Triathlon Training Blog

Saucony Kinvara 5 Awarded Runner’s World International Editors’ Choice Award for Best Shoe of 2014

Last May, I received a pair of Saucony Kinvara 5 Running shoes to review on my blog.   I love these shoes and have run 200 miles in them and still love them.   I’m actually working on a follow up post after running and racing all season in these.   I even bought a pair for my daughter, who loves them too.

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Stay tuned to this blog for another post.  In the meantime…here is some news just in from Saucony about these fabulous shoes…

SAUCONY® KINVARA 5 AWARDED RUNNER’S WORLD INTERNATIONAL EDITORS’ CHOICE FOR BEST SHOE OF 2014

Global Running Community Puts Saucony On Top Of The Podium, Affirming Brand’s Relentless Commitment to Inspiring Runners Through Performance Innovation

LEXINGTON, MA (November 3, 2014) –  Saucony, relentlessly committed to elevating the running experience through performance innovation, today announces that the Kinvara 5, the brand’s award-winning natural running shoe, has been awarded the 2014 International Editors’ Choice Award for Best Shoe of 2014 by the international editors of Runner’s World magazine, the worldwide authority on running information. The International Awards were officially presented at the Runner’s World New York City Marathon party in New York on October 31st.

The International Editors’ Choice for Best Shoe of 2014 is the highest recognition presented by Runner’s World and marks the fourth successive award for Saucony from the publication: The Peregrine 4 was named Editor’s Choice in the publication’s 2014 U.S. Spring Trail Shoe Guide; The Ride 7 was named Editor’s Choice in the 2014 U.S. Summer Shoe Guide; and the Kinvara 5 was named Editor’s Choice in the 2014 U.S. Fall Shoe Guide.

“The entire Saucony team is honored to have the Kinvara 5 ranked by Runner’s World as the best shoe in the world for 2014,” said Patrick O’Malley, senior vice president of global product for Saucony. “One of the nicest things about this award is that a bunch of people who love to run tested our shoes and told the Runner’s World editors just how good they felt. It’s truly gratifying that the global running community continues to put Saucony on top of the podium, demonstrating our continued commitment to inspire runners everywhere through performance innovation.”

“The Kinvara has long been a workhorse in our stables,” said the Runner’s World review of the shoe. “A year ago, the high-performing trainer won our Best Update award−mostly because of an upgrade to its midsole foam. This year, Saucony further improved the package. The outsole got a little extra rubber for increased durability−especially at toe-off and along the outer edge through the midfoot. The upper has a more secure fit thanks to a new saddle feature called “Pro-Lock,” a triangular piece sandwiched between mesh in the midfoot that connects to the laces and pulls the upper snug against your foot. The upper fabrics also received an upgrade: A more durable mesh has been added in the forefoot, while a softer, more padded fabric now lines the collar.” Click here for a complete Runner’s World review and video.

The Runner’s World International Editors’ Choice award for “Shoe of the Year” is part of Runner’s World’s global initiative to find, test and designate the best shoes in the world for its readers in the countries where it currently publishes: Australia/New Zealand, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Philippines, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Kingdom, and the United States.

 The Kinvara 5

The fifth edition of the Kinvara, weighing only 7.7 ounces (men’s size 9), is a performance training shoe with a 4mm heel-to-toe offset that positions the runner’s foot during impact in a way that creates a greater range of motion than traditional running shoes (with a 12mm heel-to-toe offset) for the Gastrocnemius-Soleus-Achilles tendon system, allowing for a more powerful running stride.

The Kinvara 5 features a ProLock™ lacing system born of the brand’s track and field bloodline. This innovative fit system encases the foot and locks it to the shoe’s platform with adjustable straps on either side of the midfoot. Further enhancing the shoe’s comfort and fit is a precision engineered upper that is lighter, more durable and flexible thanks to FlexFilm™ technology.

The Kinvara 5’s midsole cushioning features PowerGrid™, a premium engineered foam that’s 15% lighter and 30% more durable than standard EVA foams. The reengineered outsole offers a slightly wider forefoot platform for a more stable and powerful toe-off. The high abrasion EVA exposed foam midsole allows for lightweight protection underfoot, while maximizing rebound and flexibility.

