Redman Half Distance Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
United States
Oklahoma Redman Triathlon
70F / 21C
Total Time = 6h 46m 30s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 3/7
Pre-race routine:

I went to college in Oklahoma (OU - Boomer Sooner!), so we have a lot of friends that still live there. I stayed with my best friend from Thurs - Sun, so I had plenty of time to spread out and get everything organized for the race.

On Friday, I met my girlfriends Tara and Sharon for a quick practice swim - 15 or so min - and a quick transition bike of about the same. Because of the drought this summer, Lake Hefner had shrunk considerably and had about 200yds of mud between the ramp and the actual water. We tredged through the mud to the water and swam out to one of the kayaks and back. The water was very choppy and cool (I thought the temp was refreshing. Others did not) but the forecast for Sat was for little wind, so I was pretty sure it would be less choppy on race day (it was). Ran in my wetsuit 1 mile to and from the car to bring Tara her asthma inhaler (I'm sure the other athletes were wondering if no one told me that the wetsuit is supposed to come off BEFORE the run... ;) ) Did a 15 min easy ride which was nothing exciting, just an easy spin. After that, we stopped by Starbucks for a little sugary carb loading and caffeinating, then drove the course, which we almost didn't do. I'm glad we did - there were several stretches that had really bad potholes or super rough sections, but the Redman staff did a great job marking them with spray paint. After that, we went back to the house and rested for a few hours before packet pickup/bike check-in, then dinner, then a little more resting. I got to bed around 10:15, which is later than I would have liked as I needed to wake up at 4:30, but it's so difficult to make everything work perfectly when you're staying with someone else.

Woke up early - 2:45AM early - on Saturday morning and dozed on and off until about 4:15AM when I finally got up. Got ready quickly, then we left. The plan was to go to Starbucks at 5 when they open, but apparently 5 is not the time Starbucks in OKC open... so we went to Micky D's for coffee instead (it was OK - did the trick) and put on the temporary tattoos they gave us in the race packet (instead of body marking the morning of). Once we got to the race, I got transition set up rather quickly, used the porta-potty and ate my breakfast (oats + chia seeds mixed with greek yogurt) and was ready to go!
Event warmup:

Usually I like to get in the water and swim a few hundred yards to get accustomed to the particular body of water, but that wasn't possible. I stretched a bit, walked around, and generally got myself mentally prepared to go.
  • 41m 24s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 58s / 100 yards

This includes a loooooong run to the timing mat. My time on the watch I started when the gun went off was 40:15.

I loved this swim. Even though there was no warmup and my wave was only in the water for about 45 seconds before the gun went off, I started off pretty smoothly and settled in to a good pace. I passed a good portion of the wave in front of me and some people (albeit struggling people, but still...) from the wave in front of that (waves started 3 min apart).

Sighting was difficult to the first buoy because it was white and the way the sun was rising made it hard to see, so I more or less just followed the people in front of me, but they were clearly having sighting problems too and since I was passing a lot of folks, I did a lot of zig-zagging. Once I finally figured out where the buoy was, I had no problems swimming straight towards it. The second buoy was a piece of cake to find, same with the third buoy.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. I had a great (for me) swim and exited the water feeling refreshed and ready to hit the bike and run!
Transition 1
  • 04m 51s

Short run to the wetsuit strippers, then flopped down and they whipped it off. Ran to my bike, turned the garmin on to locate satellites (I had done this initially when setting up transition, then turned it back off to save the battery, so it didn't take long to locate them), then put everything else on.
What would you do differently?:

I probably should have used the porta-potty since I basically was holding it til the first rest stop which cut in to my bike time. But other than that, nothing because a lot of the time I "lost" was due to the distance between the swim exit and transition.
  • 3h 26m 35s
  • 56 miles
  • 16.26 mile/hr

My goal for this leg was to go "stupid easy". In fact, I muttered that over and over to myself, especially the first 25 miles. I was passed by about 70 people in the first 20 miles (and I passed about 10) but after that, I did 90% of the passing, especially at the end. Not surprising because I'm usually out of the water faster than the average bear but I'm not as fast of a cyclist nor do I go as fast on the first loop as a lot of people do due to adrenaline.

