. At about mile 4.3 on the run I was feeling pretty good. I had met all of my goals so far for the day and I was pretty sure I would run under an hour and beat my time from last year. So, even if I did get beat by some of the other women, which, to be honest, would be somewhat of an embarrassment in my eyes, I would be ok with it. Ever since the minute I even started to entertain the thought of becoming a Pro, I knew that I would get beat regularly by some of the awesome amateur ladies out there. And there is no shame in that. Or at least there shouldn't be. Or in the very least I don't want to feel that way. 

I had been really good at avoiding to see who is how far behind me. Just keep your head down and don't look. It's not helpful. You do the best you can and in the end we will see how you measure up. Just give it your best effort and be happy with it. No regrets

So that's what I did. Until mile 4.3 when suddenly this yellow jersey was flashing at me from the other side of the canal. Take a quick look. CRAP. It's PLB. My 55-year-old Flagstaff friend and training partner. He is less than a mile behind me and we are NOT running 9-minute miles. So, considering that he started 9 minutes AFTER me, he is now AHEAD of me. Beating me. 

Who do I think I am trying to race as a Professional if I can't even beat 55-year-olds?!? I had a few rough minutes there until I was able to let it go. Somewhat. Enough to get my head back in the game and finish strong. 



I finished. Happy. Great race. Good times. 
Don't look at the finish time. Don't count how many minutes until the next girl comes. 
Enjoy your personal victory. Cheer for PLB and everyone else! 
Dump lots and lots of cold water on yourself. 
Be content. 

I am stoked for PLB who crushed his AG by 35 minutes! What a stud! It's really a pleasure and an honor to call this guy my friend and training buddy. No matter how much I would've liked to beat him, I LOVE how fast and fierce he is. It's the first time we ever raced each other and hopefully not the last. I really hope he wins his AG at Honu 70.3 in a few weeks and claims that Kona spot so that we can do some Ironman training together this fall! 


We grabbed our stuff, headed back to the condo, sat on the balcony eating snacks and checked results:  


I was a happy little winner




A huge Thank You to my fantastic sponsors:



Next up

St. George 70.3 on May 3rd. 

Can't wait for this one!!!





Comments

Karen said…
Those are some great photos!!! Great job!!

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