It has now been 1 month since my last travel nurse contract ended and I began focusing on training and racing full time. While I have kept plenty busy in the past month, not spending that extra 40 hours a week on my feet has certainly helped with my recovery and the ability to adapt from training sessions. After Powerman Arizona I continued to roll straight through with training for the next few weeks with each week building on the prior. Each week consisted of not only the largest amount of volume I’ve completed in training, but also good quality work (as opposed to endless hours of commuting to work by bike). This week I’ll be taking a much easier week to recover and adapt from that load before starting the next block leading into Spring races. I love putting in the work in training, so while a recovery week isn’t the most “exciting” thing to do, it is pretty nice to be at a point where I choose to take a recovery week rather than it being forced by injury or burnout.
I have been debating on my exact Spring race schedule for awhile now. The races I choose are not picked lightly, as the results from this dedicated time to training will likely determine how sustainable I will be able to continue with training full time in the future. I have now completed the registration for my events and am excited to prepare to throw down in the following races this Spring!
While my main focus for training and racing will be for the IRONMAN distance, I still intend to throw my hat in the ring for some 70.3s as well. I chose Texas 70.3 specifically to prepare me for my following race just 3 weeks after. It will be a good opportunity to get back into the swing of racing and a lesson in reminding me how much racing is going to hurt! I believe that I left a lot on the table in 2019 due to failures in race execution, so this will be my first chance to make sure that I hit everything right on race day.
This will be my first true priority race of 2020. I honestly had a very difficult time deciding between this race and IRONMAN St George which is only a 5 hour drive from me and is this year’s North American Regional Championship race. The decision ultimately came down to Texas likely fits my strengths better as an athlete. While I greatly enjoy climbing and elevation on the bike and run, I generally believe that I can perform better on a flatter course. I am super comfortable, aero, and powerful riding in the tt position on my TriRig Omni, which is exactly what is required on a course such as Texas. I also tend to excel on run courses where I can plug into a fast pace and just go. I haven’t raced on what is considered a “fast” course since Ironman Arizona in 2018, so I’m looking forward to seeing just how fast I can go with more knowledge and training under my belt. While I have a time goal of breaking 8 hours, my main focus is more position oriented. My main goal for this race is to podium (top-3) for my first time in a full IRONMAN race.
If I’m being honest, this race is a bit tentative. I definitely hope to race it, but it will come down to how my recovery goes following IRONMAN Texas. I have raced in Chattanooga now 4 times in my career and love what it has to offer, even if that is generally a lot of pain! So as long as I’m healthy and firing on all cylinders at this point then I’ll be looking forward to throwing down and seeing a bunch of friends and family while I’m there.
This will be my final race this Spring and will be about equal in priority to IRONMAN Texas. While the course won’t be as pan flat as Texas, it seems to look pretty similar with more rolling hills on the bike. I am banking on being able to build some fitness from the prior races in this block to be ready to absolutely smash Tulsa. I am also not oblivious to the fact that the recently announced Collins Cup established by the PTO will be on the same day in Slovakia. This essentially removes some of the top competition from play, though I’m sure there will be many others thinking the same thing. Regardless of who shows up though, my goal in Tulsa is to go for the Win. Whether that is realistic or not will become evident on race day, but it certainly won’t be for lack of trying!