Gina Crawford is back
I am back into racing and it has gone much better than I anticipated. Benji is now 5 months, keeping me very busy, still not getting much sleep, 2-3 wake ups per night, he is teething too. So I decided to do a couple of races as I find this the best way to get back into race fitness, really helps with the strength and fitness being able to do some sustained efforts. So my first race back was Tinman Olympic Distance race and my second 6 days later was Taupo Half Ironman. These aren't really my distances with me preferring the ironman distance but this would be great prep for Challenge Wanaka in Jan and I got to race against New Zealand's best Sam Warriner which would be an excellent gage of how my training is going.
So the first race I came 2nd 5 mins behind Sam with nearly all that coming from the bike, but it was an Olympic Distance PB for me. So the next race the half ironman I set myself the goal of swimming and running faster than Sam, going sub 4.30 for the first time and coming within 10 mins of Sam's time (as I felt my bike not up to scratch quite yet). Well it seemed the first race really helped my cycling strength and I met all my goals. I swam faster than Sam and managed to come off the bike just 5 mins behind her so a big improvement on the week before. I then ran faster than her and ended up under 3 min behind her with another PB for me of 4.27. Sam broke the course record but I also did by 7 mins. The best news was that my run felt very easy but without any racing behind me I really didn't know how hard to push, I didn't want to go hard for 10k and then blow up so I took the first lap easy and found I still gained on her and then I picked up the pace. I think if I had trusted my body and pushed from the beginning of the run I could have caught her, but that will come with more race experience and I intend on racing this distance quite a bit more next year.
So anyway it is great that I am actually racing faster than I was pre baby with such limited training, so very, very pleased and excited for Challenge Wanaka in 6 weeks time.
If you are interested I have full race reports up on my blog