Monday, April 5, 2010
Beaver Freezer Race Report
I woke up at 4:30am. That is so early when you aren't really used to getting up at that time! I had set out everything the night before, checking and rechecking that I was not forgetting anything. So, race day morning I got up, took a quick wake-up shower, got dressed and hit the road. I got to Corvallis around 7am. It was wet. It was cold. I was ready! I still had an hour before my race start, so I picked up my race packet, got body marked (where they write your race number on your arms and legs in fun black magic marker) and then set up my transition area. I decided then that I should just head to the pool to stay warm and also see if I could hop in the pool to swim a few easy warm-up laps and relax. That was probably the smartest thing I could have done. I warmed up by swimming 200 meters and did a few bobs. They had a little 'pre-race' meeting with everyone in my race start. Then we got in our lanes to countdown the last 5 minutes before it was go time!
I lucked out and was placed as the 1st person in my lane (of 4 swimmers). As soon as it was 8:05am, I pushed off the wall and swam a steady pace pretty much the entire race. The girl behind me tapped my heels about halfway through, so I let her pass but then ended up smacking her heels the entire lap so she let me go ahead of her again. I finished strong and ended up about half a pool length in front of the next swimmer! Yay! Hopped out of the pool and then ran down the lovely turf to transition. I should tell you that I thought it was a little messed up that they put the women in the pool farthest from transition. The men literally had to just run out the door and there they were at transition, but we had about an 1/8th of a mile run around the building which would not have been a big deal, but it was cold. We were wet. Not such a good combo!
I got through transition at a snail's pace. My hands were frozen into little ice nuggets and I struggled getting my helmet clipped. Finally made it through transition and onto my bike headed towards the country.
It was cold and windy and wet on the bike. I pushed myself a little bit and still ended up with a much slower time on the bike than I expected. I did have to get off about halfway through and put the lousy chain back on my bike after I dropped it trying to pass some girl spinning like a crazy person on nice flat road. The entire ride I was thinking about making sure I was in the right gear, being a little more efficient with my spinning. The best things about the bike course... the hot army men directing traffic and passing about 12 people (even if I knew they would pass me on the run, it still felt amazing).
Back in transition I had little to worry about. Racked my bike, put my hemet down and put on a hat. Done and done!
The run. My nemesis. My hip is still not 100%, but I figured I would just feel it out and see how I did. 3 loops around campus. No big deal, right? The first loop I took it easy. Running for a few minutes, walking for a few minutes. The second lap I ran the entire way. I felt good. Comfortable. I had a couple guys pass me who gave me a few words of encouragement. By the time I was at the last lap, I was in the zone. I ran that 5k faster than I ran the one on New Years Eve!
Overall, I am pretty darn happy with the Freezer. I took 10 minutes off my sprint time from last year (and that was on a flatter course with no wind or rain and without me being injured). I feel stronger and more athletic now. I'm ready for the next challenge.