With the Tri Race Season at end and my race season a wreck after breaking my toe I looked at what I could do. With recently completing the final sprint race of the season and an Olympic Distance Tri being the final race in Melbourne I thought ok, I missed St Kilda’s OD, let’s do this one. I called the coaches to see if I could get a discount code and luck for me they managed to arrange a free race entry, score! Friday before the race our office was moving offices. So I worked both Friday and Saturday to help move our office, lots of manual work. During the Saturday afternoon I headed down to Mordy and collected both my race kit and Ellie’s. Ellie was completing the Sprint distance after coming first in the mini in the previous race. After finishing work Ellie and I headed out for a pasta dinner and I gave her race kit to her.
Sunday morning I picked up Ellie and we headed down to Mordy. After parking and grabbing our gear we headed down to the transition area and headed in to rack our bikes. After setting up my bike and gear I headed over to see how Ellie was going. After we finished our setups we headed over to the team tent to drop off our transition bags. Needed a bathroom before the race I headed over to the public toilets and waited in line while Ellie went for a coffee. However only 500m away was another public toilet. I was hoping no-one knew about this one and lucky for me it was not in use. After a quick use of the facilities I headed back to the tent and started to change into my wetsuit and headed down to the beach. I bumped into Jess from Casey Tri Club, Jess just completed or tried to finish IM Melbourne but after a crash on the bike she didn’t complete the run. She wished me good luck and I headed down for a warm up swim, the water was chilly but not cold, I did my warm up swim and lined up with the rest in my age group.
|Swim Start Warm up - how clear is the water|
The horn sounded and off we went the bay was flat and the swim felt fast and I felt strong. Anna, my swim coach, prep’d me well I followed her plan for my swim and felt great at the end of the 1500m. The water was flat and clear, you could see the bottom most of the way along with a few jellyfish. I ran up the beach into transition got my wetsuit off, aero helmet on and I grabbed my bike. As I headed out and started to ride up towards Sandringham I started to think I’ll be doing 2/3 of the Challenge MelbourneBike course twice. In my mind it set in I need to learn every bump, crack, etc before the race next February. I felt fast and strong on the bike as I approached Royal Ave and turn around I saw my target another rider in front. After the turn back into aero and I pushed hard, I passed the rider as we hit Black Rock and powered up the hill towards Ricketts Point. These rolling hills I know and I have hated and loved them, today was love.
|Bike Turn Around - Photo by CCTS Tri Club|
At Mentone It’s a clear almost straight piece of road towards Mordy. Just short of transition you could see the turn point, as I approached I could hear people calling out my name. I had to be careful to stay right on the turn as other athletes who started in later waves / races where coming through on the left. I got back into aero and powered through the second lap. The 2nd lap felt better than the 1st, I was having a great race and loving it; as we came back to Mordy for the 2nd time I dismounted the bike and ran into transition. I re-racked my bike off with the helmet on with my shoes grabbed my visor and out on the run we went. My legs hurt badly, they felt heavy and tied, I started to ask did I push too much on the bike, was my legs still lacking KM’s after the broken toe. As I headed out along beach road my pace was not great but I told myself I can do this. As we moved from the road to beach path I started to cramp up. I stopped stretched and carried on, at the end of the beach path was a hill switch back path up to the road, I tried to run, jog up it in the end I walked up part of it. At the top was a water station which I grabbed water and then headed down towards the turn. At the turn I headed back at the water station I grabbed some water and kept on pushing until we came back down the path. I legs were cramping and hating me, I had to stop at least 3 times. When I was stretching who should pass me on the short course, but Ellie I told her to keep going; I kept going and crossed the line. Cramps didn’t feel great in my legs, I grabbed a few bottles of water and headed over to the tent. I sat on the ground in pain cramp and stretching out. So 2/3’s of the race where great so what went wrong with the run. Firstly of the office most likely over loaded the legs, secondly I think my legs are not at race pace after the broken toe. Lots of work ahead in the winter.
My final time was 2 hours 49 mins and 58 secs, just 2mins off a PB.