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EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Cambridge, Maryland
United States
Columbia Triathlon Association
80F / 27C
Total Time = 6h 46m 26s
Overall Rank = 1347/1504
Age Group = F 25-29
Age Group Rank = 40/44
Pre-race routine:

I won't reiterate it all here as you can get blow by blow in jcnipper's report, but Saturday was a lesson in calmness and love. A broken bike and the threat of 22 weeks of training coming down to a DNS, and a lost wallet made for a non-relaxing start to the weekend. My pre-race meal consisted of cold "pasta bowl" delivered from dominos, sitting at room temp, and eaten at like 10pm when we returned from the police station. Ugh.

The next morning we were up at 5:10. My hair took longer than I anticipated, but it was cute and functional, no?
Event warmup:

We got up and ready, got a gatorade and granola bar from the hotel (which opened up breakfast at 4:30 just to cater to the racers...thanks Holiday Inn Express Cambridge!). The drive to the park was uneventful, but once we got there, I realized being in wave 4, I was going to be very short on time.

I set up transition, grabbed the wetsuit, and J and I headed to the porta potties. There was no TP, as usual, and for the first time ever, we'd forgotten to bring our own roll. Sigh. Fortunately the lines weren't too bad, but I freaked out when I heard something about "silver wave" (mine) being announced across the park. I put on my suit as fast as I could and jogged over there. I took a GU on the way. It turned out the wave before me was in the water, but not started, so I was ok. I got all zipped up and got my good luck kiss from J. Whew. I made it.
  • 43m 28s
  • 2112 yards
  • 02m 04s / 100 yards

I know I'm not a strong swimmer, so really my expectation for this was around a 2:00 pace, not get swam over, and not panic. Well, I accomplished most of that. I now think I could have put in a better effort, but this was only my second race and the first included a panic attack, so I just wanted to do my own thing and get it out of the way. That I did. However, not totally intentionally, I took the bouy's pretty wide left, which kept me out of traffic, but it also reduced my chances of finding someone to draft off, and I probably went a fair bit further than I needed. This was my fastest long swim ever, though, so I really can't complain too much.
What would you do differently?:

Push my limits a little more. I was very comfortable during the swim and wasn't really "racing". I'd also like to find someone to draft off next time.
Transition 1
  • 05m 14s

Again, compared to my almost 10 minute first effort at Columbia, this was blazing fast. I think I just need practice. I was also in the farthest back corner from the bike in/out and am not fast running with my bike, so it was quite a trek to get out in my bike shoes.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. Just practice. The process went ok, I just need to do it faster! Someday I'll learn to put my shoes on while riding.
  • 3h 34m 18s
  • 56 miles
  • 15.68 mile/hr

Again, I was being conservative unnecessarily. When there was no/tail wind, I should have pushed it MUCH harder. My goal was to average above 16mph, because I'd ridden the course over Memorial Day weekend, and did a 3:31. There is no doubt you should be able to race faster, right?? I just didn't bank enough speed in the beginning to make up for the drop when I started going against the wind around mile 30. Oh well. Always a learning experience.

I drank about 2.5 bottles of G-ade and took about 3 gels. I also had a granola bar around half way. For the most part I was on my own during the ride, but would occasionally get passed by boluses (boli?) of each faster age group behind me. Many of the singles that passed me were very friendly and encouraging. Triathletes are very nice in general. :-) I only passed 9 people, but I tried to do the same. I was so happy when J passed me around mile 42 because I knew that his bike was working just fine and he was about on his expected pace.
What would you do differently?:

Push harder in the beginning when there was no wind.
Transition 2
  • 04m 27s

Maybe me feet were swollen, or it was the wet socks or something, but I could not get my feet into my running shoes to save myself. I'm sure it looked pretty funny, but it was really frustrating. I have speed laces and have never had an issue before. Everything else went fine.
What would you do differently?:

Maybe loosen up the speed laces? Not really sure.
  • 2h 19m 7s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 10m 37s  min/mile

I felt really good going into the run. I'm not fast, but I have by far the most experience running, so I was happy to get to the run. They say your run pace should be the same as a stand-alone marathon, so I was estimating a pace of around 11:27. Since starting tri training though, my running has really improved, so I just went with what felt good. I started around a pace of 10:15, and slowed to a 11:21 by the turn-around. At that point though, I knew I was going to be fine, and started pushing it a little more and by mile 11 was back to a 10:20 pace...almost a mirror image of the first half.

