Ironman Coeur d'Alene - TriathlonFull Ironman

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Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
United States
Ironman North America
70F / 21C
Total Time = 12h 23m 44s
Overall Rank = 809/2187
Age Group = 35-39
Age Group Rank = 124/271
Pre-race routine:

This was my very first Ironman, and my longest race to this point was an Oly back in September. In fact this was only my 4th race period...and I had only started training last May. I trained hard, lost 45 pounds, and was ready to go.
I spent 3 days driving from Long Beach to CdA by myself with my 3 kids (22mo, 6, and 9). My wife had to fly up on Friday due to work, but we met up with my parents in Sacramento and caravaned the rest of the way over 2 days. Got into town around noon on Friday and went straight to check-in. There was no line and we were done in about 5 minutes. Checked out the expo, then headed up to our hotel and the far end of Sherman...about a mile away. That evening my dad and I walked down to the athlete meeting, then the kids and I drove out to the airport to pick up my wife. Saturday we went on a ride out to the bike/run turnaround and back and then got the bikes ready and our transition bags packed up. Walked down to transition and got setup. Went to Chili's that night and had a ceasar salad. Had some stomach issues that night, but not sure if it was the food or nerves. Tossed and turned till about 1am and finally fell asleep. Alarm went off at 4:30, and I jumped in the shower. Started getting the kids up and dressed while I drank half a Diet Coke, some Gatorade, a Poptart, and a Powerbar. Stomach felt good and I was ready to go. We all loaded into the car and found a spot to park a few blocks from transition. It was about 5:45 when my dad and I headed down to get body marked, and that was painless as they had a ton of volunteers waiting for us. After that we split up and I went to double check my bike. Climbed into my wetsuit and went up to the grassy area for last minute kisses from the family.
It was a long slow walk along the path to get down onto the beach. I'd had to pee for awhile, so I is better than later. Warmed up the suit nicely.
Event warmup:

Got down on the beach and just did some stretches and got some water on my face.
  • 1h 09m 39s
  • 4224 yards
  • 01m 26s / 100 yards

This swim was incredible. It was an absolute blast from start to finish. I lined up 3 rows back, pretty much in the middle which was right in front of a piling just off shore. Gun went off and I waded in after the people in front of me. As soon as I was chest deep I dove in. Water was chilly, but not bad at all. Didn't even have the ice cream headache I'd had during my practice swim the day before. The first few minutes had a bit of contact, but nothing like I'd read. My pace was easy and smooth and I had no problem sighting. Seemed like the first turn came up pretty quick and I was expecting a big crowd, but there wasn't. Made both turns without incident and headed back to shore. I was never really able to draft, but I was more interested in having open water. I wasn't struggling at all, and it was pretty effortless. Hit the beach, ran around the turn, and back into the water. Second loop was about the same. The last leg back to home my hands got a little cold, but it wasnt a big deal. Hit the beach and started getting my zipper down.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing....but I think I could have gone a bit faster and not expended any more energy. I'll be shooting for 1:05 in Arizona.
Transition 1
  • 08m 24s

The strippers had my suit off real quick...and I grabbed my bag from the next volunteer and into the tent I went. Found a seat right away and dumped my bag. Put on socks since it was chilly, along with my arm warmers that I had rolled down ready to go. Helmet on, sunglasses on, shoes on, and then I peed before I headed out the door. Got my bike myself, and ran to the mount line.
What would you do differently?:

I guess I could move a little quicker, but I felt pretty efficient. It was kind of a long run to the tent and to the mount line, and I was a little clumsy due to the cold.
  • 6h 14m 29s
  • 112 miles
  • 17.94 mile/hr

Got on the bike with no problem and got up to speed. The ride out the first turnaround was great. The sun was shining and I warmed up quickly. Made it back through town, then started out towards Hayden. Pretty uneventful....I grabbed a bottle of Perform to start drinking after my Gatorade was gone. I alternated a bottle of water with a bottle of Perform the whole ride after that. I think I drank 4 of Perform and 3 waters the whole ride. I peed 4 times and it was clear every time so I know I was plenty hydrated (probably a little too much. Calories consisted of bananas, about 6 gels, 2 Honey Stinger Waffles, and a powerbar. I also took two endurolytes, but probably didn't need them.
I took the hills at a good pace the first time around since I didn't know what to expect as I hadn't trained on a single hill. They werent too bad.....there were just a lot of them! The long stretch back to town was kind of tedious, but I was excited to be halfway done. Saw the family right before heading back out to the Higgens Pt. turnaround and that was a nice little boost to the morale. I felt really good, just a bit bored....but then again I don't particularly enjoy long bike rides. :) Second time around on the hills they took a little more effort, and I could start to feel it a bit in my quads, but it wasn't a big deal. Spun up the big ones as usual, and maxed out the free speed on the downhill. Did a lot of stretching out on tbe ride back to town and hit transition feeling ready to run.
What would you do differently?:

I had no cycling background prior to may last year and my training was all on flat ground or on my cheap magnetic trainer. I did however ride alot, and I think I did pretty well. I would have liked to go sub 6, and I can find all the places where I could have saved 14 minutes, but its no big deal. AZ if a much flatter course and I plan to hit that goal and then some.
Transition 2
  • 03m 8s

