I have a lot on my plate coming up and its no wonder I’m starting to feel a little stressed. I’m not exactly sure how my race schedule ended up getting quite so packed this late in the season but at this point, I’m in head first and I plan to take it one day, one week and one race at a time!
This is what my next two months will look like:
August 20 – AG Nationals – Burlington, VA – Olympic distance triathlon
August 28 – LKN Sprint – Cornelius, NV – Sprint distance triathlon
September 10 – Brenner Pro Am – Winston Salem, NC – Crit race
September 11 – Carolina Cup – Greensboro, NC – Crit race
September 24 & 25 – MS 150 – Century Ride and 50-100 (TBD) mile ride
October 1&2 – Pinehurst Olympic & Sprint (TBD) – Pinehurst, NC – Olympic & Sprint distance traithlons
October 8 – Half Max Nationals – Myrtle Beach, NC – Half Iron distance triathlon
No, all of these are not “races” and not all of these are “A” races per say, which is how I’m gearing up to handle this schedule. I plan to race hard when necessary, and enjoy the other events and my weekends home resting. No doubt there is a looming pressure to perform, which primarily comes from pressure I put on myself. Several races on my schedule take priority for various reasons.
AG Nat’s – important for obvious reasons. This is a big national race and there are women coming from all over the country who are very very talented. There is also the opportunity to qualify for Team USA!! I want to perform well, and given how my training has been going, I feel that that is possible. I have no real expectations because I don’t know any of the competition, nor the course, so I plan to race hard and see how I fair. I plan to try to focus on my own race. If I have a “perfectly” executed race (is there really such a thing as a perfectly executed race?) and feel strong all day, and come home with a 50th place in my AG, I am going to try my best to feel good regardless. I will admit though, that’d be a tough pill to swallow!
LKN Sprint – I typically would never consider a sprint race an “A” race but the circumstances around this are unique. Right now, I am 2nd in the NC triathlon series (click) and the 3rd place girl is right on my tail! The series keeps your 5 best races and Cool Breeze and White Lake Sprint (*) are bringing me down right now. At this point, there’s no way I can beat Tanya so it’s truly a race for 2nd!
* Notes: The entire Navy Triathlon team showed up at Cool Breeze (a.k.a COLD Breeze) and my “easy points race” turned into a 9th place overall finish. Given there was only one girl from Charlotte in the rankings ahead of me, so had the Navy team stayed parked in Annapolis, a solid 2nd place finish would have been great for my points. Grrrr. Despite having a good race at White Lake, the bike course is too flat for me to gain any of my usual lost time out of the water, so my 11th overall finish was also sub-par and weighing me down.
Nonetheless, I’ll be gunning for a good, solid race at LKN in order to hopefully hold my position in the series, thus making it a more important race than it normally would be. The LKN race on Sunday in 2009 was also my first triathlon victory ever!!
Pinehurst Olympic – This race is also important, particularly once the results of LKN are determined. Pinehurst is a good course for me bike-wise so hopefully I will feel strong and have fast legs that day for a strong run. I’m still deciding if I’ll double up and do the sprint on Sunday since I’ll already be down there.
Half Max Nationals – It goes without saying, anything with “nationals” in its name is likely an important and competitive race. This will be my first half of the season and my first race of any length since Augusta in September 2010. I’m excited to see how my running has progressed in the past year. The year long break from long-course training has been a huge breath of fresh air for me and (exactly as I hoped / knew would happen) I’m itching for some distance in my life! It’s so hard to force yourself to step back from time to time, but in the long run (no pun intended), it’s the best thing you can do!!
So, wish me luck as I embark on a crazy few weeks of racing. It will be Thanksgiving before we know it and this crazy season will have come to an end. In the meantime, I set out to post some solid results, create awesome memories of racing and traveling with family and friends, and continue to learn about my strengths and limits!
First up, Age Group Nationals! T-2 days.