Thursday, September 12, 2013

Sept. 8, 2013 - Ironman 70.3 Championship @ Las Vegas (Henderson, NV)

Thurs. Sept. 5 - picked up my race packet.

Tried on my new speed suit.

saturday Sept. 6 - practice swim in Lake Las Vegas Visibility in water = 0.

The covered bridge where I and many others would wait for the race to start.

Bike and run check-in
RACE DAY!!! Pouring rain...  Racers arrived on the bridge before day break
Ready to race

Final well wishes before the race start from Jimmy Zhong, Lin's cousin.
We lined up according to the instructions from the paddle board guy.  I'm at the front end of his board, between a guy in a white cap and a guy in lavender cap who has his hand on the paddle board.
Team Chris ter Horst - Lilah, Ying (Lin's father), Lizzie, Wei (Lin's brother), and Lin
My parents flew in the night before the race from The Netherlands and didn't tell us.  But apparently everyone in Bathmen knew they were coming to surprise us.
This is for Chris from The Netherlands
Here I come, out of T2.
I unzipped my tri-suit, and all the gel bags I was not allowed to discard while on the bike came bursting out of my chest.

What a great experience it was to participate in a race with world class competition. The swim went well, I gave it my best effort and given the circumstances I am happy with it. The bike was superb - I contested with 3 other racers which brought me to powers I haven't experienced before. Then, as soon as I transitioned from bike to run I started having pain in my stomach, so the run was awfully painful and slow.

Thanks to all the support, because it was amazing. Special thanks to my in-laws Wei Zhong, Victoria Van Zhong, Elizabeth Van Zhong who came all the way from Seattle, Jimmy Zhong, Ying Jun Zhong, and my parents Marlies ter Horst and Harry ter Horst who came to Vegas to cheer me on as a surprise. Also great thanks to my coach Lance Watson who made this opportunity possible for me after only training me for 8 months! I can never thank enough my wife Lin ter Horst for all her support, honest feedback, patience and advice. Without her I wouldn't be where I am now!

I am looking forward to planning for the months ahead and continuing to pursue my dream of becoming a professional triathlete.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Saturday August 31, 2013 @Henderson, Nevada

It's a week before the Ironman 70.3 World Championship Las Vegas.

We have been staying at the Residence Inn in Henderson, NV for four nights already, having left our hotel room on Bowery Street in Chinatown in New York City in the wee hours of Tuesday.

We like the Residence Inn.  It has everything we need, with breakfasts included every morning and complimentary dinners two to three times a week.

The breakfasts are typically American.  We always get ourselves the following items:
  • eggs, scrambled and/or boiled
  • sausage patties and ham (not for me, as I'm vegetarian plus fish)
  • oatmeal
  • raisin bran
  • fresh fruits
  • whole wheat bagel 
  • coffee (for Lin, as I gave up coffee three years ago)
  • waffles (I knows it's not good, as the batter most likely contains enriched bleached all-purpose flour, but after the hard workouts for the last two days, I'm allowed to indulge a bit)
  • yogurt - we skipped the yogurt because everything was flavored with something artificial
We started bringing our own toppings (hemp hearts and chia seeds for me) and our own home-made berry sauce down to the breakfast room, to spice things up a bit.

The night before Lin made a batch of her favorite chocolate cupcakes - Pierre Herme's Suzy's Cake (from Dorie Greenspan's Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme), using Authentic Foods GF Class Blend gluten-free flour which she brought with us, as I've been trying to go gluten-free.  We got a bag of the Kirkland 51% semi-sweet chocolate chips from Costco just to make these cupcakes, because we didn't bring our 70% dark chocolate couverture with us.  So the cupcakes are a bit sweeter than usual, but still delicious nevertheless.

One of the advantages of having a Cordon-Bleu-trained pastry chef as a wife is that if I'm super sweet to my wife, which is not hard, I get to eat whatever pastry I want.  Lin has a huge collection of French pastry recipe books, many in French (she's good with using Google Translate), and she can make anything come out just right.

Today my training was only an hour-long swim in open water, which I did at Boulder Beach.  My coach Lance Watson must have taken pity on me after the last couple of days.  Here is a picture of the salt stains on my clothes after the three-hour bike ride on Thurs.

I made dinner and dessert tonight - omelette with onions and stir fried veggies from Costco, frozen banana puree with melted chocolate (we don't want to bring the Kirkland chocolate chips home).  Lin and Lilah have become fans of my whimsical dessert concoctions lately, or so it seems.