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by Cherie Gruenfeld - 12 time Ironman Kona Age Group World Champion
If you’re unfamiliar with this event, it’s worth knowing a little something about it.
This twenty-eight year old event is iconic. It’s a weekend-long festival which includes three races: a long course (Half Ironman), a mountain bike sprint and an Olympic distance race. And all racing is done on terrain that is scary tough – it’s not for the faint of heart.
It brings out a full slate of top pros and amateurs from all over the country hoping to test themselves in the early season and everyone goes home with bragging rights.
As tough as this course has always been, it became a little harder in the last two years, thanks to the California draught. Lake San Antonio is a beautiful lake where the swim took place – for twenty-six years. Today, there is no lake. We’re not talking lower water levels or shallow, murky water. There quite simply is no lake!
Not one to throw in the towel on this great event, the Race Director got creative and created a devilish solution:
There is some water left in a lower section of ground, so the swim was moved there and that solved the no-water problem. Now there’s the little issue of having racers finishing the swim 2.2 miles from their bikes. No problem – triathletes can run. So, the second leg of this race is a run that is a real leg-trasher. It includes running up two very long, steep boat ramps, over hilly trails and through some deep sand. By the time the athletes reach their bikes, they’re ready for most anything but heading out on a brutal, hilly 56 mile ride, only to follow that with an 11 mile run where the hills never end. But we do it and that’s where the bragging rights come in.
In 1992, when I first entered the sport, this was my first race. I knew very little about triathlons and nothing about the difficulty of this long course. In the next 23 years, I returned to race the Wildflower long course twelve times.
As I’ve aged, I find myself at the finish line a little later than in the early days. But, even with the new run added in, I’m still handling the course pretty well.
A few highlights from this year:
I believe several factors (beyond good genetics) play a role:
If you haven’t yet tried this event, don’t put it off. Come see what you’ve got and enjoy the bragging rights.
I plan to continue taking PerfectAmino and to keep going back. It feels so good when it’s over!!
You know that the cardiovascular system is responsible for pumping blood and oxygen throughout your system, right? And that the endocrine system manages hormones? And that your nervous system relays messages throughout your body?
Well, underlying all these systems is an astoundingly complex electrical system.
This electrical system is busy sending an almost uncountable number of messages to the muscles, bones, brain, and the cells. The human brain is the home to approximately 100 billion neurons, each firing about 200 times every second.
Sometimes it feels like there are more types and brands of water than drops in the ocean. You go to the grocery store and discover a huge shelf packed with different brands of water that all claim to be health-beneficial. Add in the hundreds of in-house water purifiers, and it can seem like a “sea” of confusing options (cue the pun).
Thankfully, your choice doesn’t have to be that complicated.
What if achieving your next level of high performance didn’t have anything to do with building more muscle?
According to research, your highest level of optimal health and athletic performance may be more about using the resources you already have to their highest capacity…
And it all comes down to a new way of managing your hydration.
But... Can hydration be the key..?