I thought I was in good shape for this race 9 days out. 8 days out Jaimie and I started our travelling from Noosa to New York. After a night in Brisbane at Urban Hotel, we were up early to the airport, 9.5hrs on the plane to Seoul, Korea, a short stop then 14.5hrs to JFK airport. 5hrs later, 1:30am Monday morning, we arrived at my friends place in New Jersey. And we never fully recovered before racing on Sunday in Syracuse 70.3.
I need my sleep, my stretching, my hips massaging, foam roller etc. And in the week before the race we had very little sleep, and I did next to none of the other. We were just too busy settling in then travelling to Syracuse (5hr drive) on Thursday.
I was nervous before the race, and I’m never nervous. In hindsight I just knew that I hadn’t done what I needed to do, and that I wasn’t feeling ready like I’d expected to 9 days ago. I didn’t feel good in the swim, but I positioned myself well and sat on feet to come out with 2 others 1min up on the main competition. My legs felt terrible running through transition and that is always a sign for me that my body is not feeling great.
I rode average, was caught by the main pack after 10km’s, then dropped 1km later. It didn’t help that it was a very challenging course, and I just had nothing on the uphills. At that point I fell apart physically , and 10km later I was a wreck mentally. The guys disappeared up the road and I felt like I was going backwards. At halfway TJ Tollakson caught me and I rallied to get myself going again and stay with him, like it was life or death. I started to ride better in the last 25km of the race and I probably kept pace with the lead group. But the time I lost in the first half of the ride was major damage. Overall I lost 7mins to Paul Ambrose, and 4mins to everyone else. Not too bad considering how flat I was.
After pushing through the bike with tight hips, my back seized up for the first 5km’s and I ran slow, it released, and I picked up the pace and Graham O’Grady at 11km. The others were still too far in front so I didn’t push too hard and held 4th comfortably. I had the second fastest run which sounds ok since I felt so ordinary, but I was a long way from beating Joe Gambles who had the fastest run to win from Ambrose. Callum Milward swam and rode with Joe, but couldn’t hold him on the run and finished 3rd.
Jaimie raced too, and the effects of our travelling and busy week really showed through in her legs cramping on the run causing her to fall over a couple of times, and then in agony and stress with continual cramping for another 4omins before the medical team finally agreed to give her a saline IV. She was in tears and had shallow breathing with the stress of the cramps for 40mins before they conceded an IV might help. Apparently not everywhere in the world agree that Saline drips help rehydrate – Syracuse, and South Africa I was told!