My first Triathlon
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Ironman Louisville - TriathlonFull Ironman
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World Triathlon Corporation
60F / 16C
= 13h 29m 47s
Age Group Rank
We drove to Louisville from the Raleigh area on Thursday morning after dropping off Zoe for boarding.
When we arrived in Louisville, we checked into the Embassy Suites, partook of the manager's reception, and grabbed a sandwich for dinner.
On Friday, I went for a short bike ride, both to get the day in the car out of my legs but also to go through all the gears. Then I went the Ironman Village, checked in and attended pre race meeting where I met Ann-Marie and Susan for the first time. The meeting was the worst. The announcer guy hosted it. He did not seem to know any specifics and what specific he did know, he did not share with us. He said things like “the swim start is where it has always been.” When asked do we keep the buoys on the right or left in the swim, he said keep them on your right to stay out of the channel. Well, I think so. Then later said to keep them on your left. So we left the meeting not really knowing much of anything.
We invited Ann-Marie, Susan, Jim, and Michelle over for Manatee Meetup over drinks. They came over and it evolved into dinner as well. We went to an Ethiopian and Mediterranean place called Addis Grill. I think that we all enjoyed ourselves!
On Saturday, I went for a short swim
(the official IM one
), dropped off my bike and transition bags, and tried to relax after that. That was actually quite a bit of walking. Later on, we went for pizza at Sicilian Pizza & Pasta Downtown. As Kevin and I walked up to the restaurant, who did we see but Ann-Marie and Susan! They kept us company while we ate
(they had just finished
). Let it be said that Papa John's may be a good representation of Louisville pizza.
On race morning, I got up at 4:15, lubed up liberally and then ate a bagel with peanut butter and a banana. I also had an Ensure and drank a bottle of water with Nuun and a cold brew coffee. Then I headed out with my bags
(special needs, morning cloths, nutrition, wetsuit, swim geat
) and walked to the transition area. I left the hotel at about 5am. I checked over my bike, Loaded my nutrition
(bottle of water, two bottles of Infinit, various shot bloks and gels. Then I went to body marking, dropped off my special needs bags and started the walk to swim start.
walk to swim start
1h 22m 12s
02m 10s / 100 meters
I lined up at the very front of the 130-1:40 group. I think that I got in line at about 6:15am after checking out transition, putting nutrition on my bike, walking the bike out. dropping special needs bags and getting body marked.
The start was delayed about 15 minutes. The pros were supposed to start at 7:20 but the sky was very overcast so it was slow to get light. From where I was lined up, it seemed like the Pros started at 7:25 and the age groupers started at 7:45.
Once the line started to move, things went along quickly. Once I got into the water
(I slid in, did not want goggle issues
), I had a brief moment near the dock where I though, "What have I gotten myself into?!" I gather myself up and told myself to just swim. The upstream portion was much narrower than I expected. I was relieved to get out of that channel and into the main river. After the turn, I could feel the current pick up, which was good. It was also pretty choppy. I was glad to have a wetsuit on.
The stairs at the end were a lot easier on race day than during the pre race swim. Volunteers helped to get us out.
Official water temperature was 71.8F.
From the swim exit, I rant to the wetsuit strippers, grabbed my bike bag, and ran to the changing tent. I dumped my bag out. I pulled on my bike jersey
(kept the wet shorts and sports bra on
), pulled on socks and shoes, helmet, gloves, sunglasses, and ran to get my bike
(9th rack over, near the aisle, look for the yellow green stripe
). It was a longish run out to the street from there. I kept cleat covers on so that I could run and yanked them off at the mount line.
6h 47m 55s
I ran to the dismount line, tore off my cleat covers and mounted
(would not have used cleat covers if run out has been shorter
). I was maybe five minutes into the ride and noticed that my "bike stuff" had not been picked up by my Garmin. I powered it off and powered it back on. Thankfully, it picked up right where it left off.
I knew that I'd have a tailwind on the outbound section
(River Road and 42
) before turning on 393 toward LaGrange. I focused on keeping my power within range. After turning toward LaGrange, we encountered the first long hill of the day. There were folks out there with signs saying, "Welcome to Grandma's Hill." and "She's a bitch." I probably went into this hill with too much exuberance. I need to work on not attacking hills in IM so much as managing the power output.
Next we passed what would be the Special Needs stop on the second lap and we approached LaGrange. This was about the time that I dropped the chain for the first time. I got it back on quickly
(and realized that I had left autopause on
). We continued through LaGrange were there were spectators lining the street and not to long after, there was a long long downhill followed by a hard left turn onto Ballard School Road. There were a couple of short, steep, jerky hills in this section. The road was narrow and people were all over the place. I really had to watch myself. In my mind, I thought of the Ballanrd to L'Esprit/153 part as the "technical" section with all of the rest of the course as the "flowing rolling" section. About this time it stated to rain/mist.
After completing this section and turning back on 42, My chain dropped for the third time. I was highly annoyed by now. The bike is new-ish and I am thinking that it is cable stretch. I had been super careful with shifting
(change the cassette gear pedal pedal, change the ring from big to little
). By now I was reluctant to change rings. Thankfully, that was the final time that issue came up.
The ride on 42 back to the turn for LaGrange and the start of the second lap seemed to take a long time. Also, it seemed like the wind had not changed directions as much as I had hoped/anticipated and there was more headwind than I would have liked.
