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Ironman Lanzarote - TriathlonFull Ironman

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70F / 21C
Total Time = 12h 29m 8s
Overall Rank = 589/1300
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 147/275
Pre-race routine:

This is an especially long race report from someone who always writes very long race reports. If you're into travel and/or food, you might find all the pre-race stuff interesting. Otherwise, simply feel free to jump down to the specific race event stuff. (There are a over 80 pictures in this race report so hit reload on your browser if you need to and be patient if my web server is slow, but having the pictures makes the report so much more vivid).

For many years, I had been promising my youngest sister that I would visit her on Lanzarote, which I'd been saying forever, but somehow almost 10 years passed and I never did it. When all of our family got together in the Virgin Islands last year, they all knew I was doing triathlons so I said maybe I'd do Lanzarote in 2008. Two days after finishing my first 140.6 race (Vineman in August 2007), I clicked the mouse button and signed up for the May 24, 2008 IM race in Lanzarote. I let my parents and my other sister, T, and her family know so we could all plan our trips. We would all be flying to Lanzarote first, I'd do the IM, and then we'd also go to Germany the week after the IM and visit T's husband's family.

Now, I had always heard that Lanzarote was a tough race, but when "tough" is just verbalized in a non-specific way, it doesn't really mean much - I mean, all 140.6 races are tough, right? So I started doing my research and found that the bike course had about 9000' of elevation. Okay, well, I had done one century that had almost that much elevation, so that didn't seem out of reach. Through further research, I later found out that there were 20mph winds on the course too (I'd later learn that this is because the north-northeast trade winds blow through Lanzarote). Uh, okay... I also heard there were currents on the swim. And then my sister told me that Lanzarote is a basically a desert island so there is no tree cover at all and the sun is intense. Okay, so now I'm understanding why this is billed as the toughest Ironman(-branded) race in the world.

So I knew I had to rev up my training, but this didn't really happen without some early setbacks. In December, I developed some major tendinitis during a very hilly ultramarathon. Once I had recovered from that and had brought my mileage up again, I tore my calf muscle in mid January and then a week later had a bike accident (biking back from a PT session of all things) where I bruised my knees pretty badly. I had pretty much stop my running for 7+ weeks and had to slowly bring up my biking again.

I managed to navigate through the recovery for these injuries and build things up. I did an easy (i.e. not very hilly) century in early March followed by IM Cal 70.3 in late March. From there, I kicked up my training to prepare specifically for Lanzarote. In my final build phase 5 weeks out from the race, I did my first double metric century. Four weeks out, I did a hilly double metric century and a marathon. Three weeks out, I did a hilly century and my last long swim and then I began my taper. Frankly, I was pretty tired after all of this and hoped my training was in the delicate middle ground between putting in enough training and overtraining.

Thursday, May 15 – T-minus 9 days
This is a flyday. It was more than a week out so that we would have adequate time to adjust to the time zone change (8 hours ahead of San Francisco) and to get acclimated to the weather.

Our outbound itinerary is to fly out from San Francisco to Frankfurt to Madrid. We then have an overnight (Friday) layover in Madrid (when I booked this through United, they claimed they couldn't give me the Friday evening flight to Lanzarote) and then on to Lanzarote in the morning (Saturday). We hoped that we would be able to check our luggage all the way through, but at check-in, we were told this was not possible. Travelling around with a bike case is as much fun as it sounds...

Our flight to Frankfurt is about 10 hours and relatively uneventful. I was sitting next to a guy who claimed to be a trumpeter for Santana for the last 18 years. He proceeded to consume about 8 small glasses of wine (he had a wad of drink tickets). He was friendly enough and then he slept as did I for almost the entire trip (DW wasn't able to pull that off) so the flight went very quickly for me.

Friday, May 16 – T-minus 8 days
The flight to Madrid on Lufthansa went uneventfully although they did have to apologize because there were using some new service to service the planes and they hand't packed any food...relatively short flight anyway, so no problem.

Once we were in the airport, though, it was a bit of a mess. The short of it was that it was very confusing to figure out where to go to get our baggage and we ended up outside of the baggage claim area and had to find our way to the correct baggage area and back into the secure baggage area. This took awhile, but after some remedial spanish and much walking back and forth in the airport, we finally found our luggage. We went to the taxis, but none of them would be big enough to take our all of our luggage and my bike case. We did find a shuttle van service kiosk so used them. Fortunately, our hotel, the Hi Tech Arturio Soria, was only 10 minutes away from the airport.

The hotel was decent and is called Hi Tech because you get a Dell laptop (running all open source software) in your room with internet access. Cool. I was able to IM my sister in Lanzarote.

For some reason, the big toe on my right foot started to feel a little sore. This was a little odd since i've never had any issue with my toe before.

DW and I needed to get some real food so we went to the front desk to ask for a recommendation. They spoke english, but when she said the name of the restaurant, she said it so quickly we didn't understand. We asked her to repeat it and we still couldn't. I should have asked her to write it down, but we figured we'd wing it and see what we could find.

So, we walked around for awhile and didn't find the restaurant that was recommended and the tapas bars looked a bit intimidating to go into. We wandered back and within a block of our hotel, we saw a restaurant/cervecceria. Nothing in English. DW walked deep into the bar area and saw there was a seated restaurant area here. This must have been the place that was recommended to us, Cerveceria Gambinus or something like that. Fortunately, they had menus available in english.

It's 9:00pm or later or so, but this is typical dinner time for Spain and the restaurant gets busy. There's also a lot of smoking going on in here, something to which I'm not accustomed having lived in California for so long.

We asked the waiter for some recommendations. For starters, we had three - jamon serrano (spanish cured ham), cheese, and lomo (cured pork). We also had a bottle of Propiedad Rioja Riserva. This is a pretty rich start to a meal for me normally and not ideal taper week race food, but I love food and new experiences too much, so I chowed down.

For our entrees, the waiter recommended (via gesticulations and broken english) the lamb (he motioned on his hip to show which part of the lamb) and the fish in Spanish sauce (tomato, pepper based). We also order some artichoke hearts for some veggies.

For dessert, we had a creme brulee type dessert and he brought out some complimentary drinks for us which were similar to a baileys.

We're not back to the hotel until about 11:30am and we have our morning flight tomorrow to Lanzarote.

Saturday, May 17 – T-minus 7 days
In the morning, we have breakfast in the hotel and then take our shuttle to the airport. This flight to Lanzarote is on Spanair. I'm worried about my bike case and whether or not we'll get charged extra for that, but surprisingly, it's not an issue and we breeze through checkin. Once we board, we find out we were placed in business class which was a nice little treat for this flight. As we descent into Lanzarote, it's cool to see the island. It's quite volcanic (lots of rocks), desert (not many trees) island looking, that's for sure, but very cool to see.

At the baggage carousel, I'm the only one retrieving a bike case, so there aren't any other competitors on this flight at least, but then again, we're coming from Spain and it's easy enough for Spaniards to fly down to Lanzarote later in the week.

