As I've mentioned, the West Coast Speed Order this past weekend was our biggest and last race of the fall season. I definitely had mixed...

Race Recap: West Coast Speed Order

As I've mentioned, the West Coast Speed Order this past weekend was our biggest and last race of the fall season. I definitely had mixed results.

The race was a two day event, with a weigh-in and 6K test on the erg on Saturday, followed by a 4K race on the water on Sunday.

In college, our weigh-ins were the night before the race. This gives you about 16 hours to recover from the effort. Generally, lightweights sit slightly above their race weight during the course of the season; in college, it was standard to sweat out at least a pound of water weight for weigh-ins, knowing that you could replenish your body before the race.

For this weigh-in, I did a really poor job of weight management in the month leading up to the race. I left myself too much weight to drop in the last two weeks, and ended up depleting my store of carbohydrates in my system. I managed to make weight easily (129.6 pounds, after eating half of my peanut butter and jelly sandwich and having breakfast and snacks throughout the morning), but at a pretty significant cost.

The weigh-in was two hours before the start of the erg test, and about 75 minutes before I started my warm-up. This really didn't leave enough time to refuel. Having never tested this process before, I was stuck guessing what and how much to eat. I guessed wrong, and my 6k test suffered as a result.

Mentally, I was in a pretty bad place after that 6k, and it took some work to get back. Fortunately, my awesome family, a La Farine baguette and some football helped a lot. The Ducks' loss to Stanford Saturday night reminded me that even great athletes have bad days.

I went out Sunday morning, fueled, calm and ready to race. I've spent the last three months perfecting my steering over this race course, and I would give myself a 9.5/10 during this race. I made some of the same steering mistakes I always make, but I caught myself before they got too bad.

On the water training before the race.
I raced conservatively in the first half, still cautious after my previous day's experience, but managed to pull off a decent time. Next time, I would row with a higher stroke rate, plan a few power moves throughout the course, and spend a few more minutes warming up on land before launching. Overall, though, I was very happy with my Sunday performance on the water.

Going forward, I plan to research refueling options for post weigh-in, and do some practice runs, much like marathoners practice fueling during long runs.

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