Thursday, December 27, 2012

Murphy’s Law- It’s been a long time since my last post. The main reason for the lack of updates is because I didn’t really have anything worth sharing. My last post was a couple weeks after I returned home from Mooloolaba, Australia where I had the one race all season that I was actually happy with. Heading into my first year as a U23 I took the second semester off school because I knew to get myself ready for Olympic distance racing I needed to get some more training under my belt. With it being the Olympic year there were also training opportunities that I couldn’t pass up. I trained harder and longer than I ever have…and coincidentally I was the most consistent I have ever been. A sore heel and some food poisoning had me miss out on only about 2 weeks of training all year. Based on how things were going I thought I was going to have a fantastic year… I couldn’t have been more wrong. Looking back I have decided to call my 2012 racing season my Murphy’s Law year- “anything that can go wrong will go wrong”. While preparation is the key to success in triathlon, the role of luck is not insignificant. I have had my fair share of luck to be sure, but not this year. (Not to say that my performance this year can all be attributed to lack of luck). I got heat stroke in Dallas and had to get pulled off the course within two kilometres of the finish. Two weeks later at my first World Cup I got the first flat tire of my racing career. In the races in between something little always ended up hindering my performance. By the time I got to Kelowna in August I was not feeling my usual excitement to race. After that race I took a week off and made the decision to keep training hard and racing hard. A whole new wave of confidence hit me and I went on to have a month of fantastic training. I was fortunate enough to be included as a member of the Canadian team for the World Championship Grand Final. But, to finish my season off in Auckland being so fit and so excited to race and then cramping on the bike and getting dropped from front pack was more than disappointing.
After Worlds, I ran for UVic at the national cross country championships in London, Ontario. Minus a fall at the start (Murphy’s Law strikes again?) cross country is always fun and my teammates are so awesome! After this race I discovered I had a stress fracture in my foot and have spent that past six weeks healing up.
In elite sport there are always hurdles and by overcoming them you grow, get stronger and look at changes that need to be made. While I accomplished only a few of my many goals for the 2012 season, the experience I gained will help me get to the next level in my career. Reflection time is over. You live and you learn. Its time to move on. Got through the semester of school and finished exams on the 20th with just enough time to get into the Christmas spirit. Have had a few days relaxing with the family but its time to get back to work. Here’s to a new year and new possibilities… Thanks to: Nineteen Wetsuits...I truly believe they are the best and will be working with them in 2013
-Saucony...goes above and beyond providing all my running shoes and attire! -Oak Bay Bikes for keeping my bike in working condition (New Years Resolution is to take better care of my bike :)) HUGE thanks to coaches Patrick and Carolyn who put up with me EVERY day.
And none of this would be worth it without my darling training partners! I know I can rely on each and every one of you...xo
And last but not least the fam...could not do this without your support (emotionally and finically)