Kinvara 5 RunShield™

Wind, rain or an arctic vortex will never be an excuse to miss a run thanks to the Kinvara 5 RunShield. The technology of the Kinvara 5 is combined with a water-resistant FlexShell™ upper that keeps feet dry and warm without sacrificing flexibility.  FlexShell is an extremely lightweight, 100% polyester fabric with a waterproof membrane engineered to fit dynamically, moving with the runner’s foot throughout the entire stride. The Kinvara 5 RunShield features a RunDry™ interior lining that wicks moisture away for maximum comfort.

Availability

The Kinvara 5 is available at select specialty running retailers in men’s sizes 7-13, 14 and 15, and women’s sizes 5-12. The suggested retail price of the Kinvara 5 is $100.

The Kinvara 5 RunShield is available at select specialty running retailers in men’s sizes 7-13, 14 and 15, and women’s sizes 5-12. The suggested retail price of the Kinvara RunShield is $110.

To find a retailer near you, call 800-365-4933 or visit www.saucony.com.

About Saucony: Saucony, a division of Wolverine Worldwide, is a leading global running lifestyle brand that fuses performance, innovation and style to create compelling footwear and apparel with its widely recognized brands Saucony and Saucony Originals.  Founded in 1898, Saucony continues to inspire runners everywhere with its award winning innovations, including the “Geometry of Strong™, PowerGrid™, and the Total Run System™ apparel line. At Saucony, a good day is when we get to run. A great day is when we inspire someone else to run. For more information, go to www.saucony.com.

About Runner’s World: Rodale’s Runner’s World, the largest and most influential media brand in the running space, is the essential guide for everyone who runs. The brand provides all runners—men and women, from beginners to hardcore marathoners—with the advice and information they need to pursue their goals, the inspiration and entertainment they crave, and a sense of authentic community they won’t find anywhere else. Runner’s World is everywhere its readers and customers are—in print, online, on-screen and on the ground. Through authentic events such as the award-winning Runner’s World Challenge, the Runner’s World Half & Festival (www.RWHalf.com), and the Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival (www.HHHalf.com), Runner’s World editors forge deep connections and have meaningful interactions with our readers as an organic part of the running community. Runner’s World publishes 19 international editions: Argentina (2014), Australia/New Zealand, Belgium, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, The Netherlands, Norway, Philippines, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States. For digital updates, visit www.runnersworld.com, Twitter (@runnersworld), Facebook (Runner’s World Magazine), as well as the brand’s mobile apps.

 

Posted in >Running Tagged with: , , ,

Godiva Track Club Run for the Donuts Race Report 2014

I did the Godiva Track Club Run for the Donuts race on October 14, 2014.   Oh my gosh, it was such a fun race.    The thing I love about their winter series events is that you just show up and pay $5 to race.   And they start at 10am so you don’t even have to get up at the crack of dawn.   They are super relaxed events that are fun, yet still get me to push myself out of my comfort zone.  Which is something I don’t do in training.

What is this Race all About?

This race is not like the Krispy Kreme challenge races.    You do not eat any donuts during the run.  They award donuts afterwards as a prize.   The way it works is you put your age and name onto a card and drop it into a bucket.   The race director randomly draws cards out three at a time and this forms teams.

The race consists of 5 laps of a cross country course, each lap being 1.1 miles.

Here is a video explaining the rules:

In case you don’t want to watch the video, here are the Rules: All three runners must run together for two laps.  Then one runner drops out while the next two runners continue together for lap 3.   Then one of those two runners drops out, and the other  runs the 4th lap alone.   Then the first runner who dropped will do lap 5 alone.    So, there’s a bit of strategy in deciding which runner does which laps.

How is it Scored?

Scoring is figured out in what they call “Donut Index” and is based on age of runners, and final finish time.  Age is a good thing here.   Unfortunately, there are alot of fast seniors in this group, so we didn’t win, but we did get 6th place out of 18 teams.  Ha, I just noticed our team number is 6 and we got 6th place. (That was purely coincidence, right?)

My Team

Here is my team #6.   Paul and Heiko were my teammates.

