NC State TT Championships and some other blabbering…

This week was a good one! Work was manageable, “life” was manageable, and training was pretty spot-on! I’m on week 3 working with Leigh-Ann and I can’t explain what a breath of fresh air it’s been. I can tell already we’ve formed a great partnership….I don’t feel like I’m trapped under her dictatorship and she understands that the number one reason I do triathlon is for fun. She is just like me in that regard and it is exactly what I’ve been looking for. We both work very very hard training to be the best we can be, but at the end of the day triathlon is just a hobby.

LA and I are focusing a lot on “embracing the suffer” for me running off my bike. I have generally convinced myself I’m just not a good runner. Well, I recently had a metabolic efficiency / Vo2 max test that fortunately (but kind of unfortunately) certified that, in fact, I can run. Or I should be able to run, I should say. Knowing that, LA and I have decided that much of my running issues are mental. As a result, a lot of my workouts have, and will continue to, include a lot of threshold efforts; 1-2 mile runs at a very uncomfortable pace after sprint/Olympic efforts on my bike. I am not gonna have a ton of “fun” doing it, its hard and can be mentally draining, but I know its exactly what I need headed in to Worlds.

On another note, this Sunday was the NC State Time Trial Championships. I have a hard time calling it a “Championship” because there weren’t all that many people there but that is it’s proper assigned name. When the Piedmont Omnium was cancelled, I knew I wanted to do this TT since it’d be a good training day and I’ve never done such a long time trial with no run after! Wooo hooo. đŸ™‚ After my workout on Friday (90 min ride/run/ride/run with a lot of hard stuff in there) I was skeptical with how my legs would feel heading into the race.

I decided to go out with some good friends Friday night but kept it between the lines as to not totally dehydrate myself. Since I was out a little later than planned, I thought it’d be a great day to sleep in and get my body some rest for Sunday. The most exhausting part of training, is not always the workouts, but rather the go-go-go and the super early alarms. It was awesome to sleep in on a Saturday and not be up at the ass crack trying to beat the heat. By the time I woke up it was BAKING hot out and I again didn’t want to get out there and set myself back fluid-wise. Instead, I opted for a good-ol’ workout at the gym….just like old times. Sometimes changing the routine can be so invigorating. I had a great workout and left feeling strong and ready to race!

The women’s start times were way late…I was the 2nd women to start behind my teammate, Hannah Miller, at 10:39am. Because of this, I was also able to sleep in a little Sunday too! What a treat! The temp was approaching 95 by the time I arrived at the race site at about 9:30. I made my rounds and chatted with some other brave souls doing the race, before hoping on Black Beauty for my warm up. Not that I needed a “warm up”, I was already dripping sweat. I can’t say as I started some race efforts that I was all too pumped up to race. My legs felt like shit and I was roasting in my skin suit. I was wondering who stole my strength! Regardless…it was to the start line and ready to roll.

NC TT – 40k (24.8 miles) 1:00:17 1st OA / 1st Cat 1/2/3

There isn’t much you can report on for a 40k TT other than it hurts. To sum it up, I pretty much felt like crap, it was Africa-hot, the course was hilly, it felt like “headwind-from-every-direction,” and I desperately wanted to slow down…but I didn’t. I embraced the suffer, I HTFU’d and I gutted out the 24.8 miles, just like the rest of the field.

My goal was 1 hour but at the 1/2 way point I was at about 32 minutes so figured I could kiss my goal goodbye. My power was dropping by about 1 watt every 4 or so minutes, which wasn’t ideal. Mile 8-13 were the worst for me…suffering like a dog, not close to the finish and I start to wonder how on earth I am going to continue to ride so hard for over 10 more miles. I wanted to sit up and recover if only for a few seconds, but I didn’t. I wished there was a wheel to draft off of for just like 1 mile, but there isn’t. I just put my head down and embraced…something I seemed to have mastered on my bike….

Generally, the ride was uneventful. I decided to lay it out there when I was able see the light at the end of the tunnel; my power began to creep up just slightly as did my speed. I rode the last 5 miles above CP20 power which I was pleased with. The last 200 meters were a decent climb which pretty much sucked; it took me at least 3 minutes to catch my breath after the finish. Hannah and I laid in the grass on the side of the road under a tree immediately after as I asked Hannah “why do we do this to ourselves?” I admit, I wonder that a lot. So I was the fastest woman at today’s race which I guess makes me the NC State TT Champion…or something?

Here we are Sunday night. This week will include, you guessed it, more swimming, biking, and running and also some recovery! I have another swim lesson tomorrow morning, the Lowe’s 10mile TT on Wednesday night and Triangle Sprint on Saturday up in Raleigh…lots of stuff to be fresh for. I love recovery/taper weeks! Triangle will be my first (only) sprint this year and I’ll be putting my “embracing the suffer” to the test!

I hope everyone stayed out of the heat as best they could this weekend. I think some relief is coming. Or at least I hope! đŸ™‚

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