I didn’t get much sleep last night and woke up this morning feeling like someone used my stomach as a punching bag. I’m very disappointed. I felt so rested coming into this race and after what happened last weekend I was motivated and confident that I could put together a great race.
The day started awesome! I had another great spot on the pontoon lining up once again beside Jan Frodeno. As soon as I hit the water I felt great and knew it was going to be a good swim. I swam right beside Courtney Atkinson out to the first turn buoy which set me up great and eventually translated into the best swim of my career, exiting the water in the top 10. I had a quick transition and headed out onto the bike in about 5th place.
I felt strong throughout the bike, was well positioned in the pack, and was able to respond to a bunch of different attacks. Coming into transition I was up near the front of the group and I was able to get out quick.
I tried not to get too excited and focused on staying relaxed for the first kilometre of the run. I was sitting in about 10th place, still well within contention, but about a half a lap in I could feel my stomach starting to cramp up. I tried to work it out but it got progressively worse. By the end of the first lap I was relegated to a jog. On the second lap it got really bad. My entire abdomen seized up and I was struggling just to put one foot in front of the other. Had it been any other race I would have just pulled the plug but with a guaranteed pay cheque waiting at the finish I had to keep going. The third and fourth laps were very rough. I had to walk several times and even stopped at one point to try and stretch it out. First time I’ve ever done that!
I’ve had a lot of problems with cramping in the past but I can’t remember the last time it was this bad. It’s hard to say exactly what the cause was but I think electrolytes definitely played a role. I could even feel my forearms cramping up when I grabbed bottles at the water stops. Regardless, the last couple weeks have been frustrating. I had such a great training block coming into these two races so it’s sad that I wasn’t able to perform. Last week my bike failed me and this week my body gave up on me.
There’s obviously some positives that I can take away from the race. Heck, if you had told me before the race that I would be top 10 out of the water and in the lead group right from the start of the bike (with over a $500 000 in prize money on the line) I would have laughed and said show me the money!
I know I’m fit and I’ve been running well but I will definitely be sitting down with Coach Phil over the next week to figure some things out before we leave for Europe. It seems like I have the swim and bike down so I can’t afford to have things go wrong on the run, that’s the part I’m supposed to be good at!
The rest of the guys had a great weekend. Simon put on a show once again! I just watched the replay of the sprint…I love his reaction after winning. Both Lauren and Brent had great races too. Very happy for the whole team.