Sunday, September 28, 2008

Race Report Peregrine Charities Triathlon: It's Vacation Time

This weekend was a fun one - we headed down to Waterloo, IA and I raced in the inaugural Peregrine Charities Triathlon Since this race was in Iowa, there were a lot of athletes that I had never raced with before. Some of the other women were from Iowa, Illinois, and Nebraska, but I was the only one from Minnesota! The race was held at George Wyth State Park and due to the flooding that occurred this summer in Iowa, the swim had to enter and exit from a boat ramp. I had a good swim, but I know I can get faster. I will definitely be working hard to improve my swim time in the off-season. I will also be working on my transitions due to the difficulty I had in T1 this weekend and others in the past. I would like to say I was flustered by the photographer from a local newspaper taking pictures of me while I struggled to get my wetsuit off, but that is just not the case and I need to practice, practice, practice this important piece. The bike was great- mostly due to being able to use race wheels for the first time - it was fun catching people and hearing the whoosh sound off my new Zipp Sub 9 disc wheel. Unfortunately, there was a part of the bike that wasn't so much fun - hitting a race volunteer!! I think the guy was preparing to stop traffic for bikers and didn't see me coming. I was making a left hand turn going pretty fast when he ran right out in front me. I yelled - "look out" but we hit shoulders with each other and I quickly tried to recover by going up onto the sidewalk and then getting back on the road. I was a little shaken up after that, but knew I had about 8 more miles to go and had to shrug it off and get moving. T2 went much better and I was off on the run. Derek told me there were three girls ahead of me and I could see them about 90 seconds ahead of me. When I'm able to see people ahead of me in a race, I get fired up and I'm able to push myself to run faster. I caught one of the girls pretty early at mile 2 and then at the turn around point I saw the other two girls. I knew there were some good runners behind me so I just kept my legs turning. I could still see the other two girls in front of me and knew they were not ahead by much. I caught the second place female just as we were getting back onto the road, at about mile 5. Most of the run was on the trail and then the last mile was on a road back to the finish line. I didn't have enough speed to catch the first place female and finished in 2nd place by about 45 seconds. It just goes to show that transitions can make or break a race. If I would have had a better transition in T1 - I like to think the race could have gone differently. Afterwards, I was talking to another racer and she asked why I was riding on the sidewalk? We laughed about the situation with the volunteer but thank goodness I didn't crash, as I've had my share of bike accidents (fractured elbow and broken collarbone)! In all, it was a great weekend and I am super excited that my husband and I are leaving soon for San Francisco for a good friend's wedding.

Some other great weekend highlights:

Seeing my mom, dad, step dad and my dad's significant other. They all came to Iowa to watch the race but I think there were hidden agenda's there too (to see Owen - of course)!

Owen being able to swim in the hotel with his favorite person right now - Daddy!

Derek and I being able to re-live our college days by walking around the campus and going to lunch at our favorite hangout - the O.P.
I had a great first year of racing, but I know I can get faster. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I am a newcomer, but my competitive nature comes out and I'll continue to drive to get better.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mmmmm Pumpkins

Yes, I know I should not be eating these things during training but it is the one thing in the candy aisle for Halloween that is my one devise. I bought some Halloween candy the other day and hid it from my husband. I have to find really good hiding spots because he goes and looks for it. It is funny, he tells me to hid certain food so he won't inhale it but then when he finds it he blames me for not hiding it well enough!!! Anyways, after the Waterloo race we are leaving for a vacation to San Francisco for a friends wedding and I am going to eat as many pumpkins as I want!!!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Getting ready to roll at Waterloo!!!

I am looking forward to next weekend with my new toy I got this last week - some new wheels! Derek and I decided we couldn't pass up the deal they were having at Gear West on the Zipp sub-9 rear disc. Then my coach Dan, let me borrow his front Zipp 808. I haven't had race wheels until this race so it will be interesting and fun to see how much faster I will be. Waterloo, IA is right next to Cedar Falls, IA and that is where Derek and I both went to college (University of Northern Iowa). It will be fun to go back and walk the campus a little bit and then after the race go eat some pizza at our favorite hangout when we were in college - the Other Place - aka The O.P.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Race Report Doathlonforlife: The Haag Trifecta

It was a pretty busy weekend because I decided, at the last minute, to race in the Doathlonforlife duathlon in Des Moines, IA. I wasn't sure if I should go because I wouldn't be able to leave until early Saturday evening. I was helping host a baby shower for a great college friend of mine who is having a baby in November (she looks amazing by the way) and I kind of have a routine I like to follow with the night before a race, however, it all worked out. I convinced my husband and father in law to race too and the Haag Trifecta was in effect.

