The weather forecast for race day had looked good all week. Race morning it turned out to be true. Me and Nades headed down to the transition just before 6… there were a few people in transition already. Some of the halves were there as well… I thought they were keen. Check the tyres, put bottles on bike and that was all that really need to do. So some hanging around, looking lost.
Then decided put on the wetsuit and headed down to the start. I got into the water, others commented it was warmer, I just thought it was cold. A few hugs to some people and then it was just a few minutes to the start.
Swim – 3.8 K : 1:07
I like to hang back in the start, you know not run in and duck dive, I find it just sky rockets your heart rate, and then takes you ages to settle back down into a easy rhythm. So I hung back took it gentally into the start, however the problem with this is that there is people in front of you that did go hell for leather to start with and are slower than me… this leads to a bit of thumping and kicking and scrambling to get around them.
The swim course is a odd shaped Quadrangle. The first leg seemed to take forever, then the next 2 legs are shorter and feel like you are getting somewhere, the last leg just keeps on going and going. I managed to stick in the draft of people most of the way around the first lap. I sometimes found myself in no mans land. I some where around that last lap, I got past by 2 chicks (females wore green caps, males red which was a pain at times trying to see the orange bouys.) I stuck on their draft for a while but they slowly pulled away, turns out I was the 3rd age grouper female out of the water, so those 2 were 1st and 2nd and came out about a minute in front.
It was a cold time in the water, by the 2nd lap I was definalty having ice cream head ache effects. When I got out of the water, I was very disoriented, lots of people were watching and clapping, and all I could think was “do something”. So I started taking of my cap, then I thought, I should really be moving forward, so did that. I eventually got it together and pulled down wetsuit zip and started running. My feet were icscle sticks and I it was a odd sensation running on them
T1 – 4:46
Went smoothly enough, there was someone there to help pull of the wetsuit, put on my cycle top, gloves and shoes and was off. Jo was at the end of transition and gave her a big smile.
Bike – 180K: 6:35
Felt really good the instant I got on the bike, I was spinning away happily 32K/h straight away, then I hit that first hill out of Wanaka, so span up it and headed out to Hospital Flat. Took it failry easy on the way out, I stood up on some of the hills to warm up and stretch. Just before Glendu bay the pros started coming the other way. This was the only time to see the pros the entire day and it was good to see them and yell “Go Gina” as she came through.
On the way back you got to see who was behind you and how far back they were. I was over the rolling hills and looking forward to getting past wanaka onto a bit more flatter. Going back through town was fun, lots of crowd cheering you. However, just as I was climbing out of the town, I was dry retching, I have no idea why, this kept coming on and off for the next 50 K’s. I just tried to make sure I drank and ate as much as possible.
Once I got down into Luggate the wind picked up a bit and I basically had a headwind all the way to cromwell. In places I was groveling along at 20 -22 k/h, the last flat bit into cromwell, when you can see the bridge, was my lowest point. I was feeling a bit miserable, and with the thought of over 90 more K’s to go, it wasn’t improving. Plus I was getting close to 3:30 at this point and thinking that there would be no way to do that last bit much faster than I had done this first part.
But once I was on the other side of that lake I was a completely different person, I was humming along. I was much more released on the bike and doing a much more decent speed. There were tough bits still, that climb up to the Lagoon seemed harder than last time. The road along the top was much easier. Once past Hawea I hit another head wind to come back to. There were a few more hills to get over and I so wanted to get off the bike at this point, and those last few hills were very unwelcome.
Finally I was going down (and down fast) into transition, oh yah! Now I had to start thinking about the run, something I had not allowed myself to think about at all for the last 2 days.
T2 – 7:01
Yeh that was a long time in transition. I so needed to go to the toilet and I sat there for ages while peeing, it just kept on going. Then it was kinda a slow stumble into the tent, put on the CEP socks, decide what to wear (foolishly I decided not to put on the t-shirt, my sunburn is telling me today how dumb that was). I headed up over the bridge, and surprisingly my legs felt good. wow, this might not be so bad… How wrong I was
Run – 42K : ??? (haven’t got the official time yet)
Ok I was planning on getting a rhythm and then getting into a good pace. Unfortnualty all I seemed to get on the run was a shuffle out of the legs. For most of the first lap I stuck to my plan, walk the aid station and the hills. There was a little bit at the end where I walked a little bit more (or I could prehaps call it a gentle incline, it was good enough to walk) As I was coming in to finish that first lap Felix (the guy who runs the “Challenge” brand) was just in front of me. All the marshalls etc were cheering him on, and they had his special needs ready when I arrived, but not mine… *grumble grumble*
I had a chelsea bun awaiting me at my special needs, and yummy yummy, I quite enjoyed myself with that, worked a treat 🙂 I had given up on my last lap, thinking I can just walk the rest of the way. I was done in. Shane caught me not long after the start of the 2nd lap, he was pretty much in the same way as myself. We did a bit of running occassionally, he eventaully left me behind as I just couldn’t keep running for long. I picked up a bit more and once I was on the outlet track, in the shade and the track even though rockier and more undulating was easier to run on.
I got to 10K to go and was just happy about that, I can do 10K’s easy. After that it was just a case of ticking of each K sign and working my way through in my walk/shuffle to the finish. I caught up to Felix again at Totare Tce, his knee was shot and Rebekah Keat’s had come out on her bike to help him around. She was very nice, and I almos got a lift on her aero bars and Felix on the back. Anyway I still had a bit of running in me so left them behind and was mostly down hill from there, I was going to run the entire way. With 2K to go I heard the announcer say it was 13:36. If I kept running maybe I could beat Raches time from last year. So I tried but there was a stretch before the finish I had to walk a bit then, it was into the finishing shoot.
It wasn’t necessarily prettiest of runs, actually it was probably the ugliest and I am very pissy at myself about the run, actually I was pissy at myself when I was walking, but I just couldn’t get into the run I wanted. It was a hot day and the run just turned excurating especially the top of the first lap, by the 2nd lap it had cooled down a little.
I have something to prove to myself with that damn run. When I will prove it, who knows 1 year from now or 10, will in be Wanaka, or somewhere else? I am not making any decisions yet.
But I am happy with my swim and bike. Did I got to hard on the bike? Did that lead to a worse run? Been thinking about that all night, even was thinking about it while I was out there walking. Conclusion, no I didn’t it was a damn hard bike anyway, I don’t think I could have taken it much easier. I never blew my HR up and the longer you are out there the harder it actually gets.
So total unofficial time I think 13:48. When I started this, I wanted to get under 14, somewhere along the way I got ideas of grandeur and it became 13. But I am quite happy to be under 14.