Is it possible to achieve your goals and still feel disappointed? Well, seems like it’s possible in my world. I had national long course championship race over the weekend. My goal was to become national champion (so, those who read carefully from the beginning already know the outcome).
Three days before the race I got sick and wasn’t sure if I would be able to compete. The day before the race I got better, but because of the illness carboloading was non existent.
The race was held in a beautiful island of Krk. It’s the hardest course I’ve ever raced with around 2000m ascent over 80km bike leg. They say that tough courses don’t forgive you mistakes and lack of carboloading was definitely a big mistake.
The swim went quite well. I found myself in a strange position during the first lap as I was in the lead. During the second lap one guy managed to get away, so I was out of the water in second spot.
The bike course consisted of four loops. We had to climb a hill, descend on the other side, return back and then repeat everything four times. One side of the hill was particularly tough with sections at 19% grade. When I finished the first lap I knew I’ll have to pace myself in order to climb that beast four times. Usually I’m able to hammer bike sections of half-Ironman or double olympic distance races, but this time it was much different. During the first 30 km I was within the striking distance of the leader, but afterwards he started to pull away and his lead eventually grew to 9 minutes at T2. On the other hand I was controlling the race behind me and had around 5 minutes lead over 3. place guy.
The lead guy was not from my country and usually I’m the one that’s doing the catching on the run, so I tought at least my national title is safe. But nothing was as usual this time. I felt horrible on the run. I always feel horrible on the start of the run, but this time it was getting worse and worse. Two guys overtook me, but luckily non of them was Croatian. So at the end I took the title, but had the worst race of my entire season. Now I’m eager to race again, but I’ll have to wait until spring time…