We grab our luggage and meet up with my sister G and her husband P. We go to the rental car area where I had a Seat Altea reserved (had to rent a Spanish car of course!) so that DW and I would be able to run around the island on our own and big enough to fit bikes in the back so we could do some riding.

We go back to my sister's house, which is a cute little place about 3/4 mile from the beach. I unpack my bike to make sure all is okay.

When I talked to my sister yesterday, she asked what I wanted to eat and I said paella since we were in Spain. She admitted that her paella wasn't very good, but that's okay. It was great for me and I appreciated the effort she made (because lanzarote is a basically a desert island and there are very few crops there, almost everything has to be imported).

We went for a short walk down to the beach/shopping area with the dog. Some pictures here.

Sunday, May 18 – T-minus 6 days
We spent the morning in the market in Teguise (which is different than the town of Costa Teguise where my sister lives) and then driving part of the Ironman course. There were yellow Ironman signs that made the route very clear to follow.

We did some brief sightseeing at Lagomar, which is a house built into the volcanic rock. It was designed by Cesar Manrique, whose influence is present all over the island, and was originally built for Omar Sharif. I have pictures of Lagomar here

DW and I did a short run in the afternoon. We go with my sister and her husband to the airport to pick up my parents and my other sister and her family (great to see my nieces!). They flew to Germany first and were now flying from Hamburg. They, unfortunately, brought a chest cough with them. I'm hoping I can stay healthy enough to avoid catching it.

There were a handful of presumably German triathletes, as evidenced by their bike cases, coming off the plane too. They were all big and very fit looking.

We had dinner back at my sister's house. Had a good feast of lasagna, leek tart, and empanadas.

From the lower left corner - the head of my sister's husband P, my sister T, her husband M, my mom and dad, DW, and my sister G. Not shown, my nieces I and L.

Monday, May 19 – T-minus 5 days
DW and I rented a bike (a Trek 1500) for her from the Bike Station in Costa Teguise so we could ride parts of the course together. I also wanted to buy a floor standing biking pump because the little portable Road Morph I brought doesn't really cut it trying to pump above 100psi. We went to ride the major hilly section we drove the other day. The stretches we rode were from Teguise to Los Valles to Haria, Haria to Mirador del Rio, and Mirador to before Nazaret, which covers approximately miles 55-90 on the bike course.

Hills weren't super steep like we've ridding many times in San Francisco, but they were fairly extended and it was very windy. The roads were generally in good condition. There were a couple short sections that required climbing out of the saddle, but that was it.
After we reached the top, I went ahead since DW likes to take the descents very carefully. The descent down to Haria from Los Valles was pretty scary. There are some tight blind turns, but what was scarier was the winds. I geared out and would be in the aero bars, but in one direction (when the road was facing away from Haria, the gusts were very tricky and it almost whipped the handlebars/my front wheel away from me. At 35+ mph, that is quite alarming so the stretches facing away from Haria, i rode the bullhorns and towards Haria, I was okay on the aerobars.

Picture below of Haria and a short section of the winding descending road to get there.

I waited up for DW in town at a little cafe. There was a group of 6 other triathletes all dressed in their light blue team kit already kicking back. DW arrived and we used the bathrooms and had a soda. Several other triathletes riding the course passed by during this time. The guys in blue took off again and a little while afterward, we did too.

We continued on with the climb to Mirador del Rio. As you reach Mirador, you get a great view of one of the neighboring islands.

View from Mirador del Rio

The descent back down from Mirador had a very rough stretch of road initially, but afterward was very smooth for a long descent. This section of the race would undoubtedly be very fast and a good chance to recover with most of the climbing behind. The last bit of our ride today had a 3K climb up to Nazaret which was particularly nasty because of a very strong headwind.

In the evening, we met back up with the rest of my family for dinner. My sister had cooked some leg of lamb for us. Yum.

Picture of my sister G and her husband P

Tuesday, May 20 – T-minus 4 days
DW and I went out to bike another section of the course. We started in Uga and rode to Yaiza and then down to do the loop near El Golfo and Timanfaya and then on to Tinajo which covers approximately miles 12 through 37 on the course. Timanfaya is the national park with Los Montanas del Fuego (fire mountains).

The section down to El Golfo took us near the coast. Nice downhill with a tailwind (which meant return trip of uphill with a headwind...). Plenty of volcanic rock here.

Pictures of DW riding on loop near El Golfo

We returned back to Yaiza on the return loop and then headed out on the stretch to Timanfaya. This is a climb up with some strong headwinds. many other triathletes riding this direction and some flying by in the other direction.

Picture of DW at the entrance to Timanfaya

The road headed up to Timanfaya

Once you get up near the top, the road between the peaks becomes a big wind tunnel so there are strong headwinds here

We rode down the other side, paused for awhile at the road that heads up to the Visitor Center, and then continued on to Tinajo (all of which was still part of the course). We took a rest at Tinajo and had some coffee. And then turned around and headed back to Uga.

After we get back, I go for a short run (3 miles) and then DW head down to the Villa where my parents and T and all are staying. There's a pool here so I take a quick dip.

In the evening, we had dinner out at a Spanish restaurant in Teguise. It's a big production for all of us (8 adults, 2 kids). We went relatively early (7:00pm) and by Spanish standards, this was very early and we were the only ones in the restaurant for the next couple hours. We started to each order starters and entrees. G and P were the last to order and the waiter told them that we had already ordered a lot of food so she didn't order any starters. When 6 starters came out, they were not small. We all shared so we all tried everything.


Pulpo (octopus). This picture also shows the salted potatoes which are one of the very few crops grown on Lanzarote. They go great with the mojo sauce shown in another picture below.

Mojo sauces (foreground), peppers (blurred in background)

After the starters, none of us were "hungry" although we weren't yet full full. That would be cured once the entrees came out. One of the specials they had was ox, so I had to try that (nice light, pre-race fare, huh?). We all try to order different things so we can all try each others food so we all get plenty to eat.

DW's filet mignon (left) and my ox steak (right)

More entrees

Salted prawns

Even though we were stuffed, we ordered dessert, because that had a Lanzarote specialty - bienmesabe, which translates into "tasty to me" and is a pudding/ice cream made up of honey, almond cream, eggs, and rum, topped with a nutty sweet sauce.

Another late night for me. Going to need to start focusing on getting to bed at an earlier hour.

Wednesday, May 21 – T-minus 3 days
I wake up and I can feel the congestion in my ears, which is the first sign for me that I'm coming down with a cold. Ugh. Probably the one that T and M brought from Germany. It's been pretty impossible to avoid sharing germs since we're all playing with the baby. My folks give me some antibiotics (they're both retired doctors and have a full stash).

Worse, my toe is feeling worse. It's more swollen and I'm it's painful to put pressure on it so I'm limping around to compensate. No more running for me this week. I'm hoping my triathlon doesn't become a duathlon or just a swim...

DW decided to do a little sightseeing instead. She really wanted to see the Cesar Manrique house. Cesar Manrique was a local artist who had much influence to insure that the way things were built out on the island were integrated into the landscape. His home very much embodies this. Some pictures are avaialable here.

DW and I also then went down to Arrecife to check out the town and do some shopping. Some pictures around town here.

