…and sometimes, that’s not for the best. Ah well!
But let’s start at the beginning, shall we? Race prep was just fine, I ate all the things I was supposed to, filled myself with an insane amount of electrolytes because of this dang heat advisory, and jetlag still kind of in effect made me sleep like a baby.
The morning also went like clockwork, but I felt a little draggy. Normally, a Starbux coffee pod has me seeing sounds and hearing colors. Not so much. Thinking about it, I’d felt similarly the day before. Once we got to the race, I shook it off, threw down some more sugar, and got myself ready for the swim.
I think it was one of my best since Covid. I sighted well, stayed on feet when I could, passed when I couldn’t, and though it was a bit short (more like 400m), I cannot be displeased of an official time of 8:34 when I normally swim about 11+ minutes for 500m.
I jogged into transition and was pretty hasty… until my bike shoes went on. Lately, I’ve had some wacky cramping issues off the bike, and jogging the super long transition in bike shoes was not going to help things. Yet again, I ain’t mad at 2:26 for the longest walk in bike shoes ever.
We turned left on Weiss Ln, and I was going almost 30 mph without trying. On one hand, wheeeeee! On the other hand, gosh, I’m going to pay for that later. While I sure did, it wasn’t nearly as bad as expected. The course turned in and out of the direct headwind enough that I didn’t have the usual moments of despair. I did not enjoy part of the course that was open to traffic on a busy-ish street, and I feel like my lack of bike handling skills held me back today. Better than last race, though, at 41:02 for just over 12 miles.
Here’s where the wheels were in danger of falling off last time, so I walked my bike back to the rack. It sucked getting passed so much but I didn’t want to cramp. I took a very luxurious 4:41 in T2 but felt like all my parts were in proper working order heading out to run.
Luckily, we got some overcast and breezy moments at the start of the run. However, the wind made the slightly uphill first two miles feel more uphill. This is not my favorite run and my least favorite direction to run it in. However, I was able to run faster than my normal morning 5k jaunt and accelerate as I went. I kept passing people walking, dying in the heat, and thankful I was able to continue at my nice clip even if I wished it was faster. 29:56 for 3-ish miles (course was a little short) is respectable for the gross conditions.
All told, 1:26:42 is a pretty decent time. This is my 3rd best effort at this race, and I’ve done it every year since 2011 (except 2020 and 2021). In such a small field, I was eager to see if I placed. My age group killed me, I was 6th out of 6. Looking at any other women’s age group, I would have been 2nd at the worst. I would have actually even placed 2nd in Joel’s (40-44 men) age group. Bit of a *whomp whomp* but I’m still happy with my own race even if the fast 40-year-olds had to come swarm my age group. 🙂
Ultimately, last year this time I was limping through races. 2023 is so much better!