Gator Half Goals

11 04 2014

I was considering not even writing out my goals for the Gator Half since I’ve been pretty busy this week, but Meghan commented on Monday’s post that pre-race goals posts are always her favorite, so I thought that others might be interested too. So, I’ll dive right in!

Swim: For the first time maybe ever, I’m actually a little anxious about the swim. Not because of my training, but because of where we’re swimming…and what might be in the water…

IMG_7787It ain’t called the “Gator Half” for nothin!

The swim is in the large, fresh water Lake Manatee, and yes, there are gators that live there. It’s highly unlikely that they’ll show their face on race day, but it is entirely possible. This is my second lake swim tri since I’ve moved to Florida and I survived my first, so I’m hopeful that I’ll survive this one too, but I’m actually kinda nervous about it. Maybe those nerves will help me swim faster?

So my number one goal for the swim is to not freak out, and of course not get eaten by a gator. I’m sure you want to know time goals though, so I’m hoping to go at least as fast as I did in November, which would put me anywhere around 28 minutes.

Rev3 Florida Swim Exit

Bike: I’m a sucker for speed, so I went ahead and rented race wheels again.

IMG_9610Can’t wait!

We’ve most certainly been putting in the saddle time this winter with rides on Saturday and Sunday, so I definitely feel comfortable about my bike fitness right now. The biggest challenge I think I’m going to have is not going out too hard. The course is a simple out and back and it’s flat, flat, flat. I checked the weather forecast and it seems like Sunday morning will have 8mph winds from the east. I *think* that means that I’ll have a tiny tailwind on the way back to transition. The weather’s out of my control so there’s no use stressing about it, but what I can tell you is that I’m going to try to focus on holding back some so I have legs for the run. I’d be thrilled to replicate my Rev3 time ( 2:51:37) but I’ll be perfectly happy with anything under 3:00.


Run: I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I feel like my run is finally coming together. I’ve had some rock solid training runs in the past few months, which makes me hopeful/excited about the run, BUT my longest run to date is only 16km (the run at the end of the half is 21km, or 13.1 miles). I think that’s probably far enough and my fitness will carry me the rest of the way, but half of me is doubting I’ll be able to post a time comparable to my training times on shorter runs. The other half of me wants to post a big, fat, scary run goal: beat my current half PR, 1:51. GULP. I can’t believe I just put that in writing. It’s crazy to want to PR the half marathon at the end of a half Ironman, but if my body and mind cooperate, I may just have it in me. It’s awfully ambitious, especially considering that my Rev3 time was an icky 2:09, but I’m going to give it what I got and see where I end up.

SOAS ambassador

Transitions: If you read my Rev3 race report, you know I took my jolly good time in transition, especially T1. I don’t expect to be struggling to put my nutrition in my kit this time, thanks to my nifty Shiv-specific Fuel Cell, so I’m hoping to be faster this go-around. Let’s say no more than 4 minutes total between the two?

At the end of the day, I really just want to improve on my time from Rev3. This is my only half this season, so I want to make it a good one! It’s not just about the times though, it’s about learning how to race this distance- how to pace myself, how to fuel myself, and how to stay mentally tough. I’m going to go out and have fun, and enjoy the opportunity I have to race!

Well, there you have it. Wish me luck folks! Catch you on the other side of 70.3 numero dos!

It’s Race Week!

8 11 2013

Hi All! Sorry I’ve been a little MIA! If you missed my tweets and Instagram posts from over the weekend, you know I spent Saturday up in Panama City Beach cheering on Meghann and the #IRONSIBLINGS as they competed in their first Ironman. It was an awesome weekend and Meghann ABSOLUTELY KILLED IT! 13:05!!! She was super inspiring, and it was so fun to watch. I would HIGHLY recommend spectating an Ironman. I owe you a post with some tips!


Spectating the Ironman certainly got me jazzed about my upcoming 70.3. I can’t believe it is this weekend! The people doing the IM were doing twice the distance I’ll be covering on Sunday. If they can do 140.6 miles, I can certainly do 70.3!

We’re in full on taper mode; practices are barely an hour and I’m starting to get antsy. For most of this week I’ve had a nagging thought in the back of my head that I’m going to miss my taper. I think part of it stems from having a light training week last week, due to a random swollen knee after swim practice last Monday. I stayed off of it pretty much all last week, and ran for the first time on it Saturday afternoon during the bike leg of the Ironman. It feels fine now, thank goodness, but I definitely had a mini freak out last week!

