Skip to main content

Training weekend in Whistler, B.C.

This post comes a few weeks late, but because I'm racing the World Championships 70.3 tomorrow, I figured I better get after this post before it's too late. So, let me tell you about my training weekend in Whistler, BC!

After a long day at work on Wednesday, August 21st, Bryan and me continued well into the day and night to arrive up in Whistler, BC at approximately 2:30am Thursday morning. We could only enjoy the scenery up until Penticton, at which point the darkness began to overtake us with about 4 more hours to go. Crossing the border proved somewhat of a minor fiasco. The officer asked us to drive around "back" to have our backgrounds checked. I only had three states to list off of prior residency in the last 18 years. Bryan, on the other hand, couldn't even remember them all. What proved worse is, apparently, another Bryan Rowe exists with a DUI on his driving record. It wasn't until Bryan provided his social security number that the officer let us go after about a 30-minute delay.

We woke up the next day feeling incredibly sluggish. We rode the first out-and-back of the bike course and felt nothing but admiration for a place ensconced in trees and embellished with streams and rivers. To surround ourselves with Ironman athletes, yet not feel the pressure of an impending race made for quite a "vacation." We could enjoy our surroundings, yet feel motivated to make this weekend a training weekend, too.

Friday, we swam in Alta Lake, the location of the two-loop swim course. We swam later in the afternoon, which meant we enjoyed choppy waters and threatening storm clouds. It made for a slower swim, but I felt blessed to have the buoys already set out to follow around the lake. Locals warned us of the risk for swimmer's itch, but I knew after setting foot in the water that it felt far too cold. It reminded me more of Lake CDA's water temperature than it did my usual training hole, Bear Lake. You'll notice the mountains in the backdrop in the picture below. I couldn't quite enjoy the views while swimming, but taking the time to do so when we finished felt well worth our time.

Saturday, we rode part of the second out-and-back of the bike course toward Pemberton. We had initially intended to ride the whole thing, but I must have felt anxious to get back to Whistler. Flying down all those hills (I should say, one BIG hill) meant we had at least an hour worth of climbing to get us back home. In the end, we missed riding the only flat section of the course, the portion they call the meadows. Upon turning toward home, we realized we didn't just have a hill to climb, but a headwind to push through as well. I'm hoping these kinds of winds only crop up later in the day, as it was well into the afternoon by this point.

Race morning, Bryan and I woke up at about 3:30am to head down to the Run Special Needs Bag drop off at T2. We didn't get to see all our TriFusion teammates, though we did have a chance to wish Ben Greenfield well as he headed off to the swim start. It felt very rewarding to have the opportunity to smile at every athlete who handed me his or her bag and offer calm reassurance to faces filled with incredible anxiety.

After our two-hour rotation, Bryan and me headed out on our long run to tour the longer portion of the run course. By the time we made it out toward the Sea-to-Sky highway, athletes had already found their bikes and were riding out the first part of the bike course. We loved the run course. You get a little bit of everything: running through town, through the woods, and along several lakes. It's likely the run course that helped us solidify our decisions to sign up for next year.

This may be how we feel about what next year's training is going to require. Yet again, one must not ignore those mountains!


Popular posts from this blog

How strong are your feet?

Who knew my first post in 2020 would be about the work I'm doing on my feet. Not just any work, but the work required to make them strong enough to propel me to faster running paces, the work to make them durable enough to heal up some old injuries and prevent new ones from taking hold. Jay Dicharry , a Physical Therapist and researcher in Bend, OR, says that almost all ankle, foot, and lower leg injuries can be attributed to faulty foot mechanics and a weak foot core.  I listened to him speak on a podcast called Trail Runner Nation today, and all the advice he provided me during my two personal visits with him last year rushed back in a torrent of memory. It seems fitting that his reminders would hit me like a hammer over my head when I consider the nagging foot pain that has cropped up again over the past couple of weeks. I'm going back to my toe yoga, short foot exercises, and working hard to build up the strength in my foot intrinsic muscles. Meanwhile, here's a b

My opinion...For what it's worth

My first Half Ironman 70.3 turned into Boise 29.3. I may be the only one to say that I respect the officials' judgment call on this one, because apparently, a few of my triathlete comrades lack sufficient brains themselves. The comments I'm reading on Facebook leave me pretty disturbed. Let me just put this out there: I entered this sport because it looked tough and challenging. It pushes anyone who enters these races to their ultimate limits and requires a demanding amount of time to complete the training necessary to succeed. I entered this sport because of the people. Healthy, smart, fit, inspiring, motivating. I can't think of a single person who has questioned my ability to participate in this sport. I entered this sport because anyone can do it. I passed people younger and older than me, some as old as 74. I watched one woman hobble along the run course, surely just on her first lap. She looked like her knees were going to cave in. Yet she was running. I did not ent

It is finished

As with everything in life, nothing stays the same. Change is inevitable. It does not always mean it's a turn for the worst. In my case, I think this is a change for the better. As of 2021, I am closing the door on racing triathlon and rekindling my investment in the doctorate degree I worked for in Physical therapy. Thankfully, making money again has felt much more productive than losing it in the pursuit of professional triathlon. Thankfully, my body has responded positively to a slackened training schedule. Thankfully, my head is clearer for the release in pressure to perform.  I needed a new pursuit, a new challenge, a new endeavor. Raising and showing my dogs has helped me slow down, challenged me to learn and communicate differently, and taught me that physical fitness can still be achieved to a lesser, healthier extent.  It has worked so well that I'm also going back to doing what I loved to do 10 years ago. Pursuing a more simple lifestyle (outside of work, of course) a