Ironman Coeur d' Alene - Triathlon

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Coeur d' Alene, Idaho
United States
93F / 34C
Total Time = 16h 10m 3s
Overall Rank = 1807/2227
Age Group = male 34-39
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

I had the best night's sleep since being in CDA. The alarm was set for 3:30, I woke up at 3:29 and turned the alarm off. I choked down a bagel with turkey and cheese and drank a bottle of Gatorade, while surfing BT :)
Event warmup:

None, how do you warm up for a 140 mile race?
  • 1h 11m 23s
  • 4224 yards
  • 01m 41s / 100 yards

CRAZY!!!! Ok I have seen the videos of a mass beach start before, but nothing can prepare you for it...maybe the commercial where the guy is getting beaten by his friend. There was planty of room on the beach near the front closest the bouys, so I took that spot. :)The canon goes off and I struggle between racing into the water and taking my time so I can have space. That didn't matter because no matter where you started, there were plenty of people around you. There was nothing but elbows and feet for the first 200 yards, I couldn't sight becasue all I could see in any direction were arms and heads. I tried to settle into a nice easy breathing pattern and just follow some feet. The next thing you know the feet dropped and smack, I ran into them, then I would get run into, then it was crazy as we piled up on each other. For a while I was quite anxious because there was nowhere to go. I was in a herd and it was sink or swim, literally. After what seemed like an hour the water cleared a bit and I started laughing because this is what it is all about, absolutely amazing! I found some feet to follow and stayed on those for a while. Next thing you know I see a group of people crashing in from the right. I looked up and we were at the bouy. I tried to swim right so I could swing around the bouy, but no luck. I was back in the pack again, arms and legs thrashing about. Once I made it around the bouy, the water cleared again. It was great until I heard this voice "swim to your right!" I started swimming right and I was back in the pack again :(. Another crazy left turn and I was on my way back to shore! Plenty of open water for me to swim in because I think I was right of the pack. I just swam from feet to feet, no real sighting involved. I would swim behind someone until I could see someone ahead of them, then I would kick my feet and pass them, until I caught the person I saw. Once I got to the shore, I looked at my watch and it read 35 minutes. Are you kidding me? All of that and I was faster than last year! I jumped back in that water and tried to stay right, but I was forced back to the line of swimmers at the bouys, but this time the group was smaller. Again, just following feet until the end. I was soo stoked to see 1:10 on my watch as I hit the shore. I really wanted to be faster than last year in the swim. The bike and run, well I knew that was going to be different. :)My only concern during the swim was that OLDAG92 wasn't going to make the cutoff. I was worried because of his wetsuit issues and throw in 2000 people boxing for over an hour, and I didn't think he could take it :(
After the race, Happycow told me as I was getting out of the water, there were people starting the second loop of the swim and they wouldn't let others even start the second loop. How crappy would that be to do all of this work only to have them not let you statt the second loop of the swim. Your day over in 1.5 hours :(
What would you do differently?:

Nothing! It was scarey and exciting and I am glad I was in the middle of it.
Transition 1
  • 11m 33s

This time I wanted to not lag in transition. Why give up minutes just because I want to sit? I hurried, but made sure I had everything. I get out of the tent and see PGoldberger. Paul said "Hi" and took off. I tried to put my ($8) race belt on and it fell apart. I should have used the free one they gave me. The belt fell out of the buckle. I gave it to a volunteer as I went to the bathroom. When I came out, someone else was working on it. The problem was the volunteer was wanting to take a picture of someone, so his attention wasn't on fixing my belt, but looking for his friend. I tried to take it back from him, but he insisted he was close. I probably waited 5 minutes before he looped it through, then I tied it in a knot so it wouldn't fall off during the bike.
What would you do differently?:

