Boulder 70.3 Race Recap

Truth. I went into Boulder 70.3 with very low expectations.  Training in July did not go well for me and I spent most of the month frustrated, exhausted, unmotivated, and very distracted.  It was so bad that I actually stopped writing things in my training peaks for my coach to review because all I had were negative things to say.  A week before the race I had a mini melt down on training peaks that prompted a very good phone call with my coach regarding the month of July and how I was feeling.  Basically we both agreed that I was spreading myself way to thin, burning the candle at all ends and because of it was burning out and losing sight of myself as an athlete.  I could not have agreed more.  So I had a wonderful, albeit very emotional and semi meltdownish (my own made up word), chat with the husband about how I was feeling.  We both decided I needed to back off a bit on everything, it was a good reminder that I am human and I am not super woman; basically that no matter who you are there are times you have to realize your limits and I had hit mine.

So, with a renewed mind towards growing the athlete that I know I am and want to be I took the week before Boulder very simple. Keeping my schedule lighter and my responsibilities a bit lower as well.  I ended up sleeping A LOT the entire week.  That right there is how I know that I was exhausted I napped every single day and not just a short 20 minute cat nap but full on 45-60 minutes of sleeping (I NEVER NAP).

The lead up to race day was probably one of the least stressful and busy that I’ve ever had it.  Not really sure what changed about it or what was different but when Brandon and I got home after the race it was something we both commented on, how simple it seemed.  We got into Denver very early on Thursday and were in Boulder by noon, I had the time I needed to easily get checked in, shakeout run, get food, nap, and just hang out.  It was wonderfully simple.

Following along with the easy and stress free theme of the weekend race morning was pretty much a breeze.  We left much earlier than probably necessary in order to avoid any stress that could come with the traffic of getting into the resoviour.  I think that race coordinators handled the traffic better this year than they did the year before, for while the traffic was still really bad the race started on time and it didn’t look like anyone had to walk to the start :).

During setup I was able to chat with both my athletes, Mel and Val, who were also racing.  It was fun knowing they were going to be out on the course with me, and I am also very blessed to have raced with them in that they understood that I was racing as well and had my own race day structure.  After telling Mel that she just had to go fast I headed over to the swim start to squeeze my way into my Roka wetsuit and meet up with Val.

val

Swim

What an unbelievably beautiful day for a swim.  Lake water was a fabulous 70.3 degrees and I probably could have actually used my sleeveless wetsuit as I got a bit warm out there.  For the most part the swim was fairly uneventful minus the fact I straight sucked at sighting and ran into a life raft at one point, and found myself swimming the wrong direction multiple times.  I ended up swimming 150 yds more than one of my athletes who was racing and almost 200 yds more than is in 1.2 miles.  Honestly, I don’t know what my issue was but I sure had one.

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Swim time: 33 mins
Place out of the water: 9th in my age group

T1

Nothing super fantastic here, my baby feet did not like the ground running on so I was little slow during.  I’m such a baby about my feet.  The best part was that Brandon and David were standing right next to my bike during transition so I got to complain to them about my inability to swim straight 🙂

Bike

Oh man this was a fun bike.  It was a super fast course.  With only a couple hills and fairly short ones for the most part you were really able to carry a ton of speed throughout the entire course.  It was also super super spread out. I spent the majority of the race by myself, no one around me, and only coming up on people every once in a while.  This was good and bad; good in the sense that it really was my own race and that you didn’t have to worry about any drafting issues and bad that there were a couple of times I found myself getting a bit lazy.  Because there were some strong downhills and flats where you could push the speed without pushing the watts I would find myself getting a little lazy on the watts and just holding the speed without pushing.  Something I won’t be able to do at Kona and something that needs some work.  There is no excuse for being lazy out on the race course.

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Despite being a bit lazy on the watts I was totally on point with my nutrition, something that would seriously save me in the run later on, going through 2.5 of my custom formula Infinite Nutrition Mix and three bottles of water.  Knowing that being at altitude means you get dehydrated a lot faster I made every effort to avoid that.

Bike: 2:28
Place off the bike: 5th

Run

Holy hot as balls! Whew was that run hot.  With two loops around the reservoir there was no shade at all the sun was a bit brutal.  But as we all know running is my favorite 🙂  My main goal on the run was just to hang tough, I had been doing some runs in the brutal heat and was fairly confident I could hold steady even if was at a slightly slower pace that I would have liked.   So one foot in front of the other I went!

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With the heat each aid station was basically a god send and I consumed all the water I could at each one.  Focusing on keeping my body cool became the main thing I thought about.  Ellie Salthouse passed me headed out on her second lap sometime around mile 4ish for me and I tried to hang with her (or rather just stay as close behind her as I could) for a short amount of time just to see how long I could hang on her tail, so that was kind of fun and a good break from just trying to hang in there on my own.  She took off after an aid station that I slowed down to drink at and that was the last I saw of her 🙂

With a little over a mile to go I saw Brandon, he had biked out a ways on the run course to basically tell me to run faster which he did.  Seeing him was just the little push I needed in order to go just a little bit faster and bring it into the finish line.

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Run: 1:30
Place after run: 1st AG and 2nd Female Overall
Overall time: 4:39

As I went into this race with very low expectations honestly I was very surprised to look down at my watch and see the time that it was at (I don’t look at the overall time during races just how I’m doing for each segment) and just as surprised to learn that I was the 2nd female.  I really loved this race and after I got done all I could think about was I can see why people like the 140.6 Boulder course, plus who doesn’t love Colorado.

Despite the great outcome there wasn’t much time for celebration as Brandon and I had to catch a flight home that evening.  This is something I do not recommend doing it was pretty awful.  We ended up getting home just before 2:00 am which meant that we were up for just shy of 24 hours and while I got a little bit of sleep on the plane it was not solid sleep.  My feet were so swollen and uncomfortable!

Completing this race came at a good time for me due to the mental state I was in prior to it as it gave me the renewed strength and renewed sense of purpose going into the last build towards Kona.  With 9 weeks to go prior to Boulder I was feeling overwhelmed and like there was no way I was going to be able to hit the goals I had set for myself at Kona.  Now, while I’m not sure about the goals but I am sure about doing everything I can to reach them! So here we go, 9 weeks of hard work, BRING IT ON!!!!

As always thank you to everyone who continues to support me throughout this crazy journey:

My husband for always being there by my side, I can’t say enough out this man.

Our friend David for coming out to the race and biking all over the course with Brandon.  It kept it fun for him this time to have someone out there with him.

My coach, Heather, for always believing in me even when I don’t believe in myself.

Everyone who came out to support the race and volunteers who without them I would not have been able to keep myself cool and hydrated on the course, seriously so many thanks!!!!

My sponsors:
Infinit Nutrition for the best nutrition that is formulated exactly for me!
Irwin Wheels for the fastest wheels!! Now that I made sure the brakes weren’t rubbing I could just feel the power the wheels put out, they responded so well to my every pedal stroke.
Rudy Project for the most comfortable and safe helmets out there.  I just love my Wing57.
Stryve Biltong  for the amazing high protein snacks, they were a life saver for the entire journey.

I look forward to the next 9 weeks!

CHEERS!!!!

Kayla

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