SUBARU Vancouver 1/2 Ironman

The morning started off with a bit of a chill in the air ( this southern belle was in sweats, everyone else was in shorts...!) and would prove to be a beautiful day for a race. I got to transition early as usual to get situated and be sure i had pleny of time to warm up before having to get into the wetsuit and hit the water. since i swam in it yesterday, i wasn't too worried about the temperature, but still wanted to be sure my core was warm before i got going. this race has a mass start - so no easy task starting in a mass of people on the beach. i got a little worked up beofre the start - the longer i wait around, the more i think....but soon we were off and on our way. i found a line on the outside quickly and made my way around a few of the swimmers who seem to think they should be up front even though they are hardly considdered strong. ( i still haven't figured that one out. why on earth would someone want to put themself in the position to be swum over by masses of swimmers? i know you shouldn't seed yourself, but lets get real. ....) anyway, the swim was 2 loops which meant we had to run out of the water and go around a buoy on the beach - then back into the water for another go. some people like this, but i am not a fan of the 2 loop swim - because i get so dizzy..it was hardly a run around the buoy - more like a walk trying to hold my line and catch my breath...then for some reason (maybe because it was a "race", i picked it up to a slight jog, then into the water where i had to stop and chill out for a second while i caught my breath. how ridiculas is that? not sure what was going on there, but it passed after a minute or so - and it was off to loop 2.

out of the water - again up the beach fighting the dizzies and trying to stay upright. the run on the beach was forever - twice a long as other races like IM Florida or Sandestin. I was so glad to get off the sand and into transition where i then found myself fumbling with my wetsuit, doing the dance around to get it off! not much cooperation fron the wetsuit there(maybe i was just cold and had a hard time grasping it), but i got it off and was on the bike in a jiffy.

the bike course was flat for about 2 miles, then it was up. we did the loop 4 times then it would be back into transition for the run. I settled in early on the bike getting comfy and taking in fluids and hitting the cheetah bar. By the first turn agound, i realized i was in 2nd place not far behind Bree, but there were plenty of other girls off my rear, so i didnt want to get too complacent. by loop 2 bree dropped off the front and i didnt see her until the turnaround. turns out she went off course a bit and that eliminated her lead and put her with me. we rode along a bit - i think we were both trying to get away from each other, but it wouldnt happen. then past halfway, Rachel came along and left the 2 of us for dead!
off the bike, I was in 3rd and feeling ok - glad to be off the bike. for some reason my legs didnt feel great on the bike, so i was hoping they would feel a little better on the run. as ususal, the first 2 miles were sketchy with the VMO wanting to cramp up. I had to go pretty easy and even stopped once at the top of the hill to stretch, then continued on trying to keep the cramping to a minimum - and it worked. by 3k the cramps were subsiding and i felt like i was getting into rhythm. I still had Bree in sight, but wasn't sure I would be able to catch her. I was running as fast as i could trying to stay relaxed and keep the HR reasonable, and that was keeping me behind her by about 30 seconds. about 7k into the run, there was cheryl murphy (miss "i can run faster than anyone in canada") running by like i was in the park for a sunday stroll. I tried to run with her - mimicking her stride and trying to make it look easy the way she did - and i nearly passed out my HR went up so high- then i realized was kidding myself!! (hehe). she is an amazing runner and a great athlete! as far as half's go, the run went by quickly - with 2 loops- one part hilly on trails, the other flat out and back along the beach. by the last 6k, i realized i was in 4th today, unless i would redline it to try to run down Bree ( didnt have it in me) or stop and let 5th place run me down. So, I just cruised in. I

began to look at the view along the beach where I was running and saw what I was missing the whole morning - an awesome view of North and West Vancouver along the water with downtown just ahead. It was really beautiful, and I am glad I had the opportunity to see it while i was out there. It'samazing how much you can miss when you are so focused on the race...

At the finish, I was glad to be there and done, and happy with how good I felt compared to after the race in Lubbock 2 weeks ago. In Lubbock i was spent, but today, i felt tired, but at the same time i felt good. sounds weird....hard to explain.

after the race, we all hung around for awards then it was a mad rush to get back to the homestay's house to pack then to catch the ferry and head over to Victoria for training camp!

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