Try out my stuff ahead of time.
  • 7h 57m 57s
  • 112 miles
  • 14.06 mile/hr

Alright, I grab my bike and run past the crowds. I get on my bike and the crowds were huge on the street. I wanted to take off, but everybody around me was taking it easy. Since I didn't preride the course I was afraid there was a big hill around the corner...nope. So I got in aero and started to ride. Next thing you know, BOOOM! The guy behind me said "what the hell was that?" "I dunno", then I hear thump-thump, thump-thump. It was my front tire. I pull over and a volunteer said "Do you want me to call bike support?" "Nope, it's just a flat, I'll get it" I jumped off my bike and rested my bike on her lawnchair and tried to change the tire. About 6 inches of the right side of my tire was destroyed! The bead was just hanging there. OK, so I asked her to call bike support. She said "you need a tube right?" "Nope a new tire"."OK,a tube". No big deal. So I am standing there and I remember what Mike Riley said before the start, "The only thing you can control during the whole day is your attitude" So I just stood there cheering on the other racers. This is great, my HR is coming down and I should be the first person needing bike support so they should be here anytime now. The problem was, they weren't expecting anyone to have problems 6 minutes into the bike. As I waited, I noticed there are a lot of people that pass you in 30 minutes! I was still OK but the volunteer (Who was great) kept saying "Oh my God, Oh my God" I had to keep telling her it was OK, It's a long day and a few minutes won't change anything. I was OK until 2 girls walked up and said "There is a bike shop right down the street. Do you want me to buy you a tire?" Before I could say "Yes", her friend said "he can't take outside help" and they just walked away. I started to get bummed, then this guy walked up and said "Is your race over?" Over? Over? I hadn't thought about that. I said "I hope not" then it became harder and harder to cheer people on. I could hear the words coming out of my mouth, but I didn't really mean it. I could hear the athletes saying "Sh!T, tooo bad man" or just "wow", then I really got bummed. I was getting choked up as I tried to mutter "You're looking good". Then before I completely fell apart, The volunteer yelled "They're here, they're here!" Inside Out Sports is great, period! I was back out the road in no time. Now I'm at the back of the pack and working my way through the pack. As I was heading to the turn around, the athletes that I cheered for as I was standing there, were cheering for me as I was hammering. I lost it. I just started crying like a baby. That was so cool, and it hit me all at one time. 6 months of training, thousands of dollars spent on hotel, airfare, training, clothing, not to mention that fact that the redheads were incredible this whole time was more than I could take. You might be able to control your attitude, but your emotions are completely out of your control. For those that said they know what they would do in Norman Stadler's position...You have no idea how you would react.
After that I was going to do everything in my power to finish and just enjoy the day. The hills weren't too bad but I wasn't ready for the headwind. That sucked. During the first loop, I kept saying, "well my time minus 30 minutes, that still a good ride", but the start of the second loop wasn't coming that fast, so even with the 30 minutes taken off, It wasn't a fast ride. At the bike special needs area, I got off of my bike and my back frooze up on me. It took forever to get it so I could ride comfortably. I kept popping Advil. The heat wasn't too bad because there was a nice breeze blowing all day, but I made sure I was on top of my nutrition. I took it easy on the hilly part of the ride getting ready for the 20 miles of headwind. While on the headwind section, I was riding with a group of people. I realized I feel great and there isn't any headwind. I shifted to the big chainring and hammered (term used loosely) then my right groin cramped. Damn! Back to the small ring. Popped some salt tabs and drank more. I finally made it back to T2. I couldn't believe that my second loop was only a little bit faster than my first loop, even with the 30 minutes of just standing there.
What would you do differently?:

I don't know what I would do different. I think the flat gave me new perspective on "racing". I think I would have gone harder on the bike if I didn't stop. I'm not sure I was in that good of shape.
Riding with people in the BOP is different than MOP and I found myself just touring CDA vs racing. I think that because I took it easy on the bike, that kept my race from being disasterous later on the run.
Transition 2
  • 10m 30s

I was so happy to be off of that bike! I saw the redheads near transition. I thought they would have gone home to nap. That was cool.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. That was still faster than last time. :)
  • 6h 38m 40s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 15m 13s  min/mile

OK, the prerace plan, run every other aid station. I get to the first aid station and I ran right through it. I didn't even think about it. After I passed through it I was stoked because I stuck to the plan. I ran to the turn around and was heading back, when I noticed 3 people throwing up and everybody, I mean everybody was walking. I just stopped running and started walking. I didn't need to, I just did...weird. I walked through the aid station and started running again. I ran back through the crowds and saw the redheads and the southern BTers and felt great. Then I started up a little hill and the heat hit me. Pop, I was done! I walked again. The beginning of a long day. Well, at least I know I couldn't walk anywhere near a 7 hour marathon (6:40 is closer than I thought :) ) So, I feel good, just no desire to run, so I forced myself to run from point to point, then walk from point to point. I was working my way through the crowd like this. What is this? I was passing paople :) I never pass people even with my 10 min/mile run. Everywhere I look people are throwing up, walking or cramping. I felt great, I just didn't want to run. Just before the turn around I saw, coming the other way, a friend of mine and she said. "I was waiting for you to catch me" I continued to run/walk and caught her at mile 8. I joined her and convinced her to join in my run/walk. She talks more than my 7 year old. I'm not really a talker, so this was odd for me. I wanted to leave her but I couldn't. She looked way too happy having someone with her. Now here is the deal with her (Dina). She is in Team in Training and she always wears a costume to race in. In IMFlorida, she was TinkerBell and this year she had a Mr Potatohead attached to her shirt. All of the locals were cheering for her "Hey it's the Spud Girl" She would yell "It's all about Idaho baby!" and they would lose their minds. At first I was embarrassed. I found myself justifying her actions to other athletes as they looked at us like freaks. Then after a while (18 miles) I realized, she was having fun, the crowds were having fun, the athletes were having fun and even I was having fun. How could I be a big stick in the mud because I don't usually get that kind of attention? We had different groups of people joining us throughout the run. We would have 8 of us in a group then someone would say "lets run to the 3rd tree" and everyone would run to the 3rd tree, then start walking and talking again. At the finish, it was just Dina myself and another guy, who thanked us for getting him to the finish. We sorted out in what order were going to finish. I got to the finshline and there were the redheads (still there all day long) Sheila said Lauren wants to run with you, so Lauren stood up and joined me and I grabbed Sean out of Sheila's hands and we high fived people all the way to the finishline. Sean actually got scared by the noise created by the crowd. How cool is that?

