At first I neglected to write anything since St. Anthony’s because I didn’t feel like I was doing much. Then I realized that I was actually racing a lot, and feeling the need to write about every race was overwhelming. Here’s the quick and dirty about the whole mid season:
1) Steel City Showdown – I won the Cat 3/4 race in an awesome hometown crit and got a sweet railroad tie trophy. Later that day I crashed out of my first Cat 1/2/3 bike race. You win some and you lose some!
2) I barely survived Tour of Tucker bike race – Got dropped by the masters men right out of the gate when gaps opened up in front of me. Then I proceeded to wreck myself trying to ride around gaps that by the time I got to the opening hill, I hardly had the ability to make it up the hill. This was going to be a long day. The hills sucked. Riding alone sucked. Everything sucked and I wanted to go home. I spent the whole race planning where the best place to quit was so I could actually get a ride back to the finish area, but eventually found myself at the bottom of the 5 mi long, gnarley finishing climb. I figured if I walked up the hill I would ruin my cleats, so the unfortunate best alternative was to ride my way up. It was 40 minutes of misery, but I even managed to pass a few people on the way up. I’ve already started scheming my revenge for next year’s race.
3) Team Time Trial record – I love having teammates. Along with my LaPrima Espresso teammates Elise and Josie, we set a new women’s TTT record for our local time trial series! If you’re noticing a pattern, I’ve been having a blast racing bikes and riding with roadies all summer. I’m a much stronger cyclist than I was last year, and this summer has been the most fun I’ve had on 2 wheels, so I’m going to put joining the LaPrima Espresso team in the WIN column.
4) There was a triathlon or 2 in there somewhere. I am lucky to have 2 really amazing local races that also have prize money! That being the case, it brought out some good local talent so there was no easy cruising along to the win with Desiree Terella, Amy Javens, and young phenom Ally Meehan hot on my heels! First up was Dam Tri with the coveted beaver trophy. The bike course throws everything at you: solid climbs, long soul-crushing false flats, wind, rough road surfaces. Then the run course is part trail, loose gravel, and a desolate and demoralizing out and back across a dam. I’ve never made it through this race before without blowing myself up on the bike and limping through the run, so to my amazement, I felt totally solid start to finish. I think it mostly had to do with my increased strength on the bike not only leading to a quick bike split, but also being able to start the run without already feeling crushed.
The North Park Tri is a fast and furious sprint, and a great spectator race featuring a pool swim and multi loop bike course around the pool area. I convinced my whole family to come out and cheer on Kyle and I, and trained them to give us splits on the gaps between us and our competitors. They were great spotters, and even gave me the added bonus of letting me know that Kyle was up the road in 1st place on some serious competition as well! The run is a trail run, so once you come off the bike and go into the woods, the crowd (and sometimes the competitors themselves) just has to sit and wait to be surprised at who pops out of the woods in what order. I caught a glimpse of #2 on a switchback section halfway through the run, so I knew she was in contact but not sure how fast the gap was closing. Luckily, I held her off to the finish without it coming down to a sprint finish. Though I came to find that Kyle’s race did! With only 18s separating the top 4 men, it was quite an intense finish, but Kyle pulled of the win! How cool to be able to share the top of the podium with your significant other!
5) Not exactly a race, but Kyle and I went on an epic Pacific Northwest adventure since we were already traveling to Seattle in July for a wedding. 8 days and I rode a bike twice, swam and ran exactly one time each. I don’t regret it or feel guilty one bit about a week off. Here’s why:
It had been a busy summer. But somehow, the busy just keeps on coming! Until next time…