Ironman 70.3 Kansas - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Lawrence, Kansas
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
1000F / 538C
Total Time = 5h 43m 54s
Overall Rank = 324/1176
Age Group = 35-39
Age Group Rank = 53/160
Pre-race routine:

This was my first HIM, so I tried to do a very good taper. I did do a 20 minute bike and 20 minute run (Brick) on Friday which I probably should have taken it a little easier on. I just can't seem to slow down when I'm on my bike, it only has one speed. :) I still felt well rested and strong Sunday morning, so I don't think the Friday brick hurt me any

I got everything ready to go the night before so there was no real stressers come Sunday morning. This was my first race that's had a split transition so I was a little stressed about what to leave at T2 versus T1. I managed to get it all figured out, so that was all good. :)
I was running a little short on time by the time I got to T1 so I felt a little rushed. I aired my tires up and forgot to screw closed the front valve stem. Fortunately just out of paranoia I checked both tires again and noticed the front one had already lost 20 lbs. of air due to the valve not being screwed down. I aired it back up and all was good.
The only thing I managed to screw up was I forgot to put my body glide on. I sometimes chafe under my arms and on my toes during the run. I completely spaced it due to rushing a little at the end before transition closed.
I did have another almost crappy situation (literally). I stuck my swim cap in the back of my Tri shorts so I wouldn't forget it. Well nature called and I had to go to the restroom before the race and when I was getting up and pulling my shorts back up I realized I forgot to take my swim cap out of the back of my shorts. Fortunately it fell on the back of the toilet seat and not into the porta potty. So in the future I'll be stuffing my cap in the front of my tri shorts and not the back.
Event warmup:

Just did some light stretching. I didn't want to expend any energy warming up.
  • 43m 28s
  • 1931 meters
  • 02m 15s / 100 meters

It was a deep water start so we had to swim a good 50-75 meters to get to the starting point. I actually liked this because it gave me a quick warm up swim.
In the past I have had issues the first few hundred yards with my breathing and slight swim panic, so my plan was to line up on the outside and roll into the swim easy until I was sure my breathing was under control. It worked perfectly and I had zero issues at all. Even with all the big waves and wind I had zero panic at all.
I was shooting for a 35 minute swim and planned to somewhat take it easy the first half just to make sure I had plenty in the tank coming back. I also didn't know how much of an energy toll the waves would take on me. My navigation and sighting was good on the way out. I stayed about 10 feet to the outside of the buoys and had no issues. I didn't really have any traffic problems other than a couple people that swam into me from behind or the side.

When I got to the halfway point I looked at my watch to see where I was and it had me at 22 minutes. I kind of did the oh crap, I'm already 5 minutes behind in my head so I decided to HTFU on the way back in. Then comes my next rookie mistake. After rounding the last red buoy to head back in there was a group of 4 guys on my right that kept pushing into me steering me more to the left. I looked up a couple times trying to sight a buoy but it was so choppy I didn't see any buoys at all so I kind of followed the guys next to me. after about 50 or so yards in I saw a yellow buoy that everyone was aiming at and did the same. Then I had the little voice in my head tell me, hey dumb a$$ the yellow buoys are for the way out and the orange buoys are for the way in. I went oh crap and breast stroked for a few seconds to find the orange buoy which was a good 25-40 yards off to my right. I aimed for an orange buoy about 2/3 the way back to shore versus swim back to the nearest one. All in all it probably didn't add a ton of time, but it felt like it.
based on my time of 22 minutes out and about 21 minutes in with all the extra swimming I'd say my HTFU worked pretty well and I could have shaved a couple minutes off on the way back in had I stayed on course.

