Monday, May 21, 2012

Real Triathletes of the OC: OC Tri Race Report

First, I posted over the weekend about my new matchy matchy custom women's Slice, but if you do anything besides cruise the internet, you may have missed that very important breaking news ;) 

On to the Orange County International Triathlon...

Race morning started for me at 4 am in order to drive the 1 hour up to Orange County. I grabbed 2 slices of Gluten Free cinnamon raisin toast with almond butter, a big coffee, and lugged my crap to the car. I threw tenderly placed  my race ready Slice in the car and rolled solo up to Lake Mission Viejo. 
First race on the new rig!!!
Arriving at the lake, I could already tell it was going to be a perfect day. A light breeze, mild temps, and everyone seemed to be smiling. 
Lake Mission Viejo
I thought I had all the time in the world as I arrived at 5:30 (for 7am start), so was moving pretty leisurely. Of course when you do that, you undoubtedly run out of time and almost miss the start. Par for the course for me, but I did manage to get all my gear sorted, jog 20 minutes and make it to the start with 1 minute to go. 

The Race! 
Swim- 1500 meters
As I arrived at the swim start, I realized they had changed the swim course from previous year! Total yipes because I had no clue where we were swimming. A nice guy quickly gave  me the Cliff Notes lay of the land (or water) in the final 30 seconds before the gun. I also noticed that the elite wave was mixed with a big ole mens wave, so we were 3 or 4 girls and close to 100 big dudes. 
I got kicked in the face like never before off the start and now have a cut eye battle wound, but nothing that kept me from moving forward. I had trouble finding the "right" group. Let me say, I much prefer a Ladies elite start when we have a bigger field because we can sort ourselves out. These guys, they try to nail you in the first 500, and then some seem to come to a standstill. Anyway, I didn't get out enough in front and ended up swimming alone for a while. I eventually bridged to a group of two but it was an awkward pace. Not quite fast enough when behind, but not much faster on my own. I stayed with these 2 until the return trip when my timing chip came off. I stopped and looked back and saw it bobbing in the water. I decided that going to get it would be less hassle than having to sort this out in the end or in transition, so I got it and got back on my way. About 5 minutes later I had caught back up to the pair I was with before and we swam in together. The course seemed really long this year and the times seem quite slow. Who knows. Anyway, they don't have my swim time (even though I dragged my chip across the mat with my hand) but I think it was 24 minutes. 

The Bike- 40 K
My goal for this race was a 40k bike TT. I know that I can run off of 40k and I'm not so worried about my run right now as I am about the bike. I wanted to bike HARD and gain fitness for Hawaii 70.3 in 2 weeks. After 7 or 8 miles, my legs really did seem to come alive. I kept my heart rate up and was working the hills (lots and lots of long rollers, almost no flat on this course) and enjoying the ride. I passed one elite girl halfway through the bike and kept moving in a groove. I felt really good about my ride, and rolled into T2 wondering where I was in the race. 
In T2 a volunteer told me there was one girl about 2 minutes ahead and that was it....PERFECT
[Bike nutrition- perfect- 100calories Skratchlabs drink mix, 1 Peanut Butter Gu) 

The Run
2 minutes down? I can do this! I set out as quickly as I could (didn't wear a Garmin) and decided to take a Gu at mile 2 because I knew the course was about to get gnarly- fuel for the fire! The run is hard with lots of super squishy mulch sections and some serious climbs. However, when one has just done Wildlfower (holy heck-of-a-run-course for 13.1) a couple weeks prior, nothing seems so bad. I thought a good time on this course would be to break 40 minutes (I can run about a 36/37 on a flat course) ...I passed the lead girl, Christina (who is very cool and awesome by the way and I'm glad we got to meet at the race) in the first couple miles and thought I was leading the women's race at that point. However, with Hawaii 70.3 in my mind, my goal is to bank the best workout my legs could crankout, so I was not playing any kind of "shut-er-down" game. Luckily (or not?) at mile 3-ish, the volunteers told me "The other girl is just a minute or 2 up"! HUH? Really? I was a little bummed and a little motivated all at the same time. I knew this would push me and that was good. Never give up. Around mile 4.5, I caught the "lead" woman and it turned out she was leading her race- the Duathlon -which was all mixed in with the tri. I didn't find that out till much later, so it was fun running scared the last mile of the race. 

I crossed the line in 2:10. When I did this race in 2008, I went 2:24 .... Cheers to that! (And I really do think this 2012 swim course was longer or I got lost or something). 
2:10 was good enough for first woman and 5th human overall... So I got a great course, a great workout, and my first win of 2012....I call that a GOOD day. Oooh, and my run was 38:14- something I'm very very happy with on that course. 

After the race, I went on a 4 mile bonus run and then packed up my things and headed down to awards. 
Chugged my MRM Reload for a speedy recovery (Hawaii 70.3 in less than 2 weeks!) and hung out with ISM pal Neely

It took them a while to get the race results sorted. While the race direction and event was top notch, the timing company was not holding up their end of the deal. They botched all the results and it was pretty comical, but we just chilled near the beach and enjoyed the perfect day. 

They finally got it and called us up. 

Post- Post Race
James and I went on another jog later in the afternoon (so I totaled about 17 miles running on the day...long run- check!) and we sent my bike off with Tri Bike Transport to Hawaii 70.3! I am so sad because my new Slice and I had just bonded BIGTIME on the OC course and I had to send my new lover away. I will drown my tears and have an affair with my road bike, the SuperSix while she is away.
Later on, James & I
enjoyed some celebratory libations and good times at Solace Moonglight lounge ....
The "Salty Dog" (his) & The "Mayan Crush" (hers) 
A big thank you to everyone who made Sunday a perfect day for me. The Pelican Coast Events/OC Tri Series puts on an incredible event that keeps me coming back. I cannot say enough about this race and a huge THANK YOU to Bill, the race director for putting it on. 
*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, &  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 SelstadRehab 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 saddlesBetty Designs, & Beaker Concepts  for making sure I'm comfortable, stylish & fast. 
And last but very much not least, thank you to James for always believing in me and being there for me. Thank you to all my friends who have shown me how important our "family' is and who have supported me through thick and thin (hopefully more THIN for the Hawaii heat...haha)  


Beth said...

Congrats Beth!! I remember that run course and ot is tough!!! Many more wins to come I'm sure. :-)

Yasi said...

Awesome job Beth! You kill it, all the time. Love the shorts too!

MissFancyPants said...

NIce job on your win! Can't wait to hear about Hawaii!!

Katie said...

Congrats on a great race!

Melissa said...

Awesome race!

Tawnee Prazak, M.S., CSCS said...

Nice work! Not surprised ;) Sorry I missed ya... I made the executive decision to sleep for once -- can't remember the last time that happened nor do I know when it will happen again! Cheers!

Katie said...

5th human - HA! congrats on a great race!!

Libby said...

congrats beth! you smoked that race!!! 2:10 with a long swim?! damn! go kick some ass at honu!

Dave said...

Amazing race today! Holy crap that run was incredible for what I heard about the conditions.