The Hometown Race
I had been looking forward to the Multisport Canada Recharge with Milk k-town tri all season and it did not disappoint. The weather was great, the volunteers were awesome and the support from friends and family at the race was amazing. I can safely say I have never before been chased by pac-man to start the run while his (her in this case) ghosts ran beside me shouting encouragement. I'm pretty sure this did actually happen and I wasn't just hallucinating after 2k of swimming and 56.2k of biking.
Oh wait, there it is... do you see it too?
This was my longest race to date, and the first one where I had to undergo some serious carb-loading. I went from trying to pack higher carb lunches to shamelessly eating muffins and poptarts to reach my goal for carbohydrate intake. In the end it was noticeably more food not all that difficult to do, and I made sure to not eat to the point where I was stuffed or bloated.
Because I live just north of Kingston I had no trouble getting to the course early and getting in a solid warm-up. The swim felt strong and the wavy lake Ontario waters didn't bother me at all because I am used to Kingston's antics by now having trained in these waters and on these roads quite frequently. Despite that, my swim ended being comparatively very slow to the leaders, which is a weakness I am going to have to work on this off-season.
I was a bit frazzled (do people still use that word? Frazzled?) in T1. I ran to the wrong side of the bike rack, snuck under the rack and put my helmet on backwards. After sufficiently embarrassing myself spending over a minute in T1 I thankfully decided to stop doing stupid things and head out on the bike. The first bit of the bike felt terrible. My legs were tight, energy-less and it felt like I couldn't produce any power. At that moment I remembered something I read on what I think was Cody Beals' blog (this is why reading blogs is a good thing!) It was that you don't have to feel good to race well. So I decided to test that and see what happens and just go for it. It ended in one of my best bike splits ever. I averaged a faster speed over the long course than I did at the short course last year.
The goal for the run was proper pacing. This can make a major difference at this distance. It ended up being one of my best paced and well executed runs in recent memory. My first km was exactly on pace, I adjusted the pace going up and down the hills and finished 10s/km faster than my goal.
I was extremely happy with my performance crossing the line in 4th knowing how many strong racers there were this year. Unfortunately 2 of the guys ahead of me missed a small portion of the bike course and ended up getting DQ'd. Although this bumped me up to 2nd, I would have rather gotten 4th in a more competitive race than 2nd in one where 2 of the strongest guys made a mistake and were DQ'd. But rules are rules.
Multisport Canada put on a fantastic event. It was well run and the volunteers were great. I am marking this event in my race calendar for many years to come.