What a fantastic race. This was my 4th time I believe doing Salem and it's definitely one of my favorites. I love that everyone is doing the same distance, I love the venue for my family, and I love that the best competition comes to Salem. And this year was no different
My family and I camped up Payson canyon about 20 minutes away the night before in an awesome jimmy-rigged tent my husband and I figured out after forgetting the tent poles. We slept well and all headed down to the race about 6:30. Got there a little later than I usually like, but I had plenty of time. It's always fun chatting with people, and they even had a helicopter fly over this year throwing out race shirts. It was pretty sweet!
Now on to the race
Swim: 11:18 Swam along side Sarah for about half the race, but then unfortunately fell back a little. My arms and legs felt a little heavy and fatigued. Frustrating. Note to self: Masters the morning before with fins and paddles isn't the brightest idea. Duh. Got out about 45 seconds after Sarah and arrived at my bike just as she was leaving.Bike: 33:40 So happy with this. I knew I'd need to push hard and that I did. I rode with a great lady Jeanette the whole time. We played cat and mouse, taking turns leading (don't get the idea I drafted, I didn't, we were just so evenly paced we were always within 3 bike lengths of each other). She turned the heat on but I didn't want to let her go (I yelled at a couple age group men who cornered very slowly to "MOVE! I can't lose her!") I knew I was about 2 minutes down on Sarah from what my husband was calling out, and at this point I thought we were in 3rd and 4th, so I was really cranking it out! I've never ridden that hard ever I think. Someone that wasn't even at the race made the choice comment that the course was short, no way did we all ride that much faster than that year. I heard that yes, the course was a tiny bit short from last year, but no way were we not riding fast. All 3 of us were riding hard, really really hard. My legs cried out in fatigue getting to the tops of hills once in a while, but I had to get through it. I'm very happy to have ridden that strong. And no, it isn't the "fancy new bike" that did it. That helped, but I've worked hard over the last years (6 months in particular) on my bike, the engine absolutely played a part.
Run: 20:10 Yeah baby! This is no flat course and after worrying about Daybreak's time last week I was really happy to see that split. It was the fastest women's run split of the day second only to one speedy age grouper who ran 2 seconds faster. I was pushing hard. Form felt ok, but not amazing. I think it just took every ounce of what I had left to hang on and push that hard. I passed Jeanette early on and never looked back out of fear it'd get her thinking I was fading, but I always knew she was there. I never heard her, just knew. Salem's race was an hour long threshold busting riding and running for my life type of race. Boy did it hurt, but boy did it feel good. I think back to where I was at this race after my oldest was born, barely podiuming in my age group, and to think of where I am now makes me very happy. I have worked hard, learned a lot from those around me, learned how to push and train my own body harder, and just grown stronger. What fun it is.So I finished 2nd in 1:07.18, only 1:25 back from Sarah. She is so strong and fast, and yes I went out wanting to give her a run for her money, and I think I did. I was never close enough for her to see me, but I was close enough to satisfy me.......for now..... :)