Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Decisions Decisions (& a bonus 5k, wah?)

Warming up on the Slice for the Time Trial! 
Okay, so if you're keeping up...I spent the weekend at the Valley of the Sun stage race in Arizona with my husband and my husband's husband.
Pete & Re-Pete

When we left off, I was 8 seconds ahead in the GC after the Time Trial and the Road Race for the Cat 4 women. With only the 25-minute crit race left, I was torn between A) finishing off the race/trying to maintain my position and win the stage race overall and B) getting in my long run as I am a triathlete (d'uh!)

 I spent some quality pool time contemplating my options :)

Several people suggested I just brick it and do the run right after the crit. GREAT idea except for that we needed to hit the road to get home and the boys would not want to wait.

I ended up (BORING ALERT) sticking with my intended plan and going for a long run on the trails with Tom. Given the risks in a crit, my inexperience, and my desire to re-build my running base (I took TWELVE full weeks off running due to hip injury from October 8 to Jan 2) I knew this was the best decision.  I need to prioritize running- Stella gotta get 'er groove back! Before I get into the rest, I do want to congratulate the girls that DID finish out the race weekend. They were awesome competitors and I certainly didn't have the race in the bag with just an 8-second lead. With my "bike skills", who knows, I could have been spit out the back of the crit. We'll never know!

Back to the groove-getting! Over the weekend, I ended up not only working on bike fitness, but getting some spark back into my run. I did one speedy brick after the time trial on Friday, a BONUS 5K on Saturday and the Sunday long run.

What was that about bonus 5k? Oh yes. On Friday night, I saw on twitter that the Skirt Chaser 5k was being held in Tempe at 2pm on Saturday. Right away, I asked James and Pete if they could drop me there, and the answer was a resounding "NO!!!!!" Remember, this weekend was not about me, this was their big race weekend, so I shut up and said ok.

As my luck would have it, when I finished the road race on Saturday, the boys decided they didn't want to sit around doing nothing while I ran my brick run. So, I fished my wish! The agreement was simple: I run the Skirt Chaser 5k and drive the truck home, and they go and have a few beers and lunch in Tempe...DEAL!

The 5k was AWESOME! It started and finished in Tempe Beach Park (where Ironman Arizona is!) and was pretty well attended with about 1800 runners. The premise is that the girls get a 3 minute head start on the men and the first person who crosses the finish line is declared the winner! Sally Meyerhoff, an amazing runner & triathlete who passed away last year, won the Skirt Chaser a few times, and the race was held to raise money for her foundation. There was a moment of silence for Sally at the start which was really touching and it was great to be able to run for Sally.

Anyhow, this was my very first speed workout since October. All I have to say is IT HURT! The course was hillier than I expected and I barely squeaked by in 4th place overall just under 19 minutes. I was happy for where I'm at in the season. Most importantly, I was one of only 4 women to NOT get caught by the men's leader (Lewis Elliott) ....and I barely made it- he crossed just a few seconds behind. PHEW!

James surprised me and actually showed up at the finish (ok I may have lured them with free drink tickets) and then I went to replenish my salt stores and "re-fueled" after the long grueling 5k which must have totally depleted my glycogen stores. Massive amounts of Mexi food & bev to the rescue!
"Recovery" [I only drank half, remember, I was driving...part of the deal!) 
So, with the Time Trial & brick run, Road Race & 5 k, then the 90 minute trail run, I'd say I got a nice dose of training/racing over my 3-day weekend. 

Even though these races were not a huge focus, I want to thank Cannondale, Zoot, Studeo DNA, ISM saddles, and my other supporters for setting me up for success and giving me huge confidence. My Slice and my SuperSix were perfection in the bike races and I felt like a real roadie. Studeo DNA set me up with a seriously excellent TT position and it's freaking amazing what a difference I feel (and see in the results!) with a perfect bike and position and of course my trusty and comfy Adamo racing saddle. 
And, Zoot, my Ultra Tempo 5.0s made a solid debut in the 5k. (and the Cadet Hat never left my head the whole trip- perfect podium chapeau to cover some helmet hair!)  Thanks again everyone for the support- I can feel it is shaping up to be a great season! 

P.S. Congratulations to my husband (my Valentine!) who won the GC for the Cat 5 men and is hoping for an upgrade to cat 4!


Melissa said...

You amaze me! Great weekend of working out!

X-Country2 said...

Dang, that's a lot of weekend. :o) Great work on the bonus 5k!

(The 5th place woman is one of my twin blogger friends, so I feel almost famous for knowing so many of speedsters.)

Christi said...

What a great weekend! You had a solid weekend of training.

Congrats to the hubby as well!

Ryan Denner said...

pete and re-pete... probably one of your funnier lines beth!

Congrats on still being a triathlete in the pressure cooker of roadies everywhere too!

GoBigGreen said...

Aww Beth you are making me want to do another Stage Race:)