The past few weeks have been crazy busy for me. After a solid performance at the Vineman 70.3 I decided to focus on some local races before closing out the season. A couple I had on my radar were the Donner Lake and Pyramid Lake Triathlons.
Donner Lake was set to be my second showdown with cycling superstar, and all around badass Justin Rossi. I had a great swim, coming out of the water first with 30 seconds advantage over Justin. Unfortunately, it didn’t last long. I was caught no more than 3 miles into the bike and went into damage control mode. I felt comfortable with losing 4-5 minutes on the bike and still being able to catch Justin on the run. Coming into transition, Justin’s advantage was 5 minutes. I found out later that the announcer had already claimed Justin the winner of the race due to his lead. The run took absolutely everything I had, but I finally caught Justin with about a mile to go in the race and took the win. Justin is continuing his season with the Timberman 70.3 at the end of the month.
This past Saturday was “Reno World Championships” or the Pyramid Lake Triathlon. My plan was to race as conservatively as possible because I signed up to race the San Francisco 5k the following day and wanted to throw down a decent time. I stayed on the feet of the ageless Scott Young in the swim and then hammered the bike. Coming out of T2 I had around 3 minutes advantage over second place and settled into a pace on the run I knew wouldn’t hurt me too bad. I came through in a time of 1:01:30, which I was told may be a course record. After the race I jumped right in the car and headed to San Francisco.
Having mainly done half-marathon specific run training, I wasn’t too sure what to expect in a hard 5k effort. The leaders went out unbelievably fast, and then slowed down drastically. The lead group of 4 (myself included) came through the first mile in a very conservative 5:20. At this point, I went to the front and surged a bit to see if I could shake anyone. No dice. The 4 of us stayed together through the second mile (5:10). I had no interest in a sprint finish so I decided to go all in. I attacked, and didn’t hear anyone respond to the pace. By the last turnaround I had opened up about a 15 second lead, and ended up winning the race by 22 seconds. I ended up going 4:49 pace for the last mile and a quarter of the race.
While I feel like I’m on a roll with racing, I’ve decided to start shutting down my season for a couple reasons. I started EMT school and cannot dedicate as much time as I need for that without sacrificing some training. Also, I know my limiting factor moving forward with half-ironman racing will be the bike. I cannot continue to improve at the rate I need to while continuing to race all the time. That said, I plan to run the Reno 10-Miler as my last real race of the year.