My preparation for the 2014 Vineman 70.3 triathlon started two weeks ago with a taper program I have found to work very well for me. I take my recovery week two weeks out then ramp up to full intensity the week of the race. My volume during race week depends on how important the race is; I do less volume for more important races but, the intensity is always high.
I started feeling really good the day we traveled to wine country, Friday. Sam, our store manager at Reno Running Company, and I arrived early afternoon and did an easy mile swim to get the blood flowing and it felt effortless. Afternoon and evening was just rest and a pepperoni pizza. Saturday, the day before the race, I like to get everything over early so I can relax in the afternoon. We did a 3.5mi run with 80m builds and a 6mi bike before an awesome egg sandwich breakfast in our camp; then straight to packet pickup.
Race morning came early with my 6:48am start time, I like to eat breakfast 3 hours before race start. Warm up was a 1.5 mile build run and an easy swim with pickups at race pace.
The swim went great; I went out hard and led our swim wave out of the water. A group formed on the bike with 2 good cyclists getting away from me around mile 40 of the bike. (No worries, I’ll see you on the run J.) I sped out of transition with another guy and we went to work catching the two in front of us at 6:10 pace -- one guy down around mile 3, one to go. The second guy was not cooperating with my plan for a win so I went 2 miles at 5:55 pace which got me within about 20 meters of him. I gathered myself and put in another surge around mile 10 and ran into the lead. (Side note… The guy I came out of transition with made his move earlier and ran away from me. I could live with that because he was in an earlier wave so I was still ahead of him in the race). So I’m in the lead at mile 10, but like a bird hitting a glass window with the finish in sight, I hit the wall. First place ran me back down and on to glory. The last 2 miles were brutal for me and I couldn’t wait to be finished. Congratulations to my cunning foe for a great race, until we both found out that a guy from an earlier wave beat us by one minute. 3rd place it is, last step on the podium winning me a bottle of wine to share with my wife!
4:16 total time for a new 70.3 PR so I can’t be disappointed with that! Thank God it’s over, back to Xterra for Me.