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Norseman Extreme Tri in Retrospect - Jo90

Norseman Extreme Tri in Retrospect - Jo90
Here we go. The race report from Norseman. 

We got what we came for.

Norseman is branded as the hardest long distance triathlon in the world. It might be true – and last Saturday the weather made what is normally hard, really brutal.

The swim felt long. Not distance wise, but with the current against us, it just took longer than normally. Already on the ferry before jumping in the water at 5 o´clock in the morning people were pointing at the sky talking about the rain and wind. When you feel wild like we did down in the fjord, you just know that it will be heavy after the first climb to 1200 meters of altitude ( the first 1200 of 5000 that day) , where you have 50km flat road up there. But I guess you ask for this when you sign up.

I have learned that the norwegian people are tuff. They ride there bikes in 10 degrees with pouring rain and wind for hours without showing one sign of freezing or fatigue. And that all just wearing like 0,1mm of lycra. This is weather where normal people pack out there woolen shirts and rain jackets, in Norway they call it summer.

For Susanne the race ended early on. After a good swim, she had to pull out on the big climb after 30k on the bike. Susanne had been dealing with some problems in the last time, where she very fast showed fatigue and had some strange muscle pains. That meant that she was not able to do the preparation for the race for more than 8 weeks. Shortly before the race, it than got better, and she had some good workout units but it did not work in the race.

Not an easy thing to quit a race like this. but in this case it was the only thing to do.

I had a decent swim, even though that it was hard to find any rhythm. I came out of the water in the second small group, and changed quickly to the bike.

On the bike a very long ride started. Headwind, and a lot of it. And I had to dig really deep several times. After about 100k my knees got really cold and the right one started to hurt. It stayed like that until the run started. I had lost some ground during the bike leg, and I knew that if I had to push hard on the run the reach the next guys. The first 25km is more or less flat, and I ran below 4:00per kilometre all the way. I started to catch a couple of guys and made up quite some ground. At 25k the mountain is starting. 17Km with an avg. of 13-14%. It is steep after more than 10 hours racing.

It is possible to run, but slow. Walking is just a little bit slower.

I ran up the first 13km. Slow, but I ran and with every steep I felt how the power was getting less and less. At 37km I was on 10th place, heading into the last part – A rocky and steep trail path.

In the path I was talking over by 2 competitors, but reaches the mountain top and finish line as 12th. I was so happy that it was over. What a day.

This race is really popular, and every year it is easy to see why. Amazing nature, atmosphere and crew and if you have not done this race it should definitely be on your list of future races.

Cheers Susa and Hans
Pic: Agurtxane collection 

15 August 2013

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