Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Race #2 of the Season: Chilly Cheeks Duathlon #3

I don't know why I've been putting off this recap (besides being lazy about uploading photos), but I have. I'm also not very motivated to write this post, but write it I shall.

Way back on February 25, we had the last race in the series for Chilly Cheeks. We were a little apprehensive leading up as to what the weather would be like - it had snowed earlier that week - but other than being windy and chilly, it was sunny for race day. It wasn't ideal, but it also wasn't like how CC#1 was, so whatever.

Waking up that morning was tough. I hadn't gotten a lot of sleep that week and was up for 22 hours the previous day. Ouch, I know. In any case, we rose, got ready and drove over to Cherry Creek State Park for the race.

The transition area for #3 was the same point as #1 and we got there later than we normally would for, say, a tri and it showed with the lack of transition spots. We found what we thought was a good spot and set up.

My trans towel ended up getting DRENCHED. We soon realized why no one was over here - wet ground that just got wetter.

Brandon wasn't feeling well - we later found out he was in the early stages of a sinus infection - but he was putting on a brave face to start the race.

Getting ready to go.

While in transition, we met a friend of Kris and Mark's from Minnesota who had moved out here. She's also a multisport athlete and found us easily, given the crazy grip tape that we've put on Bob and Melon.

Right before 10am, they kicked us out of trans and had us line up for the bike start. Like the other two previous races in the series, our goal was to stick with each other as best as possible and race together.

The Bike

This didn't work out so well to start off. All of us cyclists went off in waves of about 10-15 people. Brandon shot out like a rocket (he later said that "no one else was going so I figured I might as well") but I had some issues getting Bob to shift properly. Silly Bob.

The bike was long - 10.8 miles and it felt like it. The hill in CCSP that I thought I'd conquered and had felt easy last few times I rode it? The death hill from Tri for the Cure? Turns out the few other times I'd ridden the death hill I didn't truly ride it up to the top. Still a killer. Still hate it.

Plus it was cold and windy and I was having a hell of a time trying to find my lungs. I know I've mentioned it before, but I have been diagnosed with sports-induced asthma. I don't use an inhaler because I hate the way they make my head feel when I take it and the symptoms are severely lessened the stronger I am cardiovascularly (i think i just made that up). However, given that I'm still in winter fluff mode and my cardio is nowhere near where it was, say, this past summer, the cold just hurt thatmuchmore. Ow.

The only "perk" (and I hesitate to call it that) was that Brandon was just as miserable. Moreso, even, as he had come to the painful realization that he shouldn't be racing and his day was done as soon as he got off the bike.

After what felt like one of the longest rides EVER and much windburn, as I later found out, I was off the bike.

(42:17, 15.3 mph, 161st overall)


Transition took a while as I was partially frozen from the windy bike and because I was talking with Brandon. Brandon wanted to continue but at the same time he didn't because he felt like crap; I said it was okay for him to DNF; he didn't believe me. We just about crossed the mat when he finally said, no, I can't do this. I tossed him my jacket, not wanting it anymore, told him I loved him (I think) and toddled off.


The Run

I felt lied to on the run. In the pre-race briefing, they said that the trail part of the run course was snowy, but packed snow and we shouldn't have an issue running through it.

Yeeah. By the time my slow ass got to it, it was a muddy, slushy, disgusting mess. I tried to run in the remaining snow as much as possible just for better traction. It was still horribly slow going, though.

I also started to feel an ouchy spot on my left achilles from where my timing chip was making sweet love with the zipper on the back of one of my new cycling leg warmers and making what I would find out later to be a blister baby. After the two mile point I readjusted things, opening up the leg warmer and putting the chip underneath it, but the damage had been done.

Plus it was warm enough to ditch my running hat, but windy enough to blow my hair all around everywhere. I think I spent half the run with hair in my face.

(I cut my hair short back in November at the end of the season and hadn't had to really deal with it since then since it's been toque season for running. However, I now know I either need to grow it out or chop it super short so it doesn't continue to drive me INSANE.)

The finish line was finally in sight, four miles later, uphill. Ugh. Still passed one more chick into the finish where the hubby was waiting.

(47:37, 11:55/mi, 163rd overall)

Overall Results:
164/201 (DU-open)
72/91 females
19/22 division (F29&UND)

Final Thoughts:

Ugh. Early season racing is tough ... especially when we both know that we kind of suck at this whole training through the holidays thing. We have the best of intentions every year, but every year life gets in the way. I think we'll learn that lesson this year and enjoy our holidays ... particularly because IM training starts in February 2013.

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