Ironman 70.3 Branson - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Branson, Missouri
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
74F / 23C
Total Time = 5h 10m 34s
Overall Rank = 41/
Age Group = M 40-44
Age Group Rank = 5/85
Pre-race routine:

In bed at 2100, asleep about 2300, up at 0500.
Breakfast, 2 bagels with raspberry preserve, banana, 2 cups of coffee, 1 honey stinger. Around 700cal. Water, 1 salt tab.
Pre race, 0600-0725, 1/3 bottle of Infinit, 1 honey stinger, 1 salt tab.
Set up T1 somewhat late, missed the chance of pre race swim warm up. It would have made a difference more than running 10-15min as I have done in the past.
Event warmup:

  • 30m 30s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 26s / 100 yards

Wetsuit issues are coming back again. It seems that the suit takes the life out of me. Either that or I swam too hard once again.
Lined up well, straight line, just outside of buoys. Started well, clean water entire time, no contact. After about 300m settled on a pair of feet. Checked the nav from time to time, it seemed accurate. As we began to catch the waves, no contact as swimmer ahead was making room. Noticed slightly elevated breathing and tightening of shoulders. At about 900m mark, let go of the feet as it was becoming more difficult to hold it, did not want to over do it. Settled into my pace, toned it down and cruised. Noticed tightening and twitching of hamstrings. Was wondering if I pushed a bit too hard. This would not be the first time. Last quarter of the swim was ok. Stood up and crossed the chute at 29:35, but the timing mat was another 150m up, felt as if cramping in hamstring was imminent and walked to T1.
What would you do differently?:

Wetsuit swimming issues. I will have to research this further. It is so much more tiring for me to swim with the suit than without. Last year I swam without in a skin, for a time of 31:43, felt completely comfortable.....
Transition 1
  • 02m 19s

I walked the T1 as indicated above. It was smooth and deliberate. Turned out one of the fastest T1 in AG.
What would you do differently?:

Have to learn how to take the suit over the heels.
  • 2h 56m 11s
  • 56 miles
  • 19.07 mile/hr

Pre race target was spot on with the above data, however, planned TSS was 177 with the time of 2:35-2:38. Being on the course for 2:56 puts higher TSS what may have lead to difficulty running later. Remains to be analyzed.
HR was showing downward trend entire time, still ended 10bpm higher than it should have been, also something to be looked at.
Got out of the water and on the bike feeling pretty bad. The first climb out of T1 was brutal, 1.8mi long. I was way below on the power target in the first 20min, just had hard time settling down. I knew I had to be patient and to stick with the plan. I was consuming Infinit earlier than usual trying to make up the calories and electrolytes. I was beginning to feel better by the first aid station. Put my head down and went to work now, knowing that I have lost 3-4min so far. Power target was coming easier and easier and soon I had to restrain myself. Climbed well and within the power ceiling I set. I ignored the temptation to go for it as I was being passed frequently, I knew I would suck in most of them during the second half of the bike or during the run. It indeed played out like that for the most part. This bike course rewards maturity and patience in execution.
Descend into Branson was way slower for me due to wet roads and entering the trail section that slowed things down further.
I have now worked my way into 3rd M40-44 entering T2.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. In retrospect, few minutes lost in the first 20min and also few lost in the last 20min. Resolving this early weakness is one thing that could lead to better bike split.
Transition 2
  • 01m 4s

One of my best T2s in long time.
What would you do differently?:

  • 1h 40m 31s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 07m 40s  min/mile

Felt really good off the bike. The goal, given the temps/wind/humidity was to run 1:35 split. Figured it was well within the reach and would also secure the podium finish I was after.
Running out, FR305 was locking on satellites and it took a whole mile for it do so. I was looking for my wife who was supposed to update the tracker and relay the AG placing at the start, nowhere to be found, I moved on. I was trying to slow myself down as I knew I would be too fast now and possibly affect the late run. I was correct. First thought, let's settle, feed, hydrate and asses, than get to work. I was gradually catching up with some runners, passing and pacing with some, than back to pacing on my own, self check, feeling good. The first loop came by quick. Saw my wife, she looked excited, yelling you are 3rd, keep it up. She is my most critical supporter, putting on a coaching hat when she needs to, no mercy. She is a runner herself and knows what pain is. Into the second loop, on pace now well for even sub 1:35, I was excited. I was battling bloated stomach, lots of gas, poor athletes behind, but was sucking it up, I was now pacing behind a chick who held very good pace, we were ticking 7:10/mile in the second loop. Saw my friend Bently behind at the same spot as in loop one, I knew we were holding good pace, him being a solid runner too. We cheered each other on and kept running. It was at about mi 6 into the end of mi 7 that I started feeling the rough patch I thought and stomach issues persisted. I was taking additional slat tabs beyond my flask as my quads were twitching. That seems to have made my stomach deteriorate further. I reached for coke and new I had to keep doing it now. Closing the second loop I was passed by a fellow M40-44 AGer, new I slipped one back, wife confirmed that on the second pass.I tried to match the pace, for a little while, the pace was sub 7min and closer to 6:45, I did not have it and was scared that if I did this for much longer I would have been walking later. I was now slowing down. So, downpours began in the 3rd loop.I have to report that as much as I like Quicky Blade Late shoes, they are easily soaking in water and not as good as Zoots in staying light when wet. It was getting dark in my mind and moving in my 9-13 was getting difficult. I was hanging on to 8min pace and sliding further, no walking at any point, final loop in the park, running now through these huge rivers of water, last pass at aid station, more coke. Passed again by another M40-44 AGer and I was now effectively 5th. There was no response from me as I was now in survival mode. Disappointing for sure, also my 1:35 slipped, I was battling in my mind with that. I was looking for the finish line now. There it was, nothing glamorous, just close it. Glad it was over.
Took the Vegas slot on the roll down, had 4 in M40-44, 2 were taken, I took the first roll down.
What would you do differently?:

This one is hard to define.Over swam. Excessive hydration without peeing on the bike set the stage for stomach trouble. Overpaced early into the run was a another major. So, yes, several major mistakes in execution are evident. Bike fitness maybe another suspect. I believe that II had run fitness for 1:35 that day but failed to run to potential.
Post race
Warm down:


Event comments:

Awesome venue. Bike course needs to be brought back to 2010 course.

Last updated: 2011-09-20 12:00 AM
00:30:30 | 2112 yards | 01m 26s / 100yards
Age Group: 8/85
Overall: 47/
Performance: Average
Suit: Xterra VPX2
Course: Clockwise modified rectangle. Timing mat offset by 150m of running.
Start type: Run Plus: Waves
Water temp: 74F / 23C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Average Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Average
Time: 02:19
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Average
02:56:11 | 56 miles | 19.07 mile/hr
Age Group: 7/85
Overall: 48/
Performance: Good
AP 220W xP 229W VI 1.05 IF .83 TSS 191 cad 84 avg HR 153 2 loops on 465 AP 230W xP 238W IF .865
Wind: Some
Course: Wind SSE@10mph, temp at start 59F, temp at finish 70F, humidity 93% down to 68% 4900Ft of climbing
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence: 84
Turns: Below average Cornering: Below average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Too much
Time: 01:04
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
01:40:31 | 13.1 miles | 07m 40s  min/mile
Age Group: 10/85
Overall: 77/
Performance: Below average
Course: Flat, 3 loop
Keeping cool Good Drinking Too much
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4