Coming off my worst duathlon race performance six weeks ago in Sebring, I rebounded Sunday with a good performance at the Integrity Fort DeSoto Trilogy Triathlon competing in the Sprint Distance Duathlon. Here I share my experience from a special morning.
When I noted, worst duathlon race performance, I can’t tell you how poor my fitness felt six weeks ago. If you desire to read more, you can read the recap from last month’s blog, Friends Make Horrible Race Pretty Darn Good.
Since that race I was motivated to get my fitness back and when ready, race to have that feeling of being fit, not surviving, and drive through the finish and that happened yesterday. I was not in top shape but fit enough to drive through a sprint distance hard.
I have built my run miles up again with speed coming along but in this heat and humidity that has been a factor as well. The bike has been another story. I have cycled more but not with the motivation of getting my run back and that also showed yesterday with my power output still down from a couple months ago, but improved.
The special part of the morning was I had a personal cheer section with my brother, Brian, in town on vacation, sister Jamie, and Lauren. That gave me some extra juice for sure.
I felt ok during warm-ups and as I started the very short, .7 mile first run, I felt good off the start line and found myself a bit faster than I wanted prior to the quarter mile mark when I settled in. I didn’t feel great in the final .2 miles as I was a bit gassed from the quick start but I had a good pace so I was satisfied coming in. I had a quick transition and found myself settled into the bike faster than usual. When I got half way out of the 10 mile bike leg, I estimated the 2nd place gentleman, Greg, was within a minute behind me with great friend and competitor, Bob Brown, right behind him in 3rd.
That meant or felt like they were closing on me after the first run buffer. I usually build cycling power in these races and that’s what happened as I opened up the lead to 1:29 coming in off the bike and had a very quick transition knowing they were right behind. Bob had caught Greg coming in. We had the two best bikes of the day.
The final 5k run was rough as mile one was a bit slow and battling nausea. At the end of mile one the nausea went away and the legs freed up as well. I felt really rugged but the pace was picking up. That built confidence. As I made it to the furthest most point and as we looped around onto the trail to come back I glanced across and didn’t see anyone…but I could have easily missed looking across various brush. I pressed on and my pace got faster. I looked back one final time with about a half mile remaining and didn’t see anyone again. I continued to press to the finish with my fastest of the three miles.
It felt great to feel so rough but drive through the finish and that’s the way it should be. Give everything you have with whatever fitness you have on that particular day and I did. It was great to share stories with Bob, Greg and Ed about what we experienced. It was the best I’ve seen Bob run ever. He is one mentally tough customer who pushes the heck out of me and I do as well with him.
I had other friends racing too and they all performed fantastically! Icing on the cake being able to share the experience with my family and Lauren. Experiences are what it’s about and yesterday was one I’ll remember with them there to support.
– Add Health to Your Life