Jul200716

Well, this one will warrant a pretty hefty race report which I will publish later this week. All in all a fantastic weekend, as I had the nicest homestay and Geneva is simply a beautiful place! No big city here, a small little town tucked in upstate NY (or at least, I think it is considered ‘upstate’?), green rolling hills, Seneca Lake (a 40-mile long river and at its deepest part, 400 meters deep) running through the town and dozens of wineries. What more do you need?

Getting there was seemless, as I arrived on time, got my rental car and was in Geneva by Thursday afternoon. The return was not so smooth, as I was overcharged for my bike at the airport ($150! BEWARE OF UNITED, all you triathletes, I am warning you now) and had to return my rental car with the gas tank 1/2 empty…this stuff ate at me the whole flight home, but upon reflection, the race was a very solid effort and considering that I really am not training myself to go 100% max effort for 2 hours straight, I did all I could in the end. I was 9th out of the swim, not very good but again I got a bit buried in the washing machine start and by the time I found clear water the front pack was far ahead; Solo-ed most of the bike, which I believe was the norm for the 25-person womens field as there were some good rollers and technical sections on this 8-loop course; and ran like hell. The run was great, second fastest run of the day and I probably passed 8-9 women on the run. In 6 miles, not too shabby! It was also 6-1 mile loops through a beautiful park, and at 5:00 in the evening, it had become overcast and we were running right along the water…very cool! I ran myself into 7th place and to put it mildly, was toast at the end.

I forgot how incredibly hard those races are. I don’t like to go maximally hard, I don’t have those fast-twitch fibers in me. So I fight really hard to find them. And that fighting hurts, really bad. 🙂 But again, I enjoyed the challenge of it…but it confirms that I truely feel like I am in the right place right now, sticking to non-drafting and 1/2 Ironmans! So…check out the race report later this week, which will be on my website (www.kellyhandel.com). Thanks for reading~!

Jul200711

Yep, I finally did it. I bought an IPod. For all these years, I have thought how ridiculous they are, why are they necessary? We have CD’s, we can play our music, even put it into our computer and chill out while working. But an IPod? So I can be connected to my music while running, cycling, reading, travelling, etc…? Not necessary. But I finally gave in, however I have to admit that my …good gosh, at least 12-year old…Sony radio walkman has served me well! But I am afraid it will have to move over to my new toy. Well, it is actually not a real IPod but a Sansa. Whatever it is, it holds 2,000 songs and they are all to my liking. 🙂

Part of the reason I broke down is that I leave Thursday for Geneva, New York for a race on Saturday. This is an ITU race, draft-legal style format. I figured, what they hey, I have not raced these in about 2-3 years and I used to do only ITU racing. It will be a fun change for once, to actually get to draft on the bike. I have a homestay (whereby nice people open up their homes to allow me to stay! And helps immensely as it saves me 3 nights of a hotel!) and I am looking forward to a lot of Kelly-Time. The race is not until Saturday at 3:00 PM EST, so this gives me a plethora of time to chill out before-hand and get good and nervous! I found myself doing just that the past few days, but then I told myself that, well, this is not ‘my thing’ anymore…I am completely sold on the longer racing! I am so looking forward to racing in Racine, Wisconsin on July 22nd, this will just be a fun little ‘tune-up’.

Now that my bike is packed (yes, a day early), I will continue to download music into my ‘Sansa-Pod’. Gotta take care of all the important stuff, right?

Jul200704

Started the day bright and early (well, not too bright, gloomy and rainy) to do the Run Tex Freedom 5k this morning. My friend Emily came in last night from 2 days on the road and, well she wanted to do it! So I obliged. We took off from our house around 7:30, drove near the start and then jogged in. Picked up our chips, chatted to some friends and by 8:00 (8:15?) we were off. It is one heck of a lovely day here for July 4th, rain rain rain! It just won’t stop. But that is ok, if there is anything I enjoy doing in the rain (besides swimming) it is running.

We took off and I felt good, strong the first mile. But I tried to keep it under control, as my approach was that this was just a really good Tempo workout. I came through mile 1 in 5:40 (someone was calling out the pace, I never start my watch) which was good but not terribly fast. Then I got passed by a girl, she just cruised by me! I didn’t like that. But, I also knew that in a 5k I usually don’t have ‘another gear’ so I just kept her right in front of me. We turned around and then came to mile 2 in what they said as 11:15, which meant…wow! I dropped my pace to a 5:35 second mile. I then moved past the woman leading, which I was fortunately able to do with ‘relative’ ease, and finished with anything I had left. I came through in a 17:41, which I’ll take! I think my best time is around 17:20-17:30 so that is no too far off, for a bit of a last minute race decision and running on somewhat tired legs. Emiliy and her brother Eddie finished right around 22 minutes, only 3 seconds apart! Eddie beat Emily, I don’t know why she let him do that. 🙂 In any case it was a fun start to the 4th! I’ll hit up a hard-ish bike ride later and then we’ll prep for our big bash, which we plan to grill out for. We’ll see, hopefully mother nature gives us a small window this evening of good weather! Happy 4th to ya’ll, from Austin. Yee-Haw. And thanks for reading!

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