I'm sitting in the lovely Super 8 New Paltz.
The SOS pre-race meeting is done, all my stuff for tomorrow is fairly well laid out and the alarm is set for a 4:30am wake up.
In addition to the changes to the run and swim legs I wrote about last Saturday, heavy rains this past week have flooded a section of the usual bike course, so that's been changed now too!
Here's the revised-revised course:
- 28 mile bike, now with two climbing sections instead of just one. Click here for the course map and elevation profile. The first climb (the new one) is near the beginning of the race and is about 2.5 miles long with 750 feet of gain. The second climb (the same one as in the usual course) comes around mile 22 and is 5.5 miles long with 1,100 feet of gain.
- 11 mile run, finishing at the end of the usual third run leg
- 0.5 mile swim across Lake Mohonk (same as third swim)
- 0.7 mile run to the usual finish line
Although I am disappointed not to do the "real" SOS course, this revised course should work in a little in my favor. I like climbing on the bike and have been doing a fair amount of it in training. A single 11 mile run doesn't make much difference to me. I haven't been swimming enough, so reducing the total swim from 2.1 miles to 0.5 miles works well! On the other hand, since it's shorter, the intensity should be higher, which does scare me a little.
I definitely do not feel anywhere close to tip-top racing shape. During our travels, I've been taking "taper" to the extreme. I got on the bike last Saturday in Princeton for a nice little ride, but haven't been on the bike since (the constant rain was a good excuse). I didn't search too hard for a pool in NYC and haven't been in the water for 10 days. I did run a few times, but never with any purpose. I've done more than my share of eating. And my sleeping has been a mess - going to bed late, up early some days, sleeping in some others. This is definitely not how you prepare for a race!
Between the new course and how I'm feeling, I have absolutely no idea how long tomorrow will take me. In 2008, I finished the real SOS course in 5:11:17. But there's no way to compare that result to tomorrow's race. If I race well, I'm guessing tomorrow will be somewhere around 3:40. But it could just as easily take me over four hours. The shorter course should mean that the top racers, including pro triathletes Rebeccah and Laurel Wassner, won't beat me by as many minutes!
Tomorrow is just another chapter in what's been a very "interesting" season!