Monday, May 19, 2014

USATF 15K National Racewalk Championships

I did NOTHING at all on Friday and Saturday. Total rest days. I felt OK, too - not much weird soreness, and only a bit of abnormal fatigue. We drove to Jean, Nevada on Friday - about a 7 hour drive - and I did OK! When this thing was really bad, that much sitting was excruciating, so it was good news that I was all right. Saturday's drive was only about 3.5 hours to Riverside, CA. Before driving on Saturday, I soaked in the hot tub at the hotel and stretched for about 10-15 minutes. It felt divine. The palm trees pictured were right over the hot tub. Lovely.

It was a very fun girls' road trip with Nancy, Kathy, and Diane. Nancy and Kathy and I made up a 3-woman team for the Wasatch Walkers, and Diane was coming to judge the 15K. Nancy actually raced the 15K, then judged the 5K! Anyway, we enjoyed chatting and joking in the car and it made the time fly by much faster. It's a long drive, and much better with good company.

Saturday evening (photo at left) we met a whole bunch of other racewalkers for dinner at Canyon Crust Pizza, which had gluten-free options for Lauri and Alex (RW friends who have Celiac's/gluten sensitivity) and for me, since I'm doing a gluten-free month to see if diet helps my fatigue. (Actually, I discussed Celiac's with Alex and now think it is possible that could be on my differential diagnosis list…will ask my doc about that soon). Anyway, the pizza was great and so was the company. Seeing friends is always a blast.

We hit the sack early, and I slept OK for the night before a race. I woke up feeling pretty glum about things, but tried to put on a game face. Mostly I failed at that! Regardless, I was glad I'd get to attempt to race. I just hated the fact that my normal spandex shorts looked, in Diane's words, "lumpy". Yup. Fat butt :(. So I wore my other shorts, even though I knew they'd cause chafing. Yup. Fat thighs. Ugh. MUST LOSE WEIGHT. Hard to do under these circumstances. That made me feel more glum. I applied Vaseline liberally and brought along body glide for the aid table. I did use it during the race (2 laps from the finish) and still got chafed pretty badly on my right thigh. Ouch.

I did a VERY short warm-up just to make sure my technique would be under control, and then hung out until the race start. The weather was pretty good; it was in the low 60s (probably 16-17C) and humid to start, and then the sun came out near the end of the race and it got warmer (low 70s?).

The race itself? Tough. It's hard to do that untrained. Seriously tough. The first 5K was moderately hard, and I completed it in about 31:25. Yeah. Ugly. I got slower, of course. The second 5K was hard (got to 10K in 1:03:51), and after 11K it was just very hard. And slower. And slower. And depressing. But encouraging in that my legs didn't hurt badly until 11K, and I did get to finish the 15K, which I would have thought unlikely a couple weeks ago (heck, even a week ago). So…it could have been a lot worse. But my time was depressingly slow. Yeah, I know, it's all relative and I'm too hard on myself, but…I just think of what could have been if I felt better, and if I didn't weigh 10lb too much, and if I'd been able to train, and if if if. But I also think of how good it was to see friends, to have a weekend away, and to be able to race and not be injured. People said that I looked good and strong. I guess I put on a good front, because I sure didn't feel that way inside. I just felt determined to finish and to hold good form if at all possible.

Afterwards, my legs didn't hurt too badly, for which I was grateful. I was a bit surprised by that too, but I have indeed been feeling better this week, so that explains it I guess. In fact, after a good night's sleep, I just have the usual DOMS from doing a race, and nothing worse. That's good news. Driving all day home (about 11 hr total including stops) was not too awful either! That's good news as well.

Oh yeah, my embarrassing time. 1:36:20 with ave HR 163. I was pushing hard. Seriously. My HR was over 160 for most of the race and up to average of

171 for the last lap (~1800m laps). Ouch. No wonder it was such a struggle. I'm so out of shape, and so heavy, and…SHUT UP must stop thinking negatively! Must be positive! Anyway, it was hard, and I did it anyway. That was awesome.

Garmin data here.

Also awesome was my 2nd place finish (behind Miranda and Rachel, but since Rachel is Canadian I still got 2nd) in the open division, 1st place in W40-44, and our 1st place team medal in W40-49 (Arizona RWers got 2nd to us in W40-49). Nancy and Kathy both walked 2 min faster than last year, and so they were ecstatic. Sitting poolside all afternoon with them was wonderful as well. Lots of great fun, and I'm glad I went.

1 comment:

Harriet said...

Performances are relative to recent circumstances. The fact that you stayed legal and finished puts you on the road forward, especially given that you have only the "usual" soreness afterward.

But such is the curse of having hit such highs in previous years; now "ordinary good" seems slow to you. :-)