Race Coverage

So Much More Than Data.......



By Erin Ladendorf (bikesandcatsrightmeow.blogspot.com)


How do you put into words the best feeling you've ever had in your life?

IRONMAN WISCONSIN RACE REPORT - It's been 4 weeks since Ironman Madison, and I am still struggling to find the words that can accurately describe those 13 hours of my life. Sure, I could go through my whole race report and tell you how nervous I was, or how my pacing turned out, or even what happened with my nutrition plan, but those were just pebbles in the gravel on a giant mountain of a day. Don't worry, I will still go over that, but I think Ironman recaps are so much more than a data recap. They are a chance to analyze and interpret all the ups and downs and emotions that a race can bring.

Let's go back to 5 years ago. When I was a pack a day smoker. When I worked in a nightclub and spent my days sleeping until 4, only to wake up, get ready, and go get a beer and shot of Jameson before my shift at 10 pm that night. It was a vicious cycle, but it was all I knew. After spending 12 years in the service industry, drinking and sleeping were the two things that were just part of the deal. But about 4 years ago I made the shift into a healthier lifestyle, which included quitting smoking and eventually becoming sober.

And now my life is full of early morning swimming, long bike rides on the weekends and running at every chance I can get. I have also surrounded myself with a crew of people who have similar goals and aspirations, and I must say, life is great. I feel more mentally strong than I ever have before, and the physical transformation was a happy byproduct of this change. Which brings me to where I am today.

This time last year I decided I wanted to do something that most people would never dream of doing. I wanted to complete 140.6 miles in under 17 hours. Call me crazy, but that sounds like one hell of a dream. ...

"Suddenly, That Was The Only Thing That Matters"...



By Kristina Swenson (kristinaswenson.wixite.com)


ROTTERDAM ITU WORLDS RACE REPORT - To most of the world, these are simply three colors. To Americans, these are three colors that represent life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. They decorate our flag poles, museums, and historic places. These colors are worn at sporting events, Independence Day parties, and homecoming dress up days. These colors are shot into the sky as fireworks, printed on shirts and shorts, and painted on chests and faces. They are worn proudly by athletes competing at the Olympic Games. They are represented by our military, our police officers, and our government. Wearing them always seems like a special occasion and an honor.


Only the best of the best get to compete in them. And somehow, I was one of the lucky few. Triathlon is one of only a few sports that allows amateur athletes to wear the red, white, and blue.

On September 17th, I competed on Team USA in the International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Triathlon Grand Final in Rotterdam, Netherlands. This race is perhaps the biggest stage an amateur athlete can compete on for sprint and olympic distance triathlon. Tens of thousands of people from 78 different countries traveled to the industrial city to leave their best out there and fight. This isn't just any old race. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to race against the best competitors in your sport in your age group in the entire world....

Questioning Legs & Storefront Reflections...



By Greg Taylor

CHATTANOOGA 70.3 WORLDS Race Report - There are three categories of athletes attending a world championship. First, there are those who are there primarily to participate, celebrate, and be inspired. To take in the extravaganza of 4000 like minded souls. Second, those who are there to compete, to test themselves and their training against others in their age group and even against the professionals. Winning is unlikely but a place on the podium is perhaps within reach. Finally, there are a few, the elite, those who are there to win. A review of my training leading up to my second place finishes at USAT Nationals revealed only 9 hours per week for four months. Managing to reach 14 hours two weeks before Chattanooga brought me to the realization that with 6 months of working 50 hours per week, 9 to 10 hours per day, and no days off, due to one partner's departure, I had trained all that I could. I was clearly in the second group, competing and hoping for a podium spot. 

Expectations can be a source of great anxiety. Having few, I was relaxed. We watched part of the women's race and were fortunate to see Daniella Ryf enter and leave T2. Game face that was replaced by sheer joy of her last few hundreds yards to the finish. Inspiring! With a later start for my wave, I prepped my bike, returned to our room for 45 minutes, then returned to begin the day. ...


