Skip to main content

Girls Best Friend Olympic Distance: Race Report

Girls Best Friend is an all female 3 Disciplines Racing event located in Vicksburg, MI.  Since this is 2:30 hours from home,  I got a room in Kalamazoo.  Mark booked me a room with his points at a Marriott - much nicer than the rooms I have stayed in at other races this season!  I worked packet pick-up on Friday afternoon.  I always love talking to the other athletes.  It was a little slow, but was able to help a few athletes that would be doing their first tri :-)  I love this sport!

After a great night of sleep, I got out the door at 6:30. I barely caught the sunrise.  If you know me (or have been reading my blog), you know that the sunrise on race morning is important to me.



Before the race I set my goals.  I wanted to make sure I was racing myself and nobody else.  After reflecting on Nationals, I knew that I wanted to race my race.  I knew I wanted to PR, so I set my 3 goals accordingly.  My previous PR was 2:55:57, so rockstar goal = 2:50, super happy = PR, better do = 3:00.  To be fair, I should have knocked 10 minutes off of each of these goals as the swim at Lumberman (where I had my last PR) was 1500m and this one was only 1000m.  With my goals set, I was ready to rock.

Swim - 1000 m - 19:34 -  4/33 overall - I felt good in the water.  The pace of this swim was 1.92 miles/hour which is almost exactly the same as my pace for Lumberman.  I could see that I was the fifth swimmer which was very motivating.  One of the swimmers in front of my must have been racing the Aquabike.  The lake had a ton of weeds, but was very warm!

Bike 40 km - 1:09:09 - 21.5 mph 2/33 overall - This bike course was fairly flat, so I was able to work the big gear the whole 40k.  I passed one cyclist right out of the park, but then did not see another cyclist until the turn around, when I realized I was in 3rd place!!  Talk about motivating.  I could see the 2nd place rider in front of me, so I turned it up a bit for the second lap.  I did finally take her, but was passed once as well.  I came in from the bike in 3rd place... while I was really hoping to break into the overall top 3 (finally), I was looking at my watch thinking something was wrong.  There was no way I was going into the run at 1:30 into the race!!  My watch must be broken.  My pace at Lumberman was 18.7 (course had a few killer hills), so this is where I made up a ton of time over my PR!!

Run - 6 miles - 51:39 - 8:37 min/mi - 11/33 overall - I have been training a lot for the run since I have both a half and a full marathon planned for this fall.  This training has led to some pretty ugly blisters on my big toes.  This was a trail run, which always makes me feel my blisters even more.  Other than the blisters, I felt strong on the run.  I knew I was still in 3rd place, which was VERY motivating.  Also, I was aware that my muscles were feeling good and my breathing was under control.  I was passed with 2 miles left.  It was hard to watch overall awards slip out of reach, but I looked at my watch and knew I was killing my goals (or it was broken, which was still a possibility in my mind.)  My pace at Lumberman was 9:21, guess that training is paying off :-)

My transitions still aren't great...  T1 = 2:11 and T2 = 1:19.  30 seconds faster than Lumberman total.

Results = 2:23:50 - 1st Age Group (35-39), 4/33 overall  This is a PR!!  Previous Olympic Distance PR was at Lumberman (2:55:57)  Even if I subtract 10 minutes for the reduced swim distance, I KILLED my previous PR and my goals.  I had so much fun at this event :-)

Reflection: 2 hours and 23 minutes is a lot of time to think.  During the bike and run, this is what I thought about: 5 years ago I could not run a 5k without walking.  I "ran" a 12 min mile.  2 years ago I started doing triathlons.  I competed in the Athena division and placed at a couple of events.  Last year, I was sidelined for most of the season from a motorcycle accident, but did manage to take first at Michigan Championships in the Athena division.

This year...  I called it at the beginning of the year.  I said 2014 would be my year :-) I have lost almost 40 lbs (no more Athena for me.)  I have podiumed in my age group in all but two races.  I qualified for olympic nationals.  I PR'd my 5k at a 23:05.  As I watched overall podium slip away at mile 4 of the run, this is what I thought of.  I have come so far.  AND, I have many years to break into overall awards.  This race was about remembering why I love this sport, this race I raced MY RACE.

No matter where you are in your journey - I want everyone to know, YOU GOT THIS.  If I can make these types of improvements, anyone can!  It has taken a lot of hard work in these 5 years.  I have read everything that I can find about running and training.  I have had some significant setbacks, but you get up and do your best.   Find what you love and "just do it."  I feel so fortunate that I have found triathlon :-)  I really do love this sport!!


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

IM70.3 Puerto Rico Race Report

 " Why did you choose this race?"  Before we could talk about race and nutrition plans, Coach Sami asked me that question.  I 100% chose it for the destination and the vacation Mark and I would have after the race in San Juan.  What a great perspective to tuck away for race day! Mark and I got to San Juan on Thursday afternoon and checked into our VRBO on Condado beach.  I chose this location because of the view... and its proximity to swim start.  It was a bit of a hike to get to the athlete's village and transition, but still doable which made everything easier than trying to deal with the traffic in San Juan!   Friday and Saturday, I got checked-in.  Rode my bike a couple of times on the super SAFE green paths found near transition.  I swam with several other athletes and ran in the middle of the day to TRY to acclimate a little to the heat and humidity.  I met tons of Team Zoot and Ironman Foundation Teammates.  I stuck to my nutrition plan with pasta on Friday and Wa

Sponsor-A-Mile: 70.3 World Championships in St. George, Utah

  It is almost time for the BIG ONE!  The race that I have been fundraising for and working towards since November of last year: the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships in St. George, Utah!  As an Ironman Foundation Ambassador, all of my Ironman brand races have me RACING FOR MORE, but this one is the pinnacle.  I am proud to be representing IMF and all of the good that can come from their initiatives.  With that in mind, I am asking you to sponsor a mile during this race.   For each of my IRONMAN races this year, I have taken your inspiration and printed it on tattoo paper to put on my arms and legs so that I can see it while I am riding and running.  When the going gets tough, these notes remind me that I am doing the race for more than myself!   Will you consider sponsoring a mile to help MAKE AN IMPACT and leave a quote or advice to inspire me during 70.3 St. George on October 28, 2022? Here is how: 1.  Choose the mile(s) you'd like to sponsor below.   *link to this spreadsheet

Friday Fundraising Update: Weeks 22-27

  Week 22-27 Update: IM70.3 Virginia's Blue Ridge Sponsor-A-Mile : $25 Top In Topsail: Memorial Day Raffle : $1421 T-Shirt Sales: $12 Semper Sparkle Shop Shopping Fundraiser: $84 Online Donations : $307 Overall Total: $15,735 Fundraising Events (mark your calendars): Sponsor-A-Mile for IM70.3 Virginia's Blue Ridge ENDS JUNE 1ST! Top in Topsail: Memorial Day Raffle - ENDS MAY 29TH June Shopping Fundraiser - Best Friends Boutique with Lisa Niederberger.  Join the fb group to stay in the loop. 25% of each purchase is donated. T-Shirt Sales - Ongoing - https://www.bonfire.com/store/this-girls-got-goals/ How you can help: Participate in the events above and invite your friends to participate, too! Donate Funds: https://ironmanfoundation.donordrive.com/participant/Erin-Byrge I’m asking for $1 per mile for those who are able, that’s $70.3. However, there is no amount too big or small. All amounts are sacrificing something else in your life and for that, I am so grateful! Plea