Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Now that I have taken control of my own blog, I feel more inclined to actually keep it updated. This is my 3rd blog in 1 day… I am sure the novelty will wear off after a while but will try to post at least every couple of weeks.
In this blog I wanted to talk a little about one of my sponsors – Cerasport. I get a lot of questions about this product (no it’s not a sunscreen) and wanted to shed some light.
Cerasport are a rice based sports drink and that I have been training and racing on for the past 2 years. The drink is made up of a blend of short, medium and long chain carbohydrates. The rice-base carbs work fast but continue to give you energy longer than most other sugar based drinks. I used to get a bit of an upset tummy when I used other sports drinks but since I started using Cerasport I just don’t have that issue anymore. No more bloated tummy for me, which is a big help when I hop off the bike and start that run.
I hope this has given you at least a little idea as to what the product is and why I love it so much. Check them out if you get a chance - http://www.ceraproductsinc.com
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Warning - the last month has been jam packed so I have quite a lot to ramble on about…
Was so nice to kick the season off in Oceanside. I went into the race looking to have a solid hit out and see how well my body has taken to the offseason of training. I knew I was in pretty good shape but you just never know how that first race is going to pan out.
The race didn’t really start out as well as I had planned. I had a pretty ordinary swim and found myself 3 minutes off the pace when I finally made it into T1. Once out onto the bike I felt ok and just put my head down and worked as best as I could to try and make up some ground. I closed the gap to a little over 2 mins by half way but was unable to hold it there (damn it) and by T2 it was back to 3 minutes. Once out on the run I knew I had my work cut out. I would need a very fast run if I was going to get myself into this race. I didn’t feel particularly great running out there. Actually, I felt quite terrible at the start but after a few miles I settled into a rhythm and the miles started ticking over nicely. After the first lap I hadn’t made up much time at all on the leaders and with 5 km to go was still around 1:50 down on 1st (Sarah Groff) but was slowly closing in on 2nd (Leander Cave). My main focus became catching up to Leander. At that point I didn’t even think about catching Sarah. It was only when I caught Leander that I had my first glimpse of Sarah - she was only 30secs in front of Leander! I had to dig pretty deep but was able to catch Sarah around 500m from the finish line. It was such a great feeling to cross that line first – and so nice to start the year off with a win especially after such a disappointing end to the season last year.
After Oceanside I had planned on racing 3 weeks later at St Anthony’s then St Croix 70.3 the following weekend. We dove right back into training on the Tuesday after Oceanside. I planned a good 2 week training block before St Anthony’s. That is until I crashed my bike the following Monday – I will not go into details cause it is kinda embarrassing… hmmm yes far too embarrassing to share - I still can’t believe I fell off! Such a spaz!!! After the crash I was quite sore and sorry and although I did keep up most of my training volume I had to tone down the intensity and, after a couple of days, Coach Siri and I decided that we should give St Ant’s a miss so that I could let my body heal and focus on having a good race in St Croix.
It is always such a tough decision to pull out of a race – especially one of my favorites - but I know it was the right decision. St Croix rolled around so fast and before I knew it I was back on the island staying with my St Croix family - the Holt’s, and gearing up for another exciting race!
I have mixed feelings about my race in St Croix. I always like to come back and race there to test myself out over a really tough course. I feel like I am in far better shape than I was this time last year and was hoping it would show in my racing. The race started out well enough - I was 3rd or 4th out of the water around 2 mins down on Joanna Zeiger and 1:30 behind Nina Kraft. I didn’t particularly feel great at the start of the bike but really tried to attack and get away from the girls that were just behind me out of the swim. I was quite surprised at around mile 10 to look up and see Nina and Joanna. I did not expect to catch them that early. I took the lead not too long after that but Nina chased me and caught back up on the beast. There is a $250 prime for the first to the top of the beast and Nina was going after it. Once over the beast, though, I was able to pull away. I really wanted to give my legs a good test out there. I was feeling pretty good and was really enjoying just being out there riding my super fast Cannondale Slice. I think I got a little carried away with racing and noticed late in the ride that I was feeling quite thirsty. Oops…. At the next aid station I grabbed a water bottle but unfortunately it was only half full – drank it in like 2 gulps. I wasn’t too worried then though - my legs still felt pretty good and I figured I would be fine. That is until I got onto the run – oh dear! I just felt terrible from the start. So so thirsty and it was starting to heat up. I had a 3 min lead off the bike but I was just not running well at all. I drank what I could at the aid stations but the damage was already done. I just had to hold on as best I could until that finish line. Catriona Morrison was closing fast and looking really strong. She caught and passed me with around 6km to go and I had no response. I could only hope that there was no one else behind her. I finished 2nd in the end but with one of my slowest run times ever.
