It's nice to start every race season with a little kick-off race where you bust out the cobwebs and make sure you remember how to do swim-bike-run in "GO!" mode. I'm always amazed at the amount of "things" you need for a triathlon and I spent my free moments the days before the race scavenging around for said things. Of course, I integrated my errands into workouts...Stopped at Nytro for some new cleats for my tri shoes during a spin, ran into the swim store for some goggles (& shoved in my sports bra) during my T-run.
After some short workouts on Saturday, Kristin and I drove out to Palm Desert, CA for the Desert Tri. I feel like everyone in San Diego goes to this race and somehow, each year I have missed it for one reason or another. So, the race was new to me, which is always fun...Turns out that this is an awesome season opener for anyone- Great venue, low key, great weather and a fun (but not too challenging) course.
Let's get to point, here. The race was good to great! The distances are 3/4 mile swim, 25 mile bike, 6 mile run. It's all basically flat. The run is two loops on dirt/sand/gravel/pavement around Lake Cahuilla.
I dusted off my Zoot Prophet and pulled it on for the first time since August. Felt as good as ever and I lined up for the 7:30am elite (& Men 25-29) wave. The entire first leg of the swim, you swim directly into the sun and can't see a thing. I tried to follow swim caps and just tried to get to the first buoy/turn as fast as possible. After rounding the buoy, I could see! Unfortunately, I could see two swimmers about 10yds ahead of me, but no one else. I tried my best to catch them, but was unable to close any gaps. So, draftless, I nagivated to the swim exit uneventfully. My wetsuit cord was tangled, stuck, so I lost a few seconds trying to get it off, then running to a spectator and asking her to pull down. Pretty sure I scared her, but once she understood what I was saying, she got the job done. I ran through T1 and was stoked to see both Lesley Paterson and Heather Jackson (my training bud & Zoot/Cannondale teammate) still in transition.
HJ was on her way out and Les was still getting it together. I T-1d as fast as I know how and followed about 75yds behind Lesley onto the bike course.
|Chasing (thanks MJ for the bike photos)|
Anyway, I rolled into T2 and was excited to see how the run would go. I began ticking off the miles (and the men who had passed me on the bike) and was pleased to see my garmin check off right about 6-min miles.
|Running- photo thanks to Wattie- although I'm not officially a Watti Ink-er, I still like to rock the W.|
Mission accomplished. I crossed the line in 1:59, 3rd place woman overall, 4 minutes back of Lesley. Heather made a clean sweep of the field beating all of the women and all of the men.
|Finished! (photo by Wattie)|
|SoCal Podium girls: Lesley, HJ, me|
*Thank you to Zoot for taking on the local girl and supplying the best gear & shoes out there. I'm swimming better than ever in the Prophet wetsuit. Cannondale- my Slice is the perfect ride decked in SRAM, & the perfect Zipp firecrest carbon clincher 808/404 pair of Race Day Wheels. Thanks to Nytro for keeping it all in working, blinging' order and Studeo DNA for my bike fit & so much more.
*Thank you to Dan Selstad, Rehab United, & MRM for helping me build my chassis, recover quickly and stay healthy-.I use so many MRM products, but I couldn't function without my Hydration Factor & Reload. Rehab United- functional strength 2x/ week, ART with Selstad every other week...the secret sauce!
*Many gracias also to ISM saddles, Betty Designs, Beaker Concepts & Bont shoes for making sure I'm comfortable, stylish & fast.