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Ford Ironman World Championship - TriathlonFull Ironman


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Kona, Hawaii
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
93F / 34C
Sunny
Total Time = 15h 10m 34s
Overall Rank = 1546/1776
Age Group = M25-29
Age Group Rank = 88/90
Pre-race routine:

I arrived in Kona on Wednesday. Ideally I think Tuesday would have been ideal, Monday might be over kill. Spent Wednesday/Thursday walking around checking things out. Thursday I went and got my bike. Supposed to be a 1mi walk to the bike shop. We got lost and it took more like 45min. Needless to say by now I know Kailua-Kona really well.

Thursday I developed some sort of sickness. Maybe the start of my sun poisoning. I had a fever and had chills/hot flahes and some nauseau. While I have never been in a race at this level before it could have been nerves but I did not feel nervous nor have I in the past. I was just sick.

Friday was bike check. I still had a fever/headache and was not feeling that well. Should have ate/drank more but could not, kept my feet up most of the night.
Event warmup:

Woke up bright and early and started the in-room coffee maker. Had some coffee 1.5 bagels with jelly and a bit of peanut butter. Took some Advil. gathered my stuff and ate a Powerbar and drank Gatorade on the way over to the race and while I waited for it to start. Downed a gel 20min before race start. Headache went away at some point before the race.


Swim
  • 1h 29m 12s
  • 4224 yards
  • 02m 07s / 100 yards
Comments:

The water is perfectly clear. You start pretty far off shore. If you look down you can just look deep down the entire swim. Crystal clear water.

Got caught up a few times on the way out. I tried to take it easy knowing this would be my longest swim. No panic in the water. Feet got grabbed a few times, grabbed/slapped a few. Swim was uneventful if not long. Drafted most of the way back in. Sad that my swim cap came off during the swim.
What would you do differently?:

Swim faster. Comping out of the water, I felt great. I saw 1:29 and figured the timer was started with the Pros and not altered so I figured 1:14 and thought awesome. Should have pushed more since when I came out I felt like I had hardly done anything.
Transition 1
  • 05m 25s
Comments:

Long transition. Come out of the water through the shower area, get into change tent. Once in tent, strip speedsuit, put on sunblock, put on cycling shoes/helmet, eat/drink.

I grabbed some Gatorade hit the bathroom and ran towards my bike. Transition is huge and its a long run out to the bike and then to the mounting area.
What would you do differently?:

Ensure that I put sunscreen on.
Bike
  • 7h 21m 26s
  • 112 miles
  • 15.22 mile/hr
Comments:

The race quickly broke/devastated me. I thought my position was good. It was not. I only had ridden the bike twice as it was before the race.

After about 45min on the bike my lower back started to cramp. This got worse and worse to the point I was stopping every 5mi or so to stretch my lower back. My legs and stomach felt fine. I think I took in a good amount of calories, but my back was killing me nearly the entire ride.

I hated life out on the bike. Not the biggest fan of long rides, but I just hated life out there and wanted the ride to be over. My PT was acting weird as well. When I would coast it would registered 38-60watts. My computer, with a borrowed wheel/harness.

What would you do differently?:

Make sure that my position is good.
Transition 2
  • 07m 25s
Comments:

Came off the bike, it got grabbed. I walked the long long walk to the change tent. If nothing else its fair.

Finally made it to the change tent. Wiped down a bit, could already tell I was burnt. Tried to apply sunscreen and it just blended with all salt I had been sweating.
What would you do differently?:

Hustle. More sunscreen.
Run
  • 6h 07m 6s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 14m 01s  min/mile
Comments:

I figured I would run and then walk hills. Started walking them too early. Should have kept moving and shot for a 5hr marathon. My feet towards the start hurt. The soles of my feet were just sore. Later on I was walking and realized that running hurt the same as walking so I picked up the pace. I have never had pain on the bottom of my feet before but my the time the race was done walking hurt.

I run at night fairly often. This was no big deal, flashlight or headlamp would have been beneficial. Some were prepared. I like running at night.
What would you do differently?:

Run more, walk less. Nutrition was fine.
Post race
Warm down:

Two volunteers grabbed me, one left after a minute, 2nd walked me around and made sure I was ok. Got my pre-swim bag and then my finisher stuff. Walked over got photo done and headed for massage.

