Sunday, August 23, 2009

SB Long Course & Sprint Nationals

I wish 'almost' counted sometimes, haha. I had a good learning experience and have mixed feelings today looking back at the SB Long Course tri yesterday, my first race longer than Olympic distance. I finished 5th to some good pro's, and was having a great race entering the run in 2nd a few minutes behind Pro John Dahlz & a few minutes ahead of 3rd. Dahlz won in 2:53 (while I posted a 2:57), he's the '09 College Nat'l Champ & recently placed 4th at Vineman 70.3, where he beat the likes of '08 Ironman champ Craig Alexander by over 5 minutes. Congrats to John, who also sports the Breathe Right nasal strips like me..thatta boy, they help! I was 4th in the elite wave out of the water, passed a guy in T1 and another 2 miles into the bike and remained in 2nd for the next hour.
I just needed to not blow up and hold on for the 10 mile run and 2nd was mine. I guess easier said than done. I cramped 2 miles into it in the quads, grabbed my baggie of salt tablets, and found I had dumped them out somewhere. Apparently I still managed 6:15 pace on the day but had to stop a few times in the race to rub out cramps, once for the restroom, and a few times the last mile since I was really feeling horrid and struggling bad. Patrick Baldwin & pro Mac Brown passed me around miles 6 and 8. I gutted it out to finish the last 200m strong and made it to the line where I fell over in the sand, and then blacked out for a bit to find people soaking me with sponges, which felt really really good. I tried to be mentally tough on the run, but sometimes the body just won't go.
I gained good experience from my first longer race ever, learned about nutrition and how a longer race feels, so I will take positive things from it.
I used my new Hed Stinger disc wheel that they Brian & Josh at Inside Track Ventura helped me get, which was pretty fun. Unfortunately my Garmin GPS flew off my bike on Toro Canyon Rd somewhere after hitting a huge bump; after searching for over an hour yesterday after the race it was nowhere to be found. My water bottle flew off a mile into the bike too, which couldn't have helped my hydration; stuff was like popcorn yesterday flying off my bike. They said they would DQ anyone who's water bottle flew off the bike and didn't stop to get it, as they were very concerned for safety of other riders since a lady died on the course last year. The bike has some big up and down hills with sharp dangerous curves. But I wasn't about to stop going 25 mph and look for my bottle in the weeds. Everyone..keep looking for my GPS along the road. Thanks!
A few weeks ago I won the 25-29 age group and took 3rd at the USAT Sprint Nationals in Newport. So I guess they give me the age group National Champion title, but really I wouldn't call it a true Nationals. It was turned into a duathlon since the waves and current was too dangerous apparently. It was a fun sprint. I ran a 15:43 3 mi split on a tough course with 2 very steep hills.
Here's one rather funny pic of the little fainting spell yesterday. It was awesome having my friends out there cheering and Meyers there to help drag me to the medical tent.
I also got to meet Matt Laferty from Lifewater Int'l who I'd been in touch with via email for a few weeks, a non-profit helping bring clean water to villages all over the world for the first time. I may try to race some tri's and try to raise $ through their Team Lifewater events. Check out

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