24 Oct 2009

Pre-Race!

5 Comments

ALOHA from paradise, the beautiful island of Maui!  Despite the relaxing sound of ocean waves crashing on the beach outside our condo window as the sun burns a red smudge across the ocean skyline as it sets, I am a nervous wreck.  XTERRA Worlds is in 2 sleeps, though right now you guys are all deep in sleep as it is 6 hours earlier here.  Pierre and I went to the Maui Prince hotel to register for our race today, and I have to tell you something.  All the women walking around registration in their little bike shorts and tri-tops flexing their tanned muscles look MUCH FASTER AND STRONGER BY FAR than weak little me.  I am now thinking I am so not so prepared for this, and my guts are in a knot.

Pierre, Eric Sorensen (our dear friend and Pierre’s coach) and I went for a small pre-run and ride of the practice course they allow us go on before race day.  You see, the race course traverses 22 miles of privately owned land and we are allowed to be on this course only 1 day a year, on race day.  So you can not pre-ride the mtn. bike course (unless you have connections…  we don’t have connections here!).

So anyhow, as we were riding up to the entrance of the dirt, lava-dust covered road that starts to weave up the volcano, I became acutely aware of the heat.  It is apparently not that hot, in the 80’s, but moving so slowly biking up the bouncy rough road with no shade, it feels a hundred.  We ran into some friends on the trail from previous races, one being Danelle Kabush who is top 2 female professional XTERRA athlete in the world and my fellow Cannuck.    It is so much fun to run into familiar faces and friends on a bike trail in the middle of a lava field under the hot Maui sun overlooking the ocean miles down and away in the distance.  That is what I love about XTERRA, it is a family that keeps on reuniting all over the world and on all sorts of extreme terrain.
Our run was scary as the volcano dust forms this soft blanket over razor sharp lava rock so you have to be so careful of not twisting an ankle on unseen edges.  Falling on this stuff is just lethal.  But my legs felt alright, my hip flexor is not twinging too badly, and my recently twisted ankle from a taper run 3 days ago is hanging in there!  The bike afterward on the course gave me a ton of confidence back, as I felt ready to ROCK AND ROLL on all that technical riding.
On our ride back down the mountain, we asked a group of riders taking a minute in the shade of a single tree (there aren’t many out there) to take a picture of us.  Turns out they are from France, totally awesome bunch.  Imagine tacking on ANOTHER 6 hours of plane time to the 13 hours of travel time it took from VA, ugh.
Well, other than stressing out for no good reason, I am thoroughly enjoying this beautiful place with my family.  I am so grateful to be here with my husband, my little girl who is completely enchanted with Maui, and my wonderful Mom and her husband Dave, who by the way is making all this possible for us by being my daughter’s entertainer while we prepare and then race on Sunday.
Pierre and I took lots of pictures of our experiences here already, so we’ll include them for your enjoyment.  I just want to say that one friend is not here who should be, Frank Febbraro.  He qualified for this great race back in June and has trained so hard to peaking perfectly for this.  But alas, his destiny didn’t allow him to be here with us, so I just wanted to mention that I miss my best buddy!  You should be here Frank!
:-)
Posing with my fellow Cannuck Danelle Kabush (far right)

Posing with my fellow Cannuck Danelle Kabush (far right)

Me, Eric & Pierre on the trail on Haleakala with the Pacific as a back drop

Me, Eric & Pierre on the trail on Haleakala with the Pacific as a back drop

Pierre on the run course with Molikini Island in the distance

Pierre on the run course with Molikini Island in the distance

Me & my girl enjoying a sunset swim!

Me & my girl enjoying a sunset swim!

[top]

[top]

Leave a Reply