I raced another off-road triathlon this past weekend: the ITU Cross Triathlon World Championships slash XTERRA Southeast Championship in Pelham Alabama. It was in Oak Mountain State Park, outside Birmingham, and for my first trip to Alabama this was pretty much the ideal destination.The trails were really nice, the terrain beautiful, and the people hospitable. I had a great homestay too. [caption id="attachment_3634" align="alignnone" width="119" caption="See, the trails were nice!"][/caption] As for the race, it was rendered yet another non-event-of-2012 for me when I started getting searing back pain almost as soon as I hit the trail on the bike. It hurt so much.  I'm ...
I raced my first triathlon of 2012 on April 14 outside Las Vegas. After racing one super fun small Xterra last year, and after spending more and more time on my mountain bike to the point of justifying a gorgeous upgrade, I decided to race the Xterra USA championship series this year! Las Vegas was the first stop. The swim was pretty normal, there isn't a whole lot you can do to make an off-road triathlon's swim more "rugged" than an on-road triathlon's. It was a little bit cold though. My swim was OK, I started out on a girl's feet and after a couple hundred meters I realized hey wait a minute, this girl is SLOWER than me! ...
On my second-to-last day in South Africa, I raced the Totalsports Challenge Terra Firma. It's so named because it's based off the original Totalsports Challenge that runs concurrently, and has 7 events, and Dan Hugo has won it a hundred times, and those events are a mix of land and sea stages. The Terra Firma race skips the sea stages (two paddles and a swim) for those of us whose legs are faster than our arms. So it went: 50k road bike, 13k road/dirt run, 25k mountain bike, 9k beach run. The race is point-to-point with three separate transitions, so at Christmas after a suitable amount of wine I successfully roped Dan's uncle Michael into sherpa-ing me at the race! Except ...
I’m all introspective because this was the last race of my season. But I have a quiz to write so I’m bailing on my original plan of writing a playlist-themed race report, complete with samples and instrumentals. It was getting predictably over-involved and I’m probably the only one who would have thought it was awesome anyway. But I will tell you that Crystal Castles’ Vietnam, off their second eponymous release, was playing in my head for virtually all 4 hours 42 minutes that I was racing. It was a good choice – "I'm alive", indeed (side note yes I know that's not the exact lyric in the song sampled, Walk in the Park, but that sure is ...
Here, from :36 to 1:36, is Belgian French for "that girl with USA on her bum is amazing" (actually I have no idea what they are saying, but, that's me racing in Spain last weekend!).
Subtitle: THAT WAS AWESOME I am en route from Spain back to Reality. It has been a whirlwind and amazing trip. I almost don't know where to start, because so much of duathlon and ITU and international racing still feels new to me, not to mention Spanish language and cuisine (I think the only things that felt routine were my Recovery Pump sessions and pre-race PreRace!). But, you know, "rarely at a loss for words" and all... It was awesome. The race format was 10k run - 42.5k draft-legal bike - 5k run. The U.S. Duathlon national championship race, at which we qualify for worlds, is 5k run - 35k non-draft bike - 5k run, which is quite different. ...
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