I’m going to depart a bit from my normal discussion of cramping muscles and talk about a victory today!
2 weekends ago I raced in the Lake Stevens 70.3. It was my second time racing there, the first ending up in disaster. The first time there, I’d taken my bike on the plane and somehow my front derailler had gotten banged up during the trip. My practice ride didn’t show the problem, and somewhere in the first loop of a 2 loop bike course I could no longer shift my front ring. Thankfully it was at least in the small ring…Lake Stevens is HILLY.
But, the end result was a swollen knee from spinning like a madman and my “run” required quotes…since there wasn’t much running happening. I was horribly disappointed, but lived with it.
So, my preparation for this year’s race had me left with much higher expectations. I didn’t have the best pre-race prep, but this isn’t really a race report. This is about overcoming cramping.
The swim at Lake Stevens is a little unique… there is a buoy line that holds all the swim buoys in place, so you really don’t have to do much sighting. The water temperature was great, and I got through the swim without a single cramp issue! Off to a great start!
Then I had to take my wetsuit off. I swear it felt like it took an eternity. I couldn’t get it off and actually had my quad kinda cramp while struggling with it. In my head I was thinking “really, removing the wetsuit. Come… ON!!”. haha.
But when I got on my bike, all was fine. I didn’t have a spectacular bike ride, but it was still pretty good. And about 10minutes shorter than the last time here. The course changed sometime over the last several years, and now it is much, much harder. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise…this course is legit. There wasn’t a flat spot on the entire ride.
And then…the run. This is where those cramp problems tend to pop up and cause serious problems. I’m happy to say that I not only avoided cramping, I absolutely nailed this run! I don’t think I could have done any better. Not one single twinge of a cramp, and I even negative split the run!
The best part? A distance PR and my first sub-5 hour half ironman. What a day!! No cramps, even with a wetsuit removal scare, and a hard effort all the way. I’m so happy, and would be remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to e21.
I’m writing on the e21 site, so you know I’m associated with the product, but that does not discount my feelings. e21 helped bring me home on my best half ironman race ever. I took 2 prior to the swim, 4 on the bike, and 4 on the run. I know, that’s a lot. But I did NOT cramp!!!
Next time I’ll go back to a more historical perspective, but I had to let you know about this success.
Until next time…