Considered the toughest Olympic race in Miami, Escape to Miami, is quite a challenging race. This was my first Olympic distance race I ever did and I have done it 4 times in total (3 Olympic and 1 Sprint). Is always good to test yourself with a race you have previously done to see your progress through the years. And with a race as hard as this one even better!
So after doing the “Trilogy Bonus” 2 weeks ago I dedicated my time to run and swim more. I just really needed to pick up the swim that I left off and I wanted to run at a really hard pace for as long as I could. I was feeling a little more confident in my abilities and I wanted to break 2:30 in the race (with a previous PR of 2:31.) A lot of friends did this race, and it was good to see most to the tri community of Miami in the race.
The only bad thing about this race is that you REALLY need to wake up super early for this one. Getting to transition and then going to the ferry that will drop you closed to the island in the middle of Biscayne Bay, where you will wait promptly until the race start at 7 am. I was pretty lucky to start this race in the first wave and avoid the amount of people in the race course. This helps out to see how is your race compared to the rest of the field.
I hang out with Renato on the swim start. Until the signal went of. It was quite cloudy and the sun took a while to show up. I was pretty happy that my goggles worked properly this time. The swim went well, 2 weeks of swimming quite help feeling in the water better. Maybe 3 months ago I would have done an excellent swim but I was quite happy with it. I finished the swim and was very glad to hear lots of friends calling me out, although of course I was catching my breath while running to transition.
In T1, I had a great spot inside, so I didn’t get lost for once :) . Grabbed Lightning, and started the ride. The ride is composed of a 2 loop that goes from Midtown Miami to Miami Beach and back, going through the Julia Tuttle Causeway with 8 bridges in total. I think I had a great ride, and pushed the limits of I could do. I was taking lots of considerations on hydration and had a gel. The weather was still cloudy and it was helping a lot.
Back to T2, had a speedy transition and launch on the run. My heart was on my throat but I knew I had to literally run my heart out. I heard people shouting my name but it was hard to recognize most of them. I try to always grab water on the aid station to cool down. The first bridge came up and I noticed I dropped my sunglasses on the first aid station, and of course I wouldn’t come back to pick them up, I lost them. Luckily enough, one kid came rushing to meet me and hand me my sunglasses, he was one of the volunteers at the aid station, so nice of them of going through that lengthy effort!!!
I was doing my own race and some people started passing me on the run, even going on top of the bridge. On my way down my heart entered a good rhythm, I was feeling I was not dying anymore and took control of my breathing and posture. The way out on the McArthur causeway was windy, you could feel that I was doing more effort on the run. Surprisingly I was catching up some people on the run, which were dying already. I was like “Whoa” I’m actually doing this. Most of the people collapsing were tall and big, here is were it comes to play that “small people handle heat better” aka ME lol.
On the turnaround I had a gel, and push everything I had. The run got a little easier since now I had a tailwind, and I started to pass some people. Getting back to the bridge was another story, I was hurting badly already and the bridge felt long. I was thinking of stopping but I told myself that even if you are jogging up, don’t stop to walk. Getting to the top of the bridge and I started giving everything away on the last mile of that run. The previous 2 weeks of work helped me a lot to keep pushing through pain in the run. It was so painful, but it was worth it. I caught up to a guy in the last stretch. He started to push and I followed him until the finish line. I almost blew his head up with my Panda Kick LOL !!!
I collapsed to the floor and keep throwing water on top of me. My heart was going to explode. It took me a while to settle down, but at the end was worth it. I drop down my time and PR in the hardest Olympic race in Miami!!!!
2010: 3:20 (First Olympic triathlon)
2016: 2:27 (Finally broke 2:30!!! YAY!!!)
16th of 113
This officially ends up the season for me. It’s been a long season involving 2 half ironman and one Ironman. Each year I learn more about the sport, and I feel accomplished with the decisions I took early to change a little bit. Finally I achieved all the goals I wanted and of course, I want more now. But is good to have a break now :). Thank you for reading and until next time!