We had lunch in cafe just off of Calle Real. DW had the octopus in vinegar and I had a prawn sandwich which had the prawns with boiled egg, a mayo kinda of sauce, and white bread (ugh).

Afterward, we headed over to Club La Santa where registration was located. This also gave us a chance to drive other sections of the course that we hadn't yet seen such as Tinajo to La Santa, La Santa to Farmara, Farmara to Teguise which approximately covers miles 37-54 of the bike course.

At registration, we get our chip and ironman bag filled with all kinds of stuff. Race stuff included our numbers, caps, laminated number for my bike, race instructions and program, and warm up and transition bags. We also received an IM Lanzarote towel and mug and stickers, and Puerto del Carmen (the town where the race is held) t-shirt and cap,

They also had a little store, of course, to buy other ironman stuff. I bought an IM Lanzarote cycling jersey. Good thing I tried it on before buying because I actually had to buy an extra small! in fact, according to the weight chart, XS was for 136lb up and I was even below that. I'm a shrimp. I wanted to buy a tri top, but they didn't have any at this ad hoc store, but had some in the sports shop of the club, which of course, wasn't open until later, but would be open all day tomorrow when we were back for the race briefing. The race expo was medium sized, but I didn't have anything that I really needed to buy.

As we were passing through La Santa earlier, i saw a bike shop, so we stopped off here to buy a bike pump. Gee, only 30 euros (approx $45) - such a bargain, but didn't have much choice since I didn't want to rely on whatever pumps were available at the race start (okay, this was the exception and was something I did need to buy).

Back at my sister's house, we had some Filipino BBQ that my parents had prepped the day before. I had mentioned to everyone how I needed to start getting to bed early so we all had dinner early at about 7:00pm.

Thursday, May 22 – T-minus 2 days
Today, my toe is feeling really swollen. i started taking some prednisone and ibuprofen to reduce the swelling, which both seem to help.

For lunch, we're all meeting up at Timanfaya to eat at the restaurant there at the visitor center where they cook the food with volcanic heat. DW go there before everyone so we can take the bus tour to see the park (everyone else has already seen it). All pictures of the tour are here.

A couple other highlights of Timanfaya - there's a hole in the ground here that they throw in dry grass which immediately bursts into flame

One of the guides pours water into a hole in the ground and 5 seconds later, it shoots out as a geyser.

Here's a pit that's part of the foundation of the restaurant! it's just a hole with grill on top and they use this to roast whole pigs!

Here's one of the other grills that they use to cook chickens with the volcanic heat.

We have lunch in the restaurant. I order the sardines for my starter and some local salted fish for my entree. In the U.S., when I eat sardines, they come from a small tin (i.e. they are small).

my sardine starter...

my entree...or what's left of it

After lunch, DW and I need to head back to Club La Santa for the race briefing. There are race briefings being held in english, spanish, german and french. Obviously, we're attending the one in english. I look around the room. I'm pretty sure I'm the shrimpiest guy here. I also only see two other asians (one male and one female).

The race director is the one who gives the race briefing in english along with the aid of a powerpoint presentation most of the information was the same info on the web site and in the race program. There was useful info that he covered though that was not in the race program. First, he showed the bike map with the locations of the bathrooms/WCs on the course. Second, he showed the layout of how transition would work. He mentioned how long the transition area was (300-400 meters!) and how they wouldn't have carpets down because the winds keep blowing them around so he did not recommend using bare feet unless you wanted to burn them. Third, he described the drafting distance. 10m for other cyclists was no surprise (esp. with all the winds), but there was also a 35m draft box for cars. makes sense given how windy the course is. lastly, he explained that on each lap of the run, we'd receive a bracelet for each lap.

After the race briefing, we went to the sport shop and I ended up buying the IM Lanzarote tri top, cycling shorts, and a T-shirt. Gotta love that exchange rate and the high pricing to begin with on ironman gear...

last night, I had read in the race program that if you used medications including an inhaler for asthma, you had to register with the doctor, esp. since if you were randomly selected for drug testing, you would test positive. i tried to find the doctor, but of course, he was out. I also didn't have a note from my doctor (mentioned in the race program) anyway since I didn't know until then that I needed one. Oh well. if worse came to worse, I could provide documentation after that fact that I have a prescription for it.

DW and I headed back to my sister's house. No one else was there. We decided to go for a short easy bike ride. Went fine, although we ended up meeting up with the rest of my family afterwards (while we were still on our bikes) so I ended up doing a lot of walking in my cycling shoes and my toe didn't really appreciate it.

For dinner, my sister made me some pasta. I think everyone else ate cheese, jamon serrano and other meats, and other leftovers. It was an early dinner again for my benefit so that I could get to bed early.

Friday, May 23 – T-minus 1 day
Just one more day to go...DW and I took this time to do some sight seeing. My brother in law, P, had some connections and obtained a free pass from the chamber of commerce for us for all of the island's sights. First, we went to Jameos del Agua which is this underground pool of water which has these albino crabs which were uplifted from deep within the ocean thousands of years ago, but continue to live here. This locale was built out to be integrated with the environment with the influence of Cesar Manrique. Pictures here.

Then we went to Mirador del Rio (not on our bikes!) and went inside. pictures here. We then went to the Jardin de Cactus. Pictures here

The main thing we had to do for the race prep today was to go to Puerto del Carmen for the bike check in and bag drop off. In my T1 bag, I packed a towel, my race belt and number, my sunglasses, my socks, cycling shoes, cycling shorts, 3 gels, and 3 bars (helmet would be with the bike and I was going to forgo gloves). In my T2 bag, I had 3 gels, 1 bar, my day-glo yellow pearl izumi visor, and my running shoes. I wasn't doing a special needs bag. My bike was outfitted with my new profile designs aero bottle (the one with the new lid) and two spare C02 and a tubular on my flatwing. I had the Zipp 606 wheels (404 front, 808 back) on the bike which I bought new for this race and other windy races (way too hilly and windy for a disc wheel here and I thought my 808 front would have been too deep for all the wind).

We drove to Puerto Del Carmen trying to make note of how long and what exists to take to get there. Transition was set up at the west end of Avenida de Las Playas (avenue of the beaches) and extended for quite awhile along the avenue. There was a bike check to check to make sure handlebars were on tight, brakes worked, and a helmet check.

Racks for transition bags were set up like below. After coming out of the water, you're responsible for grabbing your bag and then running to the changing tent. Volunteers would take your bag from you on your way out of the changing tent.

Bike racks were set up as shown below. Because the bikes were spaced out, this meant the transition area was very long - 300m-400m or so just for the bikes! You weren't allowed to keep anything on the ground near your bike. everything had to be in your transition bags or on your bike. There were a lot of different brands of bikes that I've never seen before. Mostly tri bikes, but a good percentage of road bikes. No disc wheels. Two handicap racers, which I believe are the first for this race.

The run up from the beach was also pretty lengthy with a pseudo shower setup in the middle.

I realized my transition times were going to be way longer than usual. I was worried a little bit about all that running, esp. from the beach with no footwear because of my toe.

