In the beginning of August I did the Portland Sprint. So, this is a similar distance to the Boise race with around 20 obstacles. I got 2nd overall and 2nd in the mens elite!! It is a huge improvement since the San Francisco race. It seems like I have been going in the right direction with my training, but as always there’s still room for improvement.
Since I was training for the super, which is 8-10 miles, before this race I was at a head start with training. I just needed to improve my speed for the shorter distances and better my running on hills. For most of the race I was solid except for a couple of sections. These were right at the end of the longer hills. In the future I need to practice longer hills at a higher intensity. In addition, the person who got in first place took off around 3/4 into the race. This showed that my running still needs a lot of improvement. When running in this race I realized that I need to increase my overall intensity when I run to train. Just the presence of the competition really pushes me. I need to carry that over into my workouts.
In the past couple of races I have lacked sprinting at the beginning of the race. I finally did this in the Portland Sprint. I think it was a huge factor in how well I did. When running with the men who are in the front of the pack you run at the pace you need to run to get a higher placing. So, this is a major tactic I need to do and improve on for future races. Where I was struggling later in the race may have been because of going fast at the beginning of the race. So, I still need to improve on this strategy. If I was a little more conditioned I could have kept up with the winner.
Overall I did pretty well on the obstacles. The obstacle I had the most trouble with was the bucket carry. I was pretty winded when I got there and the grip on the bottoms of the buckets were different compared to other races. It was hard to maintain the grip I wanted. Also, the hill we had to climb was steep with pretty loose dirt. At times I slipped a little bit, which messed with my grip as well. The slippage could have been because of my worn out shoes. Shoes are something I definitely need to invest a little more into. At the beginning of the race there were times where I was in first place. This could have been due to how well I did at some of the obstacles. The strength obstacles are something I could be a little faster on too, but they are difficult because of my smaller size and weight.
The Portland Sprint was a major success!! There are a few things I need to touch up on, but it seems like I am getting closer to a great training regime. In addition, it was great to explore the city of Portland with my girl Majken!!! The next race is the championship in Tahoe. I have a ton of training to do. The best Spartan racers will be there so I really need to step up my game!!