Strong storms had rolled in late Friday and just before I got home from work, the storm had taken down a tree and all the power lines up the road so we had no power from 5pm until about 4:50am Saturday morning. It had been boiling hot and my house was so hot, I don't think I slept at all Friday night. I just tossed and turned sweating and then went downstairs to try to sleep on the uncomfy couch. No luck. All the windows were open and storms just kept coming through banging loudly and shaking the place. I had planned to get up at 4:40am so I could leave at 5AM to make the 1.5 hr drive out to Sandusky and I went about that getting ready by candlelight until 10 minutes later when the power finally came on! At least that meant I could have some much needed coffee for the drive!
The drive out there had me a bit concerned as it was quite an impressive lightning show and I wondered how many folks would stay away. However upon arrival, I was happy to see it looked as though we were getting a break and got everything set up without any rain. We had a nice little setup of a little bit of everything out there that morning including stuff from Fleet Feet, Muscle Milk, Bike Authority and IDUTRI.
After check in, I went down to the gorgeous beach at Sawmill Creek to get ready for the swim. Today I was lube queen and started getting folks all lubed up with some TRISLIDE!
Then of course, I lubed myself up, tossed on my super awesome TYR Hurricane wetsuit and headed down to the swim clinic put on by Leah Nyikes of Liquid Lifestyles. We went over sighting, the course, entering and exiting the water and of course got in some swimming.
I was ferried via golf cart thanks to the awesome staff of Sawmill Creek to my car and headed inside their gorgeous facilities to change. If you are looking for a place to stay for the race, I cannot recommend it highly enough as the place is gorgeous with restaurants on site and the staff really has embraced trying to help us (triathletes) out in any way they could with setting up tables, coolers, opening up the restaurants early, giving us lodging discounts and more.
We had a rain delay which pushed back the bike start by 45 minutes while it dumped some major water and lightning was everywhere! Thankfully that gave my boy, MV, from Bike Authority time to tweak my ride (which was SOOO needed!). Thank you Mike and Bike Authority for coming out!
I had plenty of time to make sure I had my nutrition ready. Of course I was stocked with a couple bottles of First Endurance EFS fruit punch, an aerobottle with water and some First Endurance Liquid Shot!
Finally it was time to ride as it appeared storms were moving out. Everyone grouped up in A, B and C levels based on the speed they wanted to ride and we were off!
We started on wet roads and down an alternate route which was fine and the weather just continued to improve. The dampness kept things cool and the sun finally came out and warmed things up. At least I think it was the sun but part of it could have been the fact that our group all tucked in behind AJ (our new Cleveland Pro who came out to ride and speak for us) when we hit 113 as he took a monster pull and we hung on for dear life. YES, that was SUPER FUN!
I think the group was happy when around mile 42 we stopped in Berlin for the rest stop being staffed by SSSMT-members, Andy and Leah! Huge thanks to you both! Cold water, fig newtons, cookies, sports drink and more!!!
And then again, it was TIME TO RIDE! Most of us headed back to Sawmill Creek to wrap up 60 miles. I had planned to ride 80 miles but the time was going to be too tight (due to rain delay) as I wanted to grab a quick shower before the speakers which started at 2PM.
As a note for those who were interested, I would say the roads are in much better shape than last year. The roads that had fresh chip and seal have all settled and smoothed out quite a bit. Roads were in very good shape. If you are not familiar with the course, it is pretty flat with some small rollers and the only thing that should be noted is you may be dealing with some nice headwind out there!
Post ride, I grabbed some post-workout nutrition and headed into Sawmill to grab a quick shower and most of us ladies were using...you guessed it....TRISWIM samples!!!
The group met up inside the nice air conditioned Big Bear Saloon and listened to the speakers.
Coach Angela Forester offered up a lot of tips and things to think about!
Fleet Feet Cleveland owner, Jody Herzog, explained all about compression and answered a lot of questions about it.
Cleveland's newest pro triathlete, AJ Baucco spoke about his training and things he has learned training on his own and as a part of The Triathlon Squad. Also entertaining was the shared memorable quotes from his Coach, the infamous Paulo Sousa.
It was truly valuable to hear what they all had to say! It was another super awesome training day and I got the opportunity to meet many new people who I will again see on race day, several of them from out of state who had made the journey out! Now I will be looking forward to the next CTC-REV3 Training Day which will be Saturday, August 20!