There were a couple of girls in the field who I knew were going to be competitive and since I had never done a Duathlon before I wasn't sure of a race strategy. I knew that if I could keep a 6:30 min/mile pace in past Olympic distance races, I should be able to go a little faster for the first portion of the run which was only a 5k. I started out well with the lead girls but came up to T1 in 4th place. I made up some good ground during the bike and moved up into second. After the bike, I knew that I didn't have much time to catch the first place girl since we only had 5K left. I saw my sister in law as I was heading out on the last 5K and she told me I was the second girl, I responded - "First place is pretty far ahead isn't she?" If you know Lindsey, then you know she never has anything bad or negative to say about anything or anyone. She responded to me - "You can catch her Kort," but I saw the look on her face and knew otherwise!!!

Derek got second in his age group and Gery (my father in law) continues to impress me with his ability to finish triathlons, 1/2 marathons and now duathlons! He's getting faster in every race.

In all, I was happy with my performance, but I think I have had enough of this 2nd place business!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

The little things....

It is amazing at how the little things in life are so important to you and how much you remember them. I wrote in Owen's baby book the other day about our summer adventures and how much he is growing and changing. He will be 2 in November and I don't want him to get any older. I wish I could just freeze him at this age! Yesterday we went and fed the ducks by our house and after we were done he waved and said goodbye to them - it was so sweet! He is constantly doing things that makes me laugh. When Derek gets home he runs to find Derek's shoes and says "D's", D's". He can't say Daddy so Derek is known as D. Then the other day he was playing in the basement and came upstairs with his sombrero hat on!

I am very lucky I work part time so I can spend quality time with him but you always think - I should be doing more for them. I think that all mothers acquire guilt the minute you become a mom.
For me, I know that next summer I will be training more and racing more and I don't want to miss out on anything that Owen does or have him miss out on anything. I have always been good at multi-tasking and making sure that my priorities are in line. I find myself reading other tri mom's blogs and how they also struggle with the same thing. It is nice to know I am not alone and being a mom, wife, and triathlete can be done.

Monday, September 1, 2008

St Croix Valley Race Report: Run Scooter Run

It was a wonderful weekend as my Dad and his girlfriend, Diane, were here visiting from Illinois. We were sitting around talking Saturday night and my Dad was telling stories about his younger years. I knew that my Dad was athletic, but didn't have the opportunity to participate in sports as much as he would have liked, because of the work on the farm. I didn't realize that he had a nickname because of his speed - Scooter. It was pretty funny listening to tales of his Scooter days!

Sunday was the St.Croix Valley Triathlon in Hudson, Wisconsin. It was a great race and I was surprised there were less than 100 participants. They had the sprint distance the day before with over 700 participants. I think since it was Labor Day weekend and with Ironman Wisconsin coming up many racers took the weekend off.

The day started out a little strange for me. First, I drove to the race by myself and I know I should be able to do this, but I usually have Derek with me to help me prepare and talk. Derek was waiting to come to the race later so we wouldn't have to wake up Owen too early and meet up with my family. Well, it was probably a good thing because I accidentally grabbed his wetsuit. The race started at 7:30, I called Derek at 6:35 frantically telling him I had his wetsuit. My speedracer of a husband got to the race with plenty of time for me to put my wetsuit on and get in the water to prepare for the start - He is great! The swim was a tough one - you could touch the bottom at pretty much any time and it was really hard to see where you were going because of the blinding sun. I came out as the second female on the swim and knew I needed to make up some time. I made up about 45 seconds on the bike and just bombed T2 - I didn't have enough time to get my feet out of my shoes and probably lost about 10 - 15 seconds. The run is where I am a little frustrated with myself. I knew I was about 45 seconds behind the first place female and thought I would hold off and keep her in my sights and then try and catch her further down the run. What I should have done was run hard to catch her and then keep a steady pace. At about 3 miles left in the run I felt like I was pushing it hard but it wasn't hard enough as I came to the finish line in second place. I guess I should have taken more tips from Scooter before the race!