Sleep last night was better again. I crashed at 10:30 after a family sized lasagne for dinner but woke up at 11:15. I nearly wept on my pillow – the room was too hot and all bed clothes were discarded and I got back to sleep about 12. When I awoke I read through everyone’s blogs – I just didn’t have time to the night before and the wifi where we were staying was dodgy. I had a good laugh at Scott Molina’s “mildly un-athletic looking” and John Newsom’s we think someone is about to implode – after yesterday I knew that was me and by the way I was feeling I knew it was likely to happen.
Plan for the day was a 6km open water swim, run back and add-on to make the 10km minimum and then do today’s hilly ride as conservatively as possible.
6:45 we jumped into the van for a ride up to the most amazing place I’ve ever swum – this lake is to die for, beats Tahoe! So I lead out Adam and David for 20 minutes then Adam took over and David headed back only doing the required 3km. After a while we were joined by the Philinator and with his GPS he told us we still had a further 2km to swim – those 2km were stunning but tough, already pretty tired this took way to much out of me, I knew I should have done the minimum but “there’s no easy way” on Epic, so it’s all or nothing. Despite feeling pretty drained as I looked around I realised just how lucky I was to be here – firstly to have the means to do so and also to have the support from back home to be allowed to do so. It’s an incredibly selfish thing to do but it’s amazing just waking up and only having to think about training and nothing more (except lugging your kit around and doing a blog). It’s incredibly easy to shut the rest of the world out and 3 days already feels like a week.
The run back was terrible, I was dehydrated and feeling terrible, I also really needed the toilet so when I passed the hotel at 7km I bailed. I should have gone to the toilet, found out I actually had time to finish and gone back out, but I was worried I was going to hold everyone up. This now meant a 10km run after the bike ride to get camp completion.
Before we headed out John warned us that tomorrow we were racing a triathlon (2k swim 55k bike and 10k run) so best keep your powder dry today.
As soon as we rolled out from the hotel I knew I was going to suffer and on the first small climb I was already starting to feel bad having to hold a wheel and let someone else dictate the pace. Then within 5km my chain slipped, then got stuck and by the time I got going again everyone was off – what a relief. 100km hilly solo sounded much better than 100km of suffering and moaning. The theme for today’s ride was landslides. The road was covered in dried up mud and until yesterday had actually been closed due to a slip. The first 45km solo were fine and slowly the legs started coming back. At the slip there was a group waiting for the pilot car to guide us through the one cleared lane and shortly after there was the first aid station. A good helping of coke and I felt pretty decent so spent much of the remainder of the ride pulling the group home.
Once back, a quick feed and change and that 10km run to complete – an uneventful out and back to get the tick.
I’m hoping that today’s dip was just tiredness and today’s moderated ride will result in a bounce back for tomorrow. Although as I type this I feel pretty sore all over but there’s no complaining from me – I know just how lucky I am to be here.