I’m on my trip back home to Tulsa. My adventures began on Thursday afternoon. I was due to arrive in Hartford, CT at 11pm, where I was to meet up with some more Rev3 folks for the drive to Southbury an hour and a half away. However, my connection in Dallas was delayed for 3.5 hrs because the flight had no crew. I let my travels buddies know to go ahead without me since I would be getting in so late. I called a cab service while waiting in Dallas since I figured I didn’t want to be sorting that out at 2:30 am. Once I finally got in, my driver met me but he was standing with another guy. This kid was going to visit his girlfriend in Hartford, couldn’t get a cab and was hoping to share my vehicle. By this point I was tired and stressed about how late I would be arriving to the hotel–the last thing I wanted to do was extend the trip another half hour. But then I felt bad (darn conscious!) and agreed while gritting my teeth wondering why the kid couldn’t a. Have the sense to line up his own travel while we waited over 3 hrs in Dallas or b. Get his girlfriend’s butt out of bed to come get him. What can I say, I’m a little less tolerant when tired! I finally arrive to the lovely Heritage Hotel. I get to my room and fall into bed, glancing at the clock and wincing at the sight of 4:02. Ugh. I try to sleep in and make it to around 10. I remind myself that this is more hours of consecutive sleep than I got for the entire first year of my twins’ lives. I ended up doing absolutely nothing Friday besides building my bike and dinner with friends. Saturday was the usual pre race swim, bike, run and pro meeting but with the challenge of pouring rain. That evening my best friend from college drove in from NYC to watch the race. Of course we chatted a bit, then lights out at 930 in preparation for an early wake up race morning. Unfortunately the drunken wedding guests below my room decided to replace my alarm and woke me up at midnight. Looking back I should have objected right then, but kept thinking “they will leave soon.” Finally a little after 2 I called the front desk, where they profusely apologized and told me that security was on their way. Apparently I wasn’t the only one complaining! After getting back to sleep my alarm went off 1 hr later and I woke without my usual excitement. After reflecting on the whole weekend I realized I was just plain tired and grumpy. These feelings were temporarily masked with pre -race excitement. I knew I was coming into this race a lot fitter than a year ago, which made me really excited to see my progression. I had a great swim & bike last year & exited t2 in 5th, where I basically ran gingerly due to my soleus tear 6 weeks early. This year I was ready to run fast, and to mix up with a world championship field. It’s funny how things can work out. You can have sub-par preparation (like last year) and really surprise yourself. On the flip side you can have great preparation and really surprise yourself–in not such a good way!! I started the swim and just lacked any opening speed. I felt very strong through the whole swim but missed my pack and swam a pretty lonely race. I started the bike and heard time checks throughout and was not giving any time back and closed to within 30sec of the girls I had hoped to come out of the water with. But somehow from mile 40-56 I gave up 2.5 minutes to everyone. I didn’t feel bad. I actually felt quite strong. This particular part of the course is quite technical with a lot of turns making it difficult to see anyone, even if they are only 30 sec in front. I realize now how vital these visual ques are because really I was just in la-la land. Yet again why racing as a pro makes your swim position imperative! I started the run feeling strong and knew I had the run fitness to be competitive. Each mile I got closer and closer but ran out of real estate to change my position, landing in 10th. Of course I’m disappointed–not with my place but that I know I didn’t have the race I’m capable of. But what I can take away from this is that I’m very strong, I just lacked that upper intensity needed to be competitive in this field. And also to be smarter with my traveling. Expect delays–don’t plan on coming in late because that can quickly become tooooo late! With these women you can’t give up 1%!! They truly are something else! Again, a huge thanks to my sponsors and supporters! Rev3, Powerbar, Kestrel, Pearl Izumi, Recovery Pump, Rudy Project, Challenge Tires, BlueSeventy, Team RWB, HammerHead (formerly 918xc) Bike Shop. To my coach Kevin P for helping me see the big picture. And to Jenn Delaney for making the trip and not letting me wallow. We’ve literally been through the best of times and worst of times–from WestPoint to Officer Basic to Fort Hood to Iraq and back. What a reminder of how lucky I am to have people like her in my life!

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