Well, that’s it for the year for me. The last few footsteps of racing at the Noosa Triathlon, were the last racing steps I’ll take until next year. Fittingly, they were bloody painful footsteps as well, an apposite way to takes one’s last strides in anger for the year.
But lets get to those strides with some meandering narrative first. Since my last post, it’s been 6 weeks of prodigious amounts of work, with the aim of getting myself as fit as a butcher’s pup for my last two races of the year, Nepean and Noosa. All had been going quite swimmingly until the Wednesday before Nepean, when on an innocent enough 30 minute jog I strained my calf. This put me out of Nepean, much to my chagrin, and had me somewhat perturbed about getting to the start line at Noosa as well. Fortunately, I gave it a bit of rest, and resisted from putting it through it’s paces until the day before the race at the Celebrity Noosa Tri, where it felt ok at race pace in what, I must add, was a fruitless effort, as my team got totally pumped. I’d like to say this didn’t bother me, as it’s mainly just a fun, entertaining race. I’d like to say that...
Anyway, harboring minor melancholy post-defeat, I was able to move onto the also fun and entertaining, but somewhat more serious, and most pertinently well-paid race of the weekend. The swim was relatively uneventful, my arms were kind enough to propel me out pretty comfortably in 4th, and the brutal pace set by Shane Barrie had been unrelenting enough to see a few of the main contenders off the back early. Out on to the bike, and things started to get interesting for me at this point - and not the good sort of interesting either. Pretty much with the first few pedals strokes, I could tell I was in a bit of trouble, with my legs feeling heavier than Kim Kardashian’s make-up bag. For the rest of the ride it was a game of survival, my tactic of trying to spark myself up a bit by surging up the main hill almost saw me get dropped from the bunch, and I was in difficulties and dangling off the back for most of the ride. At this stage, my increasingly desperate inner monologue was telling me to hang in at the front of the race, and fervently praying that I’d come good at some stage. Out on to the run, and there was a bunch of 5 of us, featuring the usual suspects of Good, Kerr, Bailie and Royle. My legs were yet to ‘come good’, but I was moving ok, so once again my plan was to hang around, keep myself in the race, generally be a nuisance, and see what happened. Pete threw down some big surges from around 4km in, and was joined by Bailie and Royle in changing up the pace, which saw Good drop off at about 6km, and then Pete at 8km. At this stage, my legs were still hurting, but at the 8km mark, with a chance of a Noosa crown up for grabs, I felt that at least a bit of pain was to be expected, and somewhat warranted. Nevertheless, I decided to veto any further suggestions of pain from my legs, and decided that I was going to win the race in a sprint finish. Lamentably, Royle and Bailie were obviously also thinking the same thing, and I finished in a Wollongong Wizard sandwich to grab 2nd, in a race I was pretty happy to hang tough and graft out a good result.
Following the race, I had my last uni exam for the year yesterday, and can now officially switch off both the body and mind for a while, and as such, today’s plan involves drinking coffee, eating peanut butter out of the jar with a spoon, and watching Man vs Food all day in my pajamas. Let the good times roll.