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Ironman 70.3 Boise - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Boise, Idaho
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
68F / 20C
Total Time = 8h 09m 43s
Overall Rank = 1175/1186
Age Group = 45-49
Age Group Rank = 35/46
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 6:30. Had eggs & oatmeal @ 7:30, Gu Chomps at 10:30. Spent the next 6 hours fretting about things I cannot control.

Retrospectively deciding if I shoulda had a Gu before the swim start.
Event warmup:

None. After bike was put into T1 yesterday, was not allowed to be removed.
Hung with the hubster and pretty much had the last teary eyed mental breakdown before entering the swim corral.
  • 53m 37s
  • 2112 yards
  • 02m 32s / 100 yards

Since this was a rectangle, I ballparked each buoy turn to be about 500 yards, for the 2112 total. So I was pretty pleased I was more than halfway to the first buoy before the next wave start went off five minutes later.

I'd never started a race with this many folks so it was a bit interesting with all the jumble of arms and legs and I tried to find a pace and person to follow.

My joy soon dissipated as soon as I made the first turn as the water became increasingly difficult to navigate and the winds picked up. I found myself breaking and treading water, dog paddling forward, breast stroking for a bit to catch my breath! Never done that before in a race!

I just kept saying "Get to the next buoy" but would turn to see just how far away the finish was and a couple times thought "OMG, I might have to bag it."

By the last buoy turn, the home stretch, when they were still doing wave starts, I was overjoyed. Seriously, I thought I'd been out there 90 minutes. Knowing I was gonna make it in under an hour (still not my goal) gave me renewed spirit.
What would you do differently?:

Swim more. Although I feel ok in the water, and all along felt, OK, my last OWS Oly swim was 31 and some change. This is a few hundred longer. It surely shouldn't have taken me some 20 minutes longer! So definitely a tough swim. Maybe I'll train now at the local wave pool :->
Transition 1
  • 04m 50s

Ranked 1150 overall. After the phenomenal, awesome most fun I had in the race of being wetsuit stripped, I decided, heck, it's a long-arse day, I'm not "racing" so I walked to my bike and got my gear. I pretty much planned on a 5 minute T1/T2 anyway.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. If I'd wanted, I coulda ran, but I wasn't per se racing, so conserved a bit of energy and wanted to drop my heartrate down.
  • 3h 54m 43s
  • 56 miles
  • 14.32 mile/hr

The course itself I think is great! There are some hills but nothing a flatlander couldn't handle -- albeit at a turtle's pace.

The first few miles are downhill. Whoo-hoo. Get the heartrate set, start to think about nutrition/hydration and doing my own thing, ignoring the speedsters passing me by.

The first 20 miles I did in 1:20 so was feeling pretty happy.

Till the torrential downpours.

It really began to wear on ya, then followed by headwinds and you could never follow if you'd get the tailwind or not. I was demoralized a good couple times during the race. Especially when I couldn't find the next aid station and my bladder was going to explode.

As the day wore on, I became increasingly frozenized, dreaming of my rain jacket, wondering what exactly happens when you get hypothermia. I noticed my MPH began dropping along with my heartrate. It looked like I was just going to make my 4 hour prediction.

I think I may have an issue of OVER hydration. I get so freaked out with all the admonitions to hydrate that I felt pretty bloated by the run. Especially given the cold/wet temps.

In retrospect, and looking at the absolutely HORRID ActionSports race photos I think I screwed up electrolyte intake vs. water intake. I am SO bloated I look like I'm carrying an extra 10 lbs which led to a bad run.
What would you do differently?:

Need to work on proper hydration / electrolyte intake.
Transition 2
  • 07m 11s

I was so cold, so wet, a bit demoralized by the weather I needed all my mental energy to keep my body in motion to even care about time. Even putting on my dry T2 run socks didn't help because I was so soaked and it was still raining so it didn't really matter.

I was in the beginning stages of a migraine but fig'd I'd tough it out b/c the pain pill s/times makes me sleepy, but I guess I couldn't been any slower than I was :->
What would you do differently?:

I really shouldn't have been faffing about so much with my T2 bag, I probably coulda gotten outta there in my goal time of 5, but again, I just didn't care by this point.
  • 3h 09m 23s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 14m 28s  min/mile

I gave myself 3 hours to do this, and by the end of the first loop, I was pretty spent. I didn't know what to do to make myself feel better. I was so cold, and my hips were a bit sore so even running faster to warm up wasn't an option. All I knew is that even if I *walked* the last loop I'd still make it in while the dude was announcing.

