Monday, September 9, 2013

Challenge Penticton

The Challenge

It's been a while since my last post.  Time is slipping away quickly.  I can't believe Tempe is really just around the corner.  Yikes!!!!  Since my last post I injured myself.  Tried to keep an 80 pound  TV stand from toppling over by catching it with my right arm.  It sprained (or tore) the inside of the elbow area.  It was very painful and 2 weeks before Challenge Penticton.  NOT GOOD!!!!  I had to stop swimming up until just a couple of days before we left for Canada.  I was very nervous as I was really looking forward to getting some swims in before my first IM distance swim debut and nailing a good pace.  I was a bit depressed for a few days, but decided to suck it up and not worry about it.  I was still going to do the relay as I wasn't going to let my teammates down.  I knew I could do the distance, (have been swimming 6-8 miles/week) just wasn't going to set any speed records.  But that is okay.

Our trip up was great.  It was a nice drive with a pit stop along the way to celebrate David's Birthday by having my Manufacturing Team sing to him over the phone using Facetime while he was wearing a Birthday hat while at a Truck Stop.  I am sure that must have been entertaining for the truck drivers.  It was hilarious and I think we embarrassed him a little too.  Excellent!!!!!!

Challenge Penticton was a lot of fun.  We managed to run into 6 Time Ironman World Champion Mark Allen while grabbing a bite at a local food cart.  To be in the presence of such greatness! Words can't begin to describe what I was feeling at that moment.  I was in Triathlon heaven!

David and I with Mark Allen
 Another bright spot was finally being able to meet Chris McCormack (a.k.a. Macca) in the Expo tent.  I was also very fortunate to have him sign a copy of his book "I'm Here To Win".  He is such a great inspiration for me and another of the true great ones.  He is a great Ambassador for the Challenge Family.

David and I with "Macca"
Being in the relay and doing the swim leg, I was also lucky enough to still be in the transition area when Macca and Jeff Symonds came through number 1 and 2 respectively.

Macca with Jeff Symonds right behind in T1
The Swim

So, there was a little storm that blew in the night before the event which prevented all of the swim buoys from being put out.  This made it a bit difficult for sighting.  Also, there was a bit of a wind still blowing in the morning causing some small waves.  Of course they felt like monster waves when I hit the water.  I found a nice spot in my wave and set out when the horn blew.  I was doing fine heading out to the first turn with minimal issues.  I sighted as much as I could picking out a house on the opposite shore and swam towards it. My arm was feeling pretty good.  I made it to turn 1 and headed for turn 2.  Not much of an issue there. The water was still a bit rough, but I have swam in worse weather conditions at Cathedral Park during our Thursday night open water swims., so it wasn't too bad.  It was at about the 75% spot on the last leg when I my shoulder started feeling a  little painful.  I figured it was probably because I might have been overcompensating for my elbow and not holding true to form.  I also started to feel like I was running out of gas.  I did a little breaststroke for a couple of minutes then continued on.  I had to do this 2 more times before the final stretch into the beach and the end of the swim.

My time was a bit later than I had hoped for, but well within the time limit, so I was happy.  I looked later and found that I had actually swam close to 2.7 miles instead of the 2.4 for the course.  I was happy to see (once I exported my Garmin data) that all this didn't start happening until about the 2.3 mile mark.  I felt like  I was where I should be in my training, at least close.

One big mistake I made however, was how I approached my nutrition for this event.  This event was supposed to be a test to see where I was in my swim training, test out my nutrition plan in an event, and actually do the distance in an event situation.  I did everything except stick to my nutrition plan.  I treated this as a long workout, instead of a full event.  So I didn't get up early and eat, tapering off until the just before the horn sounds.  Instead I got up at a decent time, had my morning cup of coffee a couple of pieces of boiled potato and a Powerbar. I also drank some water, but that was it.  So it was no wonder I felt like I was running out of gas towards the end.  I should have stuck to my plan as I would have felt like I could have hopped on my bike and done the 112 miles.  Because I didn't follow my plan, I felt beat when I was done with the swim.  Within an hour I felt a lot better and more like I could have headed out on the bike.  So I at least learned something, "The Hard Way".  Won't make that mistake again.

My path on the Penticton Swim Course 
The Team

The team did a great job.  I got what I needed out of the swim. David nailed the bike leg with a great time. He managed to make up the time I lost on my swim prediction and then some.  Ami had an Awesome first ever Marathon.

Just under 12 hours later, we cross the line together.  Sweet!!!!

Ami at the 36 Km mark.  She looks way too happy, what's up with that??

Challenge Penticton was a BLAST!!!!  We really enjoyed ourselves on the road to and fro.  But one of the best moments was after we crossed the finish line and were on our way back to the Van, we stopped at an excellent little Ice Cream Shop, Ogo's. Where we celebrated our success with 2 scoops in a Waffle Cone. Doesn't get any better than that.

Ogo's Ice Cream Shop.  Delicious!!  Sharon, the owner, loaded me up on Smarties too!!!

Team Vernier is thinking about doing this again next year...... We'll see..........  Maybe this time, we'll draw straws the night before to see who does what, Swim, Bike or Run.  Now wouldn't that be a blast!!!!

Team Vernier.  The morning of the race.


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