The first thing I have to say about this race is, FIRST CLASS! This was my second Rev3 race, but first racing as a professional. I chose this race after IMWI because I was looking for something that would be fun, pressure free for me, and a beautiful course. Well my intuition was correct in choosing this race and the next direction in my season.
Prior to the race, there was a lot of communication from the race directors and professional field organizers. I just felt that they way they reached out gave positive energy to the event even before I got there. The Rev3 series makes sure that they not only include the athletes in on all the information surrounding the weekend events, but they also include optional activities for the entire family, for those who make the trek with the entire gang. This particular weekend they offered hot air balloon rides, family scavenger hunts, and other various fair type activities for children and adults. They really make sure to keep the weekend relaxed, fun, and energized.
I was lucky enough to have a connection with a wonderful family who were very gracious to opening their home to myself, and Kate Major for the weekend. They live on Lake Hartwell close to all of the weekend events. It was so convenient and comfortable. I am very lucky to have such welcoming friends.
I tried something different for this race. I had put a lot of pressure on myself for the past few races and I realized that with expectations of times and performance, I didnt do as well as when I just go out there race hard and love what I am doing. So this race I did not use any watches, Garmins, or computers. I just went with how I felt. I love it. So I got into the bike course, took in my surroundings, put my head down and went hard. The course was so beautiful. It was also more challenging than I suspected. I did drive the course, but when it comes down to it, driving hills and riding hills are completely different. The hills were not horrible just plentiful. The course offered a lot of ups and down, little flat stretches, and lots of turns. It really kept me on my toes and focused on the present. Perfect for me....and with no timing devices to get wrapped up in speeds and times, I listened to my body and believed in the feeling. I stayed with my senses. Listening to the bike sound rhythms and cheers of the crowd, smelling the fresh fall air, seeing the changing fall colors, and staying present, really put me in the best place possible. Before I knew it I had passed four professional women by mile forty. Coming into transition, I did not feel exhausted or discouraged on being down on time. I came in feeling calm, focused, and ready to take on the run.
I didn't feel perfect when I started running, but I mentally was in a really good state of mind and knew that I would be able to push thought the physical feelings. The first two miles tend to be the hardest for me. After that I get into a rhythm and good pace, I can go for a while. The run course was also set up nicely. For the first 6 miles we ran though a series of park paths and turning corners I was able to see how far ahead other competitors were from me. There were some hills. A few short and a few slow inclines. It was a fair and challenging run. I stayed in the present moment, just as I did on the bike course. I took in everything around me. Being a Sunday morning, the town was peaceful and relaxed, just as I needed to be.
When I made it to the turn around I could see that Stephanie Jones was about a minute back from me. I felt confident if I stayed at my current pace I would be able to hold her off. And I held it until mile 12. Ahead of me I saw another racer in front of me. She sort of came out of nowhere. My sometimes questionable, hunting competitive instinct, kicked in hard. I was actually in the mix of a group and fighting for a spot. I went harder, we went up and few up hills and down hills, I got closer. I could feel the pain kicking in as well. It was so close to the end though that it didn't matter. I hit the mile 13 sign and gave it all I had. However, Jones had a tad more kick than me. In the last 100 meters she passed me and the racer in front of me and beat us by seconds. Congrats Stephanie for the amazing fight to the end.
I placed 12th, in the end, but was only 30 seconds from 9th place. What a confidence builder for me! I took the pressure of expectations away, stayed present, raced hard, and got to compete to the very last step with a great group of athletic women. My goal for this race was accomplished. I gained back my racing confidence and learned new ways of competing that work better for me. Most of all, I had an awesome time and really enjoyed being a triathlete. I am so grateful to be able to live the life of my dreams. We all have ups and downs in our lives but every moment you are supposed to be where you are at that time. There are many unknown reasons for the direction our life takes, but the journey is what really makes us fantastic individuals. Do what you love!!!!
Thank you to all of the Revolution staff and volunteers, especially Charlie and Krista for taking such great care of all of the athletes. What a classy event! I am really excited to jump head first into this series next year.
Also thank you to my sponsor HED cycling for the awesomely light Jet Disc wheel I used for this race. I could feel I was flying.
Finally, congratulations to all of the athletes on a great race including teammates Magali Tissyere for the win, and Kate Major, who took the overall Rev3 series win.