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Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Boulder City, Nevada
United States
BBSC Endurance Sports
85F / 29C
Total Time = 6h 57m 30s
Overall Rank = 57/79
Age Group = 40-44
Age Group Rank = 10/14
Pre-race routine:

Set up T1, check the bike and gear.
Event warmup:

Do some stretching and a short jog. No time for a short swim this time. Putting on the wetsuit is always a warmup!
  • 36m 51s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 44s / 100 yards

I am SO proud of my swim! 2nd overall in my AG! (the 1st ranked person in my AG won the race!) AND 21st out of the water out of 79! I swam the PERFECT swim for me. I grabbed the ankles of a group of guys that were going at a really nice clip. I can't BELIEVE how much energy I saved drafting. I was right on their toes the whole time and the swim felt effortless (someone else was drafting me too! - kept touching my feet on occasion) I almost NEVER had to sight since the group did it for me. They brought me within a couple feet of each bouy and I never even looked! I thought once or twice about breaking free and going faster, but decided to stay where I was and save some energy!

Please note: that my split times are based on my garmin. NOT the official times. However, the rankings are correct. They had manual timing, so they didn't account for transistion times and they split them and put them into the swim/bike/run splits.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing - PERFECT swim for me.....
Transition 1
  • 05m 7s

I had a long run to my bike so T1 was a little long for that reason (and others). My wetsuit came off easily except for the right leg, where it caught on my heel. I struggled for at least 10 to 15 seconds, when another racer (yet to start) rushed over and YANKED it off my leg for me. I am SO gratefull, it would have cost me another 30 seconds at least.

Since it was a long race, I took a little longer to apply sunscreen and take in nutrition.
What would you do differently?:

Unzip the ankles of my wetsuit to get it off easier. OR apply cooking spray, which I forgot this one and only time. That's why I think it got stuck on my ankle.
  • 3h 21m 33s
  • 56 miles
  • 16.67 mile/hr

The bike is where I started to have problems - both mechanical, physical, and mental. Overall, I am MUCH faster than I was in the past (cut 40 minutes off my last HIM bike split on the same course!) That is a GREAT thing! However, my pace was MUCH too hard. I tend to go at my Oly pace, which took too much out of the tank. The other problem is that I didn't drink nearly enough. I really neglected nutrition. My whole nutrition plan went out the window. I was in such a zone, that I forgot. SERIOUSLY STUPID mistake. My calves started to cramp up around mile 45.

I also had a HUGE brain fart. I passed the turnaround point! All the signs looked the same. The arrows, the mile markers, and the turn arounds. They didn't have a marshal to help either. So I think I blew by the turn around due to confusion of the signs. I realized this when I checked the bike computer and I should have hit the turnaround a while back AND I didn't see any other bikers. So I turned around and found it on the way back. I added anywhere from 1 to 2 miles to my trip. My Garmin has me right at 56.5 miles, but my bike computer has me two miles over.....

My Garmin also was on the wrong setting, so the first 20 minutes, it thought I was running at 17mph! I had to switch over to bike mode, but then the time and distance reset, so I had to do math in my head all day to approximate where I was and my finish time.

THEN the wheel problem....

I was on mile 48 of my HIM when I started to feel a "bump, bump, bump" from my rear wheel. I pulled over and saw that the tire was still inflated, which seemed odd. I turned it almost a half a rotation and found a large knot/bump/hernia on the wheel. Well, it was still inflated, and I only had about 7 miles to go so I went ahead on it. There was nothing I could do, it was a tire problem, not a tube problem.

3 miles later (4 from the end) and BLAM! My fears come true and I blow out the rear tire. I pull over to see a nail sized hole in the tread with all the nylon/kevlar fibers sticking out. A true blowout.

Now my MacGyver instincts kicks in (and I recall a memory of how to fix such a problem I read about years ago). I pull a GU pack out of my bento box, quickly suck down the nutrition and fold the mylar wrapper into thirds. I spread a tiny bit of the leftover GU on the wrapper to act as glue and hold it in place and use it as a band-aid over the hole on the inside of the tire. I carefully replaced the tube making sure the GU wrapper stayed in place, finished filling it with my CO2, AND IT HOLDS!!!!!. I was able to finish the last 4 miles (going a little slower than I would have liked - I was a little nervous.) The entire fix cost me about 9 minutes :(

I finished the bike, but I was toast. And the run proved that.....

What would you do differently?:

Nutrition, nutrition, nutrition!
Transition 2
  • 02m 7s

Took a little more time to change over and get some of the fluids in my body that I neglected to do on the bike... Sigh...

