I spent 3 weeks up at altitude in Font Romeu w/ about the best training group you could hope for. France, New Zealand, Switzerland, Australia, Belgium, Luxembourg, Scotland, and Hong Kong were all represented there. While everyone had different plans, we all swim, bike, run and thus were able to train quite a bit together. By far it was one of the hardest, most consistent blocks of training I have done. But it was also the most fun. Training in groups with great people just seems to make the miles tick away faster and keep the motivation high. If only l'autre amercains would get this.... Font is beautiful and challenging. As one would guess, when you live on the side of a mountain flat spots are few are far between.I got in quite a bit of volume and still managed a sprucing of intensity (not too much since it was my first time at altitude).
I came down from Font to race Tizzy WC. Coming down from Altitude can be a tricky thing. Sometimes things go brilliantly and sometimes they go pear-shaped. Everyone seems to be different in their responses to coming down. The 3 days leading up to the race, I felt awesome. It was really easy to breath and I felt good with extra rest and extra oxygen.
During the swim I felt a little sluggish, and had a little trouble getting out the first 300m. After that I moved up the field as best I could and thought I was right in the middle of the first pack. I felt great. It wad the easiest swim for me in while. And that turned out to be the problem. I was in the 2nd pack! I hopped on the bike and started chasing. We made up ground quickly and started to reel in the first group. Right as we were about to catch them, there was a crash in our group that took out half our pack. Ouch. We were like 10s down. It totally killed our paceline and motivation and we lost heaps of time. Never made that first pack. Got on the run and had nothing. I gave it a go, but was dead and having trouble breathing. I ran well for 2.5k and then went backwards...literally. I called it a day. I friggin hate dropping out...
Then it was back to the states to get in some more training and racing. I raced nationals two weeks later, missed a buoy and got DQ'd. I wont go into details, but race buoys shouldn't move!
So here I am in September looking back on my season. It has not been good. So the question is do I call it a year early, regroup, and come back firing for next year?? To be honest, this is what I was thinking. I was pretty disheartened after nationals. You should never make a decision right after a race. I took a few days to recoup, regroup, and rethink.
Since June, I have had some of the best, most consistent training I have ever had. While my races haven't shown it, the data is there. I am fit. I need to race. I want to race. I consulted some of the experts I know to try to figure out what I can improve on. I got some great ideas and have been implementing them in my training, and they seem to be paying off. I will get into those in another blog as that is a different topic. Training theories sounds like better off-season blogging material to me.....
So here I am in Fort Worth continuing to tick off the sessions. Things have been going great and I am excited for the "start" of my new season. I am racing 4 more times this year. Next weekend I will head to Pacific Grove in California. I love that race and will be looking to get on the podium (my best result there was 4th, so it is the only logical step). After PG I will return to Fort Worth and do a block of training before I head to Asia. I will race the ITU Indonesia Asian Cup, and the ITU Hong Kong Asian Cup in the middle of October on back-to-back weekends. My last race will be the ITU Hualtulco World Cup in South Texas (read: Mexico) on November 10th.
Looking forward to racing well! Here are some pics from my time in Font Romeu.....enjoy!
the swim squadstuffing my face with cola66 kilos in that pic baybe!contemplating life, triathlon, or maybe nothing...In Andorra @ 2400m...long climb up!got to go to Dirk's "place" on the beach for an afternoon
The gang out at l'ermitage