Thursday, November 16, 2006

Decisions, Decisions

My big race goal for 2007 is to do my first half-ironman distance race (1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, 13.1 mile run - 70.3 miles total). Because of scheduling and geography, my two options are Ironman 70.3 Baja and Wildflower Long Course.

I have friends with a beach house about 30 minutes north of Ensenada in Baja, so I would have my own bedroom and private bathroom. In Wildflower, I'd be sleeping in a tent and using communal bathrooms. Yes, I'm a wimp.

Wildflower is known for being one big weekend-long triathlon party.
Baja would be mellow with a couple of friends.
ADVANTAGE: Wildflower

Baja 70.3 is a long and difficult course.
Wildflower is a long and INSANELY difficult course.

Baja 70.3 is an official Ironman-branded event with the M-Dot logos everywhere. I think that would be very cool, and a great way to get a taste of a future full Ironman.
Wildflower is not affiliated with Ironman at all. Its main sponsor is Jamba Juice. I hate Jamba Juice. I hate the bizarre yuppie-hippie hybrids that go there. I can't even stand the smell of being in their stores.

This is the big one. In Baja, I would run the race alone. At Wildflower, I'd have friends racing with me. They'll finish several hours ahead of me, but at least at the end of the day we can sit around the campfire drinking Mountain Dew and share war stories from the race. That's important.
ADVANTAGE: Wildflower

Registration for Wildflower starts Decembet 1st and it sells out very quickly, so I need to decide by then. You're probably thinking I should just set my goals high and do Wildflower, since that's where my friends will be racing. I think it's more complicated than that. I believe that by May, I will be capable of crossing the finish line for either race (I'm not there yet.) The question is, how do I want to feel at that point? I don't want to repeat the L.A. Marathon, where I didn't care at all about finishing. There is no doubt in my mind I would mentally have a better race in Baja.

I have 2 weeks to decide.


Blogger Cliff said...

Baja 70.3 is a long and difficult course.
Wildflower is a long and INSANELY difficult course.
ADVANTAGE: Wildflower

If it is not insane, it ain't fun. :)

5:41 AM  
Blogger nancytoby said...

Sounds like either one would be good choice! Have fun!

9:45 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

My buddy did both and thought the bike course for Baja was petty comparable to wildflower due to plenty of hills. However Wildflower has a mother of a run. That was my first half iron distance race ever...and let me tell you, I've never hurt so bad in all my life... The one thing they don't tell you is the campsite is FAR and up a MASSIVE hill from all the lakeside action. I spent way to much time walking back and forth over those hills in the heat. I'm not so sure Baja would be mellow after the race. There's plenty of Tequilla there. Wildflower was definitely fun. I'm not sure when I'll go back there again tho... And I did Wildflower on a record low for temps...hence all the course records this year.

Good luck with your decision.


12:06 PM  
Blogger Geek Girl said...

Might I recommend Soma? There will be a bunch of us bloggers there, and it's a great, well-run course, almost guarenteed to have no rain.

5:57 PM  
Blogger Pasadena Sue said...

Hey, what about Honu??? It's an M-Dot event and the location is beautiful! You could take a nice vacation besides doing the race. Sounds like a slam dunk to me.

Otherwise, I vote for aja-Bay.

Pasadena Sue

10:11 PM  
Blogger Iradoman said...

Dude you gotta be at Wildflower with us... I'll do Baja next year with you, also my Bday is May 5th - Race day at Wildflower.... Be there or be square...

6:12 PM  

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