Got home around Midnight last night and have spent most of today recovering from an impromptu-spur of the moment trip to Tucson/Lake Havasu, Arizona for a little bit of training and a race! Close to 2500 miles driven, lots of miles in the swim/bike/run category, and even more calories consumed, to put in for another fun/solid training adventure!
We drove all day Wednesday to make the 16 hour trek to Tucson. Thanks to a 2 hour time change, we were able to get a run around downtown and a nice dinner in before we checked in to our hotel for the night. We surprisingly felt pretty good on our runs after being in the car all day, and were starting to get very excited for the race. Thursday morning when we woke up we were excited to have time to explore the city and and its beautiful scenery. We decided to do a 35 mile ride from Orca Valley to The biosphere 2. It was a nice rolling hills route around the outskirts of Mt. Lemmone. As much as we wanted to bike Mt. Lemmone, we knew it wouldnt be good leading into a race 2 days away. Heres some pics from along the way:
After our ride, we headed over to Whole foods for some chow-down and found a cool Gelato place near by to also feast in. Yum! Next we dropped our bikes off back at the hotel room and went to check out Tri-Sports (as in Tri-sports.com) because it was the headquarter store! It was pretty cool seeing what other "tri" specific stores have to offer in comparison to Tru Tri, where I work at. Then we found a local pool and paid 2$ and got a quick pre-race swim in. Finally it was time to wine and dine, and kick back for the night!
Friday, we woke up and drove the last 5 hours to Lake Havasu, for the Lake Havasu Olympic Triathlon. It was the Mountain conference regional championships, so as soon we walked in to packet pickup, it was like everyone was looking at us. Who are these Texas A&M people!!?? Just who do they think they are.....well little did they know, but we were there to do a little DE-THROWNING!
We decided to drive the bike course and almost scared ourselves to death by seeing what we were in for. I began questioning, why do I do triathlon...What did I get myself into!? There was small ring hills in this race!! Something, coming from College Station, TX, we are NOT use to at all! The bike course ended up being really fun, but I was still scared pre-race! Next, we drove over to Crazy Horse campground to set up our tents before it got dark. It was a fun experience to camp before a race with all the other collegiates near by. Little did we know, but Spring break was in FULL effect that night...and I mean FULL effect. We could hear blaring music and drunken college kids all night long. When we woke up at 5am, I asked "yall have fun at the club last night!??" So much for sleep....We have a race to do!
The campground was only 2 miles from transition, so we biked over to the course. A front was starting to come through so I was a little nervous what the wind was going to make of the waves in the water, and the hills on the bike course. Everyone has to do the same thing, so I try not to think about all the little factors I cannot control. Transition was full of all the Collegiates, excited to race and reign in their Regional Championships. I was just looking for a good hard workout.
Hard it was. The swim started out as probably the coldest water I have ever swam in. Waves were crashing and I was freaking and shivering. After a few seconds spent on my back and off to the side, I kept moving and just tried to get into a rhythm. The boys wave went off a few minutes before the girls, so they boys ended up swimming into us at the turn around. It was so frustrating!! Even though, I knew the bike was going to be hard, I was glad to get out and get on my bike. The first half of the bike went by super fast. The hills wernt nearly as bad as I thought. I began catching up to girls and seeing where I was at. 5 girls back...4 girls back...3 girls back....and then, the box!! The box was a 4 corner route that included getting into your smallest gear (never have I done this) and just hoping you dont fall over on the hill! Then it was downhill, and with the wind picking up, it was straight SCARY! Finally, I was back on the last couple miles back to transition and was just glad the hills were over. Unfortunately, I had to stay in my small ring because my derailer wouldnt switch back to my big ring. I gave up and just focused on staying put in the race. Next thing I knew, the 2 girls in front of me were behind me and we were all running into T2 together. Is my biking getting better or what?? Was definitely happy with my bike.
Out of T2 I was second and regained the lead after about a 1/2 mile run in a deep sand pit, and then a 50-stair stair climb. I about maxxed my HR out on the stairs but got into rhythm for the next 2 miles until the turn around. Once at the turn around I felt pretty good, Got rid of my cramps and just kept moving. The second place girl was working HARD and I knew that she could catch me. I almost didnt care, because it was her Regional Championships...but then I decided Nope, here I go...Racing...Gonna keep moving at this speed..all the way to the finish line!
Results?? I won the Mountain Conference Regional Championships!! Not a bad start to my triathlon year. I got all the kinks that I worry about out, and still pulled through with the win. I was very proud of myself and also my teammates who did AWESOME as well. We showed those Mountainers whats up, and now they know we are out for them at Nationals!