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Ironman Louisville - TriathlonFull Ironman


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Louisville, Kentucky
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
75F / 24C
Sunny
Total Time = 13h 04m 41s
Overall Rank = 1347/2435
Age Group = 30-34
Age Group Rank = 176/266
Pre-race routine:

*Note* I wrote this for me. You can skip this section, it's long and probably boring to most of you. There are a few BTers mentioned though. If you want- just skip down to the race sections.

Jeremy and I left Columbus Thursday night after his sons football game. We pulled into my Aunt and uncle's house in Louisville just after midnight. The next morning we woke up and headed down to the practice swim. I ran into DC Bama and Abbie. We chatted for a bit. When J and I got in the water we swam down to the turn around buoy. That took us about 16 minutes. On the way back we messed around. He had always threatened to just grab a hold of my ankles and let me pull him through the IM swim; so we tried it. It didn't work out so well. We swam far to the right of most of the other swimmers where the current was strongest. Even with all the horsing around we did we still made it back to the dock in less than 14 minutes. Goes to show what swimming with the current will do for ya.
We went to get registered for the weekend. I weighed in at 199 lbs and 16.5% BF. I've got some work to do on the weight end of things. As we walked into the registration room we ran into Tammy (tnickerson)! There were big hugs all around! This would be a common occurrence throughout the weekend.
After getting registered we headed over to the Expo and blew some cash on IM merchandise. We ran into Amy Engel and her husband Andy and Jungle Jenn Hatcher. We also ran into Linda, the volunteer coordinator for the finish line. We had met her last year when we worked the finish. We talked for a while and made sure she knew Tammy was working the finish and could be counted on to be helpful wherever she was needed.
Then it was back to my aunt's house for some relaxation time.

At the welcome banquet that night I got to meet a bunch of BTers! Smoke, Brickey, Pegasus and many others. J and I headed back "home" and got a few hours shut eye.

The next morning Jeremy and my wife Alice (ahohl) headed back to the practice swim area to swim again. Alice had a old HS friend doing the race and wanted to meet up with her. That left me with the kids at my aunt"s house. Tim and Karen (my aunt and uncle) made us a great breakfast-waffles, sausage, fruit, coffee, juice. Mmmmmmm. When Alice and J got back J and I headed off to check our stuff into transition. We didn't make it to transition until well after noon. I was worried we'd have to wait in line for an hour or more but when we got there we were led right in. Each athlete was escorted by their own volunteer. We racked our bike, dropped our gear bags off and were escorted through the transition area. The volunteers really made us feel special. I liked the individual attention.

We headed back to my aunts house and met up with J's support crew. My aunt and uncle slaved away for more than 2 hours and prepared a feast for the 11 of us. Chicken Alfredo with noodles, salad and homemade bread from scratch. I offered to help a few times but Karen told me to relax and get ready for tomorrow. I didn't argue. I wish they'd cook for me before all my races. Thanks Tim and Karen!

After dinner J and I left for the hotel. We stayed at the Hyatt, less than 1 block from the finish. I set my morning gear out and crawled into bed. Alice and Judith (J's GF) showed up a few hours later. I didn't sleep much. As I laid awake I tried to keep still and rest as much as possible. An active mind and nervousness does not make for a good night's sleep. The wake up call came in at 5am and we all got up.

Event warmup:

We put our swim gear on and walked the mile or so to the transition area. At the bike exit/entrance we ran into Emerson (ETKnowles) who was once again working security and heading up the bike catchers. We stopped and got a quick pic with him. I filled my tires and then we were off to the swim start. It was close 6:50 when we got to the swim area. The line was really long. We ended up walking for 10 minutes to get in the back of the line. (Next time I do this race I'm going to plop my butt down on the grass by the swim entrance ramp and wait for the back of the line to get to me.) We waited with Johnny Cash (jcash). Johnny, Jeremy and I were probably among the last 20 or so in the water. Once the line started moving, it was really moving. I still had my shoes and shirt on. All at once I had to take them off, grab my cap and goggles and go. I got to the end of the ramp, started my watch and yelled "CANNONBALL" and jumped in.
Swim
  • 1h 22m 43s
  • 4224 yards
  • 01m 58s / 100 yards
Comments:

The channel between Towhead Island and the mainland was packed. I ran into a bunch of people and swam around a bunch more. Once I got to the turn around buoy I went way right of the main pack of swimmers. Like 25-30 yards right This had two advantages: 1.) I didn't have to deal with anyone else swimming in my way. And 2.) the current was stronger out there. I stopped swimming a few times to take in the sights and revel in the fact that I was actually racing an Ironman. I'd pop my head out of the water, look around and be grateful that I'd gotten this far without injury or serious burnout. A few times I'd have to stop and lick my goggles as they were fogging up. A few times I'd catch myself pushing a little too hard and I'd tell myself to hold back, that there was a long day awaiting me. Mostly I'd just try to take steady, even, long strokes.
I got to the stairs and couldn't get my footing. A volunteer put his hand out. I grabbed it, pulled and almost pulled him into the water, so I let go and got out on my own. Tammy was there at the swim exit. She saw me and I got another Tammy hug! I ran off to T1.

