With being a triathlete who maintains a blog comes the responsibility to write a race report.
That being said, here's the preamble - race reports are usually ungodly boring, too long and contain a lot of bad grammar. So in the interest of maintaining attention spans, I try to cut mine from a different cloth.
Orlando 70.3 Ironman
My pre-race nerves are things of legends. This year, however, the mind genie was kept in his bottle with a bottle of passionflower (a foul tasting concoction mixed with water).
My chiropractor, and I mention him frequently, is not just a bone-popping kind of guy. His name is Chandler Collins and not only does he keep the usual body parts from falling to pieces, he heals the rest of the stuff as well.
So, passionflower it was. And it helped! No miserable week before where I wished I had a time machine. I even gave attitude to my competitors.
Ah, yes. My competitors.
Perhaps now is the time to describe a "tri-weenie". We've all seem them. They are male and female but that's where the difference ends. These are the people who wear a matching tri kit during the race even if they're sponsored by no one. They've got 8 percent body fat and believe they're racing this race by the grace of God.
They hang around in flocks and try to outdo each other with their tales of doing 200 mile bike rides two days ago as a warm up for the race. You can see them race morning sprinting around the race site. Actually, you can see them sprinting from the hotel room to the breakfast buffet to carbo load; from the car into the 7-11; inside the grocery store. There's nowhere they don't sprint.
Best of all, come race day they break every rule set by the USAT.
Swim - It was like swimming in shark infested waters. I understand aggressiveness in the water but, come on, we're supposed to sight. We know when we're about to goose the person next to us in the water. So we should know that we're about to dunk someone's head under the water (mine) and then do it a second time (mine again) and act accordingly. We've all been touched in a not-ok-way during the swim and swam behind someone who was a little passionate about kicking. But my coach got punched in the neck (on purpose, might I add), which pretty much made the use of his aerobars nonexistent. His race? Ruined.
Which leads me to bike.
Here's where the tri-weenies shined. Drafting: check. Passing you as you are passing someone else: check. A total lack of "on your left": check. Here's where my favorite story of my race comes in.
I was passing someone while maintaining the proper bike length between the two of us. From my left side - "watchoutwatchoutwatchout." The carbon from his disc rubs the carbon on the rim of my front wheel. Understandably, I was pissed off and more than a little aware of how close this dorkmunch almost caused me to crash.
At the top of my lungs: "ON YOUR LEFT, MOTHERF*CKER!!!" He turned around in what I think was a bit of surprise and up went my tried but true middle finger. The best part is that I passed him in the headwind - thanks to training in the Texas headwinds BTW.
This aside, I was pleased with my bike. Truly the easiest 56 miles I've ever done. I didn't just sail like I was on a townie bike picking up groceries but I maintained my HR according to Kevin's plan and lookee what it got me - 28th place in my age group - missed the lead by 13 minutes.
But what goes up must come down.
(1) After the first of three four-mile loops, the course is then familiar for the second and third loops (2) during which was this amazingly grassy area with hidden ninja-like tiny potholes that feed off of exhausted feet (3) and a steamy swamp bringing the humidity to 250 percent but (4) I ran the whole thing (5) very, very slowly (6) which made my excellent bike time irrelevant.
But still. I'm proud of this race. My bike was the highlight of my season thus far. I've got such great coaches and although we've got a ways to go for Kentucky, I'm a true believer that we'll get there.
As for the tri-weenies - you'd better work on your skills in the headwinds. HAH! HAHAHA!