Monday, June 22, 2009

A Masochist's 70.3

The Ironman God is a real joker. Ha!

So, when we orignially signed up for Buffalo Springs Lake (BSLT) 70.3 in Lubbock, we just thought it would be fun, and fit in our schedule pretty well, and we could drive there, so it would be cheap. WRONG!! Well, we CAN drive there and it DOES fit our schedule quite well, but DUDE, it's not going to be fun.

About a month ago, Natalie informed me that the bike course goes down a canyon that is so deep and so steep that her monther loses phone reception when she drives it.

I didn't really believe her.

Then a few weeks ago, BSLT posted the elevation chart, and I blogged about it here. Tommy argued that the hills weren't really that big and I should stop whining.

I was secretly shaking in my britches.

Yesterday morning, we were on a bike ride with some folks from HRTC, and Tommy started chatting with Jason. Jason has done one 70.3 before and was planning on signing up for BSLT, but his coach discouraged him..."you need more time to train for that because it's so tough" he says. Jason said that he heard the hills were evil on both the run and the bike. Tommy argued that we had done Longhorn 70.3 in Austin, which was obviously more hilly, so therefore we should be good to go for BSLT.

Jason laughed in his face.

I think it was finally starting to sink in to Tommy that not only would this be the toughest 70.3 we have done to date, but probably shouldn't have run 11 miles Saturday morning, done a 5K pub crawl that afternoon, and then biked 52 miles and run run 2 on Sunday morning. It's not exactly a recovery. We will be taking it SUPER easy this week so we can attempt to be fresh for Sunday. Fingers crossed.

Tommy did some more research, which has only served to freak me out even more.

This is what one poster wrote when asked about the race. I want to cry.

Have fun with it. It is brutal. Not just my opinion after doing it twice and comparing to other 70.3s, but as a testament it is one of only seven HIM/70.3s that give out spots to Ironman Worlds. The officials always measure the water temp far out from shore and deeper over a spring to get a cold enough reading, so it will be wetsuit legal. The swim is a wonky shape, so you have to keep sighting to stay on track. The bike starts with a wicked climb right from the start to get out of the canyon. All of the climbs, too, aren't typical up-and-overs. Rather they are up out of the canyon and onto to the Llano Estacado (flat mesas) which effectively means after you kill yourself climbing up out of a canyon, you don't get to recover going downhill. Instead you are faced with high winds and brutal sunshine. The run is even worse. There's a long section of out-and-back, bordered by nothing but freshly plowed cotton fields. And sun. Lots of sun. They call it Energy Lab II as homage to Kona's out-and-back section and 100*+ temps and 20mph winds wouldn't be unusual at that point in the race. Most importantly, get there early and bring a headlamp. Parking is way far away from the transition area and everyone parks in a field and walks and the transition area is pitch black. It's a masochists 70.3. If you can finish Lubbock comfortably you can do a full with just a tad more work.

He also found a posting from one of my favorite tri blogs, Tri to be Funny, where she blogs about her experience at BSLT.

The good news is that they say if you can finish BSLT, you can finish an Ironman with only a little bit more effort. The bad news is WHAT IF I CAN'T FINISH IT?? Omg.


Anonymous said...

Don't worry you are going to be able to finish, even if you have to walk your bike up the hills. I'm going to station my parents at a flat part and they can throw oranges at you. ~natalie

Tommy said...

The funny part is that you were the one who wanted to do this race! Haha. Oh well, I guess it will be a test to see how far we've come since early April...latest forecast is 98 degrees and 10mph winds. Ow.

Love and Puppies, Christy said...

Natalie - I don't know why you would tell your parents to throw things at me. Siiiigh. Regardless, yayyy for coming out to watch!!

Tommy - You a terd and so is the weather. At least we've had two weeks in the blazing heat to prepare us for it.