I have this relationship with Chinook. It was the very first race I did, way back in June 2008. I've done that Half IM twice now, and neither have been what you'd call good days. I finished both, and that's about all that can be said for them. I expected the first one to hurt and be slow. It did, and it was. It wiped me out for about a month.
Then in 2009 I had hopes for a much faster race. Not. I bonked coming out of the water, so the bike and run were a long nightmare. I didn't do it in 2010 because the timing was awkward leading up to IMC. I'd thought of going back this year and try to get the monkey off my back and have a good day. My knee took a lot longer to feel strong than I thought it would. About a month ago I decided there was no use pushing it. I wouldn't be ready to have a good day, and the last thing I needed was another bad day, and possibly re-injure my knee doing it.
So yesterday I showed up to cheer on some buddies. It was a cool windy day. The thermometer said 10 but it felt colder than that, especially down at the water. In that sense I'm glad I wasn't in the race. Neither were a couple of buddies, Leaha and Deb had to drop out. Lorraine totally kicked ass in the half! She was the first girl out of the water. I saw her starting the run, and at the 10 K mark, and she looked so strong. I saw Todd from spin class, and he was looking good too. My buddy Kelly R saw me at the same time as I saw her, but she got the first hello in. I saw her in T2, looking good, and after the race. I hadn't seen Tessa's name on the race list, but she was there.
I was mainly there to cheer on my buddy Lori in the Oly distance. You can see her in the video below of the Oly start. She seemed pretty pleased with the result but I haven't seen her results. I'm not sure what time the finish clock was displaying, but it didn't seem to have anything to do with the start time of either race. By the end of the day I was actually pretty tired, even though I wasn't jumping around cheering, like some people I know. Afterward we went to a BBQ at a buddy of Linda's, and holy cow! So much food. It was good that I went in hungry.
Today it was nice out in the morning so I decide to go while the going was good. Half hour of leg exercises and a bit of core, then out for a run. I ended up running 11 K in 1:20, almost perfectly even split, and what's best about it is that my heart rate averaged 136 bpm. That is getting to be a more reasonable number for the pace I was going, and it was pretty consistent throughout the run.
I can feel my legs getting stronger and more comfortable with running again. It was only in the last 10 minutes of the run that I could feel my stride getting sloppy, and having to work a bit harder on my form. So it's coming along well. I've already begun to work in some strides or accelerations into my runs, and I'll be working on that a bit more in the runs to come.
It was very nice to finish the run, stretch after, shower, and eat a second breakfast all by 10am.