After all that, we headed to the water spa (also courtesy of free passes from my brother in law) back in Hotel Teguise. My other sisters and M were already there. Then it was back to G's house.

I took a little time to do some last minute race prep. I tape up my toe (hoping for the best) and shave my legs

My brother-in-law, P, wanted to make me a special meal before my race. he made paella negra, which is a black paella which gets its coloring from the squid ink. He also made a regular paella for the non-seafood eaters. i actually ate the leftover pasta my sister made yesterday before I sat down to eat the paella, but the paellas were both quite good so I ate a good amount of both.

By 8:30, we were done with dinner and it was time to go to sleep..

Saturday, May 24 – blastoff
The alarm goes off at 4:30am. We want to be out the door no later than 5:15am. I have some toast with honey, some yogurt with bran/fruit cereal, and a banana. Oh yeah, I have a mug of coffee...have to have my coffee.

I put on my race clothing, my zoot/gu tri top and shorts. In my warmup bag, I have my swim cap, goggles, water bottle, a gel, and my pump. I also have my wetsuit of course. Based on water reports (I actually did not do any swims myself in the water here), I figured I'd be okay without a neoprene cap or earplugs.

DW and I are soon out the door and everyone else will follow about 1/2 an hour behind.

In Puerto del Carmen, we end up having to park about 10 minute walk away. It's dark and everyone is converging at the transition area. I first stop at the bathrooms since I can see the lines are getting long already. After that, I head straight to my bike to pump up my tires. Seems like most of the other racers brought their own pumps as well. Seems like everyone is quite fit. i take off my sweats and put them in my warmup bag and then drop that off.

I put on my wetsuit halfway. It's about 15 minutes from the start so I grab a cup of water, down a gel, and then head down to the beach.

The race director asked us to self seed ourselves based on our swim times. The pros are in front of the green banner right at the water's edge. Behind the green banner are those expected to finish in 65 minutes or less. The "slow" swimmers (race directors word) start behind the yellow banner. I expected to be "slow" based on my IM Cal 70.3 time (35 min) so I lined up behind the yellow banner. I ask someone to help me zip up my suit and we wait for a little bit before the start.

Event warmup:

none for me!
  • 1h 12m 15s
  • 3800 meters
  • 01m 54s / 100 meters

I'm not nervous at the start because I know I've put in the training and am confident in my ability to finish (barring anything out of my control). Plus, the race start seems to come up so suddently and we're off. It's an uneventful start since we have to walk then jog a bit to get to the water.

The washing machine is a little more intense and lasts a bit longer than in other races, but then again, I've never been in a race with a single mass start, but overall it's not as bad as I had feared. I try to draft, but we all still are mixed up with different speeds that it's off and on. i head a bit towards the outside primarily to avoid contact.

The water is perfect - the temperature is Goldilocks like, neither too hot nor too cold, and it's perfectly clear and blue even though the sun is blocked behind clouds. i feel the usual additional resistance on my shoulders from my wetsuit that I don't have when I'm pool swimming. It taks a litle bit to loosen up. I don't bother to sight much - I just keep behind other swimmers. On the return leg of my first lap, I'm getting passed by a bunch of fast people which I can only surmise are the front wave of swimmers lapping me. Otherwise, the first lap is fairly uneventful and I feel quite relaxed.

I come in for the finish of the first lap. It's up onto the beach, run about 15 feet, cross the timing mat, come around and start the second lap. I know there was a clock placed at the timing mat, but I was so in the zone that I didn't even see it so I had no idea what my time was.

On the start of the second lap, I feel pretty relaxed. There are still plenty of other swimmers around me so I should be fine. This lap is uneventful and since I'm warmed up, I feel pretty good on this lap and don't feel like I slowed down much.
Transition 1
  • 10m 49s

It's a relatively long run from the swim exit to the transition area. You can see in the middle in the photo below where the shower setup is. We were told that we can remove our wetsuits here, so that's what I tried to do. Tried would be the operative word because I had a lot of trouble getting it off of my ankles again. There was carpeting here, but it was set on top of sand and was water logged so it was very uneven. I ended up having to sit down (oh the humanity) to get my wetsuit off.

Then I jogged up and DW and some of the rest of my family were there and they snapped this photo below.

After that, it's into the transition area where I run to the racks to grab my bike bag and run into the changing tent. It's pretty crowded here, but not overly so and I'm able to find a place to sit. I put on my sunglasses (prescription sunglasses so I've kept my goggles on until now). I pull on my pair of cycling shorts on top of my tri shorts; I did this with the intent of having quicker transitions in T1 and T2 rather than taking tri shorts off and putting on cycling shorts in T1 and then having to take them off again in T2. Sliding on cycling shorts onto a wet body is definitely not as easy as sliding them onto a dry one.

While I'm putting on my socks, shoes and race belt, one of the volunteers comes by and asks if I want sunscreen. There's cloud cover and I have a solid tan base so I briefly consider not using sunscreen, but she asks again and I say yes. She slaps on sunscreen onto my shoulders and arms. I grab my bars and gels stuff all my swim stuff into my transition bag and hand it to the volunteer on the way out of the changing tent.

First order of business is to use the port-a-potty. I pee for what feels like a long time. I then need to run down the length of transition in my bike shoes to my bike. It seems like a lot of bikes are already gone. in fact in many sections, it seems like all the bikes are gone (well, swimming is the weakest of my three disciplines), but there are other pockets where it seems like few bikes are gone.

After getting my bike, I have to continue running the length of transition (just the bike section is 300-400m long) to get past the start/finish line and to the mount line. As I cross the start line, I see the clock and see that it's 8:23am already and I know my swim was right around what I would have expected.

  • 6h 38m 22s
  • 112 miles
  • 16.87 mile/hr

Here's a link with a preview of most of the IM Lanzarote bike course here . It has all the pictures I took in the week prior to the race.

Bike course elevation profile (note elevation is in meters)

I'm really glad to get on the bike. I've spent so much time on my bike this year and I really enjoy riding. Plus, the roads are generally in excellent condition here on Lanzarote.

As a side note, I ride naked...electronically that is - no watch and not even a bike computer (just haven't found a good wireless one to mount on my P3C). I ride by RPE. I did see quite a few other competitors with mini-laminated copies of the bike profile taped to their stem which seemed like that could be useful, but I knew the course layout pretty well having already ridden the major hill sections and driven 90% of it.

Puerto del Carmen to Yaiza
At the start, we're all bunched up and winding around through town. There's a lot of jockeying for position and fortunately, I'm passing more than I'm being passed. This especially seems true on downhills, flat, and mild uphill sections where I can be in full aero (on the bigger uphills, there are plenty who have more strength than I do). Maybe because I'm smaller than most and because I have a very aero bike, but I seem to be able to duck under the wind better than most, so at least that'll be one advantage I'll have today. It's not long before we're out of Puerto del Carmen and have some winds with which to contend.

I keep looking at people's bib's to see where they are from. Lots of ESP, GER, GBR, and some BEL. I finally pass a woman, the asian woman I saw in the race briefing the other day, who is wearing an LA Tri top. I say hi to her and mention that I'm from San Francisco as I pass.

