Tuesday, October 23, 2007

LC du worlds wrap-up

after the race on sunday i told FMC to beat me with a shovel if i ever talked about racing long-course duathlon again. 2 days later my legs are still just as sore and that statement's still valid. somewhat. okay ask me tomorrow.

in short, it was a beautiful day, the courses were fun, the race was well-organised, and i finished 11th amateur F and 5th in my age group. could have done better, but isn't that usually the case?

my folks were an invaluable support crew: they navigated and drove the technical, convoluted bike course while i studied it from the passenger seat until i could play the entire 18K loop in my head. they filled my gas tank, found the grocery store and stocked me with bananas and gluten-free cookies, and they tracked the number of women in my age group ahead of me during the race. all i had to do was run and ride my bike some.

first run leg was 2 laps of a 7.5K course. i went out relaxed, with no intention of sticking with anyone. felt confident and strong, though i wobbled a bit when a heavy panter decided she was going to stick on my left shoulder. i couldn't hear my own breathing over her locomotion, and was i imagining that every 20sec or so she'd under her breath say "good job" to herself? to me? or was it "huzzah"? "gotcha"? whatever it was, she was negging my groove and i wished she'd give me some space. everytime i passed other runners i'd slot in front of them just to be free of her for a bit but she'd always glom back on. i finally shook her at a water stop and enjoyed the blessed silence.

the run course was fairly flat, with some cobbled and some sandy sections along the canal. it was in a sandy section that i came upon one of the physically disabled racers bogged down in his wheelchair while runners filed by. "little help here!" he called. "what do you need?" i asked, "a push?" "push, push!" he responded. so i pushed, hoping that i would not flip him over a bump and into the canal like that OJ scene in Naked Gun. i pushed and then a chick behind me pushed and later a course marshal pushed and wheelchair dude eventually finished the race in a grueling 7.5 hours.

finished the first run in 12th place and after a clean transition hit the first of 4 loops of the bike, which started with a short climb, followed by a screaming descent then a deadstop into a headwind on a bridge across the james river. very rude. very painful way to start 2.5 hours of riding, especially when the legs which performed so well running just aren't giving it up for the bike and you are passed by half a dozen women moving so fast you wonder if they've got the same headwind you do. give it a couple miles, i told myself, and the legs will come 'round. but they never did, and a course that promised to be so fun -- technical, twisty and varied -- turned out to be a sufferfest. a clanking noise down by my cranks grew louder and louder. maybe my bottom bottom bracket will fall out, i thought, and then i can stop, but no such luck. i measured time by gels consumed, and when i finally schlumped off the bike after the 4th lap i could barely run to transition.

but legs that were so unresponsive on the bike perked up for the second run. i don't know how it's possible to feel good running while sucking so badly on the bike, but i pulled it off. i passed a ton of people on that second run, downing gatorade and showering myself with water at the aid stations; the day was heating up and some people were cramping, beginning to walk. i collected a couple age group spots on that second run, but even had i run 4min miles there was still no way to make up for the 15-20min i lost on the bike. but stuff happens, you know? -and you cross the finish line at the world championships, the announcer pronounces your name CORRECTLY for once, and there are bottles of gatorade and bags of salted peanuts and your family and that is enough.

thanks to all who offered good wishes.

now, it's SofaTime.


fatmammycat said...

You did brilliantly, most of us can only read in awe. I took the shovel out of the shed though, just in case.

Mayrasmom said...

Great Job, hope the legs feel better by the time you read this.

finn said...

kath, they felt better last night when i had some jameson in me but it seems the effect was temporary. it may take more than one dose, i would surmise.

better get the sledgehammer too FMC, just in case. i'll do the same for you in a week.

fatmammycat said...

I am supposed to go out for a short run now any minute, but there is snot and I am cranked up to the last.

finn said...

why don't you take the day off?

fatmammycat said...

I can't, I'll go crazy. I"m going out. Catch you later.

finn said...


i might MIGHT take the dog for a walk this aft. or i could just throw the ball from the porch. but even my biceps are sore. cry whimper whinge. golly i wish your marathon had been this weekend so we could have commiserated about much it hurts just to lower yourself onto the toilet seat and walk down stairs.

fatmammycat said...

Still hurts a lot? If I'd thought about it before hand I should have sent you Spanish painkillers. You wouldn't have felt the sofa today.
I don't even want to think about the lowering. I might get a catheter put in for the duration of my recovery. And a drip for the rum. He who must be obeyed is planning a protein/carb filled recovery dinner, he was telling me this evening and I was going ' Yes yes, sounds lovely, what about the rum?'
Fortunately he understand needs of fatcats and there will be rum at hand. I plan to drink plenty of it.
And yes, much thank you very muchly. I do feel better, snottier but better. It sounds overly dramatic but I felt very fenced in all day until I ran.

finn said...

i know the feeling too well.

i need to get out of here myself. and if the latest spate of spam i'm getting is to be believed, my New Penis is Waiting for me.

fatmammycat said...

I hope it's called Walter. Or Barnaby.

finn said...

'e says 'is name is jethro.
wonders if i know how to make powdermilk biscuits from scratch.

I don't.

addon said...

very good work finn, i feel wonderful for you, you must be so proud!