What would you do differently?:

Nothing really. I probably stopped too many times to look around.
Transition 1
  • 05m 41s
Comments:

I grabbed my bike gear bag from the volunteer and headed into the changing tent. Another volunteer came up to me and asked me if I needed help. I said sure and asked him his name, it was Mike. Mike got my jersey ready for me and handed me my HRM strap, gloves, etc. Then he put my race belt around my waist and gave me my helmet and socks. I thanked him, gave him a high five and ran out into the sun again. I stopped and got sunscreen on my arms and face and ran to my bike. I ran over to the bike exit, crossed the timing mat, gave Emerson a high five and put my socks on (I didn't want to run in my socks and get them all wet.). I mounted up and was off.
What would you do differently?:

Na-Da.
Bike
  • 6h 07m 21s
  • 112 miles
  • 18.29 mile/hr
Comments:

I took it easy the first several miles. I drained one water bottle before mile 10- so I was staying hydrated. At about mile 30 I wondered why I didn't hurt so much. I had just finished the out and back hill and I was feeling pretty good. Miles 40-50-60-70 ticked off and I was still just fine. Then it dawned on me that this part is not supposed to be hard. I realized that it was a testament to my training that the bike felt "easy." It's supposed to.
I only stopped twice during the ride. Once I dropped my chain going up a hill and had to stop to get it back on. The second time I stopped for my special needs bag. I got my spare tube, extra bag of triathlete trail mix and an oatmeal cream pie. I actually had two oatmeal cream pies but only wanted one. So I gave the other to the volunteer who gave me my bag.
There were 2 people I kept passing and they would pass me back. One lady, Theresa, would get me in the flats. Then I'd catch up on the downhills or the uphills. She always had a funny comment each time she passed me. It made the time go by. By mile 95 I was ready to be off the bike. I still felt good but it was time for me to run. After the hill at mile 102 I increased my speed to 21-23 mph and got into transition pretty quickly. I dismounted, found Emerson in the chute, found my wife along the fence and had her snap a pic of the two of us. I remember walking down the chute thinking "man, that bike was easier than I expected."

What would you do differently?:

Nothing.
Transition 2
  • 11m 36s
Comments:

At the end of the chute I got another surprise. Who should I run into but Tammy! I got another big Tammy hug and got my T2 bag. I ran into the tent with my bag and found Mike again. Actually, I thought another guy was Mike and said "Hi Mike" to him. He gave me a strange look and asked if I needed help. I told him that he changed me this morning. Then, the real Mike came up and said "Actually, that was me." I had the real Mike help me out.
I stopped at the tent exit for some more sunscreen and then hit the john. I walked a bit in transition and started running once I hit the timing mat.

What would you do differently?:

Make sure I get the real Mike and not the fake one.
Run
  • 5h 17m 20s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 12m 07s  min/mile
Comments:

