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 2009...it 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 career...man 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!!

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