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The Race

Here we are in lap one…

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I think this is Lap #2.

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I was the slower of the bunch so I dropped out here and Paul and Heiko continued.  While I waited for my turn to come up again, I jogged around the field, did some sprinting, jumping jacks, lunges and even burpees.  I wanted to keep my heart rate up and my muscles warm.  Esp since it was raining and a bit chilly.

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Paul was the fastest so he did Lap 4 alone.   Then I did lap 5 alone.   Here I am tagging Paul after lap 4:

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Here I am gutting it out balls to the wall at the end of lap 5.

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Post Script

The cool thing about this race is the team spirit.    I raced with two guys I had never met before.   They were super nice to me, and I put myself way outside of the comfort zone because I didn’t want to let them down.    Also,   I did 9 minute miles in all three of my laps.  It was mostly flat, but a little bit of hills as we went through the trails.    Roots and rocks and some uneven terrain.  I was stoked to get such a good pace, since I usually run at 11-14 m/m.    Lots of nice people in this crowd.    I’m going to try and do all their Winter Series races this year!   Super fun, nice folks, and makes me work hard!

Happy running!

 

Posted in >Running, Race Reports Tagged with: , ,

Organic Muscle Milk Review

I sometimes get offers of free stuff to review on my blog.  I love Muscle Milk and drink it all the time.  So, when I got an email for a free sample offer, I said YES, Please!!

The milk arrived wrapped in an organic cotton Eco bag – makes a perfect little lunch sak.

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There was a nice friendly note inside this goodie box full of Organic Muscle Milk.  I felt like it was my birthday!

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Inside the Eco bag were two 4 packs of Organic Muscle Milk terra packs.  One Vanilla . One Chocolate.

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So, how and why do I use Muscle Milk?

I keep these ready to drink shakes in my car at all times for post-workout recovery drink.    After boot camp.  After a long bike ride.    After a lake swim.  After a race!    Simple, easy, tasty,and full of protein.  I also add it in as “creamer” every day with my morning coffee.

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I usually buy the Muscle Milk 100 calories variety.   Flavorwise, they are both delicious.    Here is a comparison of nutrients.

Data Point Organic Muscle Milk Muscle Milk 100 calories
Protein 15g 15g
Calories 120 100
Serving Size 8.25 oz Terra pack 8.25 oz Terra pack
Cost have not seen it in stores yet $5.99 per 4 pack
Technical GLUTEN FREE
CERTIFIED ORGANIC
LACTOSE, GLUTEN AND SUGAR FREE
20 ESSENTIAL VITAMINS AND MINERALS

I shared one, and only one, with my friend at work, Kiet.    He loves muscle milk too.   He is a body builder (or as I like to say, gym rat!)

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Thanks, Muscle Milk for the freebie.  And if you want to send me a year’s supply, I would not refuse!  :)

Here is the Official Press Release:

Muscle Milk® Organic Hits Shelves Exclusively at Target

First organic product line produced by the Muscle Milk brand

 Benicia, Calif. (August 4, 2014) — CytoSport®, one of the largest sports nutrition companies in the U.S. and parent company to Muscle Milk®, announced today that it has launched Muscle Milk Organic ready-to-drink shakes exclusively into nationwide Target stores and online at Target.com.  The 8.25 oz. ready-to-drink shakes contain 15 grams of USDA certified organic protein, 120 calories and are gluten free.  MuscleMilk Organic is available at Target or Target.com in Tetra 4-packs in chocolate and vanilla flavors.

“We constantly strive to remain on the forefront of product innovation, and we recognize the demand in the marketplace for organic product options,” said CytoSport Chief Marketing Officer Nikki Brown.  “The Muscle Milk brand has always appealed to a wide range of consumers:  men, women, active lifestylists, fitness enthusiasts, weekend warriors and professional athletes, and the organic line meets the workout recovery and snack needs for protein users across the entire spectrum.  Muscle Milk Organic will also serve as a fantastic protein option to educate new users on the importance of protein in one’s daily nutrition routine.”

Sweetened with organic cane sugar and organic stevia, Muscle Milk Organic is also low in saturated fat and cholesterol.  It’s one step closer to nature’s way of fueling workout recovery or as a guilt-free source of protein whenever the body needs it.

