Cancun 70.3 (In Retrospect)

Posted: January 4, 2012 in In Transition
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Since I’ve been on a big reminiscing kick lately given that’s it a new year as well as a new training season, not to mention the new goals I have set for myself in 2012, I’m going to kick the vanity level up another notch for one more post and share some photos from the Cancun 70.3 adventure in September that just came in the mail recently.  Usually, my race photos make me out to look like some retarded orangutan but there were a few this time that don’t make me seem so, well, tortured.


Here’s a picture of me immediately exiting the water after the swim feeling all confident and Baywatch-like running down the beach towards T1.  If was approximately a kilometer run down the beach and I tried to use this time to get my heart rate back under control before mounting Lucille for the ride.  Notice the stop watch in my left hand after having to fish it out of my shorts like a child rooting around in their Christmas stocking for misplaced presents.  It had totally come off after locking wrists with another swimmer three quarters of the way around the course but luckily I was able to do a flip-turn mid-stroke and retrieve it before it sunk to the bottom.  I remember feeling pretty proud of myself at this point and actually having fun, but the worst (ie. heat) was still yet to come…

This photo was taken somewhere near the start of the bike course along the Mayan Highway, judging by my seemingly relaxed demeanor.  It sure wouldn’t stay that way as the heat and humidity was increasing exponentially like a pot of water being brought to a boil.  Soon it would become a real effort to breathe and just keep focused on pedaling…

I like this photo because it was taken at the exact moment I was attempting to break away from a formed pack of riders all looking to break the wind (not to be confused with ‘breaking wind’,  although that would be another good reason for a break away).  Ahead of me was the first breakout rider from Papua New Guinea and behind two other riders from China and Brazil.  I remember at this point thinking how ridiculously crazy hot it was getting and how utterly daunting it felt to be trying to increase speed at that point.  Even with the breeze generated at riding 37-38 km/h, the air was heavy and thick, like trying to ride through a bowl of hot soup.  I remember my quads feeling as if they were going to implode in on themselves.

Here’s where the real agony started which is plainly seen in the expression on my face.  This photo was taken immediately upon leaving T2 when the heat of the day had nearly climbed to 102-degrees; believe me, that’s pretty fucking hot.  I vaguely remember watching one of the race marshals desperately trying to steer me out onto the run course but all that was able to go through my poor fatigued brain at that exact moment was “No more tacos today, por favor”,  or something just as ambiguous as that.  I was already beginning to hallucinate as the first signs of dehydration were beginning to set in and that bottle of water in my right hand would inevitably end up over my head.  Behind me is another participant from Mexico that I had arrived just ahead of into T2 after see-sawing back and forth with over the last 2-3 km’s of the bike course with and, for whatever reason, I had decided that I also needed to beat out of transition onto the run.  We would continue to duel back and forth for the first 10k on the run as well, before he packed it in altogether and started walking…the rest is a total blur.

Fortunately, there were no more photos, or any worth sharing anyway as they would only inevitably be portraits of someone whom you might expect to see chasing the hero through the street in any B-movie zombie flick.  Likewise, my finisher’s photo makes me look like some Bosnian refugee so I’ve chosen to omit it here as I’m sure you all know what someone who is about to barf up a lung looks like anyway.


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