It took a good week to settle back into things from Hood to Coast (namely sleep) and with the sunrise now at 7am, dang son made for tough mornings to adjust to, training in the semi dark. But now with 2 weeks in, I have been able to switch things up to get use to training upcoming for NYC Marathon. Little more running, new shoe rotation, change in computrainer bike type intensities, and some swims until they close the outdoor pool here (don a wetsuit), and more, longer UBE. I am also looking at tweaking things at work so there have been some projects on the board that I’d like to improvise in the next month – namely some extra coaching I am currently doing. I also plan to participate in 2 of Chariots of Freedom events come October to work with that foundation. Our business at the store the whole week of the DNC convention so I can’t say that it helped us as much as the Uptown area stores. Many seemed to just vacation by vacating the city and/or working from home. One GOOD thing about the DNC was that Gina and I were able to go across the street one evening for dinner at Cantina where it was all quiet. We enjoyed a relaxing Thursday night dinner and a pitcher of sangria – no joke, with a touch of amaretto (its always a plus if your waitress is the bartender). It was more juice I think since I didn’t crash afterwards. But it was good time for us to just chill. Big props too for Matt Rivas at Polar for sending me loads of pupusas and homemade bread pudding sure enough to last me through October! Gina’s sisters Chris and Susan also hooked up with some chocolate chip bread and some gifts after their visit here to Charlotte when I was at HTC. Awesome stuff.

I signed up for the Lake Davidson Sprint Tri for a number of reasons: it was a Sunday race, Charlotte Running Co was a sponsor, it would serve as a good hard workout to gauge status and proceed from there,  I don’t know if I would get to race another tri this season, and I plan to just concentrate on NYC after this. I was coming off a good training week, and from my Polar training loads, would be in a semi-fatigue state. The weather got a bit cooler as a rash of rain storms brought in a nice cold front. This race is in its third year and is marketed as a Corporate Challenge for businesses in the area. There were about 300 register and a good bunch of that was relay teams from groups like Ingersoll-Rand, Carolinas LiveWell, Loews, and Rubbermaid. It was easy to get to and a nice 8am start helped ease the wake up call for us at around 5am.

I aquaphor-ed up as usual before departing and we got there in plenty of time to check in, get settled and observe. A beautiful area tucked into an office park of Ingersoll Rand and since the water was 80 degrees, wasn’t wetsuit legal. Yes, this was a 500 yard OPEN WATER swim, no pool as is the case with most sprints. I had my Blue Seventy skinsuit handy so I was a little chilly waiting for the call to start but the sun was rising and it wasn’t going to be cool for long. I set up my little small area in transition and soon it was time to roll. I gave G and nice hug and kiss and made my way into the water. They had 4 waves going off in 5 minute sets, of which I was in the first with 5 age groups. All male under 40. Mostly, what looked liked so-so swimmers. The first bouy was only 80 yards away before we had to make a turn. Mmmmmm. Crash course expected. The water was sooooooo nice and warm. Advantage. But wait, I was off right, right behind a row of 4 guys. Two of which were like linebacker sized. Mmmmm. Crash course. Ok, I got my plan. We get the one minute warning. 15 seconds. Three deep breaths.

Its on. I immediately let a second go by to see my line. I churn a few strokes and see one of the linebackers stop short and probably get pummelled by what was behind him. I slip in between 2 guys and off I go. Blast son.I hit the buoy without an issue and bear left. By the time I get to ease a bit I notice I have a clear line in front of me. I am alone in front, but only 3 other guys about 25 yards in front. I simply keep the hard pace and go. The water was very comfy and as I make the final turn I still hold the fourth position and keep going. Bam, hands touch the sand to the dock, prop up, and up the ramp I go into T1. Gina got some great shots and positioning since it was easy access and small crowds. Off comes the suit and onto the Black Widow I go. Swim time for 550 yards: 9:41

I had one guy in front right away that I soon caught. I crank the big gear, got my CS600x showing me stats and poppin’ some good reads. Its a good rolling course, with choice gradual inclines instead of hills on some nice quiet roads. All were well covered by volunteers and police of which a “Thank You” was echoed at each turn. I soon get eye of another guy and catch him on one of the inclines around 8 miles in. I only need 2 sips of my drink on the bike the whole race. Clicking. Cranking. I cross the train tracks which can give the lady a good rattle, but the volunteer yells “2nd guy in.” as I enter the office park back to T2 (it was a rectangular 12 mile loop). I don’t see anyone so I just keep at it. Nicely done, off the bike, into T2. Bike 12 mile in: 35:32

Quick change and I take the CS600x with me to keep splits. No watch this race. Gina yells and confirms “2nd Place!!” I bust out and just pound. I hope to maybe see the guy in front. No dice. I go through the first mile in 5:30. Keep pace. A nice flat route along the office park, then a turn onto the paved trail back to the finish. Just follow cones and bust. I keep hammering hoping to see someone but that guy must have smoked the bike (he did and later found out was about 4 plus minutes ahead off the bike). I go through mile 2 in around 5:40. Now its just hold steady and try to maintain as I knew there still was probably some fast 40 yr old bikers in the wave behind me and a 5 minute differential. I see Gina before a quick turnaround and just blitz through the finish. On my watch I had the 5K split at 16:50, but for some reason the results had it at 18:40??? No issue, it was later corrected in the overall posting at 16:46. I finish 2nd overall (and fastest ruun split!!!!!!! Full results can be found here:

I cooldown jog for about 5 minutes before getting back to G and huggin and kissin! It was a fun hour of blast. Total time was 1:03 and was very pleased to be out here and testing the MChine. The weather was nice and mild, Cool Breeze (no pun intended as Cool Breeze Cyclery was main sponsor), and good sunshine. We walked, stretched, I had the usual 2 ice cold bottled drinks on my hammys in my tights, sipped my H2Overdrive, and had a good 2 hours to see everyone finish before the awards were distributed. Gina had some great stories of rookie transitions, and it was fun to celebrate people on. Interesting enough the top 3 women were all under 16!!! Some fast kids in this neck of the woods. We made the quick exit and were home by noon thanks to no traffic. From there it was recapping the day, having a nice brunch of scones and pancakes with some dark java.  Sundays are slow days and its an awesome sight to see the Ironsherpa and Holmes passed out taking a nap. Love it.

Now its on to the big stuff. The final grand event for Pops. NYC Marathon. I got my itunes play-lists newly created with the Addicted to Radio and Big R radio stations and others adjusted thanks to my run crew-mate Brad Mintz. This is gonna be deep, focused, intense. With the Hood to Coast and Lake Davidson race results, I can’t wait.


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