Posted in General Tagged with: , ,

Pinehurst Olympic Race Report, pt 2

Click here to read part 1

So if you’ve read part one, you know I had a rather frenzied pre race morning.   Rushing around getting things all set up was my warmup!

The Swim:

I got in line and stood on the beach waiting for the horn to blow, and fiddled with my goggles and cap.   I positioned myself to the right of the pack, third row back.

The water temp was 76 degrees, so the race was wetsuit legal.    I wore my shorty suit.  It was a standing beach start, so when the horn went off, I ran gingerly hopped into the shallow water and dove in to swim.

Renee’s friend got this picture of the start:

swim start

I felt like I was swimming strong, not too hard.  I found some feet to follow for a little while.    Then I started veering a bit to the right.  I do tend to veer that direction. It was a counterclockwise course, and veering that way meant swimming wide.   Not good.   :(

Oh well nothing to do but keep swimming at a good steddie eddie pace, which I did.   I was happy to make landfall and get onto the fun part – the bike!

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T1:

Nothing too notable here.  I peeled off my wetsuit, started my garmin and stuffed it  into my bra (I only want the data post race, and dont want to see it during), socks, bike shoes, helmet, sunglasses and GO!

The Bike:

Okay, now the fun begins.  The bike.   I started out, and settled in for a nice hard and hilly ride.   I made sure my shoes were nice and tight, tucked into a nice aero position and put the hammer down.     I was going hard and having fun.

The hills were relentless and I powered up them, tucked tight on the descents, and peddaled hard on the few flats that I came upon.  It was not hot, but I was working harder than at my last race, so was drinking alot of water.   I was on fire, and thought of myself as a shark, hunting down my prey as I passed each victim.  I felt really strong and fast.

Somewhere in the middle of the race, there was a big bump in the road.    I had recalled reading a race report about bunny hopping over that, so I tried giving a bit of a lift to my front wheel.   Not a good plan, because my back wheel then  hit the bump really hard.  So hard that I thought I might have flatted.   I slowed down, listening to the sounds of my bike, and I was sure I had a flat. I looked down at my rear wheel, and it didn’t look flat.  But the ride was rough and I had no speed.

This stressed me for a few minutes and I kept waiting for the tire to completely flat out.   I thought back to my ride in the car earlier in the day and how I got a flat then.  Wow, my lucky day, two flats!

But the flat tire never came, and I turned a corner and put the hammer down again.   I think the road was just really rough in that patch, and my confidence had waned, and that is what had made me slow down.

Okay, put that out of my box and carry on!   Hammer Hammer Hammer, Shark attack!  Shut up legs.   Go go go!

A little while later, the hills started to wear me down.   And I was running out of water.   I started to ration it.  Since I wasn’t looking at my garmin, I really had no idea where I was.  I had seen 5, and 10 and 15 chalked on the road, but missed any other numbers.  I was thinking if I had 15 miles to go, I’m in trouble.    But, maybe it’s only 5 miles.    I didn’t know, so I decided to ease up on my pace a little bit so as to conserve fluids.

Then my friend Renee passed me.   I gave her a hooray shout out, but inside I was thinking oh crap!  I like winning on the bike, and I had expected to be a little bit faster than her in the swim and the bike.   But here she was passing me.

Okay, put that outside my box and carry on.  Steady eddie to the finish.  Good solid form, not too hard.  Save water. Thirsty!

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There was a very long gradual climb, and I got caught up in a big group as I neared the top.   I was passing someone as I approached this big group, and just then noticed a motorcycle official go past me.   I was kind of caught between a rock and hard place.  If I moved forward, I’d be in the draft zone of this big group.  If I did not, then I risk getting a position penalty.  I opted to  drop back and noticed the official scribbling on his clipboard. Crap crap crap.  (  I wonder if i should have just kept going, after reading rules that say drafting  exception if blocked, hmmm…)

I was hot and thirsty and tired.   I opted to skip my last Gu because I had no water left.    I was really puzzled at the lack of water.  I had the same amount as I had for White Lake.   And the temperature was much cooler today.   The distance was 2 miles more, which didn’t seem like much.  But the Hills!  I was working much harder because of them.   That was it!