At around mile 9, I start the first sustained uphill with wind (you can see the start of this climb in the picture above) on the climb up to Yaiza. Legs are feeling strong, but it's still very early. I don't want to toast my legs early and pay for it later. It can be hard not to get wrapped up into the race though as others pass. I pass quite a few, but quite a few pass me as well. I wonder if they are working hard or if that is their endurance pace/effort. There's always someone faster and part of the trick is to have the discipline to race your own race and not someone else's.

Along this climb, I see a guy ahead in a Hammer Nutrition kit. He's riding a Giant TCR. As I pass him, I see that he's from the U.S. I say hi as I go by and I also see that we're in the same AG.

El Golfo loop
After Yaiza, there's a stretch that goes downhill to the coast near El Golfo. This is a fun fast section. Since I can go aero, I get to pass quite a few others at high speed, esp. those on road bikes. There's also a bit on this loop section where we see others who are already on their return from the loop. Damn, all those riders look pretty serious and hardcore.

I take some time to get some solid food in me. There's more headwind, of course. At some point on this loop, I pass a woman from GBR with a pink top. I slowly creep up on a couple others, but am also passed by quite a few. The loop heads back. Some climbing, some descending. Then I'm back on the stretch of the road that I was on earlier, but I'm now headed back in the other direction. There are still a few cyclists who are still headed out on the loop. It's not a generous thought, but I'm thankful that I'm not it's not me still just heading out on the loop.

Timanfaya to Tinajo to La Santa
Now, it's the hilly, windy ride up to Timanfaya.

There are a lot of cyclists strung out along this section. Most everyone tries to avoid drafting, but it's tough going uphill into the wind. There 's also traffic on the road and no real shoulder so cars get caught in in between packs of riders.

At some point, the woman with the pink top catches up and passes me as well as a guy in a red top with the first name Rob. The three of us jockey back and forth on the climb for awhile, but Bob doesn't seem to like when I pass and he quickly repasses me (technically, this would be blocking, but slowing down to drop back 10m is pretty hard to do when everyone is semi-bunched up because you'd end up constantly dropping back behind other riders). I settle behind Rob (and we've both passed the woman in the pink top), which is okay by me.

Once we get near the top though and it starts to begin to level off, I can get back into aero and I take off and pass Rob (for good). This stretch is especially windy because the road is between the two peaks and it funnels
all the wind through here, so being in aero is a big plus.

We're starting the descent and I can't quite get past a guy so I back off. An official passes me on a motorcycle and gestures to me with his hands to keep a bigger distance from the cyclist ahead of me so I brake a little to back off. One we get back down onto the flats, I can crank and start reeling in more cyclists. This continues onto Tinajo and then the descent down to La Santa. There's a little traffic in Tinajo and it's a little hairy actually having to pass the cars on the downhill since they are going to slowly.

There is an extended descent down to La Santa, which is pretty scary because of the winds. I pass a lot of people because I'm brave/foolish enough to ride in aero with all the wind gusts (a lot of folks with aerobars aren't riding in them). I make good time down to La Santa. There are 4 speed bumps here so I slow down and ride the bullhorns when I go over them, but I still hit them fairly fast and hard...good thing I don't have to worry about pinch flats with tubulars...

From the town of La Santa, it's not far to get to the part where Club La Santa is located. From here, we turn off and head a little more eastward to go to Soo and then Farmara.

My stomach is feeling a little unsettled. I'm not sure what it wants so I switch to water only at the aid stations.

La Santa to Farmara
I've been alternating between water bottles and Powerade at the aid stations, but I haven't stopped to go pee. I kinda have to go, but it's not bad. I hope that doesn't mean I'm dehydrated. Beside, I haven't actually even seen the porta-potties at the aid stations, but I have seen people pulled over to the side of the road to relieve themselves. It's a bit of uphill to get to the town of Soo, but after that, it's a fun downhill blast to Farmara.

The town of Soo

The road down to Farmara

The ride on the roads is a real blast. The roads are immaculate, there is a slight downhill, it's scenic (not that I'm looking at that much), and I get to fly on my bike. It feels great and I'm passing several people on this stretch.

At some point, I'm aware that my toe is hurting. At later points in the race, it will feel like I stubbed it and it's just throbbing. Nothing to do but live with it. My cycling stroke seems okay so I'm not too worried.

At the aid station in town, I actually see a porta-potty (there are only a couple of them) and it's located after the aid station which is why I never saw them at the other aid stations. i only noticed this one because there was someone coming out of one. I don't really feel like I have to go to much and I have the race fever in me so I just keep going.

Farmara to Teguise
After Famara, this section takes us up to Teguise and it's about 1000' of climbing involved. It starts out pretty mild.

but gets steeper as we approach Teguise.

Plus, there's more headwinds. I do see one competitor on the side of the road sitting as though he's done for the day. It continues to get steeper as we get into town. I need to get out of the saddle for the first time, but it's a good chance to use some different muscles. It's been about 1000' of climbing since Farmara and I know there is a 1000' of climbing ahead still on the way to Las Valles.

In Teguise, I go through a roundabout and I'm very pleasantly surprised to find DW is here. She cheers me on and snaps some photos as I pass someone through the roundabout.

Teguise to Los Valles to Haria
It's more climbing on the way out of Teguise. A bit past Teguise, I see that they've closed the road to car traffic so it's good to know we have the roads to ourselves. I'm jockeying back and forth with a few riders. I'm also passing some, but it seems like I'm being passed by more. A lot of strong riders in this race.

There's a hairpin turn that climbs upward that requires me to get out of the saddle for the second time.

Gee, windmills along the course can only mean one thing...lots of wind!

It is really windy along this ridgetop. I'm just cranking in my lowest gear and occasionally getting out of the saddle. We're all suffering here. It's moments like this that make the concept of "racing" this course seem preposterous when survival is all I'm for which I'm looking. As I finally near the top, there's a small group cheering all of us on (in spanish).

As I ride up to the Los Valles aid station the volunteers call out race numbers because this is where they have everyone's special needs bags. There's more than a dozen of the riders stopped here enjoying what they had provided for themselves. I didn't feel the need for a special needs bag so I just ride on and begin the descent down to Haria.

From the recon ride DW and I did earlier in the week, I knew this would be windy and quite tracherous in one direction and that some of the turns were quite technical (not to mention blind). It's good to know that this section is closed to cars or this would be incredibly dangerous.

I guess I'm crazier than most because I'm in aero pedaling as fast as I can while others are coasting and I think riding their brakes. I pas a lot of people very quickly on this downhill and I don't see anyone else riding in aero. In a way, having a relatively light bike and light wheels is somehow less confidence inspiring on a banzai descent, esp. with crazy winds.

Haria to Mirador del Rio
As I head out of Haria, it's more climbing.

which is eventually followed by some descending into Maguez

which is followed by more climbing. There are some locals seated along the way cheering us on.

