Monday, October 24, 2011

Lake Powell Triathlon 2011

To sum up this weekend - AMAZING

Ali and I getting into the boat

 Lets Start from the Beginning...

Wahweap Arizona is a pretty small town so I made sure to purchase fuel before we left...

Protein Bars
Sunflower Seed Butter

Friday we packed everything in the car and drove down to Bull Frog, loaded the boat on the water and boated down to Wahweap.
I was so nervous all day long.  I was probably more so for this event than the marathon.  When we arrived to the packet pick up and I felt so intimidated. I got my packet, went through number markings, and headed to the room to get some ZZzzzzz's. 

  • Number Markings - make sure you wear a short sleeved shirt or plan to have to take your long sleeved shirt off in front of everyone - Whoops... good thing I had a sports bra on! :D
  • If you have a question, ASK.  I got back to the room, opened up my packet and I did not know what to do with half of the stuff in the envelope.  There was a nice man outside of my hotel room who was a professional athlete and went through everything with me. 

 Woke up at about 4:30 and packed all my geared I laid out the night before, had breakfast, and my dad and I walked to the transition area about 1 mile away.... it was a little dark and my bike light went out!     

We were some of the first people to the transition area which was nice to be able to choose wherever I wanted my bike.  Next two me father/son racers- SO helpful.  The son was actually a part of the University of Utah's Triathlon Team and the father is getting ready for IM Arizona this November.  The father continued to talk to me, point out tips, and calmed me down. (Thanks!)

After I had everything set up the nerves REALLY kicked in.  It was so dang cold! Before I knew it they went through drafting rules and the course, and then it was time to head down to watch the Olympic Male Wave...
I was really happy to watch one group before I had to get in.  It made the distance not seem as long and definitely doable.  Two of the male swimmers were intense, they lapped the majority of the group! 

Swim - 35:59

Unexpectedly, the swim was the toughest for me.  I did not realize what a big difference an open water swim would be as compared to the lap pool.  As I was swimming to the first buoy, I asked myself numerous times 'WHAT DID YOU GET YOURSELF INTO.'  I was swallowing lots of water and just couldn't get into my stride.  I stopped, caught my breath, then took off again... finally caught my groove and I was off.
  • I could not take a breath every 4 strokes like I had practiced, I needed to every other 
  • PRACTICE Open Water Swims! 
  • I drifted off numerous times.  I need to practice occasionally looking up while swimming in the lap pool as if I am spotting.
  • The second buoy was not anchored because of the lakes depth and continued to move on us! RRrrr
  • No wetsuit next time... My legs felt weighed down by it the entire swim.

T1 - 4:39

When I got out of the water I was so disoriented.  Weirdest feeling that I did not expect.  Spotted my dad and he asked if I was ok, YES SIR! I was off to bike. :D The toughest part about T1 was running up the rocky ramp.

  • Next time I will bring sandals to run in, in between the water and the transition area
  • Taking my goggles and head cap off first then pulling my arms out of the wetsuit worked perfect so that the goggles and head cap were stuck in one of the arms.  
  • If I plan to wear a wetsuit, BODY GLIDE along the ankles for sure - wasted most of my time getting the damn wetsuit off.
  • Make sure to have water in transition area!

Bike - 1:23

 I was most worried about the bike portion of the event and it ended up going pretty well.  I averaged 17.3, which was faster than I expected.  Most of the cyclists had tri specific bikes, the clip in shoes, fancy helmets like the dude behind me here >>>> 

At first, I was letting it get to me, then I reminded myself RACE YOUR OWN RACE.  Got down in my AeroBars, into my groove, and took off.

  • My Hybrid will do for now... but smaller tires are a MUST.  On the downhill portions I would be pedaling like a crazy woman and people would still come zipping past me WITHOUT pedaling. A little frustrating.  Or - I could stop being a cheap ass and purchase me a REAL bike :D
  • Make sure to have water for the bike... I got a little thirsty during the second loop.
  • Inclines are my strength - continue speeding up them like a champ.
  • 3 dates was enough fuel to get me through the 24 miles

Into T2... Not sure why I look bald here????

T2 - 0:57:68
Running my bike in I saw a girl had put her bike right in my spot.  As I was running in I screamed 'MOVE YOUR BIKE'... (sorry girl, was not trying to be rude).  Racked my bike, ate 2 dates, put on my fuel belt and I was off.  At this point in the race I felt my BEST.  I felt really strong and ready to run. 

Run - 52:50 : 8:31pace

Starting out I was very tempted to just book it as fast as I could.  My legs felt incredible and I was ready to kick it in the ass.  (Remember how well that worked out for me in the marathon) I told myself progressive run up to the half way point and then you can go as fast as you'd like...
  • Starting out slow pays off!!
  • Mile 3 I had the volunteers throw the water on me - THANKS! 
  • It is hard not to smile when you pass people who zipped right past you on the bike... :):)
  • My new mantra 'Build The Machine' works like a charm 
  • Running is definitely my favorite of the 3 
  • My new shoes are a much better fit, still no pain - LOVE them.

I felt like I was flying into the finish line.  I saw my dad and just booked it in. 

Have my Dad a huge hug, grabbed a bunch of water and guzzled it down and went to look at the official finish times.  I was not expecting to have met my 3 hour goal but I DID and placed 3rd in my age division!!!! 

Not sure what I am doing here? Flexing my non-muscles? lol

This past weekend is the happiest I have been in a long time and I plan to continue down this path.  Officially addicted to Triathlons.  I am now deciding which HIM I will be registering for 2012.

After the race we fueled the machine and decided to go for some water skiing.  (We WERE in Lake Powell after all).  The next morning my legs felt wonderful and I decided to go for a recovery run before we left.  Ended up being 10.2 miles 8:40 average pace. 




  1. Congratulations! Great race recap :)
    So proud of you! And you even managed to do a recovery run that is awesome.

  2. Holy intensity. Can I please be you!? You are freaking amazing!! I can not imagine doing an open water swim... the pool is scary enough for me! You totally beasted this and I can tell you're going to kill it in all the future triathlons. Congrats!!

  3. Girl... you are amazing. So happy for you! HIM?! Ahh, you are inspiring me like no other.

  4. You rock!!!! What a great race you ran (and biked, and swam :))! Triathlons scare the soup out of me and I admire anyone who does them. Way to go.

  5. oh WOW!!!!!!! congrats on your 3rd place!!!
    you totally rocked this race!
    i am so proud of you!
    you are totally inspiring me to do an olympic tri!!!!
    glad you had fun and enjoyed some skiing aterwards!

  6. You did incredible! Knew you'd be hooked! So proud of you. This is just the beginning!!!

  7. "non-muscles"?? um no I'd say you got some guns there chica ;) lol anyway CONGRATS!!! you. are.such.a.BADASS. I take it this was a half-ironman? was it your first Tri? This was SUCH a fun post to read - you are really great at LEARNING from a race, and I think your next one is going to be even MORE successful (got another one planned btw?)?? Congratulations, your machine is definitely being built well!

  8. Just saw that you had a new post today... lost track of your blog temporarily...
    Anyway, amazing work lady, you are one tough bad ass chick :)

  9. NICE! the stats on your run are incredible, how you kept knocking time off! (I don't know anything about biking or running, but sounds like you kicked butt there too). Can't imagine how your legs felt so strong after all the swimming/biking. Impressed!