Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Melt Down

Well there are definitely highs and lows to everything; it sure seems like I hit my low during the month of June with training and racing. It all began when it came timefor ourannual family sailingtrip. When Iagreed to go sailing, I knew it wasn'tthe best timing.I figured it wouldn't be that big of a deal,I would just try out a reverse taper. What betterway could I spend an active recovery week than sailing with friends and family in the Caribbean; sailing St. Maartens, St. Barts, and Anguilla. When I got back to reality (Boulder) I would ramp training back up for a few days before I would shut it down two days out from the 5150 Philly Tri.

It all seemed to go as planned, until it didn't. We had an absolute blast! Nothing like spending day in and day out surrounded by water, sailing from island to island, snorkeling, and of course the occasional open water swim and island run. Let me tell you, those island runs were no joke. There were times I felt like I was either going to pass out from heat exhaustion or have to walk up one of many hills. The terrain was relentless. When it came to the open water swimming, that was a production in it of itself. There were times when I was swimming back and forth from the boat to the shore and back, several times; I think I got dizzy one time circling the boat; and of course, I can't fail to mention the times when my dad or brother would ride along side me in the dingy, warding off people, boats, and creatures. Not sure who would make it back to the sailboat first though. Every man for them self if a shark were to be seen. My brother might have even left me in the water while he b-lined it to the sailboat in the dingy. But sure was nice to have the support. There is no other trip like this one. Every year we have to go back, or at least find new territory to sail. I wouldn't have missed it for the world.

I finally make back to Boulder Sat. June 18th ready to rock out some solid training. Of course, I am still rocking so that was a bit of a challenge when it came to running on Sun. However, I was able to get in a few days of solid training and build the confidence I needed to have a good race at the Philly Triathlon that following Sun, June 26th. I make it to Philly without any hick-ups. As a matter of fact, the entire trip was a no brainer. I had a great home-stay; thanks Jen and Chris for making me feel at home. I couldn't have asked for better people. Friday rolls around, I go through my pre-race training, feeling ok but a little tired. Nothing to worry about, so I thought. By the time it was Friday night I was laid up in bed with a head cold, upper respiratory infection (which turned into bronchitis), and plugged ears. I had a lot running through my mind. I figured I was here in Philly, I might as well race. Well, that didn't happen either. A normal night before a race typically consists of little to no sleep; that is an under statement for the type of sleep I got that night. There was no way I could race; that morning I felt like a truck had run over me. Low and behold, I found out that night that everyone on the sailing trip had gotten sick earlier that week. One pesky bug!!!

Since I wasn't racing, I didn't want to turn the trip in to a complete waste. I somehow managed to have a little luck. Obviously it wasn't in the cards for me to race, but it was clear as day that
it was meant for me to watch Shane qualify for Kona at IM Cor d' alene. Everything fell into my lap. No change fee for flights, transportation to and from the airport was a no brainer, I was going to be able to surprise Shane, and I made it in time to hear the cannon go off. Perfect!!! Granted, I wasn't feeling too hot, but I still had a great time cheering. Now that's a way to turn something negative into positive. I'm hoping to do the same with all the time I had to take off of training to get healthy; there has got to be a positive outcome.

I make it back to Boulder with a Kona qualifier (congrats babe, you worked so hard for it). I was still feeling under the weather so I took a few more days off of training. You would think that 3-4 days of complete recovery would recharge my system; not the case. It took me another full week to begin to feel somewhat normal again. My daily activities were no problem. Training, well I felt like I was trying to breath through a brown bag every time I went for a swim-bike-or-run. With a week left until the Boulder Peak, I knew I had my work cut out for me but I needed to at least try and get points for Hyvee. I didn't want to leave it down to the last race of the series to qualify. That was a mistake! Boulder Peak was by far the worst performance I have ever had, when it came to triathlon. At least, that's the way I felt the entire time I was racing. I just didn't have anything to give. Not to mention the fact that racing at altitude made it even worse. I knew I was in trouble when I built lactatic after the first 500m of the swim. I thought I was coming around a bit after climbing Lee Hill, legs felt slightly alive (Side note: my specialized transition is a versatile bike; made climbing easy with tired, untrained legs). Then I get to the rollers on Nelson and 63rd (the last part of the ride); I had nothing but jello for legs and a racing heart beat. On to the run, or should I say shuffle. I am extremely grateful for Shane as well as all my friends and family that came out to support me;
sorry for such a poor performance. If it weren't for you all, I might have not slugged through it and finished. I have chalked it up to a learning experience. Lesson learned...3+ weeks of illness and little to no training is not the best formula for racing, no matter how bad you want to race.

I'm finally on an upward climb. I have had a few good solid days of training. My energy is back and I'm looking forward to the rest of the season. Next up, loveland half marathon tomorrow (Saturday), maybe Nautica NY triathlon (last race of the 5150 series), and Lake Steven's 70.3. It is time to up the ante and test my speed endurance.

I may have been knocked down, but I was never knocked out!!!