Spirit of Racine Half Ironman Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

View Member's Race Log View other race reports
Racine, Wisconsin
United States
HFP Racing
70F / 21C
Total Time = 6h 26m 4s
Overall Rank = 1056/1256
Age Group = 30-34
Age Group Rank = 53/68
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 2:00 am to drink some water. Went back to sleep. Woke up again at 4:00 to start getting ready. Ate a bowl of cereal and a banana. This was my first HIM ever and I was quite nervous and excited. I had no idea what to expect.
Event warmup:

After transition, the three quarter of a mile or so walk to the swim start and then maybe a 50 meter swim to try to get the body and breathing ready. Definitely didn't drink enough water once we left the hotel and drank hardly any once at the race site. I was caught up in the excitement and just forgot. This would come back to haunt me later.
  • 46m 17s
  • 1931 meters
  • 02m 24s / 100 meters

This time is somewhat deceiving as it involves about a 200 meter run up the beach in quite deep sand. Watch said 43:45 when I stood up from the swim. But then I walked a few feet and sat back down to take my wetsuit off while still in knee deep water. I pushed it down to my ankles, sat down, grabbed it around the upper leg area and pulled it right off. Bam, I was done in just a few seconds. Figured it would be faster and cooler than running up the beach with it on and trying to take it off in transition. I'm glad I made this choice. I was way more comfortable running up the beach.

The swim went well for me. I paced pretty consistently, bilateral breathed the whole time, swam pretty straight, tried to remember form. Since I've never done an HIM before I didn't really know what I was in for and decided not to go out too hard for this. The only bad part was when I got kicked in the jaw so hard by a nearby swimmer I think he would have dislocated it if he'd kicked me any harder. It caused an instant headache that didn't go away for several minutes and made me quite timid to get near anyone for a bit afterwards.
What would you do differently?:

Other than avoiding the swift kick to the head, not much. It was a pretty good swim for me and right about the time I expected myself to finish.

No wait, knowing now that this was the smoothest, easiest part of the race, I would have gone out way harder. I could have easily done so and gained a couple minutes.
Transition 1
  • 03m 6s

This was actually a pretty decent transition for me since my T1 is usually ridiculously, embarassing slow. I didn't want to rush myself and forget something if I was going to be on the bike for so long, but I think I did pretty well getting out of there in decent time.
What would you do differently?:

Not anything really except maybe be faster at everything next time.
  • 3h 26m 29s
  • 56 miles
  • 16.27 mile/hr

This bike was TOUGH for me. And all my problems begin and end with one thing. I was pretty badly dehydrated before I even started the bike. I left transition and took the first sip out of my water bottle and wanted to guzzle the whole thing down, refill, and guzzle that too. I thought I had read somewhere that there was only one bottle exchange so I also felt like I needed to be pretty conservative with my intake to start out. Turns out there were three and I could have/should have been sucking the entier bottle down like I wanted to.

Shortly after the first hour I could feel my legs quitting on me for the small low grade inclines. This happened in Baraboo when I was pretty severely dehydrated and I should have made the connection. By the third hour I was okay on the flats, but barely maintaining 12 mph on those baby hills. Ridiculous. I could feel myself starting to bonk. My bike handling skills were getting iffy, my pace was really dropping, I wasn't paying attention to where I was anymore, and I was generally drifting off. I forced myself to take in some perpetuem and gel and guzzled down the water I got at the bottle exchanges. I was so far in the hole though that although it gave me a bit of second wind for the end of the bike, I knew I would be in bad shape for the run. I decided to stop focusing on how crappy I felt and think about the positive things about what I was doing until I finally got into the home stretch (last 5 miles) and knew I could rack that blasted bike soon and get to my favorite part of the race.

