Monday, August 15, 2011

Winter NDuro 3 - A Race is More Than Just the Training

I really think I've started to get a bit complacent about my "shorter" distance races. Great in that I don't get so nervous and edgy before a race... Bad in that my preparation has lately proven to be a little lacking. Sunday was a perfect example of this. I must admit that I was rather nervous because I knew I had been training hard and that I had built some good strength over the last month, so there was a little bit of pressure I was placing on myself to do well in terms of things like average speed, and my time out on the course (moreso than a position in my category at the finish line).

I remember standing on the start line and feeling my tyres thinking "hmm... Bit soft... Too late to do much about it though". We took off up the Long Mile entrance to the forest and I felt like crap... Like a lead weight was weighing me down as I climbed the hill. I considered a couple of times pulling off to the side and putting some air in my tyres. I kept looking back at my rear tyre wondering if it was flat and it didn't look to be the case, although when I got home and checked my pressure, it was apparent that 15PSI was probably not an ideal race pressure... I guessed I probably lost about 5 minutes off my time from this. I also failed to eat enough on course, which is often a problem of mine, and probably more so on the shorter races... By the time I feel like I need the energy, I'm only 8km from the finish line, and on this occasion, I decided to just push on regardless. I did, however, drink quite well. So I bonked a bit about 10km out, which maybe cost me another couple of minutes.

The above considered, I still managed to cross the finish line with an average speed of 14.3km/hr, which is probably the best average speed I have pulled out of a race around the Redwoods with that amount of climbing. I also came in first in my category, and second overall female. Whilst it's a great result, I must admit I was disappointed with my ride (and the lack of preparation that resulted in said ride) and I would have loved to have shaved that extra seven minutes off my time... Next time!! Preparation is key!!! At least it was a stellar day in the forest!!!

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