Edited to add (thanks Brandt) That I was being a baby on the run course. At mile 1 I realized that my timing chip was going to rub me raw, so I tried to move on top of my socks. I bent over and my hamstrings big time cramp.. I stopped and asked this guy if he would please move my chip to the top of my socks. Him and his friends laughed. I don't see what is so funny. About mile 6 and about mile 23 I got a rock in my shoe. There was no way I was doing that again, so I had to ask people to please take off my shoe and get the rock out. At the time I didn't think it was funny, but now I think I must have looked pretty silly "Excuse me, I can't bend over, would you please take my shoe off and get the rock out?"
What would you do differently?:

Not sure. I would have been faster by myself, but I will always remember this run and I felt good when others were falling apart. Every aid station had someone on a stretcher and we were laughing and joking the whole time. Maybe later I will be bummed by my run time, but not today :)
Oh, the biggest thrill of the day... Seeing OLDAG92 at the special needs area. He was right behind me. Doesn't get any better. I saw him again at mile 20 something so I knew he was going to make it.
Post race
Warm down:

Pizza and Coke and massage. While I was waiting for my massage I heard "We need a medic, this guy is having a seizure" I am so glad I never felt that bad.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Heat, lack of conditioning and conflict between racing and being uncomfortable and touring and enjoying the day.

Event comments:

The volunteers were great. The people of CDA were great. They kept saying "Thank you for coming here". What? No, thank you for having us! If this were San Diego, people would have a heart attack if the streets were closed for a few hours, not to mention all day and part of the week. Absolutely incredible. All of the Northwest BTers were Great. Tobin opened his house to us and our families and Brian showed us the course and organized things for us to do. I met so many Bters, who are all awesome. Stake and Chippy are terrific and I'll do what it takes to race with them again. Wendy and Mike are awesome. I can't believe they would travel this far to volunteer at a race. Trixie is crazy. The scariest part is that DadYou'reEmabarrassingMeCow really likes her. She picked Trixie to be on her soccer team because "She cheats". And she is still talking about her. Stan (FLYBOY) is the nicest guy, Jamesreeves is so down to earth and funny, Danny (DanCan), is way better than he gives himself credit for. He ran a 1:40 first loop then cruised the rest of the way. What can he do if he pushes? And he is climbing Mt Rainier on Friday! Harold Hjmiii (or something like that)and his wife. I didn't get to really talk to them until Monday night, but they are equally great, they travel together and seem like a perfect fit for each other. Hopefully Harold will sign up for AZ so we can talk more. Then there is Brandt. What can you say? I feel like I have known him my whole life. I am proud that I get to race with him again in AZ. I can't wait. The two us will see each other for years to come, I'm sure. I know I am leaving people out. But I am prviledge to have met everyone of you!

Last updated: 2006-06-28 12:00 AM
01:11:23 | 4224 yards | 01m 41s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 800/2227
Performance: Good
Suit: Ironman sleeveless
Course: 2 loops in CDA lake
Start type: Run Plus: Shot
Water temp: 63F / 17C Current: Low
200M Perf. Bad Remainder: Good
Breathing: Average Drafting: Good
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Below average
Time: 11:33
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
07:57:57 | 112 miles | 14.06 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 1878/2227
Wind: Some
Course: 2 loops
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 10:30
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
06:38:40 | 26.2 miles | 15m 13s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 1807/2227
Performance: Below average
Course: 2 loops
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Just right
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: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4