Athlete Race Recap: IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, Granite Bay Triathlon, & Tri Grace

Posted On:
Saturday, September 2, 2023
Updated On:
Saturday, September 2, 2023
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It was another triathlon-filled weekend for Full Circle Endurance athletes!

IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship
Carolyn poses with her finisher medal!

On Saturday, August 26, 2023, Carolyn Classen raced at the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Lahti, Finland! Carolyn qualified for this race with her performance at IRONMAN 70.3 Chattanooga back in May.

Carolyn chose a good spot to start the race in, and was able to manage the aggressive race start well by settling in nicely as the swim progressed.  She had a smooth Transition 1 and bike mount, and then headed out on the course, which was completely closed to traffic.  Carolyn reports that it was extremely beautiful!  

Once on the run course, Carolyn was wise and reigned in her efforts.  She ran conservatively (a challenging thing; many, many athletes make the mistake of running the first miles of a triathlon at an effort and pace that is not ultimately sustainable for them) so she could feel strong for the entire run.  (And, as Carolyn told me afterwards: She wanted to make sure she finished the race because she bought a lot of gear at the merchandise tent!)  Implementing a strategic run/walk strategy where she walked the aid stations, she was able to run with strength through the entire course, including the really steep sections.  She finished feeling great and strong!

Congratulations, Carolyn!

Granite Bay Triathlon

On Saturday, August 26, 2023, Susan Doberneck raced her final triathlon of the season at the Granite Bay Triathlon in Granite Bay, California!

Susan just raced her A-Race at USA Triathlon Nationals two weeks earlier, so this race was a C-Race and was purely for fun.  She was able to get into the draft zone of a strong swimmer and then had a solid bike ride.  The run ended up being a challenge because 1.5 miles of the course was in sand.  Susan finished feeling strong, albeit tired!  It was a great way to cap off her season before she heads into Maintenance Phase.

Way to go, Susan!

Tri Grace
Jennifer found her own path by doing her own self-supported triathlon, complete with a homemade medal!

Jennifer Pearce was originally signed up for a triathlon on Saturday, August 26, 2023. After talking earlier in the week, we determined that she really didn’t want to actually do this race. So, she made the decision to not do it.

Instead, Jennifer did her own, self-supported triathlon on her terms.  She decided when she would start, how long she would go for each discipline, and where she would do it.  When we came up with this idea, it was exciting for her, which was a start contrast to how she had been feeling about the “official” race she had originally signed up for.  This feeling of excitement told us that she was making the right choice to follow her own path.

Jennifer decided to call her race “Tri Grace” because she was giving herself the grace to do what was best for her, even if it meant changing from what she originally planned to do.  She relaxed and had a great time in each of the three disciplines.  She finished the triathlon with a really strong run and feeling amazing overall.  This is exactly what we’re after in endurance sports: discovering that feeling of accomplishment and self-fulfillment.  It is important that each athlete finds it in the medium that resonates best with them, and that’s what Jennifer did this past weekend.

Congratulations, Jennifer!


Coach Laura Henry

Laura Henry is a Syracuse, NY-based coach who is a USA Triathlon Level II Long Course and Level II Paratriathlon Certified Coach, USA Cycling Level 2 Certified Coach, VFS Certified Bike Fitter, and has successfully completed NASM's Certified Personal Trainer course. Coach Laura is passionate about helping athletes of all ability levels reach their goals and has coached many athletes to success.

She can be reached at

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