22 October 2011

Ramblings heading into XTERRA Worlds

It isn't often the desire to actually sit a write a bit happens but on the eve of the biggest race of the year funny things happen when your trying to stay off your feet.  In the month from Nationals to Worlds a lot can happen, the hope is that it is all good  After a good performance last year minus one little issue on the run a lot of the prep was duplicated for this year and then fine tuned.  Prepping for the heat has always been a fun task and things were done in a similar method; dressing in as many layers as was reasonable to build and hold heat in without getting too drenched that on the decent everything would freeze.  Brick workouts in conjunction with the Fall Series Cross Country races are a fun and fast way to get in a great workout.  The fun part is that when everybody else is dressed in shorts and a singlet or no top for the nice 70 degree day, I look like the ice age is at hand with 2XU compression tights, long sleeve, shorts and singlet and toque on.

Monument Valley Race, flat fast and 3/4 of a mile run upstream just for a bit of a change.

Bear Creek Race: Rolling hills with a rope assisted vertical climb at the end, leading the kids race.

The runs were preceded by a couple hours on the mountain bike in thermal bib tights and base layers under cycling jackets and skull caps just to simulate things as best as possible.  There were plenty of strange looks but none of it mattered, that's the prep that needed to be done.  I added a few sauna sessions as well, 20-30min each day in a temp ranging from 200-230 degrees, for the week leading up.

In the few days that I have been able to be out on Maui I have gotten to get out on both the bike and run courses which we were not able to do in the past when the race was down in Makena.  Coming in no one was that excited from what we saw from the videos and pictures but after getting out there the new course is a great improvement over the old.  The swim has the potential to be very challenging depending on the surf, with possible 3 foot swells in the morning which will definitely change things up.  The mountain bike is still very physically challenging with 3k feet of climbing and though it is not necessarily technical compared to Whistler, Alabama or Richmond you do need to have some mountain bike skills.  The first and last 2+ miles of the course are on some great twisty single track and depending on conditions it could really change things on how packed or loose the corners get.  The run will be brutal, straight out of transition we head uphill, there are a few small breaks where you can get your stride back but until you hit 3.5miles you will be suffering.  The downhill is a perfect grade so you can really fly, ducking, diving and hurdling logs and trees.  It twists and turn up and down the hillside but it is shaded for much of the course and I am grateful for that.  There is still the classic beach run for about 200 meters but it is much shorter than the old course before a punishing last kicker of a climb to the finish in the last 300 meters.
It is now a waiting game 17hrs out from the race, getting the last bits dialed in and set up.  A huge thank you to 2XU, Pro Cycling, SRM, Rotor USA, Sidi, Ergon, Effetto Mariposa, Colorado Running Company, 2Toms, Inov-8 and First Endurance for all the support this year you guys are the best out there and I couldn't have gotten here with out your help.  I believe in their product and support they provide 100% and thank you for believing in me.  Thank you to all my friends that have supported me through the years, your faith, belief and encouragement and understanding when I couldn't join you for that night out helped me get to this point.  Last but definitely not least thank you to my family, you have been my best supporters from the beginning always believing in me and supporting me through it all, I couldn't have taken one step along this path with out you.  Best of luck to all the racers tomorrow time to lay it all down.

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