SOMA Half Ironman Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Tempe, Arizona
United States
The Red Rock Company
85F / 29C
Total Time = 7h 39m 41s
Overall Rank = 749/807
Age Group Rank = 54/61
Pre-race routine:

Non to speak of just woke early to make sure I'd make it to the race on time. Then went down the check list to make sure I had everything I needed.
Event warmup:

My warmup consisted of me getting my wetsuit on. That's a wokout in its self. Then thought about getting in the water to do some pre-race yards. Ended up just thinking about it.
  • 49m 24s
  • 2112 yards
  • 02m 20s / 100 yards

Entered the water with Grant and training body Mike other than that everything else seemed a blur. Did a casual type breaststroke up towards the front of the start. I didn't want to be in or near the front but the announcer said 30seconds to go and I looked back and there were still tons of people on the stairs to the water so I kinda kept moving forward. At one point Mike said he was gonna stay right with me on the swim but when the horn went off I just started swimming and really couldn't tell you who was next to me. Compared to other races I've done this swim seemed much harder. I'm not sure if I wasn't holding a straight line or everybody else wasn't but I'm pretty sure I bumped into everyone on the course.
Swimming into the sun was hard, I couldn't tell which bouy was the right one to head towards so I picked one and kept a large group of swimmers on my left so I know I was heading the right direction but as luck would have it that whole group sited on the wrong buoy and the boaters out there let us get about 3 minutes off course.

The return to land was uneventful except getting out of water was fun, couldn’t find the 1st step to the stair contraption they had us climbing out of the lake on and for some reason my HR jumped up to 172 right when I was getting out of the water, maybe I was getting excited about the up coming bike ride.

Oh, by the way, this swim was a PR for me during a race.
Actual swim time was 47:35
What would you do differently?:

I think I would get a different pair of goggles for swimming early morning into the sun. The IMAZ is going to be the exact same swim (just longer) so at that race I'll get better vision (for sun) goggles and swim closer to the wall for better navigation. If your going to get beat up you should at least be going the right dirction.
Transition 1
  • 03m 42s

2 things about T1, One, I forgot to put my sunscreen on before the swim so I remember thinking I'd get it on at T1- FORGOT again Secondly I wanted to put on my shirt under my wetsuit because its so hard to do when your wet- FORGOT that too.
Although my T1 time was better than other races, even shorter races, I could of had a better transition. other than that everything went as planned.
What would you do differently?:

remember all the steps in my plan
  • 3h 11m 4s
  • 56 miles
  • 17.59 mile/hr

I remember actually running my bike out of T1 to the mount line, a first for me so I knew I was going to have a good ride/ day.
As I got going on the bike I immediately had to cross the construction debris over the black carpet into possible bike traffic. It never even dawned on me not to look for cross bike traffic as I merged north to head out on the course. I guess not everyone thinks of those things. The 1st accident I was aware of came at that very section when one racer merged directly into another, OUCH. The lady starting her bike ride was done for the day and off to the hospital. The gentleman starting his second loop was lucky and was merely slowed down temporally. It was going to be a tough day.

Everything went smooth for me on my 1st lap I managed to stay way from the 5 or so accidents that I was aware of on the 18+ miles of the loop. I even to managed to discover that I was actually ahead of Mike by 5 or 6 minutes (the good thing about loop courses is the ability to see how far ahead or behind you are compared to other racers. I felt strong riding my own race, I kept to my nutrition plan like clock work, drinking continuously (sipping) and switching back and forth between GU and my salt tabs I finished lap 1 in 59 minutes a whole minute ahead of planned.

2nd lap- I still feel strong but my speed down Rio Salado dropped and my HR climbed a bit as I tried to pick the pace back up. I wasn’t sure if I was just getting tired or the wind picked up. After trying to hammer back up to my planned speed I decided I better ease up a bit and stick to my planned HR instead so my speed dropped.
After the 1st aide station on Hayden I replenished my water and was just settling into the aero position again when a rider about 25 meters or so in front of me looses control of his bike and plants his face directly on the ground in front of him. He unfortunately did move one muscle after that. I immediately stopped to check on him but he was out cold. He almost appeared to be soaring. If it wasn’t for the funny position, blood and the fact he was in the middle of the road I would swear he was sleeping. Other racers rushed to inform the near by police that he needed help while I stayed and try to comfort him. It really was a helpless feeling, wanting to do something for Fred (His name from his bib) but only to able to tell him to stay still and that he’s going to be OK. I did this for several minutes before he even moved once. After a bit another racer stopped who was an EMT and offered her assistance followed by yet another EMT doing the race. Then the 1st cop arrived so my function was over and I left Fred’s well being to the professionals. (note: I have since emailed the race directors to find out how he is doing, but have yet to here a status.) I finished my 2nd lap a little shaken, a little slower but refocused. 1hr 11min 2nd lap. Its turning into a hard day

3rd lap- Now after 37 miles on a 3 loop course life starts to get a little mundane in the saddle but I passed the ½ way point so I just had to spin my way to T2.
I made the 1st part of the 3rd loop when I spotted another friend, Grant, peddling away up Priest Ave, I’ve seen him a few times throughout the day but now I was worried because Mike was always just in front of Grant. A few minutes later I found out what happened to Mike (at least part of the story). A mile later here comes Mike, riding a Mountain Bike? WHAT THE! He yells to me that he was cut off towards the end of the 2nd loop and crashed big time. His bike was trashed. As luck would have it he crashed right in front of a teammate that was taking pictures today. Now in a technical sense he shouldn’t have been allowed to swap bikes but today Mike had another goal besides just finishing this race he was a man with another mission all together. So rules be dammed and he grabbed a ill fitting mountain bike, swapped shoes with Commodore and was off towards the finish line and his other mission.
My 3rd lap went relatively quick and painless until about mile 52 when I hit the only hill for the last time and my right thigh cramped so bad that I had to come almost to a complete stop as I tried to stretch out and relieve the pain. This is a tough day.