Monday, May 21, 2012

Mooloolaba & Mazatlan Race Reports

About a week after my last post I headed to Caloundra, Australia for a 5 week training camp for all of March and the beginning of April. The first two weeks we got a solid block of training in the sun and heat minus the torrential downpours that would delay our afternoon rides (actually never have I seen it rain so hard- people who were in Gatineau in was raining harder than that!). There was one night it was SO windy and raining so much Paula came into our room all serious and said "do you guys have enough food for the next, like, 3 days??". Luckily our condos were situated in a non-flooding area...but poor Patrick got stuck in Mooloolaba due to all the flooding there...
Then on March 25th Ellen, Aaron and myself raced the Mooloolaba Continental Cup (It was mine and Ellen's first olympic distance). Besides having to set my alarm for 3:15 on race morning all the pre-race warm up was the same routine. We did a beach start at the far end and did a point-to-point swim to exit by transition. I didn't have a stellar start but managed to just be behind the fastest swimmer and instantly had the fastest feet to draft off of...running out of the water I made a little gap to lead up the long stairs/run into transition. The bike was chaotic, disorganized and slow. In the one out and back loop of 40km the front pack included about 15 girls: Ellen, myself and bunch of Aussies and a couple of Kiwi's...there was one flat and a crash that I barely avoided that took out 3 of the girls. Starting on the run I knew I needed to pace myself and save a little for the two killer hills we had to run up. As usual everyone was pretty spread out...I just focused on staying into a nice rhythm because I wanted to finish strong. Crossing the line in 5th position behind Ellen I really couldn't have been happier. Going into this race I didn't know any of the other girls and how the longer distance would affect me so it was hard to have expectations. But secretly my goal was top 10 so I definitely surprised myself. The race was a little motivational booster that got me through another almost three weeks of good, consistent training in Australia. Race Pics
Here are some other pics of our Australia adventures: BBQ at the Wallace house
Strollin on the beach
Post race briefing
Me and Super Alex
Steve Irwin Zoo
I made the decision to go to Mazatlan about 2 weeks prior to the race...I thought "I'm fit, I'm healthy and I'm coming off training in the heat... so why not?" The race was mid April. I flew home from Australia, had 4 days at home and packed up with my Dad and sister and heading to Mexico. The week leading up to the race I felt a little off...I think I was underestimating all the travel I had done. It was nice to meet up with the Guelph crew for some race prep. Heading into this race I was purely excited and felt ready to go! This race had a few little hiccups, as many Mexican races do. It was a two lap swim and the buoy's were a bit confusing...luckily I got the course figured out and lead out of the water on both laps...despite volunteers on paddle boards trying to tell me I went the wrong way. Heading out of T2 with a little gap the lead motorcyclist went the wrong way! Fortunately enough I had time to turn around and still make the front pack. The bike again was slow but I bit more organized that Mooloolaba. There were the occasional attack and sketchy-ness of the uneven course...but we all made in into T2 safely. Having a great T2 I started the charge only the feel totally horrible. I ended up running with another girl (which is rare) and we pushed each other for a whole lap. I made an attack but then she proceeded to pass me with 2km to go. The heat definitely got to me about half way through and I did not have another gear to push myself. I finished 9th and was the 3rd Canadian. Congrats Jo and Manon who finished 2nd and 5th respectively!! I was definitely hoping for a top 5 but really did what I could and minus the lack of speed on the run I was 100% happy with how I executed the rest of the race. Its pretty cool starting my olympic distance every single race is SUCH a learning experience. I've been training well in Victoria for the last month with a little weekend getaway to UBC with the twins and Paula. Heading to Dallas on May 30th to have another go!!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

2012 thus far

I really have been meaning to do a post for a long time...I guess in the fall I didn't want to post boring life updates that nobody wants to hear about or cares about for that matter. But I do admit that I have had lots of exciting post-able things happening in my life since the new year started. It was this past Saturday when I was doing my pre-race run that I ran into Mr. Nelson (the best cross country coach and man who got me through math 12). I have ran into him twice in the last couple of months and update him on whats been going on and vice versa (he became a dad about 4 months ago:) ). I know he is one of my blog readers who supports, is interested and excited about my triathlon career....what I am trying to say is running in to him gave me that little push to finally update this thing!!

So the fall consisted of going to school and doing minimal training....oh I got my wisdom teeth out (one of the worst experiences of my life) and hmmm what else oh I went to visit one of my best friends down Fresno, California which was really fun.

Okay now on to 2012

Started off the New Year by heading to a 5 week training camp in Maui (that actually turned into a 6+ week camp). This was my second triathlon training camp and it was by far the best. The riding was especially amazing! Being able to escape the rainy weather of Victoria and really get a some consistent, solid training in the heat was just what I needed to start off my first year U23. Given the extra opportunities Olympic year had to offer I decided to forgo university for this semester and take advantage. I really got a step up in fitness while I was there. It was a great group of girls and we all worked really well together.

We headed back to Victoria on Feb 11th and have been training consistently ever since. Adjusting to the colder weather and atmosphere where you have to be a little more responsible (like having to drive hahaha) took a little while to get used to but its good to be home.

This past week I did both a 800m free TT and raced the Bazan Bay 5km to get both my World Cup time was a good indication of where my fitness level is and I'm happy to just get those standards over with :)

Up next I head to Australia for another training camp/race. I will be starting off my season on March 25th at the Mooloolaba Continental Oceania Cup. Super excited to be heading to the heat again and can't wait to race!

Updates to follow...promise

P.S Check out Mrs. Pennocks new blog....good for a laugh and she has some good pictures from Maui -