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Race Result

Racer: Amanda Shuman
Race: Virginia Duathlon
Date: Sunday, April 3, 2005
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Race Type: Duathlon - Sprint
Age Group: Female 20 - 24
Time: 1:33:31
Age Group Place: 8 / 19
Comment: Great first run! That's where the fun ended :(

Race Report:

Day Before:
My goals for this race were a bit lofty. When I originally signed up I was intending to race in the 20-24 female category, however, due to the aging up in August >=O I was placed in the 25-29 group. Little did I know that this would royally bite me in the ass later.

I definitely would have spent more time outside on the bike prior to this event, but given my being an extreme wuss in the cold, I decided to opt to spend more time running and in spin class. I don't think I could have changed this; I do this sport because I love it and anything that I don't like I won't do.

Drove down the day before in on/off torrential downpours. The sky cleared around 4-5pm and then the winds picked up... tianqi zaogao! :(

Didn't sleep too well the night before. I woke up every hour or two with that "oh no did I miss my alarm! no you moron it's only [fill in the blank] am go back to sleep" panic.

Morning of:
Ate my pre-race breakfast: Peanut butter on wheat bread and half a cup of coffee. Forgot to eat the half a luna bar like I do for races over 10k. Oops.

At race site, the winds were strong and bitter cold while warming up, and you either had a tailwind or headwind; wasn't much else! Very shortly before the race they announced that due to the weather from the previous day the bike course would only be 20k. Groans from the cyclists, cheering from the runners :)

1st 5k (3rd wave):
Turned the first corner... straight into the headwind! This course is very odd. You're on an airfield with a lot of sharp angled turns that constantly allow you to see other runners, but not know where you are because they're going in various directions. All the scenery looks the same: flat cement with potholes, shrubs and scrubby looking trees on the side. You never know where the mile markers are because you can't see them ahead of time.

Finished in under 22 minutes! Well, right under that. My co-worker was standing there to take pictures at the transition - I waved her away as I thought I was going to puke near her feet.

eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek. Wind, wind, puddles, wind, cold, did I mention the wind? I almost got knocked off the bike on several occasions. Also, I really should train more outside on a bike. Might help improve handling skills in real conditions like this.

2nd 5k:
Felt ok going out... then BAM 2 side stomach cramps after passing mile 1. What in the hell is this! Was I just breathing wrong? I need advice here. This has NEVER happened to me in a race. It has in training runs, but then I could just stop or bend over. Oh, the pain! I finished but barely, the slowest 5k I've done in a long time :(

So I end up in what appears to be the most competitive age group for women! If I had been in 20-24 I would have gotten 3rd and qualified for worlds, but alas, 25-29 is a lot harder than I thought. Better luck next time?

My friend from GMU, Matt Chrabot, placed 3rd in males 20-24 and qualified for worlds. I asked him if he was going to go and he doesn't know because 1) the money and 2) "I'm a swimmer!" Ugh. Watch out for this kid. He may decide to do some of the tris you're in; he doesn't do many but when he does he cleans up. I've invited him to the Sat morning RATs rides but he races every weekend and when he doesn't, anytime before 10 is "way too early!"

Overall thoughts:
- improve on my bike. Stay outside and push hard more often.
- focus on tempo and race pace training runs; they seem to be helping immensely
- swimming the first part of an event isn't that bad because then I actually want to get out and run really hard at the end and I'm not tired from running before :)

Not everything was bad about this event -- I did a great first 5k. The biggest positives, however, were seeing my co-worker and her husband at dinner and at the race (and her cheering us on! :) ) and, of course, driving with Alex, who is great company on long car rides (thanks!).

~Amanda, who will be pushing it hard on those Saturday rides trying to become a better outdoor cyclist :)