Tuesday, March 25, 2014

It's about time!

I may have written about this before but my dad always used to tell me "You get out of it what you put into it." But after 5 years straight of doing all the training and never making it to the races I started to doubt this saying!
Lately, whilst warming up, setting up transition and just being in the atmosphere of racing, I can't help but smile to myself thinking "Finally! This is what I've been missing all these years!" Finally, I'm lining up on start lines with no ailments, no injuries, just a body that's ready to do what it's told! This results in a very good state of being on the start line. A mixture of calmness and joy, as cheesy as that sounds. And really, that's about it!  I don't feel so happy anywhere else as I do at a race. Which means it's been a pretty good 2 weeks for me then!
                          Game face intimidation factor: Zero

Last weekend was the first bigger race of the year, the ever famous Mooloolaba World Cup. It's known for being a gritty course, hard from start to finish. Between the surf swim, the wind, the 16 hills on the bike and 8 hills on the run, it's sure to put you in your place early in the season. This year was a little different though. It was for one, a sprint distance and they also changed the swim to the calm (shark infested!!) canal and took the hill out of the run. So it was definitely a less daunting first race but it was hard not to feel like it was missing it's essence!

I had a good start to the season overall. I had a great swim, exiting the water in 3rd. As much as I tried, a break away on the bike just wasn't in the cards and so, it came down to the run. I felt alright and was able to hold strong for 7th place. A result I was pleased with given the depth of field and the time of year. Also, big performance from the friendliest of friends, Ellen Pennock who ran her way to 4th spot! Ya, she's 21..watch out!

After the race I drove down to the Gold Coast to stay with good friend and Aussie team member, Ashleigh Gentle. I had such a nice time with her and her family and was spoilt rotten!

It was a quick turnaround and off to NZL just a few short days later. I arrived in the friendliest town I've yet to come across, New Plymouth. This is my 3rd trip here and certainly won't be my last! I have the most lovely homestay I could ask for and am feeling right at home!

The World Cup here last weekend was another fabulous day. The weather was perfect, there was a very strong list of girls which felt more like a Championship Series than a World Cup! Once again, I had a surprisingly good swim and exited the water 2nd. The bike course was hilly and technical and a group of 13 of us (i believe) were able to stay away from the rest of the field. I had a pretty shocking T2 and started the run last of my pack. I really wanted a chance to run with "the big girls" so to speak so I made my way up to them and hung on for as long as I could. This was for about half of the 5km run. I ended up crossing the line in 5th spot behind some girls that I'm very pleased to be in the company of! So that was a great day for both me and for our Canadian team. Both Paula Findlay and I finished inside the top 10 in the women's event and Kyle Jones finished 8th in the men's. 3 top 10's ain't too shabby! :)

Our youngest team member, 19 year old Tyler Mislawchuk, in his 2nd ever World Cup was doing a fantastic job when his day was cut short by a crash in front of him at the tail end of the bike ride. He fared  the worst and ended up in hospital with a broken jaw, teeth and stiches in his chin. The good news is, he is out of surgery and healing up nicely. What a trooper! He's going to be a name to watch out for in the near future, that's for sure!

Otherwise, things here are great! Just another 9 days here in New Plymouth with Cheryl and Allen and then off to Auckland for round 1 of the World Championship Series. :) Happy days!

Here are some photos of my Oceania trip thus far:
 On the run in good company in NP last weekend :)
 Beach start in NP
 I had lots of local support and team mates taking photos at this race!

 Trying to escape the big group in Mooloolaba ;)
 Mt. Taranaki here in NP. Hopefully I'll get to ride it while I'm here!
Finish in NP. So close but so far! ;)

 Not a bad spot for swim training :)
 More NP race shots
 My initial feelings about driving on the left!

 My "home base" training center in Noosa. Life is so tough ;)

 Little QLD series race to kick of the season. Podium with Ashleigh Gentle and Emma Jackson

 Best part :)

 Mooloolaba race day was a hot one!
 Screen shot on the phone for this one! Ellen and I reppin the red and white

 Coastal adventures with Ash

Lot's more adventures to come! Back to Noosa next week then Cape Town, Noosa once more and then Tokyo and home! 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

California Dreamin! #sterotypicaltitle #usedironically

 It has come to this. Hashtags in my title. #yup


I meant to write a blog at New Years and then a month went by somehow?! So maybe by now everyone has gotten over their New Years blog overdose and is ready for some more ramblings from triathletes? Maybe.

So if you have regained your appetite for training updates and pictures of sunny destinations…here we are; California Dreamin! ;)

I went to California for some warm(er) training in early December. It was my first time going there for training and it did not disappoint! US team member and J-Squad comedian, Tommy Zaferes was kind enough to show me around his hometown of Aptos. I stayed for 2 weeks and loved every minute of it! The running trails there make me so happy! As well as the endless quiet roads and mountains.  I won't talk it up too much or else the locals will hate me for blowing their secret spot!! ;)

I went home for Christmas and had a nice holiday season with my family. It was nice to miss all the commotion leading up and come home right before the celebrations! I did pick up the flu while at home which was unfortunate but only a speed bump!

I headed back to Aptos after Christmas and now I'm on the plane on my way back home. This latest trip was mainly alone, which was a first for me. I think it's a sign you really love what you do when you have a great time doing all your training at camp alone! That or you are crazy….either one. :) I really enjoyed myself and got lots of good sessions logged.  I'm going to miss the running trails at Nisene park dearly. We had some great times together, Nisene and I!

