Monday, September 23, 2013


I've just returned from Leadman Bend, without a doubt the coldest race I've ever done, but also one of the most challenging and spectacular courses I've raced on. As I've been getting back into race shape over the last 6 months, the Leadman series has been a great distance for me - 2.5km swim, 106km bike and 16.5km run (shortened to 12km this past weekend).

I guess I could chalk it up to ignorance as a Canadian for not being aware of the fall temps in Oregon, but it was a bit of a shock to wake up to 38 degree air temp and 56 degree water temp race morning! I spent the early part of the bike blowing on my hands to bring them back to life, and wondering how I would overcome the challenge of opening my gels and gripping my water bottle with frozen fingers (note to self : full fingered gloves next time!). Somewhere around the last 30km of the ride, we started our decent back down into lower altitudes and thankfully I started to thaw out and the shivering came down a few notches.

The run was a beautiful undulating 12km loop around a golf course on the north west side of Bend. Although much warmer than earlier in the day, I was still feeling the effects of the cold when with 3km left to go, I mistakenly took a slight detour when I saw an arrow for golf course parking. I was thankful to the car coming towards me who woke me from my stupor and told me that I was going the wrong way!

I finished the race as 2nd place female and 8th overall - very happy to have another race under my belt for this season, and happy to survive the adverse conditions. An added bonus was finishing under 5hrs (4:37) and claiming a belt buckle. Thanks Leadman for putting on such a great race!