Road to Wisconsin…Part I
26 Aug 2011
As many of you know, I have moved (once again) in July back home to my original home in Green Bay, WI - there were a couple deciding factors in making this change, but the two biggest ones had to do with my husband deploying to Iraq and the instinctive family connection I craved shortly after my father's passing in March. Since July, I have NEVER once looked back and my focus in not only training, but in my daily life as a mother, daughter, wife and sister has never been so pronounced. You know that feeling you get when you just KNOW you are where you're supposed to be in your life? I'm there RIGHT now! I'm almost waiting for someone to pinch me!
At any rate, once arriving and getting situated in Wisconsin I raced in two 70.3 races - both were "training races" leading into my IM endeavors later in my season, but none the less, I wanted to perform well at both and see where my fitness was at the time. First off was Racine 70.3 - it was on one of the hottest and most humid racing days I ever experienced! Yes, my friends, it gets hot in Wisconsin…don't let the "Frozen Tundra" of Lambeau Field fool you! The day was an "ok" day for me with a 4th place finish. It gave me some perspective as to how I could perform on very tired legs as my coach and I didn't taper for the race at all…but, rather, "trained thru the race" - I reminded myself of what my ultimate journey was - and that wasn't until September!!!
Next on the schedule was Steelhead 70.3 in mid August…I drove to the lovely town of Benton Harbor, Michigan in which I was pleasantly surprised at the atmosphere and local area…very cute! Beautiful homes line the coast of Lake Michigan and the little shops make window shopping a must! The race ended up turning into a duathlon due to the 7 ft waves that crashed the am surf…so, a "time trial" start was arranged quickly and effectively by the race directors. It was a first for me, but a really cool experience! I was excited to race and race hard right from the start! What was cool about that race was we as pros had a 30 sec gap between each other…so, yes you were chasing, but also being chased! It was so much fun! You had to tell yourself all day, "Go! Go! Go!" Because you really had no idea how far ahead you were of "X", "Y" or "Z"! At the end of the day I put together a solid performance and took home 3rd place! I was very happy with my run split as I negative split the 13.1 course…very good confidence boost heading into IM Wisconsin!
So, here I am, only 2 weeks out of a major race…I feel like a race horse at the Kentucky Derby! I went to Madison last weekend and rode the course Sat and did the marathon course on Sunday…it was awesome! What a city! So many riders were out there testing the course on Saturday - it was really so special and fun…seriously, what other IM course allows you so much access to great country roads where hundreds of riders can get out on it beforehand? Not many! The city of Madison, Verona, Mt Horeb and Cross Plains really embrace IM and for the most part accommodate our nutty lifestyle commitment! (Doesn't hurt that we bring in a ton of money to their gas stations when we need to refuel on gatorade, water, bars and coke!)
Lastly, I can't not finish this blog entry without mentioning the wonderful reception I've received from several athletes in the Green Bay and Milwaukee areas. I was honored to put together an open water swim clinic for the Ozuakee Triathlon club in late July. What a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon! (see photos!)
Also, I've been blessed to meet a couple great training partners in Green Bay that are also on their journey to IM Wisconsin…Bill Roach, Marc Barbier and Jason Helgeson. These three gentlemen greeted me with open arms and have shown me some great routes and have reminded me (once again) what the core of triathlon is all about! Simply going out there…doing what you love and doing it to the best of your ability…so cool, so pure, so simple!
Well - that's about all for right now…thanks for taking the time to read a little about my journey and get ready for my "Wisconsin Part II" blog…so much more to come!