I did have a little bike crash down there. First one since the infamous Sydney WTS in 2011. I'm going to blame the drunk pavers in the Santa Cruz county. Never mind the fact that I was looking at my bad parking job and not where I was going as I passed my house. I hit a large bump (I told Bevan Docherty who also lives in Santa Cruz the story and he was like "I know that bump!" …just so to validate my excuse ;) I flew straight over the bars into a median curb and completely cracked my helmet and shredded my handlebar. Not just the tape, a lot the carbon too! I somehow came out relatively unscathed. No head injury which is surprising based on the state of my helmet. I left pretty much all the skin from my knee on Seascape Blvd. That's been a bit annoying as well as some bruised ribs but otherwise, I'm fine! Even finished the session and the run off the bike after I got my bike fixed. The crash didn't end up costing me anything! Except for a lot of Neosporin :)

The weather was insanely nice for this time of year with temperatures between 20 and 30C the entire time and sun every single day. It certainly makes training a lot easier and I'm definitely more motivated to get out the door in that kind of weather!

What next? Well, I'm home for 10 days in order to get myself organized and grounded, catching up with family and friends and taking a little rest. Then I'm off to Australia. I'm so excited! Australia and I get on quite well! I will be heading to Noosa for some training leading into the World Cup in Mooloolaba and then New Plymouth and the first World Series event in Auckland. Boy this season is already flying! Doesn't seem like that long ago I was sipping cocktails in Hawaii and Fiji!

I'm going to miss Santa Cruz in all it's hippie glory but so looking forward to what's next too! I hope everyone had a great holiday season and for those of you in the polar vortex, staying warm!!! My family in Newfoundland has had a rough go! We aren't kidding when we say "West coast, best coast!" ;)

Until next time,  here are a few snaps!

 First ride in Sunny SC!
 The sunsets here are noteworthy!

 As is the Mexican food!

 Notorious B-U-M-P (the photo does NOT do it justice!!)

Views on the ride

Dance party at the Docherty household

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Problem Solving

A bit of time has passed since my last post. Between hospitals, doctor offices, airports and vacations the time has FLOWN by. I start back training formally this monday. I thought an update was in order as I mark the start of my 2014 season.

By October I'd had every test out there, flown to the states and paid big $$ (thanks Red Bull :) I'd been poked and prodded and scoped all with no real answers. It was beginning to get frustrating.  I almost didn't even care what it was as long as we had definitive results. I did find out that my intestines had been bleeding and that I had a twist in them but that was it.

After all that all it took to get my answer was a $200 blood test right here in Victoria.  I'm glad I ruled everything else out though, so no regrets. Turns out I am extremely sensitive to dairy and eggs! That's it! Well when I say that's it, it's pretty severe as far as food sensitivities go. My antibody response was through the roof. If the unit response is about 500-600 you are advised to avoid the food. Mine was 2700! After only a few days of cutting out dairy and eggs I was back to normal! No more fatigue, hot flashes, rashes or tummy aches. It all just disappeared. I mean as soon as I stopped training my health improved a bit obviously but this was complete! Fiiinally!

So with that, I have a remodeled diet (a boring one) and I should be fine! I've just got one more gallbladder test next week to just rule out one last component.

All those tortillas (spanish egg dish), cafe con leches and delicious spanish cheese's didn't do me any favors this summer. I never noticed because eggs and dairy are in like every meal unless you are purposely avoiding them.

I did manage to figure it all out in time to go on vacation! Maui with my aunt straight on to Fiji with Brandon. I love the beach so much. This was good for the soul! haha Here are a few photos from the past 2 months:

 off season trail riding with the girls :)

 Before Dad's marathon
 Oh ya, I climbed Haleakala crater while in Hawaii. 1 bad wrong turn and 7 hours later I arrived here

 XTerra worlds is DEFINITELY on my agenda for next year. Come on body hold it together next time!!
 Maui sunset
 Paia beach my fave

 Surfing some small waves in Maui

 Endless pool at our hotel in Fiji

 Kava from some locals

 Resort at sunset

Hikin some moutains with Brandon in Fiji

 The views weren't bad

 Will never be ungrateful for our sports centre!!

 Rode jet skis to this sand bar off the coast. This picture doesn't do it justice!

 Not a bad place for a buffet :)

 Sailing out to some islands

 like this

 Island life is so hard

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

I Guess This is in Order...

Well, all I can say is it's September and I'm fit and uninjured...

I have to be happy about that, but it's hard to appreciate when the Grand Final is this weekend and I'm sitting in Vancouver airport.

Since I last posted, my stomach problems got to the point where I couldn't finish my 10min easy run off the bike. Some more symptoms came up that made me question racing.  After lots of discussions, I decided to withdraw from the event. In the words of my wise coach, "We go to world championships to race, not hope we can finish."
 I refuse to make a spectacle of myself as I have in the past. I'm not well enough to race so I'm not going to try and over ride my body this time around! The things you learn with age! :)

So, with that I regret to inform everyone of my absence on the starting line. I have a doctor's appointment set up for tomorrow and will now start the process of getting better quickly. We have a strong idea (based on scans from the spring) and I honestly hope that is the case! Just get that little angry gallbladder out of me!

Anyway, I do have to remember the positives of this year. We passed my expectations by a mile and had a ton of fun in the process! I have to give a massive thanks to my coach Shaun. He started with a very broken, long untrained athlete this January. I could have never imagined to post the races I did this year, let alone races at all! Of course another big thanks to Red Bull for sticking by me at all costs, they are really the best back up I could ever ask for. Jim at BWHF and Jamie and Synergy for keeping me in one piece this year. Thank you to my family, boyfriend and friends for keeping me sane! As well as all the TriCan staff in Europe with us through the summer. And of course my amazing teammates for making everything that much more fun! I'm sad I'm not in London to watch you all kick butt!

I'll post an update once we figure some more things out. For now, I'm going to hop on this little puddle jumper to Victoria and give my mom a big birthday hug!!! First things first :)

To all those racing in London, all the best!!