I know I'm not a particularly fast cyclist, but jeez. I didn't think 16.2 mph was all that slow until I got passed by nearly the entire field and some snails and catepillars out for a Sunday stroll. That said, I did come in within the pace range I had hoped for--16-17 mph so I'm happy with that.
What would you do differently?:

Hydrate before the race and WAY more during the beginning of the bike. Work on pacing for the longer distance events. Ride and ride and ride until I'm a faster cyclist.
Transition 2
  • 03m 22s

My T2 is usually decent. I'm so excited to run I can be in and out in pretty good time. Not super fast, but okay. This was slow. I simply could not run with my bike when I got off. I took the bike shoes off as soon as I stopped, before I even entered transition. They were making the muscles on the front outer part of my ankle hurt so bad I wasn't sure how I would run, my quads didn't feel like they could do anything, and I just needed to calm down for a minute. Walked the bike to transition, saw Coredump's mom and brother and LindaKC's boyfriend Dave, and their friendly faces lifted my spirits a little and I was ready to go again. They have no idea how much better they made me feel and how they got me going for the run. Stupidly left my running shoes untied from the short run the day before. Ugh.
What would you do differently?:

Not sure I even could have done anything differently. I was trashed by this point.
  • 2h 06m 51s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 09m 41s  min/mile

Holy crap this was the toughest half-mary I've ever run. And yet, the run was still the fastest and best part of the race for me, even as bad a shape as I was in.

There were one or two miles that were clearly marked short and then the rest felt eternally long. Forever long. Different universe long. I was getting REALLY dehydrated by the time I started this run so I took in as many fluids, salt caps, and gels as I could make my body handle, but I wasn't even making a dent. All my muscles in general from the waist down started reacting quite poorly to the dehydration. I ran the entire thing, but for the water stops, and kept a pretty consistent pace so I'm happy with that. I was way slower than I should have been though. I had to throw all expectations out the window and just focus on moving forward no matter what. My toes started cramping about a third of the way through so I ignored them and then willed the rest of my muscles not to cramp. Saw Whizzzzz, Grizdog, LindaKC, MarkK, and Coredump on the run, which gave me a little boost each time to help keep me running.

I hit mile eleven and started really struggling not to walk. I was pretty sure they were going to send me to the medical tent when I finished, but I didn't care. I was getting close so I made myself keep running. Then I saw the mile 12 sign. I swear, it was like a choir sang "Aaaaaameeeeennnn" and bright golden heavenly light shot out around it. I knew I only had 1.1 miles to go and I knew it would be ugly, but I would finish! YES! :)
What would you do differently?:

Not be so dehydrated starting out. Otherwise I think I held together pretty well all things considered.
Post race
Warm down:

They sent me straight to the medical tent, just as I suspected they would. When my breathing and pulse wouldn't stabilize, my lips and hands were going numb, I was struggling to hold up my head, and kept asking them if I could sleep, they took me back and gave me an IV. Once that was in me and I took a 20 minute nap I was MUCH better. That's some miracle stuff in those IV bags.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Massive dehydration. Doc also said he thought I might have had a touch of heat exhaustion (although the more I think about this the more weird that seems since it wasn't a very hot day--I'll go with dehydration). Otherwise, I had no idea what to really expect of myself for this race. I learned a ton of lessons about hydration, pacing, and just how it feels in general. And I had a great time, and would definitely do another one. In fact, right after I left the medical tent I told Griz and LindaKC that a full IM wasn't out of the question. If you took my time, doubled it, and then added about three more hours for pain and suffering I might pull off a finish within the 17 hour cutoff. :)

It was a really awesome experience and I'm so glad I did it!

Event comments:

A well organized race. Nice course. The volunteers were awesome. I would definitely recommend it as a first HIM for someone new or for anyone looking for a good HIM.

Last updated: 2007-02-06 12:00 AM
00:46:17 | 1931 meters | 02m 24s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/68
Overall: 1018/1256
Performance: Good
Suit: Quintana Roo Super Full
Course: Three sides of a rectangle with the looooong side of the rectangle cutting parallel to the beach across Lake Michigan.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 62F / 17C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Average
Time: 03:06
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed:
03:26:29 | 56 miles | 16.27 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/68
Overall: 1218/1256
Performance: Below average
Wind: Some
Course: A long loop out around the Racine area. Touted as a quite flat course, but there were more small climbs than I had expected. Lots of low grade inclines. Of course, I'm from Chicago. That's as flat as it gets so anything looks like hills to me.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 80
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Bad
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Not enough
Time: 03:22
Overall: Below average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Bad
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Bad
02:06:51 | 13.1 miles | 09m 41s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/68
Overall: 703/1256
Performance: Average
Course: A two loop out and back course.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
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:
Race evaluation [1-5] 5