I always go to international races 10 days before to adjust to the new time zone and different atmosphere. My homestay, Warwick, picked me up at the airport on Thursday. I was so so grateful to have the same amazing homestay as last year! I wasn’t sure they would want me since I was so sick last year; I couldn’t have been too pleasant to have around!
I felt apprehensive the night before the race. I wasn’t nervous about things going wrong or not accomplishing a certain result, but I knew I was going to be hurting in a few hours so I was starting to brace myself.
When we got to transition, in typical Jocelyn fashion, my power meter battery was low and I forgot to bring extras from the house. Oh well! I race on heart rate anyway so just didn’t have data to analyze after! No issue!
I listened to my three pump up songs for this race (Hall of Fame, Superheroes, and Bleeding Out), on my way down to the swim start. After getting pumped up, saying a prayer and my last goodbyes to my husband and sister, I got in the water for warm up. About ten strokes in I got punched right in the nose from another pro coming back out of the water. I had some blood come out my nose and thought for a second that it was broken (since your race brain always goes to the worst conclusion). The pain wore off and I finished my warm up and went to the start of the race.
The chop in the lake was so big that it was nearly impossible to sight off the buoys so it was important to use big landmarks on the horizon. You could tell who had done the race before because Sid took off straight toward the hill you can sight off while the other group of women with Emma, Vanessa, and Yvonne weaved in and out of the buoys the whole way. We all came together at the turn buoys but I’m pretty sure that Emma and crew swam a little farther. When we came around the last turn buoy the group headed off toward the docks and I saw the finish and pulled off in the right direction. It really shows that there is an advantage to knowing the course and doing the race before.
Another focus of mine has been racing through transition so I took off running through and came out with the people who I went in with. SUCCESS!
This is the first race that I have raced the bike with other women. I have never been fortunate or unfortunate enough to find myself in that position. It’s nice to have people to ride with but also challenging to have other people to worry about not getting into the draft zone.
I came into T2 to see the top five women all in the tent together! I also need to focus on racing through T2 since I was the last one out of that tent and everyone put time into me.
I came up on Yvonne around mile 3 and later Sid when I took a turn into the neighborhoods. I could tell the yo-yoing I did on the bike took a little toll on my legs, but I also knew my run was in the best place it’s been in my life. Experience is the only way to become really good at coping with the discomforts and stresses of endurance sports and I had put myself through a great deal of discomfort and stress on my training runs leading up to this race. There was one workout I remember doing on the treadmill that included 5 X 1 mile efforts. I did the last one in 5:03 and knew that was a workout to hold in the mind bank.
That last lap I was struggling and just focused on staying hydrated and fueled for the rest of the race. I had another MBK quote “when things get tough, think of those who can’t.” I dedicated this race to a friend who was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer so she was my inspiration and drive for many hard workouts and for this race. I am overcome with gratitude instead of self-pity for the pain I am in when I think of these people.
I wasn’t getting any splits of how far ahead I was from second which was probably for the better. Spectators were saying, “wow you can run”, more than cheering at all. I stopped seeing Scott as I headed back into town for the last time and knew that he had left to go secure a spot in the finish chute.
It really hit me when I came up on the grandstands and heard Mike Riley say “Here comes your Ironman New Zealand female champion.” I knew he wouldn’t say that unless it was certain so I just soaked it in. Just like in Mallorca, there were a flood of emotions as I hit the finish chute: happiness, fulfillment, disbelief, relief. I ran through the chute, screamed, found Scott, and got the best hug in the world. My parents were there as well and got to celebrate with me along with so many others that have helped me in NZ – my homestay (Warwick and his girlfriend Julie), my massage therapist in NZ (Sandy), and some Ironman Staff who have become friends, Leanna. My dream, years in the making, had happened. I don’t know why this race became so special to me, maybe all the struggles I’ve had there, maybe because it was my first professional race, and maybe just all the magic Taupo and the people there bring, but this win will always be remembered fondly.
Many people have asked if I was surprised by my win. I think very rarely in sport can winning be a surprise to the winner. I have visualized crossing that tape first and raising it above my head in triumph since before last year’s race. Now that the dream is a reality, it’s not a surprise; it just feels like I am still dreaming.
Quintanaroo Bikes- I've been with QR since I started as a pro because their bikes are fast and their service is better than anyone out there. The 2016 PRfive won the triathlon innovation of the year at Interbike.
TriSports- Like the Amazon of triathlon gear! They have the best prices on all things triathlon and great customer support! For 20% off their low prices use this link.
Big Sexy Gear - the most comfortable kit I have ever worn! They will do custom kits with NO minimum orders! No other apparel company will match their quality and support.
Ruby’s Lube - No horrible chaffing from my wetsuit this time! I usually end up with what people later think are hickeys.
F2C - I look forward to training and recovering faster with better nutrition.
Zone3 USA - I flew in my wetsuit even with the horrible water conditions. Their goggles also make open water swimming so much better with a greater range of site.
NormaTec - I loved being able to flush my legs out during my hard training days, the days leading up to the race, as well as post-race recovery.
Ice Friction - Free speed with iced chains that decrease friction. The ice on the chains last for 600 miles then you can send them back to get re-iced! Save watts and money!
Reynolds - Aero wheels for your budget! They have a range of anything from training wheels to their element disc, which I raced on at IMNZ!
Beyond Exercise - Physical therapy that is preventative as well as reactive. I owe my healthy body to them!
BioWheels - Best place to get a bike fit hands down. Mitch combines a retul and GURU fit to make the perfect and most efficient fit out there. Also best wrench you can find!
Impact - Dr. TJ has been instrumental in the overall health of my body!
Buckeye Running - Supplying me with the best shoes a runner could ask for!
Photo Credit: Darryl Carey, Scott McCauley, Meredith Gardner
· Bike handling skills
· Race through T2
· Add Batteries to my transition packing list
· Raced through T1
· Fueled and hydrated well
· Reevaluated heart rate expectations on the run