Wednesday, April 29, 2009

First Five In St. croix

No pictures today, I am blogging from the resort computer. I have taken many great pics for you to dream over.
We have been here for five days and I am officially lite red.
Sun is hot and the wind, well lets just say it doesn't ever stop. I have managed to ride most of the course, the first day I set up the bike and headed out for a loop around the east end of the island. It is mile 37 - 50 of the race. 1,000 ft of climbing at 19 mph ave. I felt good, but hot. Water will be a key in this race. I must force myself to stay hydrated.
The next day I braved the waters of the Divi. The winds blow in from this side and the water is way rough. I jumped in and like a fool began to swim straight out into the blue waters headed for the reef. It looked to be about 300m-400m out. About half way, the little devil popped up on my shoulder and told me I would not make it. He was right, I turned around and headed back toward shore. I kept looking for the pool side to grab. NO LUCK
When I got back in Jennifer said that I looked like I knew what I was doing. Ha ha ha
The next day, the wind was blowing hard, so i set out with the wind and the thoughts I would ride west along the course until the main hwy and then turn around and get in about 1.5 hr ride.
The time was the only thing that turned out the way i planned. I turned left out of the resort and headed up to Grassy Point Hill. Unbelievable views, I have pics and video just wait. The the fun began, I rode with the wind at about 27-28 mph for the next 12 miles. Loads of fun! I turned around and headed back, directly into a 30mph steady head wind. This is the way the race take you, and I was only going 17-18 mph. I got back at the resort in 1:20 and 19mph ave.
Today was the practice swim day. Surprise, i was the only one in a wet suit. I am so glad I have it, I would never have made it with out it. A 1.25 mi course laid out in the ocean is huge. Now I know why they usually make you swim a course twice. I could barley see the end buoys. I had Phil's butterfly's, my butterfly's and someone else's running around in my gut.
Jennifer came with me to be the official race Sherpa and she zipped me up. I was worried about this because Dawson seems to have such troubles with this at swim practice. Without much prep, it was time to start jumping in. I started my watch and jumped. I told myself just swim buoy to buoy. I had no idea how hard it was to go straight when there are no lane lines. I am sure if you had me on gps, I swam 1.5 mi. When we reached the turn around point, I was really relieved to be wearing the suit. I took many rests along the way, I even flipped to my back a couple of times and did the Clothier. I kept telling myself, You will finish! I had to, there was only a couple of small boats watching all of the swimmers. One seemed to hand around me, not sure why. On the return back, I found my stride. I had a woman to my right and I decided to just follow close to her and I would follow her lead. bad mistake. After about 100m I stopped to spot and we were way off course. We looked at each other and I shouted out GOD DAMN IT!
We were swimming against the current now and it seemed like I was standing still. I just kept taking about 15 strokes and then spot. it seemed like I repeated this 20 times. Finally, I reached the shore.
I did do one thing right during this swim, I managed to keep my cardio in the aerobic state the entire time. Never once did I push my self to the danger zone of the bonk in the middle of the ocean. Smart don't you think?
Oh, I did learn one other thing, don't drink so much salt water, it doesn't agree with my stomach. Would be real embarrassing to brown out at this race.

One really cool thing happened, I swam with Sister Madonna!

How many of you can say that! No shit, I didn't take a picture and I could kick myself.
I hooked up with Vinnie Monseau after the swim and met his wife. They were nice and offered some more advice. He went down on the bike at St. Anthony's last Sunday and got to the run and did a 32min 10k. 5:18 / mi pace. He lost by 11 seconds! Bummer

Tomorrow, I am doing a 5k that I should get smoked in, and have a blast doing it because it doesn't take place in the water.
As I sit here, my body still feels like it is rocking with the current. No shit, I am serious!
Oh well, no problem mon, as they say on the island. Sphere: Related Content

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