"Aw shucks, Gosh Darnit"...



By Ted Treise (venturetri.com)

CHATTANOOGA 70.3 WORLDS Race Report - In my first triathlon at Iowa’s Best Dam Race back in 2012, I remember showing up to transition and thinking wow, there are some heavy hitters here. This guy has a carbon bike, that guy has clip onshoes, and why on God’s Earth is this woman’s helmet shaped like a she’s going to space. The same can be said about my experience at worlds. When I arrived at the site, my eyes were saucers seeing the pro men and women at the event; how they prepped for the race, putting their transition in a particular order.  It was my first race with big names at it couldn’t have been a better experience.

After Madison in June, I took a break from running after tearing some tendons in my upper glute leading up to the race. I was quite butt hurt about not running, and was out of commision until about 6 weeks before worlds thanks to dry needling at Rochester’s ActivePT . Coming back from an injury is always scary when trusting the injury, but I had some major help from Nate Dicks Sports. Like the De Vince he is, I was more than ready when it came to race day at world championships. I cannot stress enough how amazing it was to see my run transform in such a short amount of time under Nate’s guidance....

Iron-Reality Check...



By Nathan Ansbaugh (nathanansbaugh.blogspot.com - 9/26)


IRONMAN WISCONSIN Race Report - Before every Ironman I have raced, I like to read back through my race reports from prior IM events... in particular my Kona Recap 2011. While this may sound a bit self-fulfilling, its actually more the opposite. I know I need more humility heading into an Ironman that I emotionally have. The buildup before an Ironman is different than any other race, where in the sprints and olympics early season I can't wait to take that excited energy and just explode out of the gate and hammer it throughout, where as the buildup for an Ironman involves so much more and yet I really have to reign it in mentally from the get go to make sure I don't blow it. Mainly, I look back at these prior posts because I need a reminder that Ironman is REALLY REALLY hard. It is so easy to forget the feeling of emotional and physical exhaustion that sets in somewhere around 90 miles into the bike with another 22 to go and marathon to boot. Ironman triathlon is a humility check, training check, and reality check that truly puts you face to face with your fitness, your insecurities, your preparation, and your resilience... but one day after every Ironman, you start to tell yourself, "It really wasn't THAT bad." Well... it is THAT bad...

Throwaway Shoes & Vineyard Views...


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By Heather Lendway (heatherlendway.com)


SANTA ROSA 70.3 RACE REPORT - While my year did not start out on the right foot I was looking forward to racing in Santa Rosa for a few reasons.  Firstly it has to be one of the more beautiful race courses, with my preferred race weather, sunny but cool, reminiscent of race morning at one of my favorite Minnesota races, Square Lake.  Secondly my fitness was starting to come around a little bit, meaning I finally started doing a little speed work on the run and bike.  Lastly, my husband Patrick was also racing with me, doing the 70.3 distance for the first time.  I can’t deny I was looking forward to Patrick having a different perspective of these races that I do.

  1. Race morning we were up bright and early as the race was starting for the pros at 6:10 am and we had a 30 minute shuttle ride from town.  Race morning was chilly, I was thankful for my hot coffee and layers upon layers of clothes.  I slipped out of my clothes and right into my wetsuit to say warm.  I kissed Patrick good luck and ran into the water about a minute before the ladies were taking off.
  2. The swim start was aggressive which always takes me by surprise but it happens every time.  The ladies tend to take out the race like an ITU race sprinting the first 200 meters but typically things spread quickly after that.  I tried to stay on some feet as best I could but settled into my own pace and exited in third just behind 2nd.
  3. The exit was carpeted for a small portion for then about a 400 meter run up the boat launch on rocky pavement.  It was one of the more painful transition runs I’ve done, definitely will bring throw away shoes for next time!
  4. Before the swim I debating putting a jacket on for the bike as the air was in the low 50’s and the water temp was mid 60’s but during the swim I warmed up and I knew I’d be OK.  I hoped on my bike and took off for a beautiful bike ride....
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