I grabbed my phone out of my bag and called my family they came back and met me in the massage tent. They could tell at that point how burned I was. Massage was more of a real long rub down. It was nice.

Grabbed all my bags and bike. Watched some more finishers then headed to hotel sipped on a beer and nibbled on a burger. I am never hungry post race.

Day after the race my fever/chills were back and sun poisoning was bad. It started to bubble. I developed quite a few blisters, they were mainly on my arms. Forearms are/were in rough shape.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Lack of experience at the IM distance. Poor bike fit.

Event comments:

Volunteers and local support is insane before, during and after the race. The entire side of the island was without ice because of the race. They were down to 6 containers of Gatorade once the race was over. Most of the locals said it was one of the hottest races the past few years.

Left on Wednesday to come back to CT. First day back it snowed. Wonderful.

So while I was disappointed by my time and by not checking position better, I had a ton of fun, and would do it again. NO IM plans until at least 2011. That will be my last year as M25-29 and my daughter will be 5. Better time to go back and take with me.




Last updated: 2009-04-13 12:00 AM
Swimming
01:29:12 | 4224 yards | 02m 07s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/90
Overall: 0/1776
Performance: Average
Suit: Xterra V.002
Course: Long out and back. Pretty smooth.
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Waves
Water temp: 80F / 27C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Good Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
T1
Time: 05:25
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Yes
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Good
Biking
07:21:26 | 112 miles | 15.22 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/90
Overall: 0/1776
Performance: Below average
Lost PT post race. Know it was in hotel room, just not sure where or if it was packed.
Wind: Headwind with gusts
Course: Very windy. I was prepared for the gusts but not the relentless headwinds. Few tailwinds which were nice, but relentless headwind for the last 40mi. Hilly course as well. Brutal sun. Crosswinds were not that bad.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills: Bad
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
T2
Time: 07:25
Overall: Below average
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Below average
Running
06:07:06 | 26.2 miles | 14m 01s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/90
Overall: 0/1776
Performance: Below average
Garmin still not downloading.
Course: The course is two long out and backs. Tons of aid stations. There are almost no lights at night when running on the Queen K and Energy Lab. The road temperature out in the Energy Lab was measure at 120degrees.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Below average
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? No
Evaluation
Course challenge Too hard
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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2009-10-17 5:01 AM

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Elite
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Subject: Ford Ironman World Championship


2009-10-17 5:54 AM
in reply to: #2464397

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Expert
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NoVA
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

You did a great job on a tough race!!!  Don't be so hard on yourself----afterall YOU are an IRONman!!!

2009-10-17 10:18 AM
in reply to: #2464397

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Master
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Huntsville, AL
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Congrats! Sounds like it was a rough trip.
2009-10-17 10:34 AM
in reply to: #2464397

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Modesto, California
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
You did it Aaron! Thats so much more than getting a good time, its about pushing yourself, putting up with back pain, meeting awesome people, listening to the crowd cheer, seeing others suffer as well, talking to yourself for 15 hours,and getting sunburn! Celebrate Ironman!!!!!!!!
2009-10-17 3:45 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Elite
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Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

Other notable notes:

I saw Chris Leito while I was heading back on the first run turnaround. he was on his bike going to wherever he was staying and told me to keep going.

I met Norman Stadler the morning of the race. Very poor bathroom setup, waiting in line to use the toilets at the hotel. People had been cutting to use the urinal since there was no wait for them. He came to the front of the line to use the urinals, and said "dont worry I have a little one" I laughed real hard. No one else really laughed, he then said "No no no I have a big one, I just go little." I laughed again and told him to have a good race.

 

Saw most of the pros by their bikes in the morning as well.

2009-10-17 7:41 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Master
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NJ
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

Way to go, IRONMAN! Funny story about Norman S.



2009-10-18 1:53 AM
in reply to: #2464397

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On your right
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Great race, congratulations.  Sorry about the sunburn.  Maybe the snow will help it feel better?
2009-10-18 2:14 AM
in reply to: #2464786

Member
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100100
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
aarondavidson - 2009-10-17 4:45 PM

Other notable notes:

I saw Chris Leito while I was heading back on the first run turnaround. he was on his bike going to wherever he was staying and told me to keep going.

