Ironman 70.3 California - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Oceanside, California
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
60F / 16C
Total Time = 5h 44m 47s
Overall Rank = 889/3074
Age Group = M40-44
Age Group Rank = 170/388
Pre-race routine:

Had an awesome condo at North Coast Village overlooking the beach and The Strand for a week leading up to the race. On race morning, woke up at 4:00 as planned and got myself around. Had a bowl of Special K (yeah, I'm weird that way) and gathered my gear. Met up with a buddy (Shawn) downstairs at 5:15 and rode over to T2 to drop off his run gear (mine was stored the night before). A quick ride back to the condo and grabbed our bike and morning clothes bags and we joined the train of bikes heading for the harbor and T1. Arrived at T1 about 6:00 and found an open space on my rack and was pleasantly surprised it was more forward than I expected with my race number (2637). My wave was 3rd to last (7:40ish), so I had a long wait. Hung out with fellow ONE Multisport athletes and listened to the pros and early waves take off (and return - UGH). Decided the weather was nice enough to ditch the arm warmers and gloves on the bike and stored them in my bag. After doing some business, dropping off my morning clothes bag and stretching, I donned my trashy socks (awesome standing on the concrete with these!) an got in the swim chute and awaited our turn at the start.
Event warmup:

Once I was rubberized, I stretched out my legs, shoulders and abs with some dynamic stretches. My psoas (or sports hernia - still unsure which) were feeling ok and this made me quite happy. When our wave was allowed in the water I wandered right in and headed for the start buoys. Positioned on the middle right for cleaner water at the start (longer swim, but smoother).
  • 38m 1s
  • 1931 meters
  • 01m 58s / 100 meters

Even with a wave start (instead of the mass full-IM starts), I decided to position myself on the outside buoy to give a cleaner path along the course. My sighting is still very poor, and after swimming about 250m on the right, I found myself on the inside of the course, so my zig-zagging had started. My Garmin showed a bit straighter path than I expected to see, but it still was not the line I should have taken for a better time. That being said, I felt strong throughout, and had targeted a time of 39 mins for the course, so coming in at 38 mins was a good start. My year over year improvement on this swim was almost 2 mins, so that also was a big positive.
What would you do differently?:

Continue to work on sighting and swimming straighter. I found myself just "going through the motions" about half way through the course, so staying focused and pushing harder would be an option, as my fitness level would allow for it without jeopardizing the rest of the race.
Transition 1
  • 05m 50s

This was a :30 sec improvement over last year's T1 time, and I had targeted a 6 min T1, so I am happy with the result. I took a bit longer getting out of my wetsuit than I planned (actually sat down to remove it which is rare), but I was moving along well so no big deal I suppose.
What would you do differently?:

Not sit down to remove my wetsuit.
  • 2h 59m 5s
  • 56 miles
  • 18.76 mile/hr

This is where I believe my ability to accomplish more on this race was a bit lost. Riding a new bike (Valdora PHX2) with only 50 miles on it, I had some hesitations with how I would handle the downhill portions and cross-winds. Mechanical failure with my seat at mile 2 would affect me the whole race. My seat was continuously tilting backward, so I stopped and re-tightened it, and moved the seat forward to try and avoid it from happening more. This definitely put me in a less comfortable position, and it only partially helped the situation with the seat, so I ended up riding on the nose of my Adamo seat for most of the race (which is not ideal for those saddles). Still, the bike felt strong with respect to cornering and absorbed much of the bounce of the road, so I know in the long-term this is an upgrade. Riding with my SRAM S80 wheels, the cross winds had some effect on me, especially on the descents, and later in the race I found myself coming out of aero on faster descents to ensure a stable ride (one descent I caught a cross wind and it had my front wheel rattling and shaking more than I am used to). Starting in one of the last swim waves also had an effect, as I found myself having to pass more athletes than I typically see, and at times the roads were quite congested and slowed progress (most notable during the no-pass zones behind slower riders). My shifters also gave me fits, as I could not seem to get in the lowest gear in my big ring for some of the climbs, so I had to fumble around with other gears to get in a good cadence and climbing gear. I know my stopped time for mechanical adjustments was just over 2 minutes according to my Garmin, so I 'could' have come in anywhere from 2:52 - 2:57 based on stopped time and the lingering effects of the other issues. I still managed to improve my bike time by about a minute over last year (even with the issues). My abs felt fine for the entire ride, and I had expected to feel them start to twinge later in the ride, but that never happened so I was beginning to think I might have a pain-free race (I was in for a surprise in T2).
What would you do differently?:

Not have mechanical issues, first of all. Without these I believe I would have been 2-7 minutes faster over the course, and believe I would have come off the bike feeling a bit stronger as well to set up a better run.
Transition 2
  • 02m 38s

As with T1, I was happy with my overall transition. I made it to my rack in good time, running with the bike, then got out of my helmet and into my run gear quickly. My target time for T2 was 3 minutes, so I have no complaints with my transition time. HOWEVER, after swimming and riding with no twinges or pain in my abs, the moment I took my first step in my run shoes I had such an agonizing pain I almost collapsed. I managed to keep running (sort of) through transition to stretch out a bit.
What would you do differently?:

I switched socks in transition, and since we did not have the rain from 2012, I probably could have gone without the change, which could have saved me 10 - 15 seconds.
  • 1h 59m 13s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 09m 06s  min/mile

Starting the run I obviously knew this was going to be a challenge, as I now had the pain in my abs to deal with, and my legs just did not feel as strong and fresh as they have in recent races. Once out on the course the pain in my abs subsided a bit, but it was always lingering. On the first north-bound portion of The Strand I stopped at a restroom (I had to pee since mile 20 on the bike) and felt much better afterward, so I tried to get into a good rhythm run. My pace was hovering at 8:45 per mile for the first 6-7 miles, and this was already :30-:45 seconds per mile slower than I expected, so I knew I would likely not have much extra kick for the stretch run. I managed to walk only through a few aid stations, and kept cool with the sponges that are a personal favorite at these races. Fluid intake was fine, with Perform and a little water at each. I carried 2 GU packets and took them at miles 5 and 10, which I am sure helped a little to keep me from sliding down in energy. With the sun out, the run was warmer than I would have liked, but it was nothing compared to Phoenix, so I cannot say this was a severe detriment. I saw many familiar faces on the run course and enjoyed it almost as much as last year. However, my expected run time was 1:45-1:50, and coming in at 1:59 was worse than last year, and was the single split that kept me from a better overall result.
What would you do differently?:

I would prefer to not have the ab pain kick in as I start to run.....and I know had I felt a bit stronger at the run start I could have settled into a goo 8:00 per mile pace to gain better results.

Oh....and apply sunscreen - 5 hours of fair skin on this course left me quite red (:30 seconds on the course to apply sunscreen would save several days of pain and discomfort afterward).
Post race
Warm down:

After crossing the finish I met up with my fellow ONE clubmates and other friends and chatted away while eating pizza and cookies. Overall I felt fine - no troubles walking - and we made our way over to the massage tent to release the other pains that we acquired over the last 6 hours.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Mechanical issues on the bike were the most likely culprit of my slower overall performance. My ab pain had some effect on the run, but it ended up being nothing more than I am used to lately.

Event comments:

I love WTC races, and really like the Oceanside course and venue.

Last updated: 2012-12-05 12:00 AM
00:38:01 | 1931 meters | 01m 58s / 100meters
Age Group: 258/388
Overall: 1445/3074
Performance: Average
Suit: Xterra X3 full
Course: Counter clockwise out and back route in Oceanside Harbor
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Waves
Water temp: 60F / 16C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Average
Waves: Average Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
Time: 05:50
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
02:59:05 | 56 miles | 18.76 mile/hr
Age Group: 192/388
Overall: 971/3074
Performance: Below average
Average HR = 145bpm
Wind: Some with gusts
Course: Winding course through Camp Pendleton, including a few considerable inclines as well as a headwind on the return to the coast.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Not enough
Time: 02:38
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Average
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
01:59:13 | 13.1 miles | 09m 06s  min/mile
Age Group: 170/388
Overall: 890/3074
Performance: Below average
Avg HR - 155bpm
Course: Two loop course along The Strand and Pacific Rd, with a few ramps and inclines/declines changing between roads and climbing up to the pier.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
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: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5