Cruised to the dismount line, got one leg over and hopped off without incident. Ran through to the bags and a volunteer had my bag ready. Into the tent, dumped my bag and had my Zoots and visor on in no time. I had put my Garmin on during the last few miles of the bike so that was good to go. I also took my socks off before putting my shoes on since i always run sockless and I was prepared to do the same thing here. Grabbed a cup of water and made my way out of transition.
  • 4h 48m 4s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 10m 59s  min/mile

I started off at a good clip and realized I was going a bit too fast as expected. I hadn't previewed the first part of the course, so I didn't expect the rolling hills and turns through the neighborhood and it took all the way to the bike trail to get myself settled down. I had planned to walk the aid stations, and this turned out to be a great idea. I was able to break the run down into chunks using the stations as a small reward. I managed to stay under a 10 minute pace out to the first turn, even after walking that bast@rd of a hill at the turn. At each station I took what looked good. Squeezed a few sponges on my head, a cup of water to splash on my face etc. I really enjoyed the orange slices and the pretzels.
About mile 9, I started to feel some minor issues in my right IT, and I knew it was going to give me problems. Sure enough within another two miles it was pretty uncomfortable and I started walking all of the uphills. I found that I could walk pretty fast (like a 13 minute pace) and I was okay with that. Made it back into town and that was my only brief low point of the whole race....just knowing I had to do it all again. After the turn, started trudging back up the road through the crowds and saw my family for the first time since the start of the second bike loop. Stopped for a minute for hugs from everybody before heading out. Told my wife I'd see them at the finish in 2 and a half hours. I was overstating what I thought my time would be just in case I fell apart, I didn't want them worrying too much.
The second outbound loop wasn't too bad. Maintained my walk the stations and the uphills. I made an effort to look around every few minutes and enjoy the scenery. I really liked this course...especially out on the path. Seeing so many people was great for keeping my mind off the pain. At the last turnaround, my quads were really protesting, and every time I started running again, I'd let out a groan. By this time I knew my best case goal of sub 12 was out, but was doing the math in my head and figured I had a sub 12:30 in the bag as long as I kept up the same paces during my run/walks. I did a lot of walking during the last trip through the houses, but the crowd support in there was awesome. Having your name on your bib is one of the best inventions made you feel like every single person was out there cheering just for you!
At the last aid station I grabbed some sponges and water and cleaned myself up a bit. After that I walked up the last little hill before turning onto Sherman, and that's where one of my favorite memories of this race took place. A female voluteer walked up and wrapped her arm in mine and said something to the effect of: "you look fantastic, and when you turn this corner, you will experience one of the greatest moments in your life. All those people are cheering for you, so I want you to put a smile on your face and enjoy every second of it!" At the time it sounded like poetry and it got me pretty emotional.
As I turned that corner and looked down that street I was thinking...damn that's a long way, I hope I can make it the whole way without walking! Of course, from there on out the crowds are insane and it was effortless. I floated down the chute with a huge grin on my face. I also did a double fist pump I don't remember doing, but I look pretty happy in my finish photo and video. :)
A catcher grabbed me a told me I looked great and I told I felt great! She got me my shirt, hat and medal....and got m picture taken. I assured her I was fine and made my way to the massage tent.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. I know I can do a better run, but as my first IM race, I'll take it.
Post race
Warm down:

My family was waiting at the fence so I told them I'd see them in a minute. Only had to wait for a minute for my massage, which was awesome. Grabbed some pizza for the kids, since I had no appetite, and met everyone at the moose on the grass hill. I still felt fine, but I was getting cold, and getting some warm clothes on was my first priority. I went and got my morning clothes bag, then waded into the lake to get rinsed off. Changed quickly then decided to all get in the car an d drive out on the run course to see how my dad was doing. Made it back down to the finish to see him cross with a great PR over St George last year. He ended up having a great race considering he was suffering from a hip injury that forced him to shuffle most of the marathon. Got back to the hotel and had a quick hottub with my son that felt great. Ended up staying long past everyone as I was just too amped up to sleep. The next day I was pretty sore, and the following 3 were tough having to sit in the car for 1300 miles...but I made it and today (wednesday) my legs already feel almost back to normal.

Event comments:

This was a fantastic race! CdA is just stunning and the crowd/town support was incredible. This was my first WTC race and I think it was money well spent. I don't know that I'll be back to do this one as logistically its tough, but as my first I couldn't ask for a better memory.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2010-11-27 12:00 AM
01:09:39 | 4224 yards | 01m 26s / 100yards
Age Group: 62/271
Overall: 393/2187
Performance: Good
Suit: Xterra Vortex
Course: 2 rectangular loops.
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 57F / 14C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 08:24
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
06:14:29 | 112 miles | 17.94 mile/hr
Age Group: 120/271
Overall: 791/2187
Performance: Good
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 03:08
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
04:48:04 | 26.2 miles | 10m 59s  min/mile
Age Group: 125/271
Overall: 809/2187
Course: 2 13 mile loops.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
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