Back in March, the team went up to Lake San Antonio for our Wildflower Training Weekend. Remember that it was one tough weekend, rain, wind, cold – probably the worst camping experience I’ve ever had. Conditions were so bad that we had to modify the planned training bike and run routes for safety.
Last weekend the IronTEAM returned to Lake San Antonio with relatively much better conditions (no rain!). I carpooled with my teammate John W, headed out from the valley at 7:30am, and made it just in time to camp to set up our tents and join the team for a preview of the lake. When we got to the lake, we noticed how windy conditions were, so there was a little current in the lake with a little (actually a lot) of choppiness. We swam as a team with a nice easy pace to the first buoy about 100 yards. We hung out for a bit in the water getting some tips from our coaches, then we swam back.
Triathlon expos are much smaller than marathon expos, then again, I’ve only been to two. From what I hear, the Wildflower one was one of the best ones for triathlons. I thought it was ok, not the greatest. There were a few bike vendors, some endurance food vendors, things you’d expect. The food court area had some of the infamous burritos that people were talking highly about (I didn’t think they were that great compared to genuine L.A. Mexican food trucks). I guess I can see how good they can be after a race.
In the afternoon, since Wildflower was an actual event for some TNT participants, there was an Inspiration Dinner inside a huge white tent. Pictured above, was the usual “Red Carpet” intro where the staff and mentors go to cheer on our teammates before the start of the event. The TNT National Director, a TNT Honored Teammate family, and a USAT representative were the speakers for the night. Very inspirational indeed. At the end, Coach Brad gave a speech and gave us some last minute pointers about the course.
There wasn’t much time from after the dinner to bedtime. It was a time to get our gear ready for the morning, a little chit chat, then it was lights out. I was so nervous that I didn’t get much sleep. It was cold, and there wasn’t much cushion from my sleeping bag either. Waking up 2-3x to the restroom was frustrating because I was really needing rest for the big race.