I rode on for probably a few more miles, and was estatic when I passed the field of parked cars.  I knew I was close to the end of the bike, and closer to a drink of water!    Thirsty thirsty thirsty.

I chant alot of things in my head when racing, haha!

T2:

I tried to be quick here.   Helmet off, sunglasses off, rack bike, change shoes (no change in socks), grab water bottle, race belt, hat.

As I exited transition, I did grab 2 cups of water at the aid station,  because I  was really thirsty!!!!  I dumped one over my head, and the other one I drank.  Then it was off to the run…

The Run:

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I ran easy for a few minutes to get my running legs on.    I  drank some water, I had a gu.

Then I started working it.  Going hard.  I was breathing hard, focusing on good posture, fast feet.    I felt strong and was happy with my form today as I passed the race photographer.   I had a big smile on my face.

At about mile 1, I saw a woman with 53 pass me.  I tried to keep pace with her, but nope, she was too fast.   I didn’t let that drag me down, I kept up my own solid pace, inside my own pain cave.

The course was rolling hills, up and down and around a scenic lake I went.  I don’t really mind the hills, I think they are kind o fun.

I did walk for a half minute up the two worst hills.  But, then I got right back into it.  Solid form, fast feet, pain cave.

I scoped out the ages on the backs of legs as folks passed me.   Nobody else in my age group did.    I took gu at mile 4.

As I neared the final stretch, I kept glancing back to see if any females were on my tail.  I didn’t see any, but I kept my hard effort up until the very end.   I ran across the line as fast and hard as I could go.    I was beat, and hot and glad to be done.

Post Race:

Ran right to lake and dove in.  Cool water felt oh so good.  I was so hot and tired.    I alternated laying on my back and front as my face felt really hot.   Looking at my HR data, I had really pushed my effort level on the run.  11 m/m are a fast pace for me on that hilly distance.    Does not sound that great, but for me it is.

I lay in the cool water for a really long time.  I chatted with a few folks in the water.     I saw Sharon and met her friend (can’t remember name), and met a fellow with a cool accent named Arman ( I think)

Then I was dying of thirst so headed for some water and oranges.  Met up with Renee.  Checked the results.  My time was 3:18 and I went over to the penalty sheet, and sure enough I did get one.

Renee’s friend said I should challenge it since I didn’t mean to do it and got stuck in a group accidentally.  But my feeling is rules are rules and it doesn’t matter, I should be looking farther ahead and not let myself get in that situation.  Also, looking at the USAT rules, I may have been better off continuing forward even if entering draft zone of the bunched up riders.   (being blocked is an exception to rules – I did not know that!)

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After eating a bunch of oranges, I went back to the results tent, and   I watched the results scroll down the screen until the age group standings displayed.   Dang, I missed third by that penalty!  :(

Oh well, better luck next time!   And I still felt really great about my results because I really left it all out there on the course and did my best.      Since  I definitely did not make a podium spot,  I headed back to my car.   I was too famished to stick around for the awards ceremony,  and didn’t really like the food options at the race.

Back at my car, I downed two terra packs of organic muscle milk .  That hit the spot for sure.  It’s  a good recovery drink and tastes good even at room temperature.

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Then I drove around looking for a hamburger and fries.   I wanted some salty fattening food.  I know that’s really bad for me, but after a race, that’s what  I want.    Finally found food – nom nom!

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Here are nutrition notes for future reference:

  • Day before – nothing special other than pigging out on peanut m&ms at work all week. We have too much candy around the office, and it’s hard to resist the chocolate stuff!  I also drank G2 several days before to pre-load my electrolytes.
  • Morning of – two bottles of starbucks frapacinno, mocha light, and a cup of oatmeal with walnuts, about 3 hours before. I ate just past satiation.
  • Before Swim – Gu Roctane 45 minutes before and than 10 minutes before start.
  • Bike – Gu Roctane at the 5 mile marker . 20 ounce water with 1/2 tablet Nuun. Plus another 2o ounce bottle with 1/2 nuun. I had planned on taking another Gu at the 20 mile marker, but had run out of water, so skipped it.
  • Run – Gu Roctane at the very start and another at the 4 mile marker.