I was still fighting those bad taper thoughts until last night, when my friend Chris sent me a picture of my bike:


That’s right folks, those are some snazzy Zipp wheels being put on to my bike! I decided to rent a pair as we were driving back to Tampa from Panama City. Why not? I’ve never ridden race wheels, so I’m really excited to try them! This was the thing I needed to really get me pumped to race. I’ve been waiting on this race for almost two years (I registered for last year’s race but deferred because of my foot injury) and it is FINALLY here. I’ve done my training, my body is resting up, and I’ll show up on Sunday ready to dominate 70.3 miles.


I’m going in to the race with low expectations- to be honest, after my ugly brick workout two weeks ago, I just want to get through the race on my two feet with no tummy troubles! But, if we’re being really honest, I do have some rough goals for each leg:

Swim: This is definitely my strongest leg of the race, so I want to get out there and absolutely have a fantastic swim. Unfortunately, my wave is the fourth wave, so I’ll be running down the swimmers in front of me. My goal is sub 30. How far under 30 minutes? I’ll have to find out on Sunday!

Bike: I’ve been incessantly checking the weather report for Sunday in Venice, because with such a flat course, I think the wind could definitely factor in to how I perform (how much it will factor in, I have no clue!). Right now, it says winds will be 12mph. At least the race isn’t Saturday, when winds are predicted to be 17mph! The bike has a bunch of turns and not a ton of long straightaways, so at least it will be interesting and the wind shouldn’t be in my face or pushing me along for too long of a time. That also means there’s not really a good place to just put my head down and go. That being said, I’m hoping to ride it in about 3 hours.

Run: I think the run is my biggest question mark right now. I’ve had some stellar short runs, but all of my longer runs have been much slower than what I should be going for how fast my short runs are. My knee’s feeling better now, but the fact that it was swollen and hurting two weeks before race day worries me. I would love to go 1:55, but I think a realistic goal is 2:00.

Total time: 5:30

So I know I didn’t take in to account transition times, but I’m hoping I’ll come in a little under each of my goal times to make up for the transitions. 🙂 We will certainly find out soon!!

These are certainly rough estimates, and I’m not really in this to see how fast I can go. I’ve never done a HIM before, so I really don’t know what to expect. I’m nervous. I’m excited. I’m anxious. I’m ready to put myself to the test for this distance, to overcome the physical and mental challenge it will present to me. Bring it on Rev3!!


14 07 2011

I’m ready! I have been training since January 1 and am absolutely positively finished with training for this little old triathlon on that I will be competing in on Sunday. I am ready to RACE! I have swum approximately 216,000 meters, biked somewhere around 1100 miles and logged about 440 miles in my Brooks Adrenaline GTS’s. Last night I tried on my new tri suit and subsequently had a mini dance party (in an empty house) which ended with me in front of the mirror flexing my triceps.

Yep, it happened…and I am not ashamed!

And then I proceeded to run around like a crazy person gathering all of my race day “things” and take a picture, just so that I could show you how excited and prepared I am! (I even took my tri suit off to take the pic just so you could get an idea of the whole deal).

The only items missing from this picture are my bike,  my wetsuit (which my friend Jenny is GRACIOUSLY lending), towels for the transition area, and my pre-race breakfast (the Justin’s Almond Butter is always a race day treat for me and will go on a bagel with banana!). I actually put together a list earlier this week…

***please, PLEASE let me know if you think I have forgotten anything!!!

If you are a numbers person and are curious what my taper has looked like, the past weeks workouts have looked like this:

Friday: OFF

Saturday: Swim 1600 straight

Sunday: Bike 20 miles pace/Run 2 miles + 2000 swim loosen

Monday: Swim 2500 easy/moderate with a few sprints

Tuesday: Run 4.25 EASY

Wednesday: Swim 2000 easy with a few sprints

Thursday: Run 3 EASY

Friday (tomorrow) OFF

Saturday: either OFF or short run, swim or bike to loosen my legs!

Sunday: RACE

In reflecting on the past 6.5 months of training, and all of the hours spent on my bike, in the pool, on the roads, eating to fuel my training and sleeping to recover, it all honestly blends together. Sure, I had some GREAT and AWFUL training days, races that took me by surprise, motivation slumps and frustrating injuries; but at this point, 3 days out from my race, I can confidently and proudly say that it has all been preparation. Preparation for a race longer than I have ever raced before. Yes, it is going to be unbelievably physically and mentally challenging.  Sure, I am definitely nervous.  But I know that I am ready. And even further, my Dad will be right by my side, as he is competing in the Aquabike (the swim and bike portion of the 70.3). It is going to be a great day! Send my Dad and I  STRONG thoughts on Sunday! and I will be back on Monday to give you some type of “I Made It!” post.

Question of the Day: Are you challenging yourself this summer?