Sunday, October 7, 2012

Xterra USA

I haven't really been too excited about writing this race report, hence the two week delay since Xterra USA Nationals.  Overall the race went about as well as could be expected considering how my year has been going and I'm happy with my 6th place finish.  However, the resulting aftermath is just typical of what I am going to chalk up to as simply the curse of 2012.
Swim Start - Xterra Photos
The pro's had a slight head start in front of the amateurs and it was nice and clean.  I quickly got in behind Ben Allen and Craig Evans with Branden Rakita right in the mix.  The three of us couldn't hold Ben's pace through the 2nd lap and came out of the water a couple of seconds down with a nice gap behind us to the next guys.  My swim is finally really starting to feel good and I was excited to be swimming right where I should at a comfortable pace, especially after feeling like I was going to die at Xterra Canada.
Wheeler Canyon - Photo Emma Garrard
Onto the bike I was feeling the best I have all season.  I held onto the lead all the way through the first two climbing sections getting caught by Mel and Suzie right at the top before the first descent.  I stuck with them for a bit and thought I might just hang on, but the pace was just out of reach.  Leslie, Danelle, and Renata gradually reeled me in and passed me up the long climb to Sardine Peak and I rolled into T2 in 6th place, right about where I thought I would be.
Middle Fork Trail - Photo Nils Nilsen
I started the run feeling pretty good, legs were light and turning over nicely.  I had been nursing a bit of a niggle in my left calf and a chronically sore right Achilles tendon for the week and a half leading into the race but was hoping that by easing into the run I could let them warm-up and get through the run without any problems.  Usually my Achilles is a bit stiff and sore for the first couple of minutes then loosens up and is fine, unfortunately not this time.  By halfway through it was progressively getting more and more sore and putting lots of strain on my soleus, which was in turn tightening up.  A slight stumble in some congestion when the sprint course joined back into our course sent a shooting pain up my calf and I almost just had to laugh, really I just can't seem to get a break this year can I.  All I could do was hobble into the finish hoping the damage wasn't too bad.
Fall Colours on Run - Photo Emma Garrard
By evening my ankle was starting to bruise and swell along the side of my tendon.  After two days in the car driving home from Utah I had cankles the size of Canada. Is this season almost over, please!!!

Anyways, only three weeks to go until worlds and then it will be over.  Making the best of what I can do training wise and will just have to roll the dice in Maui and see what comes up.  Good news is no matter what happens I will be in Maui :)

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