NOTE: 11/2/2005- Just tracked down Fred, he's OK. He didn't remember anything about the accident just that he woke up in the ER with 12 stitches and a cracked rib.

What would you do differently?:

Besides all the wrecks, flats and other miss haps on the road today I was lucky and right on plan. I rode this course two weeks ago at somewhere like 20.5 mph avg which was too fast for me so the 18 pace was good for me and I followed my plan to the Tee.
Transition 2
  • 04m 58s

Took my time in T2. i took the time to change my socks, grab my drinks for my fuel belt (which I had stashed in a little cooler) and even stopped at the port-a potty on the way out towards the run. BUT, I forgot the sun screen AGAIN!
What would you do differently?:

  • 3h 30m 35s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 16m 05s  min/mile

I started my run at a good pace for me @11:00min mile but that would soon turn into the death march of dread. As in races past I was expecting Mike to come up and high five me as he passed on by before I hit the 1 mile mark. It didn’t happen. Then came mile 2 still no Mike but Grant finally caught me and off he went towards a great finish. As I slowly worked my way around the lake I started to get worried about Mike because he hasn’t caught me yet. I continued to watch countless people pass me while I ran. 20 at mile 4 including another teammate Todd on his 2nd lap and away to great finish, 50 at mile 5 but still no Mike. I was hurting pretty good at this point but kept pushing forward. I remember passing the ½ mark and knowing that I had 6.5 miles to go. Boy’s it’s been a long day.
Somewhere along the line I slipped into a run one minute walk one minute mode and shifted from shooting for a personal best race to I hope I make the run cut off. I started to do the math as more of a distraction then a necessity but I was pretty confident that if I keep moving I’d finish.
Finally as I approached the 10 mile mark I turned to see Mike coming up behind me. I was hurting but all I could think about now was that I hope I didn’t look as bad as Mike looked. He looked like he was in some real pain.
Of course its still a race so I just kept moving and it took another mile and ½ until Mike was shoulder to shoulder with me. He slowed just long enough to run with me awhile and fill me in on his long day. The last 2 miles went relatively quick and I tried to keep Mike in site. He finished 3 minutes before me.
As I turned the corner to head up the finish shoot my wife, Jeni, was there waiting for me with our 3 kids. What a great feeling.
I ran across the line with my 2 boys and with Conor, my youngest boy, carrying his newly found baby ‘rock’.

Just pass the finish line timing mat Mike completed his other mission of the day. He got down on his bloody knee and asked his girl friend Tracy to marry him.
She said yes, helped him up and over to the medical tent were he was sent off to the ER because they believed he may have had a collapsed lung not too mention other issues.

Well, I hurt all over and my legs felt like I’d be OK if the just feel off, but Mike finished this race in pain that I could only imagine and unable to even take a fully breath of air. That’s Love.

(Turns out Mike’s lungs are OK, he’s ‘just’ bruised pretty good with a lot of abrasions as well.)

What would you do differently?:

More running. Oh I know, more running.
Post race
Warm down:

none really I just sat down and I was down.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

running, running, running.

Event comments:

With the expection of the registration/ check-in on Saturday which was pretty un-organized this was by far the best race I've down of any distance.
This is the only race I've down where they actually had ice for us BOP'ers all the way to the end of the run. I've done 6 other races of various distances that had coke at the aid station but they have always been out by the time I rn by. Every station and COLD COKE, ice, water and enven food items. Dang these people are good at there jobs and the Volunteers are great as well.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2005-09-26 12:00 AM
00:49:24 | 2112 yards | 02m 20s / 100yards
Age Group: 44/61
Overall: 659/807
Performance: Good
swim time includes getting the wetsuit STRIPPED out of the water and running to the transition area
Suit: Ironman Stealth
Course: A rectangle loop, single lap in Tempe Town Lake.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 70F / 21C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Average Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Bad
Rounding: Good
Time: 03:42
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
03:11:04 | 56 miles | 17.59 mile/hr
Age Group: 49/61
Overall: 638/807
Performance: Good
After about a half of lap got my HR to 145 to 149 good overall
Wind: Some
Course: 3 lap course around Tempe and ajoining areas, managing to hit very little hill they could find. The course also managed 3 U-turns on each lap and many other 90 degree plus turns that killed your speed.
Road: Rough Dry Cadence: 80
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 04:58
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
03:30:35 | 13.1 miles | 16m 05s  min/mile
Age Group: 57/61
Overall: 764/807
Performance: Below average
Course: A two loop tour around Tempe Town Lake.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5