Ironman 70.3 Hawaii - Triathlon

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Kohala Coast, Hawaii
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
90F / 32C
Total Time = 7h 07m 58s
Overall Rank = 1018/1550
Age Group = 30-34
Age Group Rank = 46/62
Pre-race routine:

Was flying solo for this race. Flew into Kona on Friday morning. Drove up to the Fairmont Orchid for race check-in and bike drop off. Got everything squared away and then waited around for the pre-race meeting to start. The meeting warned of some brisk wind for the following day. Drove back down to Kona afterwards as I was staying at the Kona Seaside Hotel. A bit of a drive, but manageable. Was in bed reading by 6:30, and lights out by 7:30.
Event warmup:

After a night where I slept like a baby (up every hour), I woke up at 3:30 to get ready. Ate a banana, sunscreened and body glided up and got in the car to drive up to the shuttle stop.

Arrived at the shuttle stop and opened the car door. Wow was it windy and actually on the cooler side. I almost wished I had a long sleeved shirt with me. Hustled over to the waiting bus to take me to the start.

Pumped up my tires, ate a peanut butter bagel, and waited around for the start. Heard that they Mayor of Hawaii County was racing and was really impressed with that. I actually sent him an email when I got home thanking him for setting such a healthy living example.
  • 42m 47s
  • 2112 yards
  • 02m 02s / 100 yards

In the water swim start, counter clockwise. This year the men started 7 minutes ahead of the women. So that sent 1000 people out first and then 500 in my wave. This was the most people I've ever swum with before. Some contact, but not too bad. I still think I prefer smaller races though.

Ocean swims always make me a little nervous. I try not to think about sharks.

Sighting seemed pretty good, mostly I just followed the crowd. On the back half contact seemed to increase and the water got really choppy as well. Since I've been swimming a lot more lately I felt a lot more comfortable in the water and did not feel tired at all. Considering the conditions I'm happy with the result.
What would you do differently?:

A little more body glide on the arms.
Transition 1
  • 07m 25s

This is the longest I've ever spent in T1. A few good reasons though.

1. Last time I did a HIM I did not pee before I went out on the bike and was uncomfortable the entire time. I stopped this time.

2. Salt water swim - quick rinse off.

3. Long day ahead of me, stopped for more sunscreen.

4. Why is there always a big hill to run up out of the swim. I guess they don't call it sea level for nothing...

5. Really long transition area and my bike was close to the swim exit which meant a longer time running in bike shoes and more people to try to work around. I was really surprised at how many bikes were still there.
What would you do differently?:

Honestly, I'm not sure I could have made this one shorter. Since I am completely inept at peeing while swimming, this was how it went.

It would have been nice if there was someone there helping with the sunscreen. It's hard to reach everything and I'm definitely crispy today.
  • 3h 41m 59s
  • 56 miles
  • 15.16 mile/hr

I had great illusions of getting my bike time down to around 3 hours. If I had to sum up the course in a few key words they would be: wind, hills, wind, and hills.

This course was a challenge for me. Fortunately, I bike in rather windy conditions on a regular basis, so the crosswinds didn't unnerve me. However, Madam Pele did not hold back on the headwinds. There were a few times when I had to pedal hard downhill just to make progress. The lack of trees or any other wind blockers made this challenging. The hills were also a factor and were quite demoralizing. I went into this race thinking, I still have 12 more weeks until Louisville!? While on this course I thought to myself, I ONLY have 12 more weeks to prepare for Louisville?! Humbling for sure.

Good news is the amount of climbing done in these 56 miles was only 300 feet less than is done in the entire 112 of Louisville. I swear there wasn't a flat section on this course.

I did feel like I really nailed nutrition on this portion of the race though. I bought some salt tablets last weekend, meant to try them out, didn't, but took them with me anyways. Ate 2 Clif bars and a payday, a bite about every 10 minutes. And drank about 5 bottles of water. Had 4 salt tabs, the first was by accident as it was hiding in my Clif bar bite. Also about half a bottle of Perform that I grabbed at the end because I was out of Payday and still had about 30 minutes to go.

