February 10, 2013

Playing Catch-Up

Ever get so behind on something...?  Has it really been since July since my last post on here?  (thank you Facebook for keeping me in touch with family/friends on my whereabouts)  It's been a crazy couple months - here's a quick month by month summary:  

    I drove to Chicago and met up with Andrew Starykowicz and Jill Cwik (...now Starykowicz...see December).  While recovering from his Abu Dhabi injuries, Andrew humbly stepped into "home stay" mode.  I'm sure plenty of people were nervous seeing him on race morning :)  My race went fairly well after having raced just the weekend before in Muncie.  I was 2nd out of the water, maintained the #2 position throughout the bike, and finished in 7th after a squelching hot run.  It's been a while, but I remember feeling "flat" throughout the race... no giddy-up. 
Picture courtesy of Ali Engin

  • I got confirmation that I was 1 of 30 professional females worldwide to claim a coveted spot to compete at the 70.3 World Championships in Vegas!  GOAL MET!!  I was relieved, though somewhat surprised to secure a spot considering my recent placings.  Nevertheless, I was thrilled to be given the opportunity and began training. 

  • One of my favorite training trips over the years has been with a group to North Carolina... this year we headed to Tennessee.  5 days of riding mountains (including the infamous Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap), running trails, and swimming in lakes.  We started out camping, but after getting rained out, hearing park rangers search for a mysterious hiker, and one of our group members terribly miscalculating his daylight:run time ratio... we shacked up with Glen in the cabin we should've be in from day 1. 


The bike course...yes, mountains!  Love it
    Vegas baby!!  I joined 29 other female professionals (and thousands of age group athletes) racing one of the toughest 70.3 courses out there.  The temperature was over 100 degrees (no shortening the race distance like at Muncie) and the course takes you through mountains...not hills...I said mountains.  This is the type of bike course I love!!  This is the type of bike course people blow up on if they don't conserve early... and they did! 

    Speedfil drink system
    made my bike AERO!!
Swim: gun went off and I was side by side with Leanda Cave in the first pack until the first turn, then WHAM!!...she kicked me in the eye and I fell off the pack ever so slightly, but it was enough that I couldn't stick on the feet in front of me and I was on my own. 

Bike: I knew I could handle this course and was excited to race with the top professionals all together.  Several women took it out HARD and paid for it later.  I saw several top racers crack mid-way through or caught them at the end of the bike. 
Enjoyed the strip after :)

Run: I love everything about this venue...except the run profile.  You're either going uphill for 2 miles, or downhill for 2 miles.  Bleh!  I suffered the consequences of poor nutrition on the bike and eeked my way to the finish line after walking quite a few aid stations.  Electrolytes and salt tabs are important!!  Force them down even if you don't feel like it... lesson learned the hard way. 
The Nageotte support crew
Inside OSU stadium
My sister Crysten ran her 1st marathon last year.  This year she let me organize her training a bit and she raced #2.  She did amazing, taking 25 minutes off last year's time!!  I ran the last 15 miles with her (yes, I'm a bandit... but I never crossed the finish line and I brought my own nutrition).  I think she's ready for some serious training and a real goal: I see a Boston Qualifier in the near future :)

  • After Vegas I didn't feel like throwing in the towel on the 2012 season, though I had met my goal in qualifying for 70.3 World Championships.  I decided 8 weeks would be plenty of time to gear up for Ironman Florida.  I am familiar with the distance and know some friends competing... why not? 

  • After 8 weeks of long distance training I headed to Panama City for Ironman Florida.  I knew it would be a gamble, but the way I figured: all IM distance races are tough the last 6-10 miles.  This one would be no different... right?
Photo courtesy of
Ramon Serrano

    • Swim: the ocean was choppy and had a strong current.  I had a terrible time sighting the buoys on lap #1.  Lap #2 I just told myself to relax and finish the swim knowing it wasn't going to be stellar.  That was a first...
Bike: LOVED IT!  This was my first full distance as a professional and it was quite different.  In past IM races, I've witnessed large age group packs on the bike.  At Rev3 Cedar Point I only saw a couple dozen riders the entire bike.  After this race I had a friend challenge me saying I probably drafted.  No way buddy - there were officials all over the female pros and especially following Jessica Jacobs (previous IMFL champion).  I saw a motorcycle every 5-10 minutes, several riders around me got a penalty, but I managed a clean ride - one I was quite proud of!

Run: I felt relaxed, smooth, and ready to gut out a long run.  Everything was on target through mile 16.  Aaaannd then I faded.  It was all I could do to finish but I was determined!  I walked a handful of aid stations (1 with Jessica Jacobs who ended up having a worse day than I did) but finished only 3 minutes off my PR from 2 years ago.  Not too shabby.  I'll get you next time! 
Another great experience with TriBike Transport! 
Thank you! 

Congrats Andrew and Jill
Bob, Lisa, and I

Took a road trip with my coach Bob Duncan and his wife Lisa to Chicago to celebrate Andrew and Jill Starykowicz's wedding.  Wish you guys nothing but the best!  Thank you for inviting me to join in on the celebration

Whew...  at least I'm caught up to 2013.  Lots of changes this year... race season already underway... 




  1. When are you coming out to train in Colorado???

    1. So far work, training, and "extras" have been dictating my schedule - not a lot of wiggle room. BUT...if I happened to get a plane ticket to CO in the mail...I'm sure I could squeeze it in :)