Then we have a longish stretch that takes us closer to the coast and eventually Mirador del Rio. Somewhere along the way, the outside of my right knee starts to bother me. I've never had pain like this before so I can only guess that my biomechanics have been a bit off because of my toe problem and it's causing problems up at my knee. I take some ibuprofen and hope that's all I need.

The views of the neighboring islands are beautiful, but I'm not spending much time enjoying them.

There's an aid station and Mirador del Rio. This also means I'm at about the 120K/75 mile mark and most of the heavy climbing and headwinds are behind me and I can now enjoy a long descent.

Mirador to before Nazaret
The descent immediately out of Mirador del Rio has some very rough road.

We make a left onto LZ-201 and the road is now very smooth with an extended speedy descent. To the right, are vineyards, but unlike vineyards here in California. Because of the winds, each vine plant has a little wall of lava rock built around it to protect it from the wind.

I'm passing a few people on this descent, but I catch up to a guy who descends at about the same speed as I do, so I decide to hang behind him for the rest of the descent. There are some turns, but there are long stretches of straight fast descent on very smooth roads. I'm geared out for most of this descent so it's great to have a bit of a break on my legs.

Once we finish the descent, there's plenty of work left to do. The next stretch is deceiving because it looks pretty flat, but there's it is a gradual climb. We're along one of the main roads that has a good amount of traffic. The road is wider though so we don't need to encroach too much in the road. I'm passed by a few and pass a few along this longish stretch.

At this point, my crotch is feeling a bit sore despite wearing tri shorts and cycling shorts. I'm starting to have thoughts of "get me off this bike" already. My legs have done a lot already and I'm already watching for the course mileage (or in this case kilometer) signs and starting the long count up to 180K (again, I have no bike computer on my bike).

One of the wind ornaments at one of the roundabouts along the way.

At one point, I pass a couple riders. A guy has his hand on the back of a woman rider (not sure if he's pushing her or not). She's in the race (as evidenced by her race bib and bike number), but he doesn't appear to be so I assume he's there giving her some moral support.

At one point, there just a little bit of mist/sprinkle coming down. The sun has generally been mercifully obscured by clouds for most of the race. Speaking of sprinkles, every so often, there are guys pulled off to the side taking a leak. I kinda have to go (still haven't gone yet at all this ride) and I keep thinking I'll pull off if I see some place convenient to do so, but I never find one convenient enough so I keep going.

Eventually, we make a turn northward towards Nazaret. It's a nasty 3K stretch with a climb into a headwind fairly late into the race. I get passed by a bunch of people and passed by a few. I know it's only 3K, but it feels much, much longer. Eventually, I get to the turnoff and I can enjoy a little bit of descending.

I was, of course, hoping for a tailwind, but it's more of a side and sometimes head wind. This stretch of road is also extremely rough so I'm not in aero most of the time and I'm just slugging it out. I'm counting the miles looking forward to each race distance marker.

Soon, we get to a stretch that I didn't really preview with a ride or a drive (or any of the rest of the course to the finish from here). That makes it just a bit tougher mentally since I'm not sure what to expect. I know from the elevation profile that there is more climbing, but it's all so abstract on a piece of paper (or web page). I had been focused on all the big climbs in the first 90 miles. The climbs at this point in the race were consequently a little bit of a surprise and all the more taxing. Physically, I was relatively well prepared, but these miles just dragged on for me. Thankfully, I could rely on my legs to just do what they had to do, but I waited for every distance marker to come up and would keep calculating (from kilometers to miles) how much distance I had left to the finish line.

Finally, finally, finally, I'm at about 15K out and it's mostly just a descent back to Puerto Del Carmen. I pass some folks and end up behind a guy who descends at about the same speed as I do. I want to pass him, but it's not worth it so i just hang back behind him for the rest of the descent.

Along the way, maybe 5K or 10K still from the finish, I see a guy who is walking his bike. Ugh. We continue winding our way down and soon enough we're in Puerto del Carmen on the same road we were on so long ago this morning on the way out for the bike ride. This stretch takes us alongside part of the run route and there already a lot of runners going. There are crowds here so it's nice to get some cheers. There are some small hills which feel magnified in elevation by the 110+ miles my legs have already biked. I see the bike finish line, but first, there's the dismount.
Transition 2
  • 08m 31s

I'm off my bike and I have to run for quite a ways (again, the bike transition area is 300m-400m long) until a volunteer tells me I'm in the right area. They take my bike from me and then I continue running onward to the transition bag area at the far end of the transition area. I'm still in my bike shoes and that's not working so well so I take them off and run in my socks. I'm thankful that my toe isn't giving me a lot of pain.

I grab my transition bag and head into the changing tent. This is a much easier transition, of course. Off with the bike shorts and helmet. on with the running shoes and visor. I grab my gels and one bar. I give my transition bag to the volunteer and I'm out of the changing tent.

I need to take a stop at the porta-potty. I pee for what seems like quite a long time. I'm surprised I had that much pee in me since I didn't feel very uncomfortable on the bike. Either way, it's a great relief to relieve myself.

Now it's a run down the length of transition again to the run start. As I pass the run start, I see the race clock and it says 15:10 or 3:10pm.
  • 4h 18m 14s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 09m 52s  min/mile

Lap 1 of 4
For the first part of the run, my legs don't feel too bad. My quads are definitely fatigued/sore though, which my experience from past races when I've toasted my quads are that a long, trudging run are ahead. Still, I'm hopeful though that my training will pull me through okay.

My right knee has some pain from the bike. No sure what I can do about that, but I'll take some more ibuprofen eventually.

There are many runners already here on the course some going out and some coming back. I can see how far along they are by how many bracelets they are wearing. Some have one. Some have two. I eventually spy some that have three already.

There are a lot of crowds here which is exciting. The first aid station comes up very quickly. This is also the special needs station, but I didn't have any. I grab some water and drink that. I grab some sponges and squeeze one onto my head and one onto my back.

The run continues on the road along the beach. Usually, the run is my strength, but I'm not feeling particularly strong. I'm passing some, but I'm amazed at how fast so many others are. I suppose this is partially because it is a four loop course so everyone sees everyone. You can often tell what lap someone is on by their pace - in general, the ones running faster are the ones further along.

I hit the next aid station (2k later) and have some powerade. 2k later, it' the next aid station and I have some water. For many stretches of the course, I'm only running a couple feet away from spectators. It's nice having race bibs with names on it because the crowd cheers you on with your name.

Eventually, I get to the first turnaround point. There's a race clock here and the time is 15:38 almost 15:40. Hey, not bad. I'd be ecstatic if I could do a 4 hour run, but it all depends on whether or not my legs get faster as I loosen up or the fatigue from the bike overtakes them.

Not too long after the turnaround point, I see the other american guy I saw on the bike segment who was wearing the hammer nutrition jersey. I know I can only run my own race, but I sure hope I can stay ahead of him. I later see the woman with the pink jersey (looking strong) as well as the LA tri woman too (not so strong).

Halfway back on the first lap, I finally see where some of the porta-potties are located, which is good because i have to pee. But it's on the other side of the course so I'll catch it on my next lap. The placement of the porta-potties made them hard to find since they weren't co-located with the aid stations. Also, there were typically only 3 porta-potties and they were just a bit off to the side of the course, so they weren't immediately obvious.