I met Norman Stadler the morning of the race. Very poor bathroom setup, waiting in line to use the toilets at the hotel. People had been cutting to use the urinal since there was no wait for them. He came to the front of the line to use the urinals, and said "dont worry I have a little one" I laughed real hard. No one else really laughed, he then said "No no no I have a big one, I just go little." I laughed again and told him to have a good race.

 

Saw most of the pros by their bikes in the morning as well.



Dude, I was there suffering with you.  HOT,WINDY,HOT,WINDY, and HILLS.   I finisihed an hour later from your total time.  I had a really bad run due to bad nutrition execution.  I ended up in the ER the next day.  I heard from the nurse that it was more crowded in the ER the night of the race.  

I was lucky that I was able to get there a week early and got to hang out in Kona.  It was just so cool that whole race week when all the athletes started to arrive.  While running or biking or just hanging aroung you bump in to so many pros (i.e. Wellington, Macca, Lieto brothers, Brown, there were so many).  BTW - Stadler was in the same hotel as I was so I kind of stalked him.  It was so cool that I was never nervous even at the start.  Even when I was suffering I still was able to smile.  Even now I'm still smiling.  We did it.  "You're an Ironman!"

2009-10-18 11:33 AM
in reply to: #2464397

Veteran
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Boston
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Way to go Aaron! Sounds like you had a tough day, but way to go for battling through it all. In the end though, I think the suffering we went through in Kona was well worth the finish line, don't you think? (I hope so!)

Congratulations Hawaii Ironman!!
2009-10-18 3:50 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Master
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Mt Pleasant, SC
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Good Job!

Dream it, Train for it & Do it!

Nice

Kevin
2009-10-18 6:24 PM
in reply to: #2464786

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Member
56
2525
Philadelphia
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Nice RR, and welcome to the club!

I like your blog as well. I'm concentrating on 70.3 this year and I might head up to Rhode Island next year.



2009-10-18 6:25 PM
in reply to: #2464786

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Member
56
2525
Philadelphia
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Nice RR, and welcome to the club!

I like your blog as well. I'm concentrating on 70.3 this year and I might head up to Rhode Island next year.

2009-10-19 12:12 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Member
198
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Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Great job Aaron!  I had some sunburn issues at Louisville but nothing like you endured.  Way to gut it out!
2009-10-19 3:48 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Regular
89
252525
Mesa, AZ
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
Exciting!! Congrats on just finishing.  An Ironman seems so far away for me and to be racing in Kona seems like a dream.  Awesome.
2009-10-21 7:42 AM
in reply to: #2464397

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Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

Despite the sun poisoning, the poor bike fit, the long painful marathon, and despite Norman Stadler's misguided potty humor, despite it all... you... are...  KONA IRONMAN AARON!   As long as you live, no one will ever be able to take away the fact that you raced and survived the Ironman distance at the World Championship.  Years from now you may come to appreciate this fact more.

Congratulations Aaron.  You are an IRONMAN.

2009-10-21 9:00 AM
in reply to: #2464397

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Extreme Veteran
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Lakeland
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

Great Job! I got up early to go to work on Sunday Am, east coast time and logged on a few minutes later here you came through the shoot and heard the words, YOUR AN IRONMAN! I remember last spring or so when you posted that you had gotten a slot, so I was happy for you.



2009-10-22 2:01 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Expert
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Long Island, NY
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

Finishing at Kona is an accomplishment.  Finishing Kona with a bike you couldn't really ride makes for a LONG day.  Way to push through and break the tape. 

Epic.  Hold on to that one forever.

2009-11-17 9:17 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Expert
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Lafayette, CA
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship

Aaron:  Well done.  It was a long tough day. Unless you were out there you don't understand.... I had heard the wind & heat & the humidity & the sun was bad.  It was an amazing challenge.  We fricken did it!

I'm sure I saw you around the energy lab.   Congrad--sorry it took me to leave a comment.

2009-11-17 9:28 PM
in reply to: #2464397

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Champion
19812
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MA
Subject: RE: Ford Ironman World Championship
After your crash at Timberman and the effects of that with broken bike, being able to compete is awesome..bummer bike didn't fit well and PT was messed up, but you raced Kona..a race so many triathletes dream of doing!

Overcoming everything to toe the line, being sick, getting sun poisoning, having major bike fit issues due to new bike all shows how mentally tough you are to keep moving forward and getting it done.

Love the early race morning bathroom story

Well done!

Congrats Ironman!
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