Coming out of transition I spotted Jeremy's support crew and then mine a few dozen yards later. I stopped to give my kids a kiss and high fived Uncle Tim. I also saw Alice and Aunt Karen. It was nice to have them there starting my run. I heard Tim say that I was doing really well.
I finished mile one in 9 minutes. Too fast, but I always run fast off the bike. I stuck with my run 9 minutes; walk one minute for the first hour. I covered about 6 miles. After that I ran until I reached the aid stations and then I'd walk them. At the turn around I looked at my watch and then looked for Jeremy. I passed him 16 minutes later, doubled it and came up with a 32 minute lead. I was sure I could hold him off.
I reached special needs at mile 13 and took my spare socks out of my bag. My feet weren't wet but I decided to go ahead and change my socks anyway. I eyed my treat, another oatmeal cream pie, with suspicion. I decided against it and left it in the special needs bag. Grabbing my dirty socks I took off again. At about mile 14 I spotted my wife at the turn-around point. I gave her a kiss and my dirty socks. I like giving people presents. :) I also looked at my watch to calculate how much time J had made up on me.
I was still feeling pretty good at this point. As I was running I noticed two athletes who were tethered together. I ran up beside them and looked at the bib of on of them. It read "Charlie." I blurted out: "Charlie Plascow?" Charlie turned and said "Yeah, is that a good thing or a bad thing? If it's a good thing then I'm Charlie. If it's a bad thing he's Charlie" and he pointed to his guide. I told him it was a very good thing and asked if I could shake his hand. (Charlie Plascow was featured in last year's Kona coverage on T.V. He's blind and competes with the help of a guide.) Charlie was very gracious. He asked how I knew him and I told him I'd seen him on the Kona coverage. He said "Yeah, that was a good day." He told me to send him an e-mail after the race and said I ought to think about becoming a guide.
Let me just say, to have a man like Charlie Plaskow tell me to keep in touch and say I should become a guide is quite flattering. Meeting him was one of the highlights of my race.
I said goodbye to Charlie and headed off again. I spotted Jeremy a few minutes later and did the math. Still 22 minutes ahead.
At mile 16 the wheels came off. I'm not sure what happened but I couldn't run more than 20 yards without having to stop and walk. I walked most of miles 16 and 17. I was determined to keep moving. I started running one cone, then walking one. Run 2- walk one. Then 3/1 and so on until I could run 7 cones. I hit the last turn around at mile 20 and decided to run for as long as I could. I saw Jeremy about one minute later and realized he was going to catch me. Bummer.
He caught me at mile 21 and ran with me. I told him several times that he ought to go on ahead. He told me that he blew his wad just catching up to me and couldn't run much faster than I was anyway. He said he was going to stick with me till the end. We ran most of the last 5 miles in, stopping to walk the aid stations and a few cones when we needed to. We thought we might be able to get a sub 13 hour finish but we didn't have it in the legs.
As we rounded the last turn we picked up the pace and high fived the spectators as we entered the chute. Mike Riley announced our names and some other information. I grabbed J's arm and we raised our hands up- crossing the finish line together. Who was there to catch me but-Tammy! It was great to have her there.
And David Hohl, you are an Ironman!

What would you do differently?:

Nothing. It was a good day. I beat my projected time of 12:30 miles so this was just fine.
Post race
Warm down:

We took some pics with Tammy and Linda and headed to the recovery area. I refused to go to medical. J went in and I headed over to the food area. Alice got me pizza and a drink. As the two of us were sitting there I started to cry. I began this journey 3 years ago. I was fat, depressed and unhealthy. I didn't like myself very much. I ate too much, drank too much. I had no goals and two little kids. I was headed for a heart attack at 50. The culmination of reaching this milestone, the happiness and relief that the race was over and the feeling of just sitting after being in motion for more than 13 hours all caught up with me. Alice gave me a hug and told me she was very proud of me. I ate a little pizza and took in the moment. J joined me soon after.

We went up to the hotel room and I got a shower. Alice and I went back down to the finish line for a while and talked with some other finishers and some of Louisville's finest. I needed to get off my legs so it was back to the hotel room and a warm bed for me. I slept like the dead.


Event comments:

I think I've blathered on enough. I'll see how I feel in a few days/weeks and I may do Beach to Battleship or the Columbus Marathon.

Oh yeah, My goal for this race was to go sub 14hours. Beating it by almost an hour feels pretty good.




Last updated: 2008-09-19 12:00 AM
Swimming
01:22:43 | 4224 yards | 01m 58s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/266
Overall: 0/2435
Performance: Good
Suit: Yes :)
Course: .7 miles out against the current then a 180* turn and back another 1.7 miles.
Start type: Dive Plus: Time Trial
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting:
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
T1
Time: 05:41
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
No
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
Biking
06:07:21 | 112 miles | 18.29 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/266
Overall: 0/2435
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: Hilly!
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 95
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks:
T2
Time: 11:36
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
Running
05:17:20 | 26.2 miles | 12m 07s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/266
Overall: 0/2435
Performance: Good
Course: 2 out and back loops in North L'ville.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Evaluation
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

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2009-09-02 9:20 PM

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Master
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Ohio
Subject: Ironman Louisville