After the race I felt quite annoyed with myself for making such a silly mistake. I am usually quite diligent with my nutrition plan knowing exactly how much I need to drink and at which aid station I will be refilling. I just didn’t give St Croix the respect that it deserved. You can get away with it on a cooler day but not in St Croix with it’s hills, wind and heat. Having said that though, I can sit back and look at the positives and negatives of the race. I put together a decent swim and had a great ride and feel that my cycling is starting to improve. I just messed up my nutrition and paid for it big time on the run – I know I can run much faster than that. I just couldn’t do it on that day.
After St Croix I had a couple of days off which included a road trip with my pal Mary Miller up to Boulder via Las Vegas. We had such a fun trip but that is a story for another day. I am now just trying to adjust to the altitude and get back into training before my next race which is the Revolution 3 triathlon on the 7th June.
Monday, April 6, 2009
After Clearwater it was so nice to be able to spend some time with my family. I came back to Oz and decided to live with my brother & sister in law for the summer so that I would be able to spend some time with my little nice Mackenzie. I absolutely love this kid – she is so adorable, I didn’t even mind the early morning wake ups smelly nappy changes or anything. It was also nice to be home for the arrival of two new nephews. My sister Colette and her husband Murat welcomed their first baby Kaya into the world on the 7th of January then two weeks later my sister in law Tammarra and my brother Warrick had little Patrick. I have some photos below of the 2 little monkeys. I guess you could say my summer in Australia was mostly spent hanging out with babies and I loved every second of it. Of course when I wasn’t changing a nappy or reading a story I was out training. It was so nice to have a few months without the stress of travel where I could get in a block of base training.. Something I neglected to do last year by diving straight back into racing in early Feburary.
This year I had the end of November off then used December to ease back into it, I then had the whole of January and February to enjoy some nice long base miles.. One other thing I have done differently this year is try out a new training tool – Powercranks!!! These things are so freakin hard.. I got them put on my bike on the 1st of January and my first ride consisted of a lot of single leg drill over an hour wind trainer session then another hour lying on the floor in agony. My hip flexors had no idea what had hit them. This sort of thing lasted for a few weeks, with relatively minor increases in distance with each session and a number of phone calls to my coach asking if she was sure this would make me faster!! It took about 5 weeks before I could do any quality at all, but by my 7th week I was really starting to see the improvements, I can now say that I am a firm believer in this product! I am back on normal cranks now with the odd shorter ride on the powercranks to help remind my legs how to pedal correctly. I definitely feel like I am riding stronger than I ever have before .. But I guess the true test will be how well I ride in my next few races?
Speaking of which, my first race of the year will be next weekend in Oceanside. It’s shaping up to be a great race with some really fast chicks lining up. I am looking forward to testing out my body and see where I am at in terms of strengths and weaknesses. I am also quite excited to be riding my new cannondale slice. I picked up my new baby last week from Nytro. I have a very good feeling about this bike! If you would like to see some photos below is a link to an interview I did with triathlete mag a few weeks ago.
Oh and I guess you may have gathered by now – I am back in the US, at our SoCal desert training base, I arrived here on the 1st of March and will be here till late April when I head over to St Petersburg for st Anthony’s tri and St Croix 70.3. I am thoroughly enjoying being back in training camp with Siri and the new group – I have 2 of the best roomies – Sam Warriner and Hayley Peirsol. It is amazing how much more enjoyable training can be when you are surrounded with such great company.
Until next time..