Wednesday, December 12, 2012

2012 Season Recap

It's been a while since finishing the 2012 season with the Rev3 Florida Duathlon and I've had enough time to look back at the year and get some perspective.  Here are my thoughts on the last season and where I see myself going for 2013.

Coming into the year, I had just finished my first off-season of training full time and was incredibly optimistic about racing.  For the previous 4 years, I sounded like a broken record of 'all I need is a bit more time to focus/rest/train and I can be great'.  It was time to live up to those words and I was in good enough shape to make good on them heading into my first race at Rev3 Costa Rica.  Of course, I go and get injured on the first race and don't even get to have a single positive result.  I follow that up with my first ever DNF in Miami and I can honestly say the following 3 months were some of the hardest of my triathlon career.  Sitting on the sidelines, doing rehab, watching the races go by knowing that I could, or perhaps should, be competing for the top spots was as agonizing as the injury itself.  Knowing that I'd been billing this as my breakout year, I felt like a bit of a failure.

Fast forward through most of the summer and I had a huge PT bill, a lot of great support, and the patience of a monk. The one thing I didn't have was fitness or speed.  I kept having to push back my first race past my initial goal of Rev3 Quassy to Rev3 Portland to finally Giant Eagle 5150 at the end of July.  It was a test race to see how my body would hold up and I was more relieved than anything to pull of a decent 4th place result with minimal pain (well, except for a nasty freezer burn from icing afterwards that has left a 3 inch scar on my butt... goodbye nude modeling...).  I put all of my focus into preparing for the ironman distance race at Rev3 Cedar Point.  Ofter just a month's time, I pushed myself  as hard as I could and constantly worried about re-injury.  I made the start line in one piece, healthy, and happy.
Running pre blow-up
The first 7 hours of the Rev3 race were fantastic as I led from the start to 18 miles into the marathon.  The rapid build up and the lack of training over the summer caught up with me and I blew up, but still managed to hold on to 4th.  Given my year, I thought that may be my best result and set the goal to simply recover and stay healthy through the end of the season.  2013 would be a fresh start and if I pushed it too hard now, I'd risk being injured yet again.  I decided to finish off the Rev3 series with the fitness I had developed for Cedar Point and basically swam/biked easy.  I didn't know that my best race was in front of me at the Half Full race.  Winning there was a bit of a shock as I honestly contemplated not even starting.  My body was not ready to run, but luckily I didn't have to do much after a good swim/bike.
How slow can I run and still win?
Sadly, the last two races of the year were honestly and truly in damage control mode.  My running dropped to under 10 miles/week and I only kept racing in order to stay in the series race and because I had missed so many early season races with my injury.  I love to compete and facing a long off season I felt the need to get my last racing fix.  South Carolina and Florida were nothing to brag about and the conversion of Florida to a duathlon was the final nail in the coffin.  From the up and down year, I was mentally and physically exhausted and ready for a break.  Despite not wanting to lose my fitness yet again, I knew it was important to take a good amount of time off.  Ashley and I took a week and went down to Mexico and I didn't even pack running shoes.  It was a bit of heaven.

Sorry Ashley, had to post this.  Love it!
Now I'm back to training and have run more in the past two weeks than I did in the whole last month of the 2012 season (which is sadly still under 60 miles).  I'm building strength, keeping up with my rehab, and building slowly and steadily.   Looking forward to 2013, I will be focusing on the Rev3 series for the most part with an emphasis on Quassy and redeeming myself at Cedar Point.  If all goes well, I will be hitting a late season Ironman to toy with Kona qualifying in 2014.  A lot of pieces have to fall in place to make next year successful but I'm keeping my head down, doing the work, and staying healthy.

Thank you to anyone reading this who has supported me throughout the crazy year.  I know that I'm never racing alone!  Thank you to my great sponsors: First Endurance, BlueSeventy, 3Sports, The Sport Factory, Utopian Coffee, and ISM saddles.  I'm lucky enough to use some of the best stuff in the business and encourage you to check them out.  Finally, I was able to put a bit of money toward the Blazeman Foundation from my winnings this year but it's never enough.  Make a holiday donation to the cause and make a difference.  

See you next year!

1 comment:

  1. Love the chart! Congratulations on keeping your head while in the 'scribble' in 2012! To a healthy 2013!