2009-09-02 9:30 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Extreme Veteran
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Algonquin, IL
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Awesome job Ironman!  Thanks for sharing your race report.
2009-09-02 9:31 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Regular
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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
great race!  I also saw Charlie on the swim and the bike...such an inspiration!!!
2009-09-02 10:31 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Master
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Lexington, KY
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Great job ironman!  It was nice to meet you at the welcome dinner.
2009-09-02 11:02 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Veteran
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Columbus, Ohio
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
I was wondering when your report would be posted. A huge CONGRATS to you! I look forwad to picking your brain in the Ohio forum. Way to go!
2009-09-02 11:37 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Master
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Gold Coast, Australia
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
"As the two of us were sitting there I started to cry. I began this journey 3 years ago. I was fat, depressed and unhealthy. I didn't like myself very much. I ate too much, drank too much. I had no goals and two little kids. I was headed for a heart attack at 50. The culmination of reaching this milestone, the happiness and relief that the race was over and the feeling of just sitting after being in motion for more than 13 hours all caught up with me."

Very inspirational David. I am currently where you were about 2.5 years ago and I can imagine myself in your shoes. Very touching. Wel done Ironman!


2009-09-03 5:40 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Love it. Awesome job.Get some rest & start looking to next year Ironman!
2009-09-03 6:17 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Elite
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HURRICANE, Utah
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
You had a terrific race David.
2009-09-03 8:16 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Veteran
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Washington , MO
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Awesome race David. It was a pleasure meeting you and your friends in the swim line. Big 'ol congrats Ironman!!
2009-09-03 8:51 AM
in reply to: #2386721

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Master
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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville

Great race and report David. Good luck if you decide to do Beach to Battleship...I hear it is a great race.

2009-09-03 9:44 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Expert
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Alpharetta (until we find a home)
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
You put in a ton of bike training- I would have been more suprised if the bike wasnt easy for you. You proved the axiom that hard work and preparation pays off. Great job. 


2009-09-03 9:55 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Champion
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the colony texas
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
great race... nicely done.

that's very cool you met Charlie... and think about being a guide...
2009-09-03 10:25 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Expert
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Washington Court House, Ohio
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville

Congratulations on being an Ironman.  Nice race report too.

2009-09-03 12:43 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Extreme Veteran
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San Diego, California
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville

David - very nice race!!!  You are an ironman!!

2009-09-03 2:07 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Master
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Columbus, Ohio
Gold member
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Awesome job David! I'm so proud of you, and I love reading your race report!

-the wife
2009-09-03 3:14 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Veteran
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Central Ohio
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Great report, loved every bit of it.  You are an inspiration. 


2009-09-03 3:27 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Expert
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Missouri
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Congrats!!! Way to go!
2009-09-03 9:08 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Master
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Ohio
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Great race report, David!!!!  So awesome to hear by how much you beat your expected goal.  That really is amazing.  Enjoyed your post race comments.  You have come so, so far!  Keep enjoying the prize...and the journey!
2009-09-03 11:13 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Pro
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NorCal
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Great race David!  Your wife took your dirty socks...that's LOVE!  Congrats and good luck at B2B, we both know you'll be there! LOL
2009-09-03 11:23 PM
in reply to: #2388782

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Master
2014
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Ohio
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
AbbieR - 2009-09-04 12:13 AM Great race David!  Your wife took your dirty socks...that's LOVE!  Congrats and good luck at B2B, we both know you'll be there! LOL


Thanks Abs! Sorry we didn't get to hang out more over the weekend. But I'm very happy I ran into you!

As far as B2B...we'll see. There is the issue of two little ones, and two big dogs, and the cost to get there and the fact that my wife's work really heats up around that time. I'd like to, but we'll see.

And my wife does love me. Dirty socks or not, she makes it clear every day.
2009-09-03 11:42 PM
in reply to: #2386255

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Veteran
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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Awesome job David. It looks like all the long training rides really payed off on the bike.


2009-09-04 4:11 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Extreme Veteran
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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
"I began this journey 3 years ago. I was fat, depressed and unhealthy. I didn't like myself very much. I ate too much, drank too much. I had no goals and two little kids. I was headed for a heart attack at 50. The culmination of reaching this milestone, the happiness and relief that the race was over and the feeling of just sitting after being in motion for more than 13 hours all caught up with me"

Wow, man. Just wow.  Nice job bro!
2009-09-04 5:06 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Champion
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Alabama
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville

Good race and nice report!  Good for you for stopping to look around on the swim and take in the moment!

 

~Mike

2009-09-04 7:56 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Master
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Huntsville, AL
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Congrats Ironman.  I thought that was Charlie.  I wish I would have said hi now.
2009-09-04 8:22 AM
in reply to: #2386255

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Expert
716
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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Congrats!!!! Nice job!!! Have you taken your finisher medal off yet, I wouldnt have. 
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