Race Coverage

Storm Delays & Exploding Hearts...


By Cami Eckhoff

Steelhead 70.3 Race Report - Steelhead 70.3 was an awesome and challenging experience! The highlight was having Keith and our boys with cheering and supporting me! The kids have come to a couple local short course races but being apart of a Ironman event and spectators on race day is no small endeavor. They came with to registration and bike check in the day before and were up at 4:30 am (3:30 our time) race morning, sat in the vehicle for the hour storm delay, walked miles across sand, road, golf course and more all to cheer for a few seconds each time. Every time I saw them, my heart exploded! They were the real champs of the day!

A quick race recap~ I truly swam, biked and ran as best I could with what my body gave me on Sunday.

Swimming in Lake Michigan was nerve-racking but I took it buoy by buoy being tossed around by the waves, telling myself to be calm and just keep swimming. I was so glad to lift my head and finally see the finish arch! ...

T-1 was a slow go, running across the large beach, up a sandy hill, onto pavement and all the way to the end of the bike racks where my 353 was parked. My heart rate was really high.

After the first big climb on mile 1 of the bike, I settled in for a bumpy but solid ride. The only setback was grabbing a Gatorade on course that wasn’t opened. After attempting 4 times to open it with my teeth I gave up, had 2 of my hydrogels instead and road with the full bottle until aid station mile 42. Thankful to grab an open one and book it the last 16 miles!

The run was hot and hilly and mentally challenging. I’m not where I want to be with my half marathon legs but took it mile by mile staying in the moment grateful for the aid stations and wonderful, upbeat volunteers. Mile 8-9 was the toughest, feeling completely drained- walking the whole aid station needing to regroup. A little internal pep talk and I was off to finish 4.5 more miles as best I could.

Seeing my family in the finish line chute was the best! I was completely spent but so grateful to be healthy and able to participate. I ended up 1st place in my AG, 6th overall female. It was a great finish to a lot of work put in. There’s always more to do, which is why I love this sport so much! So, back to the drawing board… after we enjoy our final day of the road trip at Wisconsin Dells tomorrow!