Last weekend I went off to Portland, Oregon to race Age Group Nationals. It was gorgeous … green and mountains abound! The race was at Hagg Lake, about 30 minuntes outside of Portland in a town called Hillsboro. The lake was incredible and perfect for a race.
I arrived there Wednesday night and Thursday went for a morning swim at the lake to feel the water temperature and get a sense of what was to come. It was rainy and in the low 50s, but surprisingly the water was a warm 70-72 degrees (yeah, I did have a full wetsuit, which helps! haha). In the afternoon I got my bike set up, and Friday headed out to packet pickup after a short ride and run in the morning to get the legs going.
Race morning had me a bit worried since I had not seen the sun in the few days I had been there, and it was still in the 50s-low 60s in the afternoons. Thankfully, we had a beautiful day with clear skies and a high of, I think, 70. It’s amazing, but once the gun goes off, weather is the least of your concerns. My feet did get numb on the bike – haha – which felt weird at the run transition for the first couple of minutes.
The swim went in rectangular form from one side of the lake to the other, and the bike was a hilly 2 loops around the lake. The run went opposite the bike direction and was nothing but up-hill down-hill, no flats I could spot!
I felt I had a good race given some mishaps. My swim was slower than I would have liked, and it was a bummer they did not have any electrolyte replacement on the run (i.e gatorade) or I would have planned with some extra salt tablets.
In all, I came in 10th in my age group (20-24) which got me a podium finish and a cool mug
I qualified for Worlds in Germany this September but gave the spot up as Ironman Hawaii in October is top priority. Since I raced in an older age group due to my turning 20 at the end of the year, 2 of the girls are 24 so I probably will get a spot to Worlds 2008 in Vancouver, which I will do.
Anyway, it felt great to get back to San Diego, as I made that trip by myself and was a bit stressed out. I was actually quite lucky to find a car rental company that would rent to people under 21 (e-z car rental for those that are interested, hehe).
Yesterday, I did a short race in Carlsbad, which is a couple of miles north of where I am in Encinitas, California. It was a short sprint race that I was really looking forward to as not only was it close to home but I needed a boost of confidence after a not so excellent show at nationals.
We rode out to the race in the morning, which made for a good 40 minute bike warmup. Although when we got to transition around 7 a.m. we still had an hour and a half to kill before the female waves went off.
The swim looked a bit sketchy as the surf was well over my shoulder height, but by the time my wave went off, things were calmer
I dug as deep as I could the whole way and got to the run behind two other girls. I managed to pass them both and finished with a nice gap, taking 1st place overall female.
The ride back home was nice, and I was looking forward to a huge salty meal after a morning of energy bars and gels – yuck!!
Well, now a bit of rest and some heavy training in the weeks ahead as I begin my preparation for Ironman. I’ll be doing a 10k run on the 28th and a sprint on the 29th of July both in Solana Beach so will post updates on that soon!
Thanks for reading and I hope all of ya’ll are having a great summer!!