WOW, again time got the best of me and it’s already March 13. I just sat down on the plan and I’m officially on Spring Break! The last couple of weeks have definitely reminded me we are in fact approaching the official race season. Let me rewind real quick.
- The Disney Marathon was…MAGICAL. I don’t think I’ve seen a race atmosphere anything like this. These people were clearly here to have fun and I think that was pretty cool. They all had a CRAZY love for disney and they obviously had some sort of love for running. Even though at one point they had us running on the sand of a baseball course, it was still a good day. Even though it wasn’t exactly the time I was looking for- I crossed the finish line with a smile. Why? I felt stronger and more confident here than I did before Chicago. I’m so glad I raced it because we were able to focus on my run which I already can tell is benefiting me on my runs off the bike. The distance training was also awesome to have, especially leading into the next few months getting ready for my 70.3 and then Ironman Louisville in October.
- Immediately following the Disney Marathon I headed to the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs for a swim focused Paratriathlon Camp. I was at this same camp last year so it was nice being back to see where we improved and to see the areas that still need work specifically in the swim. It’s always nice being at the OTC because you have one thing to focus on…training. We had 6 athletes at the camp and 3 coaches so the ratio was literally PERFECT. We all were able to work one on one with the coaches at some points and we were able to push each other both in the pool && in yoga 🙂
3.Tritonman Triathlon in San Diego is a race I went to last year in San Diego and headed back to again this year. It’s a race that the TriCats all go to as well so it’s always a blast. If you were to ask me my top 3 favorite places to ride my bike… Fiesta Island in San Diego would be one of them. Just like last year, my Dad came out for this race to help me in transition. It’s always nice having him around BUT I think he gets the award for the weekend. Long Story Short; there was a bunch of mud right int the water by swim exit, not realizing it- my dad went down to pick me up to exit the water, his foot got stuck in the mud, so not only did I fall back in the water but he also went down with me- REASON #2542 he is the worlds greatest Dad. It’s nice to race in February to get back in racing gear after an offseason but its always nice to seeing everything you work on during the offseason come together at a race.
- 19 athletes from 11 different states who make up the Dare2tri Elite Team, each with a story of their own. Despite each of our stories we all have one thing in common- the love for the sport of triathlon, the determination to be the best we can be, and the drive to push one another to succeed in the sport. Since we are all from across the country and each of our race schedules vary, we don’t get many opportunities to all be in the same place at once. Last week, Dare2tri hosted their first ever Elite camp out in St. Charles. We had the opportunity to go through VO2 testing (which I was pumped about) as well as go through various swim, bike, and run workouts as a group. One of the greatest things about the sport is being able to learn from each other. There is no pamphlet that is given to you when you start the sport and since each of our bodies are so different, sometimes the best learning resource is each other. Whether it’s with equipment, body position, or something as simple as how to lift your handcycle into your car (which I finally mastered…4 years later)- it was so great to be able to pick each others minds. One moment, I paused (very quickly) during the weekend was when all of us were in the computrainer room. We were finishing up a workout on the bikes and we finished with each of us taking pulls on the bike. As we rotated around the room, all of us above threshold, we were still able to find that energy to push each other to the end. In races we are competing against each other but outside of the race’s we feed off each others energy & motivate each other everyday. I’ve said this before, but I’m so lucky to be surrounded by people who inspire me everyday. As I headed home from the camp, I had a smile on my face knowing that this is going to be one heck of a season for the Dare2tri Elite Team. To Keri, Melissa, Dan, Stacee, and everyone else at Dare2tri– Thanks for giving us not only the confidence to compete in triathlon but also thank you for giving us a team that we can learn so much more than just triathlon from. #oneinspiresmany
5. Whats next? Well… after camp I had to come back to Arizona for a 72 hours to take one last midterm (yes, don’t worry- school is still a thing). I’ve reached the point that the Southwest people at gate A4 in Tucson know my schedule for the rest of the year and we are best buds now. I’m on my way back in Chicago for a whole 10 days for break- seeing my favorite people, riding my bike at my favorite place, running along the one and only lakefront path, and getting ready for a busy two months ahead. A First Stop: Paratriathlon will be included at Collegiate Nationals for the FIRST TIME EVER. I’m super excited about this and I’m so thankful USAT was able to work with me to make this happen. The TriCats will head to South Carolina at the end of April to BEAR DOWN at Nationals.
Did I mention I get to celebrate my favorite holiday in the best city? Happy St. Patricks Day!
Hold the vision, trust the process