Back to the Races- ITU Clermont

It’s been quite a while, but I’m finally back racing! It was good to be able to cut down the school/work/training itinerary into just work/training- stress level came right down. I’ve also discovered the wonders of actually getting 8hrs of sleep at night, which has been aiding recovery times.

Since Florida is relatively “close” for an ITU race, my parents were able to come out to Clermont, as well as my Great Uncle Bill who lives nearby. It was great to have their support, as well as getting to see many of the athletes that I met at races last year. ITU racing is a fairly small group, and these friendships make all the travel that much easier and fun.

It was great to just hear the starting gun go off again! I didn’t race that much last year, and since my season ended in September, I was certainly ready to get back at it. The swim was in a shallow lake, and wetsuit legal (glad I stuffed that in the suitcase at the last second!). Swim/T1 included running through 150m of shallow water, a beach, and a boardwalk. The swimming part went well, but my T1 has much to be improved upon. Granted, I hadn’t raced in 6 months, so some things still need polish. I’m learning to be more aggressive in the water again, something that you don’t have to do in an age group race, but the clustered pro field must adjust to. It’s like a swim meet general warm-up out there!

Once I was able to get on a pack, the bike felt pretty good. Boulder is a stellar place to train, but winter is still pretty wintery. Big thanks to PowerTap, my riding has gotten a ton more consistent now that I’ve been able to measure power… and realize that I really slack off while I’m on the trainer. This increased bike fitness also helped me to feel a ton fresher for the run, and put in a decent split in that as well. Overall, I placed 10th in a pretty good field. It’s a solid start to the season, and was great to see all the fitness that’s been built working with Dave & Christine over the winter months.

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Next up, a World Cup race in Mooloolaba, Australia. It’s a classic on the ITU circuit, promises a great field, and is a great opportunity to test myself against some of the best! Though I’ll miss my Boulder peeps while I’m gone (And the Buffs winning another national title?), I’m stoked to hit the big show in Oz/NZ. I’ll report from the beach next 🙂

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