Sunday, October 3, 2010

Halfmax Championship

Sept 27 - Oct 3
Race week: I had a massage on Monday (after a short swim). I'm not sure that this was a good idea, as I ended up feeling some strange twinges in my knees and calves during the week. I rode Tuesday and Thursday on my backup bike. The fit of the bike is pretty different, so I did my best to take it easy. I couldn't ride in the aerobars, as that setup is too aggressive to ride comfortably. Both days my left calf felt on the verge of cramping on the most anterior part- worrisome. Tuesday I did 3x 1000m @ 7:15, with 1.5mi wu & cd. Thursday my legs felt achy, and I decided I'd be better off without the run.

The race: We flew into Myrtle Beach around noon the day before the race, and went to the race venue and checked our bikes into transition. I had pasta for dinner, prepped my transition bag, and crashed early (~8?). On race morning, we arrived on site, and I realized that I had mistakenly racked my bike in the wrong section (I was surrounded by 20 girls). Aha! My race number is 105, not 150! So I moved my bike to the appropriate rack and got the last available spot. I got my spot organized (it was pretty roomy, since no one wanted the end), grabbed my wetsuit, and headed for the race start when the announcement was made that the swim would be cancelled due to high concentrations of bacteria (apparently a week of heavy rain had taken its toll on the intracoastal waterway). So... My best event: cancelled. To say I was disappointed would be a massive understatement. The race would now be a bike-run, with a random time trial start. A and I were near the front of the mass of starters, so we started near the beginning of the race.

Bike: It was a windy day (15-20 mph), Which made the bike more of a challenge. Two miles into the bike, I dropped my bottle of nutrition on the road (I used my half-size Performance bottle, which I'm not used to handling). I coasted on a bit, considering abandoning it, but eventually pulled a U-ey and picked it up. My goals for the bike (based on my dry run 2 weeks before) were to keep my power between 165 & 175 W, and my HR between 145 & 150. I started the race a little hot, and my first 12 miles or so my HR was well over 150, but I managed to rein it in. I was strongly hoping to average 21mph or better.

Bike result: 21.1 mph, 179W, HR 149 bpm. Right on target. (I'll have to look up what my pace would've been without the dropped bottle).

Run: I have spent the last several weeks reminding myself how to run fast, and over that time my pace goal for the run has crept downwards from 7:45min/mile to sub 7:30. I ran the first 3-4 miles at a sub 7:30 pace, fighting a side stitch the whole time, and eventually my pace slowed to ~8:15 (by that time the side stitch was gone, but it was hot, and I didn't have much kick). I had a few miles that were slower still between mile 6.5 and mile 10, then managed to pick it up a bit over the last few miles (still >8:00 pace). I finished with an 8:08 avg pace.
All in all, not too bad. With a swim (even a slow swim), I would have PR'd and had a good shot at qualifying. Without the swim, I wasn't even close to qualifying for Worlds.
Next time: Train better- more time running fast would've done me wonders. More runs after long rides. Bike pacing was good. Rode race wheels with latex tubes; no issue. Next time put Teflon tape on spare tube valve for extender. Avoid race week massage.

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