Forgot my race belt too.
What would you do differently?:

Remember my race belt/number!
  • 2h 42m 23s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 12m 24s  min/mile

One word - SUCKED!!!!! The first 4 miles where basicaly uphill on loose sand and gravel. Plus I was trashed due to the mistake of nutrition on the bike. I had to walk a LOT of the steeper sections and through EVERY aid station to take on extra fluids and nutrition.

I am now officially a member of the "BONK" club. I just couldn't go on. There were SO many times that I almost called it quits and sat down at an aid station. But I pushed on. Miles 4-9 felt much better. I almost felt normal (as normal as you can after 1.2mi/56mi). Then mile 9 the cramps started up BIG time (it got some others too as I passed them limping on the course) I was waiting for one to really get me and knock me out of the race. But I held up. Since the last 4 miles were mostly downhill, I was able to keep a decent pace most of the time, but I still had to walk through every aid station on a couple more of the small up-hills.

My right knee (which sometimes has a little soreness after a long run or bike, was acting up. Maybe some tendonitis). It was causing some minor issues on the run as well. My stomach was having issues too. I don't know if taking on that much water and gatorade (one cup of each at every aid station) plus a GU and half a banana caused a problem. Maybe a little too much too late in the game? So I had stomach and body cramps for most of the run.

The run was beautiful though! Part of the 6 tunnels half marathon cours that looks over Lake Mead. Very scenic.

I probably spent at least 30 minutes longer running than I would have liked. I was hoping for 2:00 to 2:10.

Oh well, did it to my self! Live and learn!
What would you do differently?:

Nothing on the run - I can run ok with the proper conditions, I just set myself up for problems be not being nutritionaly better on the bike.
Post race
Warm down:

Fluids and nutrition!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Reaccuring theme - NUTRITION!!! FLUIDS!!!!

Event comments:

A couple other things to add:

My goal was to break 6:35 and qualify for the Halfmax. I would have come close, but even taking out the mistakes and mechanical problems, I would have been 12 minutes short or so. the other way to qualify is be in the top 1/3 of my AG. Just missed that as well even without the problems.

I was still VERY happy to break the 7 hour mark and set a PR. It would have been closer to 6:45 without the issues.

My wife bought me a present! The night before the race, she presented me with some Oakley bike/run sunglasses. She picked the "LiveStrong" version because she knows my racing colors are yellow! She SAYS that she did this on her own and never noticed that I have been oggling them in the store a half dozen times!

Since the HIM took longer than the Sprint and Oly. Most of the post race activities where over when I finished! I also had to get a Large finisher's t-shirt because they were out of the XL when I was done. The staff felt bad since I was the biggest guy at the race! Maybe next time they can put one aside for me! ;)

I may have to reconsider attempting an IM. This race hurt A LOT! I never came so close to quiting before. It hurt MUCH more than the last HIM I did, but for some strange reason, I have a stonger feeling of accomplishment than I did last fall.

Overall, a fun and good race. My preperation for it paid off and I was about 35 minutes faster than my first HIM with more room for improvement (with better fluid intake). I still get frustrated/upset by what "could have been" without the mistakes and equipment problems. But such is life.

I hurt SO bad after the race! I looked like an old man limping around! Cramping, sick to my stomach... I took in as much food and water as I could and slept for about 5 hours. Felt MUCH better after the rest.

I checked the Oly times at this race. I think I could have had a GOOD shot at a podium spot as a clydesdale if I raced that instead of the HIM. Maybe even first (without the problems)! But I'm more proud of completing the HIM. At first I was a little disapointed with my overall results, but when I recall the athletes there, and look at their times, we had a pretty high level of competition in the HIM. Probably because it was a qualifying race for the HalfMax championships. I probably would have been more competitive in the Oly or sprint and not in quite so far over my head. But I'm happy that I finished it! It's been 3 days since I completed it and I'm already psyched to do the next! Man, one can forget the pain quickly! HIM is a nice distance. Long enough to REQUIRE a lot of planning and strategy, but still short enough to be competitive rather than just try to finish (such as an IM for me).

Last updated: 2008-04-21 12:00 AM
00:36:51 | 2112 yards | 01m 44s / 100yards
Age Group: 2/14
Overall: 21/79
Performance: Good
Suit: Full
Course: 1.2 Mile loop
Start type: Wade Plus: Shot
Water temp: 68F / 20C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 05:07
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed:
03:21:33 | 56 miles | 16.67 mile/hr
Age Group: 11/14
Overall: 54/79
Performance: Average
Wind: Some
Course: Basically a rolling out and back.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 83
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Too hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 02:07
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike Below average
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
02:42:23 | 13.1 miles | 12m 24s  min/mile
Age Group: 11/14
Overall: 52/79
Performance: Below average
Course: Mostly off road on gravel paths and sandy river beds.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
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: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2008-04-21 1:20 PM

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Sin City
Subject: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman

This about sums it up.  May do some editing later to correct mistakes or add something that comes to mind.....

