Spirit of Racine Half Ironman Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Racine, Wisconsin
United States
HFP Racing
82F / 28C
Total Time = 7h 22m 26s
Overall Rank = 1224/1256
Age Group = Clyde XL1
Age Group Rank = 18/18
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 3:15am, had a cliff bar, some lean ham, and a glass of milk. Drove to the course and arrived about 5am. Set up my transition area and was good to go. Was feeling solid at this point.
Event warmup:

Walked the mile to the swim start and did a few hundred meters of warmup. Then just floated around waiting for the gun.
  • 50m 48s
  • 1931 meters
  • 02m 38s / 100 meters

First 200 meters felt great. I rounded the first bouy and my spotting was dead on. I was having trouble finding people to draft and unfortunately the guy who kept drafting me would periodicly decide I was going to slow and swim by me. Then he would stop and do a breast stroke to sight, at which point we would collide, and then he would fall back behind me only to do it again in another 200 meters or so. This went on all the way to the last bouy.

I also started to have a few pangs of a side stitch half-way through the swim. I had a major cramp/pull of my diaphram back about 6 weeks ago and I thought it was fully healed...this was foreshadowing for the festival of suffering that would insue later...
What would you do differently?:

I don't think I would have changed anything. My sighting was good and I didn't want to aggravate my side by swimming harder. I would have liked to have found a way to ditch the dweeb who kept crashing into me but I tried to swim away from him a few times and he would just draft me anyway.
Transition 1
  • 05m 31s

In T1 I took my time trying to get everything back in order. I wanted to shake off what I felt was a way below average swim and set myself up for a good bike. The side stitch went away and I got out on my bike.
What would you do differently?:

I could have shaved a few minutes off easily but I was still a tad worried about my side. Turns out I had reason to be.
  • 3h 22m 48s
  • 56 miles
  • 16.57 mile/hr

The bike didn't start really well. I had ridden the course and expected the first section to be a bit rough. I couldn't get my HR down for about 30 minutes so I just spun. I still felt totally out of sorts from the swim and didn't expect it to effect me so much.

After about an hour of sub-par performance I started to get my act in gear. My HR had settled and I determined to keep my HR in zone2 and my cadence at 90+. I started to pass people on the bike but never really got "comfortable"

At the 2:30 mark a girl and I kept passing eachother back and forth and finally we had passed everyone within miles of us so we pulled up side by side and just chatted for about 30 minutes. Our pace was nearly identical so that took some of the boredom factor out of being all alone on the course.

When I did this ride before I came in at 3:20 so this was pretty much the same deal. I could have ridden quite a bit faster but I was determined to set up a good run and have a shot at a 6ish hour finish.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. My goal was not to hammer the bike and I stayed with the plan perfectly. The only thing I would have done different is not sign up as a clyde. If I was an age grouper I would have started much farther forward on the swim and had more people out on the bike course with me. That would have added significant motivation to an otherwise lonely bike.
Transition 2
  • 03m 52s

I was looking at my watch and feeling good right here. I had a shot at 6 hours and the way I felt I was thinking I had a lock on beating my 6:30 "good" time. If I ran even a slow training run it was in the bag...

What would you do differently?:

Ditch the bike jersey, add yanks or speed laces for my shoes. Once again this wasn't about speed as much as being in the right place to run well. IN a sprint I'll worry about speed but the extra minute here wouldn't have that much effect on my times.
  • 2h 59m 27s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 13m 42s  min/mile

When I came out of transition I was feeling great. I knew from running the course before I would run up to hill #1, walk the hill, run to Hill#2, walk the hill, and then run the rest of the way. All I had to do was do a slow training run and I would hit my time.

This plan worked well for the first mile. Then it happened. My diaphram full cramped on me. The right side just locked up and I couldn't breath at all. I stopped and bent over, dug my fingers under my rib cage and tried to get compression on some of the more superficial muscles which were all spasming. That allowed me to start to breath in short gasps. My HR spiked up to 190 or so as I couldn't catch oxygen and my body was screaming for it.

Right about then I thought my day was over and I was going to need to ask for a medic.

Then the muscle settled down to a raging side stitch and I could breath with pain, but I could breath. Oxygen is a wonderful thing. I started to walk a bit and stretch my right side. I was getting waves of pain through my core but they started to subside after about a half mile. Now I just had a really bad side stitch and a fear that if it cramped again I wouldn't be able to breath again.

I was determined not to waste all this training though. I wanted to finish.

So for the next all miles I played the heartrate game. The muscle would start to spasm at 172bpm almost on the nose. So I would walk till it dropped to 148 and then slow run with the best form I could manage till 170, wash rinse repeat...

That was a long aggravating 11 miles. At the turnaround I stopped and gave my daughter a kiss, chatted with my wife and family for a bit, and said this was going to take a while. My brother in-law who is an ironman just looked at me and said, "Hey man just go out there and do what you need to do, we'll be here when you get done." He gave me a big hug and off I went.

The second lap was much like the first. HR game and waves of wracking spasms through my core.

I knew my times were totally blown so I spent time chatting with people who were still on the course as I did my walk/run. I was going to finish either way.

At the finish line my 2yr old daughter was screaming "run run run" and my wife released her out into the chute. It was very cute as she ran for all she was worth to grab my hand and we crossed the finish line together. So that was very cool.
What would you do differently?:

All in all it was dissapointing but I haven't been able to figure out what I could have done differently. I think I made the big mistake 6 weeks ago when I "ran through" pain and caused a minor pull to the diaphram muscle. My doc said I should be good and when I did 1 mile runs at 8:15 I was thininking "cool I'm set" but I obviously wasn't.
Post race
Warm down:

I was revnously hungry but nothing looked good. I choked down a pb+j, a banana, and a 7up. Broke down my transition area, and then went and sttled into the lake for a bit to cool down and wash off.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I need more time in the saddle to get faster at the same effort level but that was what I expected. The swim wasn't great but was ok.

The major problem was the injury to the diaphram which flared up again when I wasn't expecting it.

Event comments:

Excellent volunteers and great course control, even at the back of the pack. A very well run race. I would have liked to see some other options for food at the finish but overall it was an excellent venue.

Last updated: 2006-12-10 12:00 AM
00:50:48 | 1931 meters | 02m 38s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/18
Overall: 1162/1256
Performance: Below average
Suit: promotion full
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Below average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Below average
Waves: Average Navigation: Average
Rounding: Average
Time: 05:31
Performance: Below average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Below average
03:22:48 | 56 miles | 16.57 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/18
Overall: 1205/1256
Performance: Average
Wind: Some
Road:   Cadence: 90
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Below average Hills: Below average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 03:52
Overall: Below average
Riding w/ feet on shoes Bad
Jumping off bike Bad
Running with bike Bad
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
02:59:27 | 13.1 miles | 13m 42s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/18
Overall: 1219/1256
Performance: Bad
Course: Course was great. 2 hills close to transition but otherwise fairly flat. Slight rolling terrain with good scenery and great course support.
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? No
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4