What would you do differently?:

HTFU the whole race versus waiting until halfway through. Also, I need to be a leader and not a follower when it comes to sighting. Make dam sure I know what direction I'm swimming before I start swimming.
Transition 1
  • 02m 2s

Nothing too fancy, I have my shoes clipped into my pedals and my helmet laying on the ground. Normally I'd put it on my aerobars, but it was so windy I didn't want it to blow away.
I had plenty of energy to run at a decent clip from the swim to my bike and when leaving transition.
I did have one issue once I got on the bike. I had just purchased the Zoot arm coolers a few days before the race when I saw how hot it was going to be. I had them rolled up and stuck on my aerobars. After I got my feet in my shoes and up to speed I started putting them on. It was a lot harder than I had anticipated. I was weaving all over the place and it got to the point of being dangerous. I did manage to get them on, but it took a while and wasn't the safest thing to be doing.
What would you do differently?:

Next time I'll definitely put my arm coolers on in transition and take the extra 5 or 10 second penalty.
  • 2h 43m 54s
  • 56 miles
  • 20.50 mile/hr

The bike is my strength by far, but I really didn't know how hard to push it being my first HIM. So, I went out with what I would describe as a solid effort, maybe 85% or so to see how it went. The winds were really bad, but fortunately they seemed to be cross winds for a big portion of the course so I was able to hold my speed in the mid 20's most of the flats.
There was one section that seemed to last forever where we had a dead 25mph headwind climbing what seemed like a 5 mile long hill (probably more like 1 mile) that really taxed me. When I got to the top of that hill I was a hurting unit.
Coming back in with the tailwind was kind of fun. I was actually sitting up all the way on my seat and cruising at about 32mph and there was zero headwind at all. Was kind of a surreal feeling. The only negative is that I started to get hot because there was no wind at all and I was trucking along with a solid effort that required some cooling.
I think the tailwind riding at the end may have had an effect on my run because I was pretty overheated after the start of the run.
Oh also, this was my first race with an aero helmet. OMG, I love this thing. I picked up a Giro Selector and I literally could feel and hear the wind just cutting around it. On a huge windy race like this on eI could really tell the benifit. I also think it helped act as a sail with the crosswinds giving me an extra push.
Nutritionally I brought 2 CLIF bars and had a GU Gel and a pack of shot blocks. I also have my 32 oz. Profile Design Aerodrink bottle on my aerobars and left one water cage on the seat tube. I started with a junk bottle with water in it and when I got to the first water stop I had already filled my aerobottle with it. So I chucked the empty and grabbed a bottle to top off my aerobottle and then grabbed a second bottle to stick in my cage. I did this at each stop and it worked out perfect. So I was basically drinking about 40 oz. of water every 45 minutes.
From a food standpoint I ate 1/4 of a cliff bar every 15 minutes which resulted in about 400 calories per hour. The GU and shot blocks were for backup in case I got tired of the CLIF bars or had some GI issues with them. I didn't have any problems so I never touched the GU or Blocks.
What would you do differently?:

Can't think of anything. I was very happy with my bike effort and my legs were tired, but they still felt strong at the start of the run.
Transition 2
  • 01m 35s

Fairly uneventful. I got my feet out of my shoes with plenty of time left and did a flying dismount without issues. I ran right to my shoes and of course my neighbor decided to rack his bike in my spot. So I had to move his bike over before I could rack mine.
I took my time slipping my shoes on because I had a bad cramp attack in a race last year putting my shoes on. Didn't have any issues, but it definitely took me an extra 20-30 seconds easing them on with a bent foot versus pointing my toe down for quick entry.
I usually have a gatorade sitting in T2 to take a quick swig of before I run and I realized I forgot to do that, but no big deal. I felt pretty hydrated from the bike.
What would you do differently?:

let the air out of my neighbors tires for being a sloppy bike racker... (kidding) :)
  • 2h 12m 55s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 10m 09s  min/mile