One of the aid stations

I coming in from my first lap but one of the pros (I think it was the number 2 finisher) or someone is coming up on me so that everyone is following him and cheering him so I get lost in all and i can't see or hear if any of my family is out here.

I receive my first bracelet and those of us still doing laps are directed down and around (whereas those finishing are directed straight through to the finish line). I see the race clock and it's 16:09, which meant I almost exactly a 1 hour first lap. So far so good.

Lap 2 of 4
On my way out for lap 2, I see DW and she cheers me on and it feels good to know she's out here. I don't see the rest of my family so I'm guessing they decided to come later because of the kids (but as it turns out, they were all there and they were chowing down in a cafe and missed me).

A bit further along the run, I see Hammer Nutrition guy, but I still have a decent cushion on him. I alternate water and powerade at each station. I finally get to the bathrooms and take a nice long pee.

As I get near the turn around point, there is a big screen here showing the finish line and some speakers playing what the announcer says. I can hear him announcing ironman finishers names. I hit the turnaround and the clock shows me that it took me about 33 minutes for this one length; okay, I took a pee break, but I definitely slipped from the first lap.

On the return, I start taking in bananas at the aid stations in addition to the water/powerade and sponges.

I also find another set of bathrooms that are earlier in the loop (but it's on the other side too) which is good since with all the liquids I'm taking in, I know I'm going to have to go again soon.

As I'm nearing the end of my second lap (actually about half a kilometer out), DW and my family are there cheering me on.

My cheering section. The T-shirts on my nieces say "Equipo Donato" (Team Donato).

I get my next bracelet and see the race clock, 17:15, so another 33 minute length. No way I'm running a sub 4 hour mary this time so the rest of the race is damage control to keep from slipping too much.

Lap 3 of 4
I'm starting to walk the aid stations, but DW and my family are there just past the first one cheering me so I get a little extra boost from that and I'm running again.

I go to the earlier set of bathrooms I found and continue onward. The woman in pink passes me and motors on.

I'm looking at people's arms to see how many bracelets they have. I'm impressed with those that have 2 or 3 of them already. I know it's not a generous though, but when I see folks with only 1 or even no bracelets, I'm thankful that it's not me and that I only have this and one more lap to do.

At the turnaround, I see it's 17:49 (34 minute length) so I've slowed again. A couple minutes after the turnaround, I see Hammer Nutrition guy. He's definitely gaining on me.

At each aid station, it's more water or powerade and sponges. Bananas when I can get them. One aid station has some mini-pretzel sticks so I take some of those (mmmm...salt).

There are still individual riders coming in on the bike ride (getting close to cutoff) and they get a full escort and are treated by cheers from the crowd.

As approach the end of lap 3, my family is there cheering.

DW runs along side with me for a bit. She asks how I'm doing and I tell her "Tired!" She tells me that she's going to run through the finish with me (the race director had announced at the briefing that this was allowed). Cool.

Bracelet number three, my last. I go through the turnaround and head back out. The race clock read almost 18:22, a 33 minute length.

Final lap!
When I go out for the final lap, I know I have just over 10K to go, but I know that it's this last 10K that's going to trash my quads.

I'm walking through the first aid station, but my family is just beyond the aid station cheering me on so I get a boost of energy and start running again.

On the way out, it's another trip to the porta-potties. My legs are fatigued so I just put zone out and let me subconcious keep my legs on autopilot.

There are a fair number of people walking. Now when I see other competitors and how many bracelets they have, I have a lot of compassion for them and for those that follow. Ironman racing is a humbling sport and I think how much more of the race they have ahead of them and I'm humbled by their effort and sticktoitiveness (yes, that's a real word).

At the turnaround, it's 18:56, a 34+ minute length, so I've slowed again. Not too long after the turnaround, I see Hammer Nutrition guy. He can't be more than a few minutes behind me. He's closing, but I think I have enough of a lead to stay ahead of him.

Trudge, trudge, trudge. The crowds have thinned somewhat and it's cooler. At the aid station, I get some water and some sponges. I skip the next aid station knowing that the fluids won't do me any good anyway for the rest of the race. I'm approaching the final aid station, which is where my family is and they cheer me on.

I come up on the last hill and DW is there and she begins running with me. She has a U.S. flag which she unfurls and we run with it together. I pick up the pace a bit.

I can hear the announcer say something about us and the flag and they read off my number and call out me name. I can see just beyond the line that there is a wall of photographers in front of us. We cross the line together and I feel happy and relieved to be done.

Race Results
AG: 147/275
OA: 560/1300?
Swim: 01:12:15
T1: 10:49
Bike: 06:38:22
T2: 08:31
Run: 04:19:14
Total: 12:29:08
Post race
Warm down:

At the finish, the direct me and DW to the side. The race director is there and he is congratulating me and giving me my finisher's medal (how cool is that).

The take us aside again for a post-race photo with me and my wife (not sure what photo company did this since I haven't seen this photo yet). My dad also managed to sneak in past the finish and took some of the photos of us at the finish. DW and I walk on to go find some post-race food.

There is a long stretch of medical tents with plenty of people in cots covered in blankets. We find it and there's a decent spread. There's paella, pasta salad, potatoes, some beef, some meatballs and some beans for warm food. There's also ice cream, coffee, hot chocolate, juices, soda, water and draft beer.

I turn in my chip and they return our 25 euro deposit on the chip and give us a small goodie bag including a nice collared (polo shirt style) finisher's shirt. They also give me a printout of my race times with all the splits.

We head back towards my bike and the rest of my family is waiting on the other side of the fence. They have a triathlon medal to give me that they had engraved with my name, the date, and the race.

I grab my bike and my transition bags and we head back to my sister's house. Back at the house, it's time for more food (so many leftovers from earlier in the week). I can't sleep after dinner yet though, because we need to pack (including my bike!) for tomorrow morning since we have a 6am flight to catch to Hamburg! Several times through the course of the evening, I say to someone to think about the competitors who are still out on the course and what an incredible effort and accomplishment that is.

This was an incredibly tough race and a very competitive one. All ironman distance races seem better appreciated after they are done. I don't fear doing another ironman race (I have IM Moo later this year), but I'll definitely say I have a healthy respect for this one. Would I do this one again...maybe someday...I can't think about that just yet...I'll get back to you on that one...

What did really make this race worth it was that my family was there, which was the first time they've seen me race. I was glad that they were there to support me, but I was also glad that they were able to experience the event and see and appreciate what it takes for athletes to complete one of these races. For those of you who have family who cheer you one, consider yourself very fortunate. For those of you that don't normally, I highly recommend scheduling an event so that your family can cheer you on.

After reflecting back on my race performance, there are some things I wish I had done better on, but in the end, I'm happy with my performance (I finished almost exactly as I had predicted). I had a solid MOP finish for a tough race with a tough group of competitors. I'm in awe of the group of fellow triathletes that were here. I'm in awe of those who stuck it out until midnight and even more so for those who continued beyond that.