I was well hydrated, stopped to pee in the middle, and never felt nauseous or dizzy or anything. My legs still felt pretty good when I rolled into T2, but I was glad to be done.
What would you do differently?:

Make sacrifices to Madam Pele to tone down the wind a bit?
Transition 2
  • 03m 30s

Big races mean big transition areas, and LONG runs to get the whole way through them. A handy volunteer pointed to my exact spot, THANK YOU, I got everything I needed, did not change socks, and hit the bathroom once more. The fact that kept having to pee gave me the confidence that I was doing something right.

Put on some more sunscreen at the first aid station (really wish there was someone there to help), filled my Nathan bottle with perform and was off.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing here, this was pretty good considering the circumstances.
  • 2h 32m 17s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 11m 38s  min/mile

I initially had illusions here of running the entire course and keeping it to two hours. HA! That quickly became a joke.

The first five miles went pretty well. Started off with a gel and just perform. Was running the entire time, and it was nice that I didn't have to stop because I had my bottle with me. The goal was at least one bottle per hour. After mile five I started walking the hills. I took my last salt tablet, wished I had one more for back up. Miles 5-8 were a big mental challenge for me. It was hot, oh so freaking hot.

Once I started taking ice I felt better and this really helped keep my cool. I've never stuffed so much ice down my short in my life. Front and back of my top as well, and the occasional splash of leftover water/ice down the back. Somewhere in there I took another gel and more perform. At this point I was getting tired of perform and was worried I may be taking in too many calories. I switched to water somewhere in here.

Miles 9-12 went really well. There was still no shade, but a long gradual downhill that I was able to mostly run. At mile marker 10 I could really start feeling the heat on my shoulders. I begged some sunscreen off of a timer tent and that made me worry a bit less about it. Ran the whole way up the gradual uphill and most of the way on to mile 12.

12-13 was a mixture of running and walking. At one point my visor blew off and I said oh screw it. Looking back I felt really bad about leaving it out there on the course, but I just could not stop and turn around to go and get it. I couldn't. Fortunately, there were some spectators there and they picked it up and gave it to a guy I had been playing leap frog with for awhile. He handed it back to me when he passed and I was very thankful for that. It was a lot hotter than I realized without that shade on my face.

Finally the finish rolls around and I cruise through. Overall my legs didn't really feel tired, I was just ready to be done though and find some shade.
What would you do differently?:

Put sunscreen on my part. When my pony tail starts to fall out, my part shows and that got a little toasted.
Post race
Warm down:

Grabbed some ruffle chips and some shade and sat down for a bit.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I really wanted to beat my previous HIM time of 6:27. However, these were two VASTLY different courses. Considering the conditions, I'm pleased with how it turned out. Most of all I'm pleased with how good I felt after the race. Considering that in the grand scheme of things this was just another training day on my road to Louisville, I'm happy with how it turned out. And no, I will not come back to do this race again. It is just brutal.

Event comments:

This was my first WTC race. I was impressed with the organization of the race and the army of volunteers. They were absolutely amazing. I know everyone always writes this, but I'm seriously impressed with how helpful they were and how they stood out there in the heat all day taking care of us.

That being said, I think I prefer smaller races. It was nice to have company, but the number of people starting the swim (and I know that was hardly anything compared to a lot of races) and the sheer size of the transition area wasn't very appealing to me.

Last updated: 2013-06-02 12:00 AM
00:42:47 | 2112 yards | 02m 02s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/62
Overall: 0/1550
Start type: Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current:
200M Perf. Remainder:
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 07:25
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
03:41:59 | 56 miles | 15.16 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/62
Overall: 0/1550
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 03:30
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
02:32:17 | 13.1 miles | 11m 38s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/62
Overall: 0/1550
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]