Recover, Build, Recover, Repeat

Three weekends in a row of racing might seem like a lot of racing. Well, you heard it here first, it is a BLOODY HELL OF A LOT of racing! Like a few too many nights spent at a stag party in Vegas, it leaves you feeling depleted, sore, and in shambles. BUT, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. This tunnel seemed to be a bit longer than per usual, but it did indeed have an end.

Only two weeks after Lake Stevens 70.3, I had a 6 day block of training scheduled in Penticton, on the inaugural Challenge Penticton. I took along my trusty steed, and even trustier (look it up) partner in crime, Jenn. It was a fantastic week, including almost 700km’s of riding on the Challenge Penticton course over 4 days, including an incredibly solid solo ride on the course on the last day of camp. Olly Piggin, a friend of mine who lives in Penticton, has a Kiwi professional staying with him for Challenge Penticton, previous Challenge Wanaka Champion Jamie Whyte. We hit the course in the middle of the camp, riding start to finish with a double-take of Yellow Lake (memorable quote as we turned around on the top of Yellow lake to head back down, “from here on out it’s all excellence.”)

All I could think of was Trevor Wurtele’s latest race report video, with a lot of discussion about “pissing excellence.” I was hoping that if I rode Yellow Lake enough times that maybe I, too, could piss a rainbow of excellence.

I’m still waiting.

Trev’s Calgary 70.3 Race Report on pissing excellence

In addition to partaking in some excellence that day, we also got to watch the Ultraman Canada athletes climbing up Yellow Lake in the opposite direction. Ultraman is this crazy double-Ironman distance race over three days, with Penticton hometown favourite David Matheson taking the win AND a new course record (in a time of 21:47:47….that’s 21 HOURS!) I thought the iron distance was tough; these guys and gals take crazy to a whole new level.

Collecting a little bit of salt out there in my new Champion System kit.
Perhaps it was excellence I was sweating?

I was able to get out on the swim course area again, it has to be one of my favourite places to swim. A 4k ass-kicking session (more so mine) with the local crew of Jeff Symonds, Jonathan Caron, Olly Piggin, and Kiwi pro Jamie Whyte, made for one solid morning swim.

A pro swim with Symonds, Piggin, Caron, and Whyte. These fellas can SWIM!

Another incredible confidence building session I had was a 35km run on the Challenge Penticton course; I was rocking my new two-piece race suit from Champion System, and a new set of Pearl Izumi eMotion N1 race flats (from Distance Runwear in Vancouver.) Both were outstandingly comfortable, but the best part was how comfortable and quick I ran the distance, on tired and fatigued legs. The last time I was out on that run course was during last year’s race, and it brings out a lot of positive and strengthening emotions. Maybe there was something in the shoes, maybe something in the legs, but whatever it was I was flying out there. Lets hope I’m saying the same thing after next sunday’s race!

New Pearl Izumi race flats, ready for the marathon course! Comfort AND speed!
Channeled some ‘Team Ossenbrink’ out there

A few days after coming back, I raced in the Kits Challenge, an open water swim race including a 1.5km, 3km, and 6km distance. You wouldn’t need three guesses to figure out I did the only logical option, the 6km. What can I say, I’m a sucker for punishment! With my arms falling off, I went in to the last of four loops and dug myself a nice seat in the pain cave, coming out of the water 3rd male and nearly throwing up. Working on getting myself down to fighting weight, I went ahead and gave myself food poisoning the day before the race. Paring that with a 5.5km swim workout (complete with 3km of band work,) the kind that proves my coach really does love me, makes for a tough race. But I was happy to have the experience, VOWSA always puts on great events.

Took all my remaining effort to hold up that pin. Was bloody heavy!

After all the hard work this season, it’s time yet again for the big taper. This means less training, more time preparing for the big day ahead. I’m happy with the prep so far; I’ve been getting in touch with all my support team and getting last minute things taken care of.

I hope everyone has been having a solid season of training, racing, and absolutely thoroughly enjoying themselves!! Best of luck to everyone racing in the upcoming Challenge Penticton, Ironman Canada, and whatever other trouble you’ve signed yourself up for.

Be safe, and happy training!

Nathan

About one day’s worth of food during training camp. Epic. Consumption.

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