Obviously the second loop I took 11 minutes longer so did walk a substantial portion of it. I was doing things I'd never did in training, eating a banana, chips, pretzels, drinking Coke, anything to cure the bloatedness I felt. The thought of ingesting the Gu I had made me wretch.
What would you do differently?:

Work on my run. I dislike running and need to work on HTFU to make me go faster, well a little faster.
Post race
Warm down:

Hobbled through the finish where they took what most likely is a god awful dreadful picture of me. Picked up my gear and limped back to the hotel with my main fan and took the hottest shower known to mankind and ate some pizza.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

IMHO the BT 20 week beginner plan is OK, but I dislike the RPE format vs. a HR Zone format. This plan could use longer bikes and runs.

It will get you to the finish like it says, but only with strong mental fortitude.

I should have worked harder in training to not have gotten to the finish in such ugly fashion.

Spring/Summer '08 I had an awesome base that I wanted to carry through the fall/winter into this HIM training. But the end of summer thru the end of '08 I was hit with some personal tragedies that limited my ability to mentally put forth the effort to maintain that great base. By January, I had to scale back to a more Beginner plan.

In my perfect world, this woulda happened with me doing the BT 20 week HIM *Silver* plan and I think I woulda been better prepared.

I really felt undertrained for this, BUT I do wonder what my day woulda been like had the bike portion not been so horrid. If I hadn't been cold and wet, who's to say, I mighta hit my goal?

Event comments:

I think the organization and volunteers were top notch. The fan support was great too! For the entry fee, there truly was a great deal of support and direction given the magnitude of putting on a race like this.

My *only* complaint is I think they coulda used a portapotty or two randomly placed on the bike course. You get these tips "oh, if you don't pee by mile 18, you're not drinking enough" but then where do you go? It doesn't even need to be a manned station. You're warned over and over not to use the bushes or what have you but the aid stations were farther apart than I cared for. I was in tears by the last aid station my bladder was so full.

Also a HUGE THUMB'S DOWN to the 2:00 p.m. start. I highly recommend against it, *especially* for a first timer. I thought the time would hamper my physical ability being a morning person but the mental toll it took on me I think contributed to my poor performance.

Last updated: 2009-01-01 12:00 AM
00:53:37 | 2112 yards | 02m 32s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/46
Overall: 984/1186
Performance: Below average
Suit: QR Ultrafull
Course: Clockwise rectangle
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Waves
Water temp: 64F / 18C Current: Medium
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Below average
Breathing: Below average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Below average Navigation: Average
Rounding: Average
Time: 04:50
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Average
03:54:43 | 56 miles | 14.32 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/46
Overall: 1129/1186
Performance: Below average
Wind: Some with gusts
Course: Great course for first timers, some hills, nothing a flatlander can't handle
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Too much
Time: 07:11
Overall: Bad
Riding w/ feet on shoes Bad
Jumping off bike Bad
Running with bike Bad
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Bad
03:09:23 | 13.1 miles | 14m 28s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/46
Overall: 1148/1186
Performance: Bad
First half of half 1:28:20
Course: Paved area / asphalt, parts along the Greenbelt pathway next to the Boise River. Shaded and flat.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5] 2
Good race? Ok
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] 5

2009-06-21 7:00 AM

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Ann Arbor, Michigan
Subject: Ironman 70.3 Boise

2009-06-21 7:51 AM
in reply to: #2231537

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Ferndale, MI
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Andrea, I have seen pictures of that downpour you rode through .  You think you didn't HTFU?!?!?!  You got some bad luck there with the weather and went and did what you needed to do anyway.  Your goal was to finish and you did that in stellar fashion. 

70.3 is tough under great weather conditions.  I give you major kudos for getting this thing done, so let me be the first to give you a WAY TO GO, GIRL! 
2009-06-21 11:14 AM
in reply to: #2231565

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Ann Arbor, Michigan
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Hey thanks gurl!  Funny how we're all so hard on ourselves, or is it just me?  I'm climbing back on the horse though and hope to see y'all out at ILRA!
2009-06-21 11:16 AM
in reply to: #2231537

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Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise

Ditto to what Kimm said above Andrea!!!  I am a pretty fair weather althlete, so, please give yourself some props for doing this HUGE race in the crap weather Mother Nature handed you!

