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Monday, June 25, 2007

Thursday - AKA MVP Day

At 7 AM, we drove out to a local trail for a 90-minute trail run, which included a 1-mile climb to the cars. I'm proud to say I made it up the hill without walking.

After the run, we soaked our legs in this cool lake and ate bagels.

We headed back for our first shower of the day, some more quick food and a little rest before regrouping at 11 AM.

We then headed out on our bikes for a loop of the 56-mile course. Hodska would regroup us periodically in order to break each part of the course down. It is not an easy course by any stretch of the imagination, but race day can be good if it is ridden smartly.

The course includes a long descent (6 miles I believe), which is a little scary to ride down but also exhilarating. After we got to the bottom, Hodska formed us into a paceline. For the next 10 miles, my HR soared as I tried to keep up with the uber athlete guys. Speeds were easily around 25 mph on this flat section. By the time it was my turn to take lead, the group had broken apart a bit, but I still held onto the 25 mph pace until it was time to fall back. It was fun, but I don't think I should be riding that hard on race day.

After the flat section, the group fell apart again for the climb back to Wilmington. It is probably one of the hardest hills, because it goes on mostly up for about 3 miles.

We regrouped at the convenience store where I peed for the first of many times out by a bush. I know, TMI, but it was just part of the experience.

Paula and I rode the 14-mile out and back section at a pretty good clip, because it took the guys a long time to catch us. This section is fair and only has one hill of merit. On race day, it should be crazy, because it is tight in there for so many bikes.

We then headed for the last 12 miles of the course. It is a stair step climb all the way back into town. This is easily the hardest part of the course. We got poured on during this section and my morale was starting to sink. I had been leading, because hills are my forte (Paula's superb on the downs and flats, but no slouch at the hills either). She offered to take the lead, which I misunderstood to mean that she thought I was going too slow. I said "This is the speed I'm going. You can do whatever you want." She meant that is wasn't fair that I brave the headwind the whole time and when she took the lead I realized how grateful I was that she did. When we headed up the last big hill, the guys were all there waiting at the turn to make sure we made it okay. The hill continued though, so I gave a quick wave, said "hi guys" and kept moving. I am grateful that they were there even if I didn't show it at the time.

We had time for a brief shower when we got back before we regrouped for a swim. The plan was to swim 45-60 minutes. The water was choppy from the rain/wind, but I did okay. About 17 minutes into it, I came upon two of our group. Apparently, it was thundering, so Trephina decided to head back. Gary and I decided that we could make it to the turn, so we kept heading out. It rained on us, but eventually it cleared. I wasn't ecstatic about the time it took me to swim the course, but Angela pointed out that the place we turned was probably farther out than the real course is and we had already run 90 minutes and biked 56 miles before the swim (kind of like a half-Ironman in reverse).

We went out to dinner at a local Italian place. Hodska presented the MVP award of the day and crazily enough, he gave it to me. My pace line work and swimming the whole course showed some guts I guess. It was very nice of him and I got a huge bottle of Recoverite, which should last awhile. Thanks Hods!

Of course, we went out for Ben and Jerry's again. Nothing like a dish of ice cream after a tough, long day!

We were exhausted, but knew we needed to get to bed early and rally for another big day coming up. Our idea of what is "clean enough" changed a lot during this camp and we never knew the bathroom heat lamp could be used as a dryer.


Blogger Craig said...

Hardcore training days in the summer are great - congrats on the MVP award!

9:24 AM

Blogger E-Speed said...

awesome MVP! You are so amazing! That day sounds tough!

10:34 AM

Blogger Jen H said...

I'm so NOT surprised that you'd be picked as the MVP ... your dedication, work ethic, positive attitude and desire to push yourself are fantastic--you are a great motivator to those around you to want to do, be and achieve more!!

Love you, buddy!!

12:18 PM

Blogger DaisyDuc said...

Great job Ms. deserved that icecream!!!!!!

3:19 PM


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