It’s been just over a week since I raced in Oceanside, and thought I would give a little update on the last block and the event.
After a couple of months in Tucson, I returned to Boulder with my sights set on buying a home. It’s been a big goal of mine for the last year or more, as moving on what feels like a tri-annual basis has become a bit maddening. Don’t get me wrong: I love the freedom to move about and be where I feel I need to be to pursue my triathlon ambitions, but living out of boxes gets old. So, deciding that Boulder holds the keys to my future in sport, I started the process of trying to find and then purchase a home in one of the crazier markets outside of New York City or California. High prices, extremely limited inventory, and scores of heavy-hitters ready to pull the trigger on anything that pops up! I got pretty lucky with my search, being turned onto a relatively “secret” listing through my agent, and then the dance began. After doing all my research, jumping through the hoops, and sacrificing my first born, I was under contract. And after fifteen or so trips to the lender’s office to sign this paper or bring this check stub, I was returning home on Monday after my race in Oceanside to close. BOOM! Homeowner status. Can’t wait to start the next chapter with a little more solid footing. That’s the good news…
And the race. Well, it was a shocker. I really pride myself on being super consistent, and that went out the window in Oceanside. Sure, things were different this year. I didn’t find myself staying in the consistent good weather of Tucson, or building with big miles for an early-season Ironman, but I had a good month of training in Boulder despite some winter weather. I knew the run and swim were solid, and that the bike would be the question mark, but not to that extent. After a strong swim where I came off the lead group just over half way, but still within a minute, I fumbled around in T1 like a drunken sailor, and then got dropped like a bad habit on the opening miles of the bike. I watched eventual contenders like Jesse Thomas and Ronnie Schildknecht roll on by and out of sight, and I simply did not have the top end power to bridge. Initially, I was riding okay, but not well enough, and felt like I only slowed over the course. Rolling into T2, I felt a bit like hanging my head in shame and hiding from the crowds, but I practiced what I preach, or at least what Kanye preaches: It’s harder to give up than to try. So I threw on the Zoot Kiawe’s and took to trying. It wasn’t easy to keep the head in the game with the splits I was hearing, but I still feel like I put together a solid run. I can see the improvements that I have focused energy on over the winter, and know that the year is long. It’s hard to be so far out of a race, but I have processed it and moved on.
So, a crazy month, but a good one. It feels like spring (finally!), and I am back into a solid week already, preparing for a return to New Orleans, and then the big dog in St. George. After that, it will be all systems go, as I target my 4th Ironman title at the beautiful and classic Ironman Coeur d’Alene in June. As much as they’d love to see me win every race, they still cheered me and showed great support helping me get to the line in Oceanside, and I have to say a tremendous thank you to all my sponsors: Zoot Sports, Specialized, Volkswagen, Clif Bar, Tender Belly, Zipp/SRAM, Sportpump, Infinite Monkey Theorem Wines, Fuelbelt, and Oakley. It was especially nice to have Specialized on hand, showing off the new Sitero saddle that I have helped develop and cheering for me despite a mediocre ride. Also, big shout out to Dan from SRAM for dialing in the bike, Greg with some new Oakley’s (what does everyone think of the new causal Garage Rock shades?), and Scott from Fuelbelt with some last minute race gear. It’s always fun to connect with everyone and get the new season underway. Here’s to 2013… It’s going to be a great year!