You are a ROCK STAR in my book!

Congratulations again on an awesome job!

2009-06-21 11:28 AM
in reply to: #2231537

Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise

Hey lady!  It must take a lot of guts to keep on going for a freakin half marathon after that bike ride.  You are amazing....I'm very impressed.  Congratulations on sticking with it and finishing.  You should be proud of yourself.

2009-06-21 12:54 PM
in reply to: #2231537

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Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Great job finishing! That was a hard mental race, but you did it anyway. The bike especially was very demoralizing for me as well.

2009-06-21 1:27 PM
in reply to: #2231537

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Ferndale, MI
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Great job finishing! That, in itself, is a wonderful accomplishment.

I used the Beginner plan for Steelhead last year and felt the EXACT same way about it. It got you to the finish, but still painful. This year I was planning on Musselman, but after doing the Silver Intermediate plan for three months I scrapped the race because training was consuming my life. I mean, really, 4.5 hour bike rides on the weekends? So, I think neither one is the perfect plan for me; thus, 70.3 is on hold, perhaps for a time in my life when I have 12 hours a week (plus travel time from Ferndale to Island Lake) to train.

Anyway, just wanted to lend some empaty. I had no idea (at Steelhead) that following a plan would lead to such a painful race. Definitely more bike and run training should be included.

2009-06-21 11:03 PM
in reply to: #2231537

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Pinckney, MI
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise

Good thing we don't judge the accomplishment by the victory photos, or else I wouldn't survive my sprints, let alone any longer races!!  (I currently do NOT take a good racing photo

You are as tough as nails and I'm proud for you, and if you ever need to hear it again, just let me know.
2009-06-21 11:47 PM
in reply to: #2231537

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Silverton, Oregon
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Great job sticking it out and finishing Andrea! It was a tough race and you had some tough issues to deal with, but you got it done!!! I'm proud of you!!!
2009-06-22 8:04 AM
in reply to: #2231537

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
You had a great race no matter what you think of it. The 70.3 distance is brutal and to do it in the weather you did say's a lot about the person you are. You finished it and live to talk about it. I will agree with you on the plan. I felt the same way as I limped along the couse and thought I could have trained better. We all learn a lot about ourselves out there racing and we can improve from it. I am proud for you and of you for this great accomplishment.
2009-06-22 8:54 AM
in reply to: #2231537

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Canton, MI
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Wow...I feel like this was an epic experience!  Congrats on gutting it out in some really tough conditions!

2009-06-22 10:35 AM
in reply to: #2231537

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Ann Arbor, MI
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Awesome job! Congrats on finishing, and overcoming some really tough mental hurdles. You are only stronger for doing the race, and I hope after some reflection, you realize what an amazing accomplishment you've achieved!! Congrats! Way to HTFU in that rain. I would've given up and swam my bike back to T1
2009-06-22 10:45 AM
in reply to: #2231537

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Bellingham, WA
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
Way to go Andrea. You did it!! It was one tough day with the adverse conditions.
2009-06-23 7:45 AM
in reply to: #2233811

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Ann Arbor, Michigan
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
jazz82482 - 2009-06-22 11:35 AM Awesome job! Congrats on finishing, and overcoming some really tough mental hurdles. You are only stronger for doing the race, and I hope after some reflection, you realize what an amazing accomplishment you've achieved!! Congrats! Way to HTFU in that rain. I would've given up and swam my bike back to T1

Thanks, Jazz with numbers :-> but somehow I doubt you woulda swam back to T1.  you kick some serious arse out there.

THanks everyone, I can't remember who said it but truly, you do learn a lot about yourself out there slogging thru one of these.

I need help though-- it's true, I'm thinking about another one!!!!!!!!
2009-07-17 10:48 PM
in reply to: #2236236

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Extreme Veteran
San Jose, CA
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Boise
I'm totally late to comment on this but want to say GREAT JOB. It was not an easy race at all - a really really rough day out there. By the time my wave went out to swim, people were being pulled from the course left and right - I seriously considered bailing on it. The bike ride was utter misery in the rain and wind and most of all the LONELINESS! Congratulations on your finish!
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