The Desert Triathlon is a great early season race opportunity in beautiful Palm Springs during a very unpredictable and tumultuous time of year. In 2015 Saturday’s Sprint fell during a wind storm and Sunday’s Olympic was a wash out (which made things difficult considering I was camping). I hoped things might be different this time but unfortunately I was wrong.
All I’ll say here is that I had a plan, a good plan, that all went to shit once a surprise wind storm turned what should have been an enjoyable prerace camping experience into a fight for my life.
8:01 rolls around and God unleashes hell…
5:15am, things get even more interesting as winds pick up to gusts of 70mph!!
Race morning was unlike anything I’ve experienced before. I was kept awake most of the night from the wind, leading up to the morning when at 5:30am I was hit with gusts so vicious I abandoned camp thinking I might die. At 6:30am they announced the race would be on but they didn’t know when. At that point my nutrition and pre-race planning was shot but I did my best, packing up what was left of the tent and searching for expensive equipment through the debris. By the time I got to transition, not knowing when and even if the race was on I heard “please exit, transition will be closing soon”. I didn’t get a chance to warm up but at that point, probably before even, I decided to let go of what was out of my hands and just do my best. The result –
First into the water, led to the turn around then drafted to the exit (didn’t feel worth the energy to break away). 2nd fastest swim in my wave but still comparatively pretty slow.
If only I felt as good as I looked out there. Power was pathetic, lower than my last 70.3 watts and still painful. HR in the 180’s.
This was just a continuation of my underwhelming bike performance. Pace was slower than my last HIM but HR was climbed to 180bpm again. I can attribute the lack of pace to no speed work this year, however I was running healthy.
Despite all the headaches it was great just to be out there racing again after a tough 2015 sidelined me in almost every triathlon I entered. Most notable I was reminded the feeling of overtaking someone on the bike and run, remembering equally as well the anger of getting passed. More fuel for the fire! Oceanside and Texas are really what it’s all about. Happy and hopeful to keep the momentum while staying healthy.