I am the same person I was before the race, but I do feel a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment in my finish and I'm thankful that I could share the experience with my family and with all of you who read this.

Last updated: 2007-08-21 12:00 AM
01:12:15 | 3800 meters | 01m 54s / 100meters
Age Group: 205/275
Overall: 275/1300
Course: Mass beach start. Self seeded in 3 groups - pros, under 65 minute, over 65 minute. 2 loop course. After first loop, you run up onto the beach, past the timer and back into the water for the second loop.
Start type: Run Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current: Low
200M Perf. Remainder:
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 10:49
Performance: Bad
Cap removal: Bad Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
06:38:22 | 112 miles | 16.87 mile/hr
Age Group: 171/275
Overall: 275/1300
Wind: Strong with gusts
Course: The athletes go around the whole island of Lanzarote through Mountains and Lava fields. They start from the transition area in Puerto del Carmen, Puerto Calero, Uga, Yaiza, El Golfo, back to Yaiza, Firemountains (Timanfaya), Mancha Blanca, Tinajo, La Santa, Soo, Famara, Teguise, Mirador de Haria, Haria, Mirador del Rio, Arrieta, Mala, Tahiche towards the centre of the island, the Monumento al Campesino, Masdache, La Geria, Tegoyo, Conil, Tias, under the main road LZ 2 Airport road, then right down hill of the old donkey road Camino Hoja Limpio, out to the roundabout at Mundilanza and follow the road to Rancho Texas and in to Puerto del Carmen and back to the transition and finish area.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 08:31
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
04:18:14 | 26.2 miles | 09m 52s  min/mile
Age Group: 152/275
Overall: 275/1300
Course: The run course is made of 4 X 10 km loops along the coast of Puerto del Carmen, the turn point being close to the Beatriz Playa Hotel. After each loop, the athletes receive a bracelet. The course is fairly flat with a few small hills.
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]

2008-06-08 7:33 PM

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San Francisco
Subject: Ironman Lanzarote

2008-06-08 9:11 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Springfield, MO
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

Whew, that was long, but I liked it.  Good Job!

2008-06-08 9:37 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Douglas County
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

What a journey....thanks for sharing!  With all the photos, I almost felt like I took a vacation right here at my computer.  Great job!

2008-06-08 9:52 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
That has to be one of the best (if not THE best) RR I have ever read on here. Great job on the race, I have always wanted to do that one and now I feel like I have been there.
2008-06-08 9:55 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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scottsdale, az
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
That was so cool!! SOme of the food pictures made me cringe, but WOW! What a journey! You just look like you have so much fun during Ironman competitions!!! I hope my 1st is that "fun"!!!
2008-06-09 12:33 AM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Great race report and congratulations on a solid finish, well done!!!

2008-06-09 11:17 AM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Awesome job on the ironman. Wow! It seems like a tough course. Sounds like a great vacation too Great job on the race report. I enjoyed all the pictures of Lanzarote.
2008-06-09 11:30 AM
in reply to: #1452825

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Atlanta, Georgia
Bronze member
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Wow! What a day..That race has such a wicked reputation but you dealt with everything it threw at you..Nice.

Great RR and congratulations..

2008-06-09 11:45 AM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Great and entertaining race report! Sounds like you're all ready for IMMOO!
2008-06-09 11:54 AM
in reply to: #1452996

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Cycling Guru
Fulton, MD
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

I skimmed it, but it was a superb report and a great way to make it "feel" like we were there with you!!

That's a fantastic time and congrats on the great experience and the great result!!  Love the pictorials!!

(And the food looks awesome being a foodie myself!)

2008-06-09 12:49 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

Great RR, congrats!!!  Thanks for sharing all the pics, it felt like a mini-vacation as I sit here in my office


2008-06-09 2:24 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Great job, Donato! Your RR's are always a highlight... thanks for writing and sharing them with us. Cheers!
2008-06-09 3:05 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Fenton, MI
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

This is the best RR that I have ever read.  Thanks for sharing it!


2008-06-09 3:27 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

When I saw you had your report up, I made a "date" with my PB&J at my desk and your RR for lunch!!

Donato!  Awesome race, super accomplishment and a great race report and vaca guide!  Love all the detail and pics.  Didn't click on on all the picture links but will get to those over the next couple of days.  What a gorgeous place.  Thanks and congrats!!!

2008-06-09 3:53 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Northridge, California
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Terrific race report...thanks for all the effort you put into it!

And congrats on a really outstanding race!
2008-06-09 4:53 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Goodyear, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

What an awesome race report- I have to admit I spent a lot of time looking at your food pictures

Glad you had an all around great time. You are an amazing athlete!  

2008-06-09 4:53 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Madison, MS
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Man oh man...that was awesome!
2008-06-09 5:52 PM
in reply to: #1452825

NorCal, near Lake Tahoe, Ca
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Donato, that was the most amazing race report I've ever read. What a day! Congrats on a great race!
2008-06-09 9:56 PM
in reply to: #1455318

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Extreme Veteran
Tucson, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote


You make it look fun, you make it look easy...  Your smile at the end tells it all.  You owned that race.  And that is what makes a true Ironman!

Be well my friend, Emerson

2008-06-09 10:18 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote



That is the best Race report I haven't read!  I only had time to look at the pictures and read the picture captions...will have to come back to read the race details.

 I really enjoyed all the food pictures and haven't figured out why you don't weigh 300 LBS.   I loved the picture of you passing michael Jordan with his tongue hanging out, you and DW in the finishing chute & of course all of those food pictures.  The one of the other island was cool too.  

 So cool your whole family could enjoy the week, island and race with you!  

 Will read the report when I have an open afternoon

2008-06-10 1:34 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Dodge County, MN (out in the corn)
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

D- I *love* your race reports!  What a tough race!  Nice job getting it done.  The pics are great.  I hope I'm still smiling like that at the end of my oly this month.  Hope you're enjoying your recovery week(s).


2008-06-10 4:23 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Modesto, California
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

Another epic RR. Wow, allot of food,you guys did well in that department.

Great race Donato, I'm sure it must have been difficult with all of the traveling and logistics, way to stomp it!

2008-06-10 8:20 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Berkeley, Calif.
Bronze member
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Well done, Donato! A fantastic race, and a wonderful report. (I did skim through most of the pre-race days, but I read the entire race-day report.) The photos are incredible.
2008-06-10 8:26 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Mishicot, Wisconsin
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote
Wow... that was an amazing race, you are amazing and that was one long race report!!  Congrats on a great race.  I look forward to seeing you in DCT!
2008-06-10 9:38 PM
in reply to: #1452825

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Melon Presser
Subject: RE: Ironman Lanzarote

Duuuuude. WORD, NERD. All hail the Great Donato!!!

Wow, I think it took me as long to read your RR as it took for you to do the race Thanks for all the awesome pictures. They really made it. The action shots are great but I think my favorite is the one of your family wearing a letter each for DONATO. That made tears come to my eyes.

What an amazing journey and crazy crazy training/races you did to get here, and you did such an incredible job on such a brutal course. You are truly an IRONman. Wow. I aspire to both your greatness and nerdiness.


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