Pigman Triathlon - Long Course - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Palo, Iowa
United States
Pigman Triathlon
82F / 28C
Total Time = 6h 51m 14s
Overall Rank = 466/535
Age Group = M 35-39
Age Group Rank = 58/61
Pre-race routine:

Leading up to this race was a very busy time for me. This was the least prepared for a race as I had been since my first. I ended up getting the day that I deserved (again). Obviously, 1 swim and 2 runs per week is not enough training for a 1/2.

Drove up the day before with Pat, Glen, James (who surprised us with his new, super wheels), and Nick (who was spectating) with Stacey following behind. Made it to Peoria, when we turned around and went back home to retrieve Glen's forgotten wetsuit. He heard about that the rest of the weekend, lol (and will continue to hear about it for awhile).

Got checked in, picked up packet, and headed out to drive the course. The course was much hillier than I remembered and the whining in the car was crazy. We went back unpacked and went to eat some pasta.

Later night than what I had planned due to some phone calls and medical issues with my dad (he is going to be fine), but still slept ok.

Up early to go set up transition. Everything went pretty smooth. Put on wetsuit and headed to race start.
Event warmup:

Swam about 100 yards and felt "fast" This was a time trial start by waves. I was in wave 8 of 9, so had to wait awhile
  • 40m 54s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 56s / 100 yards

Started right behind James and in the wave ahead of Glen. Swam next to James for about 200 yards (on his left where he couldn't see me). We hit some slower traffic and I had to go around, I didn't see him anymore after that. It was a lot longer to the first turn buoy than it looked from land. Seemed to take forever.
Made the turn and headed down the backstretch. This took awhile, but I knew this was a long stretch, so I just tried to zone out and swim. I have not swam much(only 1 swim over 1200 yards) so was waiting for fatigue to set in. Swam buoy to buoy and was surprised at how well I felt.
Made the last turn and headed in to shore. The finish blow up arch way was at an angle, which made me think I was way off course. Didn't really push it in, just kept it steady. I didn't wear a watch and didn't know what time I started, so had no idea what my time was until later.
What would you do differently?:

As usual swim more, but swimming is overated, lol. Really the lack of swimming didn't hurt my time (PR 1/2 swim time), but didn't help. Where it did hurt me was on the bike (coming up)
Transition 1
  • 13m 51s

Long run to my bike. I see James's bike is still there, so I'm still ahead :)
Got everything ready, wetsuit off, helmet and shoes on. Grabbed my bike from the rack, gave my tires a quick pinch, just to check, and saw that my back tire was flat :(
I knew there was a bike mechanic set up that morning at the other end of transition, way down by the building, but thought they might have one close to the bike out. Ran bike up to the volunteer there and asked if there was a mechanic close. She looked at me with a puzzled look and said "what?" I told her my tire was flat and asked her again for a mechanic or if I should just do it myself. She said to do it yourself. Ok.
This really sux, cause my tires (GP4000) are very, very tight on my rims (Easton). I got everything out of my pack that I would need, asked the volunteer to hold my bike so my aerobottle would not spill and set to work on the wheel. I spent a lot of time trying to get the tire off. I heard Glen in transition. He said "I wish I could help you" lol, I thought, well get over here, lol. I heard James there too. Thought to myself that at least this was in transition and didn't count against my bike time.
Finally, asked another volunteer to help my by holding a lever. Finally got the tire off and the rest of the change went smooth and quick. Filled it up with CO2 (almost the whole bottle) and then headed out to bike.
What would you do differently?:

Not have my tire go flat. I'm going to buy some different tires the next time I purchase some.
I really thought for a race this size and it being a qualifier that they would have a mechanic close to bike out.
  • 2h 47m 46s
  • 56 miles
  • 20.03 mile/hr

Usually I'm excited to get on my bike and go. But just didn't have my head in the game at this point. Had to do some mental motivation to keep going. Got out of the park and down the big hill and enjoyed the free speed. This section of road was very rough and required constant attention.
I noticed right away that my neck and shoulders were very sore and painful. I figured it must be from the lack of swim training and the sighting I did during the swim. My helmet felt like it weighed 50 pounds. Aero position was a real strain and not working for extended periods of time.
Oh, well, gotta soldier on. Got the neck and shoulders stretched out enough to be used and then my back started. "Good Grief, I'm falling apart." Just kept riding. Made it past the rough sections including the rail road tracks, which luckily on the worst ones, they put some boards across.
Came up on James about mile 17. We chatted briefly. He told me he was just "spinning" and "enjoying the nice weather." Yeah, ok, sure. This was the guy who said "Pigman IS a race!" I continued on. Anywhere I could coast at 24+mph, I would coast. This later turned into 22+ and then 20+ :)

I had 3 bottles of CarboRocket 333 formula. I finished the first bottle a little over 1 hour into the ride. Just about perfect. I was taking bottles of plain water from the feed stations.

I got passed by a guy. I really don't like to be passed on the bike. I passed him back. Wasn't long and he passed me again. I thought he might be wanting to work together and slingshot each other. That's not how I roll in a race. I passed him again and made sure he didn't catch me for awhile. Never saw him again.

I think it was somewhere in here that I saw Stacey and Kim. Always nice to see teammates on the course.

