Mont Tremblant 70.3, Vineman 70.3: the not so good, the bad and the ugly

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Posted by: Heather Leiggi 8/19/2016 3:33 PM
Ok...I've procrastinated this blog long enough. Somehow it always seems easier to write race reports after good races. Ha! To say I am disappointed after these past 2 races is an huge understatement. It was, quite literally, some of the worst racing of my career. Not only that, but after a very positive start to my season, I had very high expectations going into Mont Tremblant 70.3. While the overall places at my first 2 races were not as high as I would've like, I was pleased with how my splits looked and I was looking forward to building off of those races. My initial recovery after IMTX seemed to have gone well. I was actually pretty excited with how quickly I felt like I had recovered. After some time off post-race, training was feeling really good. As I got closer to Mont Tremblant 70.3 however, things started to feel off. It was nothing I could put my finger on specifically but sessions just didn't seem as smooth. Paces and watts were taking more effort to hit. I was feeling kind of sluggish in the water. As it got closer to race day, my worries got worse as well. My anxiety levels/concerns/fears/worries always multiply the closer it gets to race day though so I figured I just needed to do my best not focus on all those thoughts. Plus, I really thought the added rest during my taper would solve the problems. At least that's what I was counting on. My first goal for MT70.3 was to have a successful swim. With the scars of IMTX still at the forefront of my mind, I was determined not to mess it up. I went out as hard as I could and did everything in my power to get feet. I managed to do this and held on for dear life. I made it about halfway through the swim before I lost contact, but I continued chasing hard. After the swim, the rest of the race was pretty much a bust. I felt terrible on the bike. I wasn't coming anywhere close to hitting my goal watts. The whole bike was just me suffering and fighting for some pathetic power numbers. I came very close to DNF'ing. It's no fun to suffer like that, frustrating to be under performing for no apparent reason, and while during the race it's always important to focus on the execution and not the outcome, at the end of the day, I was there to podium and that was becoming pretty unlikely. Still though, nothing specifically was wrong with me and so I trudged on, hoping that perhaps, by some miracle, I would end up feeling great on the run and salvage something from this race. In the end, the run ended up being much of the same as the bike and I ended up 10th pro with one of my slowest 70.3 times in quite a while. To make matters worse, I already had plans to head out to Vineman 70.3 (which was 2 weeks after MT 70.3) which left me with little time to turn things around. While I was hoped this was just a fluke and one of those bad days, deep down inside I knew it was more than that. I most like would've bailed on Vineman but my trip was already booked, I had a visit to GU Labs planned with I was super excited for, and my husband was absolutely dying for a Sonoma County vacation. Nothing really needs to be said about the race. As expected it was pretty much on par with MT70.3. But, the trip out was not a complete waste of time. The visit to GU labs was fun. I met the GU gang, got a tour of the facility, watched gels being made, and learned all about future plans. GU has been my longest and one of my best sponsors throughout my career and I can't believe it has taken me this long to visit. After the GU tour, I headed over to a local running store for a meet and greet with local triathletes. I love meeting other athletes and sharing stories and tips. Then it was off to Sonoma County with the hubby to drown my sorrows with lots of amazing wine and food. It was nice to be able to distance myself from the races for a few days, take some apparently much needed downtime and regroup before heading home. I had a long heart to heart with my coach. We came with a new plan of attack, tweaked some things with my training and diet and hopefully I am back on track. We will see. I am now 3 weeks out from my next race, IM Wisconsin, so all my fingers and toes are crossed. Live, learn and move on.

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