Sunday I was pretty excited to be able to get in one last short fast race before Buffalo Springs. Here I am with Lori before the race start of the LA Series Olympic Tri in Bonelli Park:
My plan was to focus on the bike. I've been riding a lot more lately, so am hopeful it starts paying off. But to get to the bike I'd have to make my way through a pretty confusing swim. There were about 10 red buoy's out in the lake, and we had to figure out which 4 were marking the course. With 2 mins to start there were fingers pointing toward the water trying to figure out the course. I started to wonder if I'd be in the lead and if I could just pick my own course. We had a wave of men ahead of us, but within 45seconds me and one other girl were swimming through/over/under them. (just a minor frustration of being a decent age group swimmer! Race directors never let us girls go first. GRRRRRRRRRRR. Marti and Mike Greer -race directors for Buffalo Springs70.3- could you maybe make this wish come true and put us after the pro's instead of last ;)) Anyways, the swim is what it is, and I was out of the water in second.
Within 6 miles of the bike I moved into first. The bike course consisted of 3 loops, with steady rolling hills, and all right turns. As I came back around to the beginning of the loop three volunteers were pointing to our right, and yelling for us to turn. The guys ahead of me did just that, and I followed. Within 2.5 minutes I was back at transition yelling out "where is the turn around." People told me to keep going, but it didn't seem right. I think the volunteers thought I was part of the sprint race and therefore told me to head for T2 a bit early. I corrected the mistake and made my way back to my wrong turn. I knew after 5 mins off course I lost the lead, but didn't know how many people benefited from my wrong turn. It was hard to mentally regain my focus and drive, but I tried. The next time I came to the corner there was a man w/ a megaphone giving the correct instructions. I'm just not use to being in the lead on the bike. Without this error my bike split would have been the fastest female by a few mins. Bummer, because that was my big goal (instead I had the 3rd fastest bike split).
As I left T2 someone told me I was in 3rd, with #2 only 1 minute ahead. Within 2 miles I ran into second. I was gaining on the girl ahead, but didn't think I had enough time to get her. The run course was again very hilly. At times I wondered if I was on an XTerra course. There were hills, bounders, steep descents, rivers and lonely trails. For much of the run there was no one in sight. Countless times I wondered if I went off course again. At one point I hit a dead end on a trail. Then I saw a small gap in the fence and an arrow in the distance. Whew, still on course. There weren't many mile markers so I was guessing on my pace. I figured I was holding around 6:50/7:00. With all the hills and trails I didn't feel super fast. Turns out I was holding 6:40. I'll take it!
I finished 2 minutes behind the leader. At first I was pretty bummed about the wrong turn costing me the overall female win, but I'm over it. The purpose of the race was accomplished. I pushed the bike and then got off and ran a solid 10k. I felt like I could have pushed the run pace more, but knew I was in solid in second. Total time for the 1.5k swim, 40k (well, actually 26.8mi) and 10k run was 2:20.
Pic post race with Andrew...oops, good pic of him, but awful pic of me with my eyes closed
After the race I met up with Brandy for a fun afternoon around Orange County. We started with a great lunch. When we were done eating we found ourselves amidst a chili festival. Who thinks having chili tasting on a warm summer day is a good idea. It was SO strange! The streets were jam packed with people taste testing chili. And then there was a "sexy leg competition." We thought about competing, but figured we'd easily win. I mean who would have better legs: triathletes, or chili tasters?
Then it was off to Brandy's new apartment complex for some pool side relaxing. Does this look like an apartment complex pool, or a resort? Welcome to life in the O.C.! Too bad there wasn't a pool drink server. Looks like my girl Brandy has found herself an awesome new home! I foresee some light training and pool side drinks after Buffalo Springs!?!?
Here's to one more solid week of training! Starts with some fun filled mile repeats in the a.m. Over and out...