When I was about 2 miles from the turnaround, I saw Glen. The meant he was 4 miles ahead of me. Never saw him again either. I ht the turnaround at about 1:20. I knew the ride back would entail some headwind, so I didn't get too excited about that.
Maybe a mile, maybe less, after the turnaround, I saw James. He smiled. I figured he was pacing me and planning to catch me on the run, which I was sure he could do.
Ride back was more of the same, lots of hills and gear changes. I got passed by a girl on the way back into the town. I passed her back, she passed me and took off through the town. It was miles up the road before I caught and passed her again (she passed me early on the run).
The last stretch of road before the entrance to the park was BRUTAL. Rough, uphills, into the wind. On one of the flat sections I think I was only going 14mph or so. I really wasn't sure I was going to be able to ride up the big hill at the end, but really didn't want to walk my bike up the hill either. Used my gears and made it up. Still 2 miles to go to transition with some more hills. I was mentally drained. That last stretch of road just took it out of me. I was ready to get off my bike.
Made it to transition and to my rack.
What would you do differently?:

Swim more. Yep, I said SWIM more. I truly believe my neck and shoulder "discomfort" was directly related to lack of swim training. I know my bike fitness is good.

Something about the day, I just didn't seem to have any pep in my legs. Might have been from the slack 3 weeks of training (check log). Also, only drank 2 of my bottle of 333. Got tired of it towards the end.
Transition 2
  • 06m 57s

No hurry here. Sat down, put lube on my feet, made sure I had everything I needed. I also changed into a "running" shirt and shorts.
Saw Nick as I left, he was trying to get me to go faster, lol. I knew already that the legs weren't there.
What would you do differently?:

Slow transition, but I really wasn't in a hurry.
  • 3h 01m 47s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 13m 53s  min/mile

Here we go again. I had not run over 7 miles at one time since probably very early spring or late winter. No real reason or excuse, just never ramped it up.
Decided I'd start with a 8minute jog, 2 minute walk strategy and walk any tough hills. My left, lower back was starting to get tight already. I had some problem with this in the past and will have to do some thinking on the cause. Well first tough hill came early and screwed up the 8/2 plan. I thought a 4/1 plan would work better. Lost track of that one too. Just decided to jog when I could and walk when I must.
Had 3 gels and a bottle of CarboRocket. The CarboRocket was so warm I dumped it out. The course had HEED (I don't like) and water. I then planned on taking a gel at mile 2, 6, and 9. Stacey ran by me and tried to get me going faster, but I was on a plan.
I hit every aid station and had them fill my bottle with ice water. I drank most and dumped some on my head. I wasn't really overheated, it just felt good. My back would get "tight" every now and then and anytime I took a quick deep breath, it would stop me and make me catch my breath.
Not really a whole lot to tell. It was a better death march with more jogging than at Effingham last year. My legs really didn't feel that bad, just didn't feel much at all. Just weren't there.
I ate a couple of orange slices at a couple aid stations. I saw Pat and then Glen. One of them was about 4 miles ahead of me. They both looked strong.
Made it up the hill and to the turnaround in a little under 1:30. Set my sights on sub 3 hour run.
Was watching, waiting for James to catch me anytime. When I didn't see after the turnaround, I figured something had gone wrong with his calf.
With about 5 miles to go, I noticed that my run/walk mile was 14:30, and that if I walked fast, I could walk sub 15 minute pace. Walking didn't hurt my back quite so much, so I walked a majority of the next 2.5 miles. Made sense at the time.
Got to the last big hill before the entrance to the park (about 2 miles to go from there) and walked up the hill. I was really trying to swing my arms and use them to help me walk faster, bet I looked really cool, lol.
Inside the park was more hills. I tried to jog when I could. The legs started to cramp some here. It was uphill to the final turn into the park. Not sure I've ever been only 1 mile from the finish of a race and still not sure I was going to make it.
Made the turn and jogged about some, walked some, then jogged across the finish line.
What would you do differently?:

Run more. I need to reset my training and goals. There was a time when I ran pretty well. (Mattoon)
Post race
Warm down:

They had a really cool pop up tent with a soaker hose hung up around the top outside. This was awesome. I really didn't feel good. Got stuff packed up and after talking to a IMWI racer, we took off. Made it about 45 minutes up the road before we had to pull over so I could empty my stomach. No wonder I had no energy, everything I'd put in there was still there. LOL, I had 3 slices of orange on the course :). Obviously my stomach quit digesting somewhere along the way. Will have to figure this out.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Lack of training, plain and simple. I was not ready for this distance again. This distance is no joke and unspecific training, 3 weeks of bad food and little to no training is a recipe for disaster.

Event comments:

Love the race organization, the volunteers where GREAT. Negatives, bike course was very, very rough (borderline dangerouse in places). Personal negatives, need a bike mechanic at bike out and make the swim finish balloon straight for swimmers coming in.

Last updated: 2011-05-03 12:00 AM
00:40:54 | 2112 yards | 01m 56s / 100yards
Age Group: 45/61
Overall: 324/535
Performance: Good
Suit: Xterra Vortex Sleaveless
Course: Inverted triangle with backstretch longer that others, buoys on the right (clockwise)
Start type: Run Plus: Time Trial
Water temp: 77F / 25C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 13:51
Performance: Bad
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
02:47:46 | 56 miles | 20.03 mile/hr
Age Group: 42/61
Overall: 249/535
Performance: Average
5 mile mph averages: (22.84)(19.65)(20.81)(19.35)(18.71)(19.82)(21.87)(21.92)(18.83)(19.85)(15.99)
Wind: Some
Course: Out and Back. Hilly. Some very rough sections.
Road: Rough Dry Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 06:57
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
03:01:47 | 13.1 miles | 13m 53s  min/mile
Age Group: 59/61
Overall: 508/535
Performance: Bad
Mile splits: (11:21)(12:42)(12:43)(13:41)(14:21)(13:54)(13:29)(13:41)(14:31)(14:58)(14:32)(14:16)(14:53)(15:16)
Course: Out and back. No shade. Hills at beginning and end both ways.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race? Ok
Course challenge
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4