So OVERALL I was the series winner:
At least, that’s the 1st thing I’ll tell people if they ask how I got on in the 3rd round of Monikie on Sunday.
After all, I don’t really need to tell people that my undefeated streak since starting multi-sport races is officially over, do I?
This pretty much sums up yesterday’s race:
It just wasn’t my day. At the end, a lot of people asked if I was the “girl who had the mechanical”, as opposed to the “series champ”. Yup. My chain came off. Not once, not twice, but on THREE separate occasions! Why does this always happen to me?! My bike hates me (or I hate my bike).
Would I have won had my chain not come off multiple times? I’m not sure. I’d like to say yes, but that means nothing. No point in dwelling and wondering “what if”; time to stay positive and move on to the next race!
To recap, I woke up early feeling great. I had time for a long thorough warm up, set up everything perfectly in a good spot in transition, fuelled with my usual foods (apart from the addition of “Race Day Boost” – more on that later) and had not been out the night before (more than I can say for some other races).
But, when the gun went off, I had nothing. Nada. Zip. Zero. Oh, apart from an extraordinarily high heart rate. It shot up within seconds! I just tried to tell myself to relax (although I am pretty sure I was relaxed?) and just stick with the chasing group of guys. Around 3.5km passed and I was still in the lead, when suddenly I heard FEMALE panting. This was not good. A GIRL was about to overtake me. And she did. I didn’t push to go with her, because I thought I had a while to go and I seem to have pretty good cycle splits compared with the other girls. and tend to produce decent brick run splits off the bike. It wasn’t by much, because it was in the final couple hundred metres, but it was still a loss for me.
Trail Run 1 time: 15.55 – 2nd female, 15th overall (last time I was 11th overall so boooo to me)
Little did I know, I actually beat her out of T1, but was trying to spot her during the start of the cycle. I was in the lead but thought I had been truly and utterly “chicked”. At this point, my mental strength vanished. In fact, a girl passed me about 2 miles in on the cycle (not the same one). This exact point is where I saw Kylie Babez (he CYCLED from Stonehaven to Monikie….awesome! I wish he’d told me I was only being overtaken for 2nd place, then maybe I wouldn’t have shaken my head so much at him!) Lesson to be learned: race your own race. I lost hope because I thought the girl who beat me by 9 seconds on the run had shot off like a rocket in the cycle, but actually I had been the rocket in transition. Had I not lost hope, maybe no girls would have overtaken me (until the chain disaster of course!).
I got my mojo back and stayed with her, only to overtake her again about 2 miles later.
This did not last long. There was a BIG hill on the way back to Monikie that I had to change into the small ring for (I am using new wheels and there are less gears (is that right?) or something, so I had to move rings). At the top of the hill, back on flat road, I went to change back into the big ring and my chain came off. I spend 3 minutes trying to put it back on, but quite a few people passed me (a few were lovely though and asked if I needed help!).
I finally got it, clipped in, cycled about 20m, and it came off again. This time didn’t take as long to put on, but the hail stones started and I was drenched and freezing (it was warm with little wind at the start so I was in shorts, and took my gloves off after the run. Bad move, Debs, because now your hands are COVERED in oil).
Now, it was beast mode time! I was angry, cold, and just wanted to catch as many people as I could and then hopefully get the fastest girl split on the 2nd run so that all was not lost. I started picking people off (think I got about half a dozen or so, including a few more girls that passed me while my chain situation was happening).
Official Cycle time: 43.48 – 4th female (wow how did I manage that?!), 35th overall (haha watch out Wiggins)
Garmin Cycle time (it was on auto-pause): 40.56
Time taken fixing chain malfunction: 2.52 (grrrrrr)
T2 came so quickly after that, and I just wanted to get as close to the leading girls again as I could so I could still get the overall winner prize. I passed a girl on the run, and quite a few guys, so although I was nowhere near on running form,I gained some confidence from picking people off. Oh yeah, and I threw up during the 2nd run too, but that was the least of my worries.
Again, there are more than 2 people in this race, but it is amazing how spread out the field gets in these races!
In the last mile, I just pushed as hard as I could and when I crossed the line, I wasn’t mad anymore (makes a change!). It was actually an awesome challenge to be chasing as opposed to being chased; I just hope it doesn’t happen again! I was only frustrated because my winning streak was over 😦
Trail Run 2 time (same as 1 but in reverse): 16.30 – 1st female (finally!), 9th overall (I was 6th overall last time, never mind!)
Total time: 1.17.29 – 3rd female 😦 , 24th overall
I did a cool down with Kyle (his injury is getting better!! Woohooo!) and he said exactly what I needed to hear! It is better for these faults to happen at smaller races than at big championships, and the way you handle these challenges only makes you stronger! I was happy I powered on as opposed to quitting, and hopefully I’ll feel better for the next race!
After feeding back to Scott after the race, turns out I wasn’t meant to take the Race Day Boost that morning (you load on it, then stop taking it the day before…my argument was their deceptive title!) and because it was my 1st time using it, my body probably rejected it (hence the elevated heart rate and puking in the 2nd run!) Trial and error I guess!
We celebrated with the BEST tapas I have had in this country, and a VERY windy walk around Broughty Ferry!