My goal had been to walk as little as possible, but only a little at each aid station at the maximum. Mission accomplished! I walked for the first time at mile 4, and only once between 9.5 and the finish. I took ice and either water or g-ade at each water station, and took to pouring some of the cold water on my head/neck, and putting a couple of ice cubes down the front and back of my shirt. I think that really helped me from overheating.

I saw J on his way back, about 8 for him, 5ish for me. I got a smooch, which always makes me feel better. I also had the best friends ever come to watch, and they saw me around miles 1, 2, 11, and the finish. It's great to have your own cheering section. I was also SOOO excited at mile 12 when they had one of my favorite liquids: non-fizzy Sprite. Obviously I'd never practiced with it, but I was a mile from the finish, so eh, whatever makes me happy. I finished strong, and came in more than 10 minutes faster than I'd guessed. Yea!
What would you do differently?:

Not really much of anything. I was pretty happy with my run. I don't really know that I needed the 6 walk breaks between 5.5 and 9.5. Maybe my goal next time should be walking less than every OTHER aid station.
Post race
Warm down:

I located J and my friends and just wandered around a little bit, drinking and eventually getting some food. Mentor Dave found us and I was pleased to tell him I made it without drowning or suffering. Eventually we packed up transition and drove back to the hotel to shower and then go out to dinner with my friends. That was followed by an entire bottle of Sangiria (with apples, so it's healthy) in the hotel. :-)

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Basically inexperience. I didn't want to bonk or crash or whatever, so I was conservative in the beginning. I trained well and am pleased with my race overall.

Event comments:

It's only my second tri ever and my first 70.3, but this one seemed well run. I know there were some complaints from the fast people who started behind me about having to pass slower people like me, and complaints from the slower waves behind me that it was very lonely. I guess there's no perfect situation. The volunteers were good and the aid stations well stocked. I think it was a great race and would recommend it and strongly consider doing it again.

Last updated: 2008-07-22 12:00 AM
00:43:28 | 2112 yards | 02m 04s / 100yards
Age Group: 44/44
Overall: 1393/1504
Performance: Average
Suit: full sleeve F2R
Course: semi-rectangular, clockwise course, in the brackish Choptank river with jellyfish or some other stinging creature
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 76F / 24C Current: Medium
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Bad
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Below average
Time: 05:14
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed:
03:34:18 | 56 miles | 15.68 mile/hr
Age Group: 44/44
Overall: 1588/1504
Performance: Average
Fastest mile = mile 8, 18mph; slowest mile = mile 46, 13 mph Avg HR = 144
Wind: Strong
Course: Loop course through the Blackwater Wildlife Refuge
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks: Just right
Time: 04:27
Overall: Bad
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Below average
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Bad
02:19:07 | 13.1 miles | 10m 37s  min/mile
Age Group: 37/44
Overall: 1094/1504
Performance: Good
Fastest miles = mile 2, 10:17; mile 11, 10:20 Slowest mile = mile 7, 11:21 Avg HR = 165
Course: Non-shaded out and back.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2009-06-18 10:44 AM

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
Oh, and for the ladies with long-ish hair, the pigtail braids worked great!  At least for my hair it was way better than a ponytail. 

Edited by ras26 2009-06-18 10:49 AM

2009-06-18 11:06 AM
in reply to: #2226640

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Olney, MD
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

Great job!!   Whew, what an adventure you guys had the day before!  I like the idea of pigtails instead of a ponytail.  I think I'll give it a try.

Edited by vball03umd 2009-06-18 11:07 AM
2009-06-18 11:49 AM
in reply to: #2226727

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Fulton, MD
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
You did so awesome!  I know how hard you've worked over the last 22 weeks, and think you earned every bit of the satisfaction you got from this race.  :-)
2009-06-18 11:47 PM
in reply to: #2226640

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

Way to go!  Very exciting to read.  It is a great feeling to see you go from not having done anything, to now having done an Ironman 70.3.  That's a fantastic feat.  Obviously you've got guts, dedication, and too stubborn to deviate from the plan. ;-)  You guys rock.

2009-06-19 4:35 PM
in reply to: #2226640

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Arlington, VA
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

Terrific race, and a great RR, too!  This was a terrific effort, especially considering it was only your 2nd tri.  Congrats!

2009-06-19 4:41 PM
in reply to: #2226640

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