Last month I started a new job as a sales manager at SmartWool and needless to say, a lot has been happening. It’s been a little tough to catch up on some race reports but since I raced Boulder 70.3, I completed the Vegas 70.3 Championship as well as the Nautica Malibu Triathlon and both were really good trips!
This was my 2nd year racing in Vegas for Worlds and was hoping to do well. I put in a good amount of training for Kona since late July so I had a feeling the fatigue would be tough to shake on race day. I flew in late Friday night and stayed with one of my friends who lives .6 miles from the finish line. I got in some short efforts on Saturday and met the Timex crew for b-fast. It was a really great to catch up with them as we rarely get to see each other. I got up at 3:15 on Sunday AM and headed down to Lake Las Vegas for the start of my 10th triathlon in 2012.
I was in Wave 16 so it took a good amount of time for me to start. I felt really good in my new Blue Seventy PZ3TX and my swim went flawless as I finished 1st in my wave. I hopped onto my QR CD0.1 and was on my way into the Las Vegas desert. After 10-15 miles I could already feel the fatigue settling in and I knew it was because of the heavy training I had done the several weeks before. It is what it is and I continued on my way pedaling the most efficiently I could. I got into T2 and felt ready to slug out 13.1 miles in the 100 degree heat, at least I thought I was! I put on my new SmartWool Ultra Light Micro socks and Saucony Fastwitch shoes and hit the road.
From what I remember, this course always goes up or down so it can really pull a lot out of you. I did my best and cheered on as many Timex people as I could, but the bottom line was that it was just plain hot. It was great to see Keith and the Timex crew screaming at us every time a Timex athlete ran by..the support you give is fantastic! I love suffering and I love the heat, but at times it hard to keep everything in check while trying to run as fast as you can. This was one of many races I’ve done where all I could think about was getting ice cold water in me and on me they whole time. It seemed like no amount of water was enough. Either way I did my best and finished in 4:38. Not my best race, but as I always do, I gave it my best!
Later that night, I flew home and a brief 6 days later, I flew out to Malibu to do the Nautica Malibu International distance triathlon. Even though it was within a week of Vegas, I was very excited for this race because my dad was going to race with me. My mom, sister and aunt came to watch as well so it was a full on family trip! Once again I flew in Friday night, assembled my bike again, and got a little bit of sleep at the hotel in Santa Monica before the 3:30AM wake up call to head to the race.
I didn’t do that much after Vegas so I felt as good as I could have for just finishing a ½ Ironman. I did this exact same double last year so I had an idea of what to plan for. I signed up for the pro/elite wave as they do not require a pro license. After body marking, we headed down to the swim start about a mile down the beach. The surf was “up” so I knew it would be a little challenging to get through the waves. We were the 1st wave so after the gun went off I sprinted as fast as I could into the water only to catch a wave that pushed me right back into shore. A little frustrated, I tried again, swam below the wave and soon got into a rhythm. I got out of the water in 3rd and soon got into 2nd as I started the bike. The bike course is a fantastic out & back 24.8 mile ride along the PCH (Pacific Coast Highway). I rode as hard as I could but could not gain on the first place male. I got into T2 a few minutes back and hoped to get in a good fast 10K run along the water.
As I came into transition, the announcer was right by my gear and announced to the crowd, “We have our second place male right here and watch how fast he’ll put on his running shoes!” Needless to say, it was a little added pressure to not screw it up, but luckily it was flawless and I was in & out in well under a minute. I was pushing as hard as I could and still came up short placing 2nd overall, but still happy with my place in a race of over 1100 people. I got to cheer in my dad who placed 3rd in his age group! It was a really neat feeling to have us both be on the podium at such a great race.
The next day I ran to the start to get in some more training and we watched the celebrity relays. The Office cast as well as several other celebrities were all out in full force and it was a lot of fun to watch. Sanjay Gupta from CNN’s “Fit Nation” was one of the many celebs doing the entire Sprint Distance. After the race him and I chatted a bit as we both have a mutual friend, Tim DeBoom. Tim and Sanjay worked together last year on Kona for the show so it was a good to chat with him about his life at CNN and how he fits it all in. I thought I was a busy guy but I cannot imagine the commitments he has….very impressed! For those of you who remember former Timex Team member, April Gellatly, she was also part of a relay with Sanjay as she now works for CNN. Way to go April!
Now I am well into my taper for Kona as it’s under 2 weeks away. Very, very excited to go back to the island for #14!