Thanks for reading....

Edited by Aikidoman 2008-04-21 1:22 PM

2008-04-21 1:39 PM
in reply to: #1351985

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Arch-Bishop of BT
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman

hey great swim... cool mCgyver trick and you learned a lot...

great race.  


2008-04-21 2:10 PM
in reply to: #1351985

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Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Great race, Mr. Aikidoman. Way to push through the problems and the pain and the peril. This RR is more inspiration for me.
2008-04-21 2:12 PM
in reply to: #1351985

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Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Great swim and glad you saved the race......I had never heard of this way of fixing a tire so thanks a bunch....hopefully will never have to do that....I would be a nervous wreck!
2008-04-21 2:38 PM
in reply to: #1351985

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Surprise, Arizona
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Even with the issues, you had a great race.  You showed resourcefulness and determination even when things weren't going well.  And that course is very tough.  I raced Pumpkinman last year, and I thought that the Lake Mead swim and the hills where the course is set up were extremely challenging.   Getting through a half on that course is very impressive.  Great job!! 
2008-04-21 2:48 PM
in reply to: #1351985

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Washington Court House, Ohio
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman

I hope you feel better and better about your performance.

I think you feel a greater sense of accomplishment because of all the pain and adversity you worked through.  In my shorter events the pain is always of the "if I keep up this pace I am gonna puke" variety.  It hurts, but the solution is to take a step back and slow down.  In the longer events (and I've been through it in the Army) you can get to the point were you've used up all your "slow downs" and the next step back is DNF.  Hanging in there at that point can require much more mental toughness and physical pain than some of our successes that come easier.

I was a cyclist for 3.5 years and I only rode my bike 56 or more miles about 8 times.  I've never run more then 7.5 miles, and I can't swim 50 meters before having to stop to rest (duathlete for life).  So I am quite impressed.  I bet if you did another event in September, and trained for an Autumn peak, you take 40 minutes off that time.


2008-04-21 3:09 PM
in reply to: #1351985

Sydney Australia
2008-04-21 3:21 PM
in reply to: #1351985

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2008-04-21 3:26 PM
in reply to: #1352435

Sin City
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Thanks all.  I'm proud to call you my friends.....
2008-04-21 3:52 PM
in reply to: #1351985

New user
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
If anyone is interested I have quite a few photos from this race at:

I probably don't have many from the HIM as I needed to get home to move, but I have lots from the sprint.

Some photos are better than others, but I don't charge so no complaints.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.
2008-04-21 7:35 PM
in reply to: #1352546

Extreme Veteran
Somewhere in your dreams
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Jim, Way to Go!!! I am very proud of you! I think you did an amazing job! How was the wind out there?? I once was doing a century ride last year and had to use a $20 bill to patch a tire blowout too! Smart and fast thinking on your part. I think you are 100% capable of doing the full IM....sure it is going to hurt but you know that. Again, great job on the race and great job on sticking at it!!!

2008-04-21 8:39 PM
in reply to: #1351985

Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Good job. The hills are tough out there and you took care of them again. That was a real good swim you put together too!
2008-04-22 9:12 AM
in reply to: #1351985

Husker Nation
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman
Wow great race! The RR was fun to read I had heard about shutting up a hole with a dollar bill before but not a GU, that makes more sense due to the sticky factor and you already have it on you! Smart fix, and fast too. Even without fixing a hole I'd have easily been over 10 min for a tube change. I got plenty of experience doing so this weekend, that's for sure! Get rested up, you know you'll be back for more very soon, no matter how much you hurt right now
2008-04-22 9:31 AM
in reply to: #1354002

Sin City
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman

Gina, Chile, Bripod,

Thanks for spending time reading the long winded report!


The wind was not as bad as you might expect out there.  During the swim and bike I realy never noticed much of an issue.  (at least I never cursed a headwind, even if I noticed one there!)

The run I noticed it a little more.  It started off calm (in the morning) and slowly built up to 10 -15mph I'm guessing.  NOTHING as bad as going to Red Rocks!  Guess that trip got me used to it!

Edited by Aikidoman 2008-04-22 9:34 AM
2008-04-22 2:02 PM
in reply to: #1351985

St. Louis
Subject: RE: Rage Triathlon 1/2 Ironman

Hey.. great race! Very ingenious about the Gu pack bike fix. Dollar bill works well on the road.. but never carry those racing! lol.

Im very impressed with your swim! Awesome job.. Im hoping to have a swim at that pace myself!

2009-04-09 11:35 AM
in reply to: #1351985

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