Stopped at mile 22 to use the porta-potty and lube under my arms as I was starting to chafe (I literally have NO idea how a tri top that I can train in under the same ows/bike bricks can chafe me on a race but never during training). Decided to fill up my water bottle and drop in another nuun tablet since I was already stopped so I wouldn't have to stop again, which ended up being an excellent choice.

I saw Tara at the turn around going the other direction (she was doing the aqua bike full) and Sharon passed me near the end (she is a much better cyclist than I am). Both times it was an instant mood booster to see my buddies. I leap frogged with a few guys and eventually ended up passing them.

I felt pretty good the entire ride, but I was simply ready to get off the bike.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. I went "stupid easy" like I planned to. Every time I looked down at my average pace and thought about going faster to try to make up time, I thought about a post someone wrote a while back about just how fast you would have to go on the bike to make up for the significant amount of time you would lose on your run if you cooked your legs too much. So I stuck to the plan.
Transition 2
  • 03m 30s

Nothing special to mention here, except that again, I should have used the porta-potty in transition as it ate into my run time.
  • 2h 30m 12s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 11m 28s  min/mile

This run ended up being only 10 minutes more than my stand-alone half mary time, so I'm pretty pleased with it.

My legs felt GREAT coming off the bike and I was able to stick to my 2:15 run/0:45 walk with NO problems until mile 10, when it dialed down to a 1:30 run/1:00 walk and then finally to a 1:00 run/1:00 walk at the end. I train using the run/walk method so I don't see walking as a failure. The only regret I have is that I only made it to mile 10 before my plan had to be altered. But instead of just walking as much as I wanted, I kept adjusting the plan until I found something I could follow. I passed a lot of people in the last few miles, but they didn't look like they were doing so well.

I was ready to be DONE at mile 10 but knowing I only had a 5k to go made it a lot easier. I laughed out loud when I thought to myself "Ok, 10 miles down, 5k to go" - the sheer realization that I had already ran 10 miles was really funny for some reason.

Crossed the finish line smiling, then tripped over the little kid trying to rush at me with my finisher's medal and rolled my left ankle. Sigh. But at least I crossed the finish line first, since I spent the next 30 min in the medical tent. ;)
What would you do differently?:

Not sure. I drank at every aid station, alternating gatorade and water, and ate my chomps every 30 min as scheduled. I simply think the fact that I slowed down after 10 miles was due to the fact that my longest run in training this summer was 11.5 miles and my run fitness wasn't there. That or I actually did go a little too hard on the bike. Either way, I'm not unhappy with my time nor am I unhappy I had to adjust my plan in the last 5k. In fact, I don't think I could have made any choices that would have improved my time, so I'm just going to be happy with what I did.
Post race
Warm down:

Laying on a lawn chair in the med tent with ice on my ankle ;)

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I'm not fast at this point (maybe even ever), but I hit my goal paces and my overall goal time.

Event comments:

The volunteers at Redman are second to none. I could not have been more pleased with how well stocked the aid stations were, how well manned the intersections were, or how enthusiastic and helpful the volunteers were. I will definitely be doing this race again!

Profile Album

Last updated: 2011-05-18 12:00 AM
00:41:24 | 2112 yards | 01m 58s / 100yards
Age Group: 3/7
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Suit: Zoot Fusion sleeveless
Course: Triangle
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 70F / 21C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Average Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 04:51
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Good
03:26:35 | 56 miles | 16.26 mile/hr
Age Group: 3/7
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: Basically an out and back along rural roads. Most of the road conditions were good but there were some sketchy areas. Fortunately, those didn't make up a significant portion of the distance. Rolling hills, which I love because it makes the distance seem to go by so much faster.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 03:30
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
02:30:12 | 13.1 miles | 11m 28s  min/mile
Age Group: 2/7
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Course: Flat, flat, flat. Around Lake Hefner.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5] 5