Vigor is a common word used in our squad. Vigor is Joel's favorite word to use in training. We have the vigor meter used to describe the feeling on the day, the vigor mobile which is the van that transports us all to training in the morning with Rihanna blasting from the mini van calibre sound system. Some days there is bountiful amounts of vigor, other days the meter is teetering on empty. This past weekend in Barbados the vigor meter was off the charts for all of us 3 girls! We all had great races, working together in a breakaway group to come away with 1st, 3rd and 4th positions! Here is a short recap;
Lauren Campbell, Kerry Lang and myself made the trip from training camp here in Florida to Barbados last friday. We were set up with a lovely couple as a home stay for the weekend. They own a sugar plantation and live in the oldest house in Barbados! Kerry and I got to stay in the tree house which was a very upscale tree house. We arrived to the race relatively late and only had a few small training sessions to do before the race. The locale was so stunning it was hard to stay inside! Aqua marine waters and white sandy beaches were our office for the weekend. I couldn't help but think to myself while swimming in the perfect waters of Bridgetown the day before the race that I have the best job. If you can call it a job!
Race morning was very relaxed. I had a great start as you can see here
but unfortunately that ended abruptly when i happened to catch a hole and flopped instead of diving. I found myself towards the back but noticed that it was just a big fighting mob in front of me and it wasn't stringing out so I decided to remain drafting the mob with nice and easy relaxed strokes with no one beside me. This could have been a huge mistake because Kerry Lang punched the transition and first part of the bike to spread out the field. I had a number of people between myself and the small group that had formed in front including Lauren and Vanessa Raw from Britain. I got out of the saddle and sprinted for the first half lap without taking the time to put my feet in my shoes. Luckily no one came with me so I latched on to the breakaway then we got organized and ended up putting 1:30 on the chase pack. The group worked really well together which was extra important in the strong winds.
After such an effort on the bike I wasn't expecting my legs to feel great. Once our feet hit the pavement Lauren was quick to get to the front. I ran a few meters back with Kerry and Vanessa. I'm still getting used to the feeling of racing and how hard to push and I was feeling a little uncertain of my pace but I managed to keep relaxed while feeling like I was working. Lauren slowly pulled away from us a bit more as each kilometer passed and Vanessa and myself slowly broke away from Kerry. I was feeling like I was in a good position for second but lacked the speed in the last couple hundred meters and finished in third spot. Overall I am very happy with this result based on where I am at in my training. I'm also very happy for my training partner Lauren who has had a rough few years much like myself! It feels good to be on the road back! Also a great effort by Kerry who was the drill sergeant on the bike and kept everything rolling smoothly. All 3 of us earned some good points toward getting ourselves into the Olympic qualifying races.
I've got to say, my proudest achievement of the day was opening my first bottle of champagne! I've had a few before but always had to get the guy next to me on the podium to do it or just stand there in embarrassment getting sprayed. This time the men and women's were separate to I was forced to learn. Hopefully I have the opportunity to hone my skills again this year :)
After a nice breakfast cooked by our home stay, Kerry and I were taken out on a tour of the island with a few other triathletes. We even stopped for some body surfing which I miss terribly after living on the beach at the Gold Coast for a year!
All in all it was a great trip! Now it's straight back to work in Clermont. I received a little extra happiness which translates into vigor from my favorite valentine yesterday which also doubles as pocket fuel during our rides this week! Here's to keeping the vigor meter high!