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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Nationals- A bad day at the office.

I am a little slow updating my blog on my races, but when you have 3 races all around the US on back to back to back weekends and you work a full time job, sometimes there is just not enough time for everything.

The Nickel City triathlon was a couple weeks ago in Buffalo, NY. The first of 3 races back to back to back (as I am sure you figured out from reading the first paragraph). This race served as the US Elite Nationals and would be my first nationals at the Elite Level. Leading up to the race I felt alright in my training. Nothing out of the ordinary. I was looking forward to the race.

I arrived on Thursday night and I was staying with the Herskind family. They have a beautiful 100 year old house and staying at the same house were James Bales and Derek Oskutis. What made this interesting is that by chance we all had military connections. James is an Orthopidic Surgeon for the Air Force, Derek is an office in the Navy with EOD, Mark (the father of the Herskind family) is a former Green Beret, and myself, I work with the Navy as a Civilian Contractor. It was a good fit as we had plenty of stories to tell.

On Friday, the day before the race, I went through the usual warm ups and I did them with Derek and James, but I was feeling tire, not quite right. I figured maybe it was just the travel and with a good night rest, I would feel better. The race was not till 2 the next day so there is plenty of time to sleep in. We hit up the athletes meeting and then had a delicious dinner with the Herkinds.

They day of the race I was still feeling tired. Not sure what it was. I figured maybe it was just nerves. We started the swim and I did not feel better. I was lucky I was with a group of swimmers otherwise I might have been in a lot of trouble. I tucked in and drafted off of them, hoping I would feel better on the bike. It did not happen. I was feeling exhausted and spent. It wasn't a feeling of not being able to hold the pace, it was a feeling of pure exhaustion. I got in the pack, did some pulls on the bike (where I am in the front and everyone drafts off me. In draft legal races you work together on the bike), got some fluids in, took a gel, all hoping to feel better, but it never happened. I was simply spent. After two laps of 8, I just pulled out from the bike and stopped, my day was done. My heart was racing and it took several minutes for it to get down. Usually after 1 minute my HR drops, but this was taking 3-5. Something was wrong and I did not know what it was and still don't. I was disappointed and this was not a way I wanted to start off 3 consecutive races. Talking to James after the race he told me "A bad race is better then any day at the office" and I have to agree. I am doing what I like and there will be bad days out there. I just need to learn from them, adjust, work hard and smart for my next opportunity. I will update the other two races in a couple of days.

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