The second lap was mostly uneventful. We even had some sun! After getting back on 42 when the temperature dropped. Shortly after that, the wind picked up significantly. Now it was a direct crosswind coming from right to left. It was cold and it was strong
(sustained at 32 mph with gusts to 45
). A few times I was scared as the wind blew me across the lane and debris fell from the trees -- yes, even crabapples. It also rained hard for a brief while -- quite noisy on my helmet. I felt like I was in the Wizard of Oz and that all I needed was the wicked witch music.
I briefly contemplated running in my bike jersey because I was cold. I told myself that running is always warmer that biking and that we would be more protected by being in town. Also, I had never run in that bike jersey and I didn't want to get super chaffed up.
Thankfully, either the wind eased a bit or I got into a more protected section by the time I got to River Road.
I saw Kevin near the dismount line, I got off my bike and was surprised not to be able to hand off my bike right away. I tried to run to the transition bags but I had a hard time getting my legs under me again.
Nutrition: 2 bottles of Infinit
) and shot bloks. I had one gel with 5-10 miles to go.
I grabbed my transition bag, headed to the change tent, dumped my bag, changed out of my bike jersey and into my tri top, kept on my same socks but changed shoes, decided that I did not need sunglasses so I left them but I did put on my running hat and, of course, my race belt. Then I was off.
I saw Michelle
(aka Mrs. Jim
) on the run out.
4h 58m 10s
11m 23s min/mile
Two down and one to go! I handed off my bike and made my way to the changing tent, grabbing my bag along the way. I feet were really really ready to get out of my bike shoes and it was more of a fast walk than a run to the tent. I got to the tent and changed into my tri top, kept my same socks on
(I had extra socks in case my feet got soaked on the bike
) and put on my run shoes, hat, race belt. Oops! My lube somehow didn’t make it into the bag! OK, then Vaseline would have to do. And I was off.
I started out strong with my cadence high as we made our way past the Yum Center and up the gradual slope away from the river. I past the first aid station just out of transition and got water at the second one. At the third one, I had gel. The plan was for gels every three miles. I continued to tick off the miles past the Tri Club tents and spectators towards Churchill Downs. I was running between the aid stations and trying to keep it to short walk while I got water. I had few sips and moved one. By about mile six, when I got my second gel, I really had to pee again. The problem was that the bathrooms all had a line. I continued to mile seven, still a line. Pretty soon we were at the turnaround and heading back towards downtown. Mile 8, still a line. I think they need more port o pots on course! My cadence cropped from 182 to 178. I kept I trying to get it back up and finally changed my watch to stop looking at it. That’s not to say that I wasn’t still trying to keep the cadence high, it was just not helpful too see it anymore. By mile 9 I wanted my long sleeved shirt — only four more miles to get the shirt. I was getting chilly. Next up, the tiny out an back by Churchill Downs. Ten miles down. Parts of the course go through a section of gilded age houses in the Old Louisville Historic District near the University of Louisivlle
(they claim to have the largest contiguous history district of Victorian homes
). Pretty soon I was at Breckenridge and feeling more energy from the course. I saw Kevin at the turnaround and I was thankful to grab my long sleeved shirt to wear of the next little while.
By mile 15, my stomach said enough of the gels. I had some Turns to try to settle my stomach. By mile 16, I was feeling pretty nauseous. The jostling of running didn’t help. I had some Pepto chewable to try to settle my stomach. When that didn’t help, I walked and had the rest of my Tums, then started running again but ended up inserting extra walk breaks. Someone on the course, another competitor, asked how it was going. I said that it wasn’t the run that I had envisions, stomach issues. He said that her always put a small bottle of Pepto in his run special needs bag and chugged it. That’s something to consider.
Anyway, I continued on in this way, got back to Breckenridge Street again, felt the energy again, and made turned n Chestnut, just two blocks form the finish. I put my long sleeved tee in a trash can and run in to the finish line. Ironman #6 in the books!
Nutrition: All in all I had three or four gels, water, a few sips of cola, a sip of chicken broth, a few handfuls of potato chips, a pack of Tums and two Pepto chewables.
I ran through the finisher's chute. I tried to time it so that I could get a good picture but of course someone had to horn into my shot.
(I guess I'll just have to do another IM next year to get that illusive-to-me shot!
). There were lots of volunteers there and one of them grabbed me, gave me a silver blanket, water and a medal and walked the through the process.
Kevin was there too and he took a photo of me between the finish line and the official backrgound thingie. Once I had my official picture taken and the volunteer let me go, Kevin took me around the corner for the post race food. I grabbed a drink and had some french fries and I sat down on something other than my bike for the first time in a long while. Everyone in the tent was commenting on the wind and the super changeable weather throughout the day.
Kevin then walked me back the to the hotel and went to get me something for dinner. I said that I didn't want anything and he said, "You will after you shower."
What limited your ability to perform faster:
Upset stomach on run
The volunteers and specators in Louisville were very supportive. I have never seen so meny police -- every intersection on the run and most intersections on the bike were traffic controlled. Louisville put out an A+ effort for this event!
Last updated: 2016-11-23 12:00 AM
01:22:12 | 3800 meters | 02m 10s / 100meters
72F / 22C
Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
06:47:55 | 112 miles | 16.47 mile/hr
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Shoe and helmet removal
04:58:10 | 26.2 miles | 11m 23s min/mile
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]
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