Beach2Battleship Half Iron Distance Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Wilmington, North Carolina
United States
Set Up Events
72F / 22C
Total Time = 5h 41m 46s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = W25-29
Age Group Rank = 10/39
Pre-race routine:

Hung out with buddies and hopped on a trolley around 8 a.m.
Event warmup:

Got in the water a few minutes before the start to get acclimated to the water
  • 32m 24s
  • 2078 yards
  • 01m 34s / 100 yards

I kept floating the wrong way, and would have to expend a lot of energy to get back going in the right direction. My goggles fogged up so bad I couldn't see, so I had to stop and tread water, let some water in, and drain them. This water was very salty, so those two times I had to do it burned my eyes so bad and it was painful. Three time in the swim, I turned my head to breath, and instead of air I instead inhaled a mouthful of salt water and accidentally swallowed it. This would come back to bite me later. We had to turn left and swim a few hundred yards to get to the dock that was the swim exit. There was no current here so I had to swim hard to get a halfway decent time and still be in this race. I was so relived to see the dock, I was more than ready for the swim to be over. According to my Garmin 910xt, I swam 1.42 miles, probably from all that drifting off course.
What would you do differently?:

Not swallow salt water
Transition 1
  • 04m 40s

There were wetsuit strippers on the dock, I got mine ripped off and started the long run to T1. Swim time included some of this run.
What would you do differently?:

Take off the toe warmers
  • 2h 50m 19s
  • 56 miles
  • 19.73 mile/hr

I was having a hard time hitting my normal speeds and cadences. The bike course was mostly flat with wind from the sea. This is the type of condition I train on at home, this should have been my chance to shine, but it wasn't. I saw The Clawww early on the course and said hi and gave him some encouraging words. He informed me later that as I rode away a girl I passed was swerving as I passed and almost clipped my back wheel. Wow! I narrowly escaped that one! Yikes! There were some heavy headwinds on parts of the course and I was pushing a lot harder than I should have. Never ending winds. For what little tailwind was given, we would suddenly hit a turn and get beat up again.A gust of cross wind pushed me really hard and for a moment I almost lost control of my bike and I was only riding S60s. When I hit the 37 mile mark I felt completely beat up from fighting the winds and just wanted the bike to be over. I did not put on sunscreen in T1 and there were no sunscreen volunteers, so I could feel my back and shoulders getting hot, I was in the aero the entire bike ride. I just felt hot, tired, and beat up. Finally we made the final turn to head to the convention center where T2 was, but of course we had a substantial hill to get over before getting there. It was actually a bridge and at the very top there was metal grating. There was a thin rug on the metal grating and we had to ride on the rug for about 15 feet or so. This was scary, especially being as tired as I was. At the convention center the mount line came up and finally the bike was over
What would you do differently?:

Use sunscreen
Transition 2
  • 04m 29s

T2 they had a very full ironman type transition going on. You grab your bag and head into a changing tent, which was also attached to a real bathroom inside the convention center. I was trying to get myself pumped up for the run, but I was just so tired and felt beat up from the bike. The run is always my best of the 3 disciplines, its where I make up for time lost in the swim and bike. I knew for the conditions I had a good bike and I was still in this race. I ran a 1:51 at Augusta 3 weeks prior so I thought if I could just run another 1:51 I could get a new half iron PR. I exchanged cycling shoes for running shoes, helmet for running hat, went potty, put on my race belt and left transition.
What would you do differently?:

Accept the face that I was worn out
  • 2h 09m 56s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 09m 55s  min/mile

Mile 2 of the run was when I knew I was in trouble. My legs had absolutely no snap or pop, it was as if I was dragging them behind me. I told myself that at mile 3 I would start walking the aid stations, doing this I would still have an under 2 hour run split. The aid stations weren't at every mile, they were sporadically spaced apart so you never knew when one was coming up. When I go to the 3rd aid station I walked through it. Then I couldn't get running again. I was panicking. When I picked up to a jog again I stumbled into the grass. I could no see straight. I stood there for a minute trying to assess the situation and figure out what to do. A PR was out of the question now, and I was out of any kind of contention, now it was just see if I could get to the finish line. I started walking again, I just wanted to cry, I couldn't believe this was happening. I had such an awesome race at Augusta a few weeks ago when everything just fell into place perfectly and now at this race I am experiencing a disaster. I was caked in salt and my skin was dry. I jogged a bit to the next aid station and drank fluids like crazy and dumped cold water on myself. A few steps after that aid station I was able to pick up a jog again, but then I couldn't see straight again, and once again stumbled into the grass. I was angry, and I was mentally done with this race. I started walking again and momentarily considered turning in my chip and calling it a day. As I was walking I thought about my girls, and the life lesson I want to teach them, mainly to never give up. Even when things aren't going their way. It is easy to stay motivated when things are going your way, it is very difficult to stay motivated when things aren't. I need to be the example. How could I give up and then come home to them? My oldest would want to see my finisher's medal, I would not want to explain to her why I didn't get one. So, even if I had to walk the rest of this, I was going to finish.The next few miles, I was able to do a jog/walk. I felt terrible, hot, and sick, I just wanted it to be over. I suddenly realized that all that salt water I swallowed during the swim could also be a contributor to how I was feeling, in addition to lack of recovery and getting beat up on the bike. Around mile 10 I did a lot of walking. I was able to jog the second half of the last mile and finally the finish line came into view. This was the slowest 13.1 mile run in my life.
What would you do differently?:

Realize I need more than 3 weeks between half iron races
Post race
Warm down:

I got to watch many of the competitors go through the emotions of crossing the finish line. I then realized that my disappointment of my race time wasn't fair to the spirit of triathlon, or even to my own self. 3 years ago, in October 2009 I was close to 300 pounds and getting a parking spot far away from the store front was torture, and here I am disappointed that my half iron time was over 5:30? Times like this I REALLY need to step out of myself and look at the big picture. I saw people of all shapes and sizes cross the finish line, big smiles, happy tears. Many of them made me smile by looking at their reactions.After my hour near the finish line I decided that I was not going to be disappointed in my race, but use it as a learning experience instead, and later a life lesson for my girls. I have only been racing for 2 years and honestly this was bound to happen at some point, and it will probably happen again, but now I know I have the perseverance to finish when the race goes south. I am proud of myself for finishing another half ironman triathlon.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Husband recently deployed the Afghanistan, did Augusta 70.3 three weeks ago, stressful finals week at school, was really sick the weekend before the race.

Event comments:

I would love to do this race again on a year I don't do Augusta 70.3

Last updated: 2012-08-21 12:00 AM
00:32:24 | 2078 yards | 01m 34s / 100yards
Age Group: 25/39
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Suit: Xterra Vortex
Course: L-shaped
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 72F / 22C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Good
Time: 04:40
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
02:50:19 | 56 miles | 19.73 mile/hr
Age Group: 6/39
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Wind: Headwind
Course: One big loop
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Too hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 04:29
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
02:09:56 | 13.1 miles | 09m 55s  min/mile
Age Group: 16/39
Overall: 0/
Performance: Bad
Course: Loop, with triangle and out and back
Keeping cool Bad Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4