Did I mention it was HOT?
So my strategy on the run was to start out at a 7:45 pace and gauge how I felt after the first mile. I've got a GPS watch so I can track it very well. I did just that and the first leg of the run was on the furnace highway from hell with full sun, zero shade and OMG was it fricken hot. I was absolutely cooked by the time I got to the first water stop at mile 1. I walked at the stop and chugged a couple cups of water, some perform, and a coke. I knew I couldn't maintain the 7:45 because my HR was up around 160 and I need to keep it in the low 150's for a HM effort. So I backed it off to around an 8:00/mile pace and by the time I got to the second water stop I was more cooked than the first one. I just couldn't cool off to put it in simple terms. I walked at that stop too and drank as much as I could and shoved some ice down my top and shorts and it just didn't seem to help enough. about halfway to the third water stop I knew there was no way I was going to be able to maintain that kind of pace and stay cool so I essentially said the heck with it and dropped to an easy jog of around 9:30. I did this the whole run stopping and walking at each water stop to get in as much fluids and ice as I could.
My wife, 2 of my kids and my mom were all at our campsite so that was fun running through the campground and looking forward to seeing them. It was exciting to see them all jump up and run out. The funny thing was my wife said something to the effect of "you're looking strong" and I had to laugh because inside I was melting from the heat. lol
Several people had set up sprinklers throughout the campground and OMG they were a gift from heaven. I ran through every sprinkler I could find and it really helped a lot. I also kept a cup of ice with me the whole time and would suck on a cube, and put a cube in my hand to let it melt. then the last few cubes I'd shove down my tri top.
The double loop through the campground was amazing. I got to see several friends ant BT'ers over and over throughout the run which was really uplifting.
When I finally got to the finish line I picked up the pace and zipped up for a nice finish line photo. I even concentrated to make sure I didn't stop my watch or look down. Then as I'm approaching the finishline a guy I know from Omaha not only comes sprinting by me, but he jumps in front of me right before the finishline. So now my finishline picture is going to be somebody else. I even walked up to him and said "seriously Dave?" His response was hey, we're not in the same age group, it's all good. My response was, yeah but we're in the same finishline photo now. Oh well, its no big deal, but it took a moment of excitement and elation and turned it into a not so fun moment. :(

What would you do differently?:

Trip Dave before the finish. :) (kidding, he's actually a pretty good friend)
Honestly aside from losing some more weight which I do need to do I'm not sure what else I could have done to stay cool. I was breaking out every trick in the book. I could have pushed the run harder, but I just didn't want to risk it in that heat.
Post race
Warm down:

nothing to speak of. I walked around a little bit and did some static stretching. When I got back to the RV I plopped down on the floor for a while, but that was more of a cool-down than a warm-down. :)

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Did I mention it was HOT?
So, I'd say heat and my weight. I'm still around 184 lbs. and should be around 170. This was a good wake up call that I need to cut the weight down by IMWI

Event comments:

Very well put on race. All of my negatives are due to weather which obviously WTC cannot control.
My only gripe would be that they tore down T1 immediately after the swim was over and just left everyones stuff laying in an empty parking lot. I had my tire pump, transition bag, wallet, keys, and phone just laying out there for anyone to come steal. Fortunately I didn't lose anything but from the sounds of it there were several wetsuit/speedsuit thefts.
They do give you an item bag to put your stuff into that they pick up and put into T2 which is secured until the end, but this essentially means that you'd have to put all your stuff into this bag during your transition which is stupid.

Last updated: 2012-04-30 12:00 AM
00:43:28 | 1931 meters | 02m 15s / 100meters
Age Group: 78/160
Overall: 455/1176
Performance: Below average
Suit: Zoot Ultra Tri Top and Shorts
Course: Out and back rectangle. Very windy with pretty heavy chop/waves.
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Waves
Water temp: 77F / 25C Current: High
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Bad
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Good
Time: 02:02
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Average
02:43:54 | 56 miles | 20.50 mile/hr
Age Group: 42/160
Overall: 220/1176
Performance: Good
HR Min: 121 HR Avg: 152 HR Max166
Wind: Strong with gusts
Course: A fair amount of challenging hills with a hard south wind blowing the whole time.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:35
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Good
02:12:55 | 13.1 miles | 10m 09s  min/mile
Age Group: 53/160
Overall: 324/1176
Min: 122 Avg: 149 Max: 164
Course: HOT, with a touch of HOT added in. Did I mention HOT I believe we hit 97 degrees which was a record high for Lawrence, KS. go figure It was a double loop through the campground. The atmosphere was great with a ton of fan support
Keeping cool Bad Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
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] 5