Execution.. Mind over Matter
The Revolution3 Triathlon hit my hometown in Knoxville, TN this past weekend. Many local athletes came out and raced over a multitude of distances- Olympic, Championship, and Half-Ironman. Today, I took on one of my first Olympic Distance races in over 6-7 years.. it’s been a while.. enjoy the long read on how it played out.
2 scoops of EAS Brand Protein Powder, vanilla
24 oz of Sports Drink, Ironman Perform
The Olympic Distance race consist of a 0.9mi swim in the Tennessee River, right off the dock of Calhoun’s, swimming 1/3 to 1/4mi upstream before turning around to head back to the UT Rowing Team’s dock where T2 lies just across the street.
My swim was anything less than remarkable. Am I ‘ok’ with this time? Sure. Am I satisfied? Definitely not. This was one of my first ‘longer’ races in a full sleeve wetsuit. I’m 6’2” and definitely all arms/ legs, finding a good long sleeve wetsuit fit for me is hard to come by. I felt as though my stroke was constricted and I was cutting off my pull too short. After turning around at the first turn buoy, I immediately recognized the problem and tried hard to refocus and keep my swim wave in site! I also experienced a first for me, calf cramps DURING a swim? The funny part is that me and the other athletes were just talking about cramping during the swim, the night before! While I was swimming I recalled what our coach said if it happens that early on.. “Oh, you’re screwed 🙂 ” Oh Great!! haha. Anyway, I tried to work through it and finally reached the dock. I glanced at my watch as I was getting pulled up by a great Rev3 volunteer and saw my time… disappointed. Sadly, I really hate to say this but mentally, I think I just checked out of the race at this point. Never-the-less, I had two more events to go and I was planning on tackling the race as best I could!
SWIM TIME- 25:46 (1:47/100yds), 4th out of 19 out of the water
T1- I struggled to get my wetsuit off quite a bit here (another reason why I will be retiring this long sleeve baby) and fight the calf cramp that seemed to have got worse on my way to transition. I was able to quickly strap on my bike cleats, grab my helmet and Tifosi sunglasses and head out! Time- 2:25
THANK YOU to Charles Payne and Don Bosch for graciously letting me borrow their Race Wheels!
The plan was to take it pretty easy until the long downhill, mile 6ish, and start slowly building the pace and heart rate from their. After the climb on Neuburt Springs, I was going to spin harder and set myself up for a good solid run- my favorite part!
The bike leg went pretty well as I hit the majority of my goals minus one… nutrition! Usually I am spot with my race nutrition but today for some reason I wasn’t. I was unable to tolerate my IRONMAN Perform mix I made up on my bike. To IRONMAN Perform’s defense, I’m pretty sure I made my mix over concentrated and it was just too hard to get down. Lesson Learned! 3 Powergels (Orange flavored, my favorite) was consumed on the bike and half a bottle TOTAL of IRONMAN Perform consumed. This may or may not have contributed to my on going muscle cramp issues! Haha. Sarcasm. Shoes were able to slide off easily on the bike, even though both my calves locked up on me (worst feeling ever) but I was still ready to roll in to T2!!
BIKE TIME- 1:13, 20.3mph. 3rd out of 19 in Age Group
T2: Bike was racked, I only saw a few in my age group.. the race was on! Another slow transition for me- my shoes a little hard to get on as my feet were still frozen from the morning swim, ha. So be it! Time- 0:59
The out and back course takes place along Knoxville’s greenway. Starting off along beautiful Neyland drive, running beside the University of Tennessee Football stadium and onto the shady course that takes you to a local park around campus, aka the “greenway” where you turnaround to make your way to the finish!
With my leg cramping issues at the fore-front of my mind, my goal was to hold as steady as could until the final miles then push my body as much as it would let me. On the run, I looked forward to every aid station, as I consumed as much Gatorade as I could tolerate while running. At the turnaround, my split was almost 1:10 minutes slower than I had wanted! I grabbed another Powergel, which happened to be the same time Mike Tarrolly– good friend and local Nashville Triathlete- yelled that he was coming after me! Good grief!! I better beat him 🙂 I continued to keep my run cadence high and focused towards every breath, every stride, and step towards the next mile. The final climb up Neyland and onto the final stretch, no matter how much I practiced, is brutal!! I was SO HAPPY to see my little “sister”- Addison– at the final aid station to run with me up through the last steep hill. She kept me motivated and going strong can’t thank her enough!! I saw the finish line and finished “strong.”
RUN TIME- 46:41, 7:30 min/mi pace. 2nd out of 19 in Age Group
TOTAL TIME: 2:29:45, 2nd in Age Group, 8th OV Female.
Thank you to EAS supplements for all your support and TIMEX Team!! Receiving my award at Rev3 Knox Olympic, 2nd AG
After the race was finished and I was able to look over my data with my Coach, it was quite evident I didn’t come close to reaching my true race potential today.
Bottom line is I didn’t push to threshold as much as I should have and it is a great lesson learned from this endurance athlete! And more importantly, it is never ok to mentally check out of a race either before it even occurs or after any part of the leg you think you failed at. I can definitely say that I will be coming back for you Rev3 Knoxville, it’s on! 🙂 Until then, I’m happy to put this race behind me and am really excited to take on IRONMAN 70.3 Raleigh in 2 weeks!
Far Left: Race recap with one of my fav. training partners, Betsy Johnson, who dominated the race today!!
Right: Picture with some of the coolest (and fastest) athletes around. Me, Charles, Kelly, Betsy, Jonathan, Bill, Andy