Gu Roctane Rocks!

Disclaimer: I received the organic muscle mile for free from a publicist.    Even so, I have bought muscle milk products many times, and I drink it regularly.   That’s why I said I’d take a free sample!  I only accept free stuff that I actually want.

Posted in General, Race Reports Tagged with: , ,

Pinehurst Olympic Race Report 2014, pt 1

I did the Pinehurst Olympic race in October.   I had actually vowed to never again do this race, because I did so well in 2008, that I figured I’d quit while I was ahead.    But my friend and boot camp instructor Renee inspired me to want to return to this race.   It is a beautiful race venue, and I figured it was really dumb to leave it off my list forever just because of foolish pride.   I had a great time, so am very glad.

Official Results:

  • Swim 1500m: 31.25, 3rd AG.
  • T1: 2:41 , 5th AG
  • Bike 30m: 1:33:57, 19 mph, 2nd AG.  (hilly)
  • T2:  1:34, 3rd AG
  • Run 10k: 1:06:34, 5th AG. 11:06 m/m (hilly)
  • 2 minute Penalty for “Overtaken” on bike
  • Overall: 3:18:09  4th AG (would have been 3rd if not for penalty

Heart Rate Data:

Bike: 162 bpm Avg HR / 170 bpm Max HR

Run: 166 bpm Avg HR / 176 bpmMax HR

Pre Race:

I packed my gear up the night before and headed for an early bedtime.

I got up at the crack of dawn (4am), grabbed some coffee and oatmeal and started driving in the dark.    Somewhere in Apex, on a dark and lonely road, I heard a funny noise in my back tire.   I hadn’t seen anything on the road, so was startled by this.     I looked in my rear view mirror and didn’t see anything.  I wondered if a screw came loose, or if I had left something on top of my car that fell.  Or, if the mechanic who recently installed new tires left a bolt loose.  Lots of things were going through my head.

I drove cautiously for a bit, listening to the sounds of the car, and everything sounded okay, so I kept driving.   About ten minutes later, I noticed the low air pressure warning light come on.  Crap.    I was still on a dark and loney road.   The car still sounded okay, so I figured it must be a very slow leak, so I still drove on, looking for a safe place to stop.

Fortunatley, I found an exit with a gas station, and got off.  I think I was on 1South heading toward Sanford.   Luckily, the station was open and well lit.    I got out, and inspected the tire.   Sure enough, it looked low and I could hear a hissing sounds.  Crap Crap Crap.   I actually happent o have a tire repair kit in my car, so I found the spot where the air was hissing out, but I did not see a nail, and I didn’t really think the kit would work here.

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So, I called AAA.  They are really great…I highly recommend subscribing to their service.     I always always get my money’s worth from the $75 annual fee.     I called them, and the first thing they always ask is “Are you in a safe location”.  Yes, I was, thank goodness.   I gave them my information and they said they’d have someone out in 45 minutes.

Ack, that was probably going to be too late for me to get to the race.  I had written it off, but texted my friend Renee that I had a flat tire and was likely not going to make it.   She called me , which was super nice, and asked if I needed help.  I said “No, but can you ask the packet pickup folks to hold my packet for me, and tell them I may be a little late”.   She said she would.

So… I waited for the AAA guy.   It was a long wait, as you can see from Facebook:

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The AAA guy showed up at 6:30, and took about 15 or 20 minutes to change the tire.  He was really nice, and I thanked him for helping me so early in the morning!

I was about 45 minutes away, and packet pickup closed at 7:30.    Yikes!    I carried on, trying not to worry about the time crunch.

I got to the parking area, pumped my bike tires, grabbed all my junk and rode the 5 minutes to the site.   I think I got there at 7:40.   They had set aside my packet, so I grabbed it, got chip, body marking, bike set up as fast as I could.

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It was stressful, and I had not spare time whatso ever .     Just barely got my potty break, wetsuit on and they were calling up my wave.

Click here to read part 2

Posted in General, Race Reports Tagged with: , ,

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