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Victoria New Balance Half Ironman - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Victoria, BC
22C / 72F
Total Time = 6h 09m 18s
Overall Rank = 275/337
Age Group = 35-39
Age Group Rank = 64/76
Pre-race routine:

Really tried to make an event of the whole weekend. Took the fairy from Vancouver to Victoria on Saturday afternoon. Arrived at the race site with my friend and co-worker(manager) Nick who was racing with me. We got registered, had our bikes checked and basked in the great tri-culture that existed all over the race site.
We then took a drive of the bike course and did a pretty good job psyching ourselves out with all of the hills (not rollers, hills!!)
Went back to Victoria for a nice big plate of pasta at Old Spaghetti Factory (and helped ourselves to an extra loaf of their awesome bread for the morning :) )
I prepped all of my gear for the morning and turned the lights out by about 9:45. I must admit that my nerves got the better of me and I didn't sleep very well at all (I think I saw every hour pass by on the digital clock).
Got up at about 4:45am, had a big bowl of oatmeal (standard tri-morning fare) and a few pieces of Old Spagetti Factory bread with peanut butter and jam (peanut butter and jam were from the ferry ride... our pre-race meal will be featured in "how to tri on a budget" article :) )
Event warmup:

None really... got transition setup, body marked, and lined up for the bathroom. My warm-up then commenced as I ran from the bathroom to transition to get my wetsuit on and then down to the lake with about 45 seconds to spare (well at least I didn't have time to get nervous!)

  • 40m 12s
  • 2000 meters
  • 02m 01s / 100 meters

I was very nervous about the swim (as usual), but it went really well and I felt really great coming out of the water (time flew by). It was a wetsuit race even though the water was pleasantly warm. I was relaxed throughout the whole swim and had total control over my breathing. It was a great start to the day as the sun was cresting over the trees and glinting off of the lake as we swam down the first leg.
My only area of dissatisfaction was my brutal navigating. I think I probably added about an extra 100m because of my zigzag swim path. Why can't they paint black lines on the bottom of the lakes for these events!?!?!
What would you do differently?:

Better sighting, better navigation.
Having more confidence now, I could push the pace just a little bit.
Transition 1
  • 02m 14s

My T1 really went very well (although I didn't realize it at the time). I just felt very very fresh coming off the swim, so the T1 was just easy and smooth, felt great. Wetsuit came off easily and quickly and I was wearing a tri-suit for the first time. The suit felt great on the bike and run and made transition way easier.
My friend Nick was just heading out of T1 as I was coming in... very cool.
What would you do differently?:

not much.
  • 3h 18m 31s
  • 92 kms
  • 27.81 km/hr

I took it out at a pretty easy pace on the bike just to get my "bike legs" under me. I felt fresh from the swim but it didn't take long for the first few hills. I was surprised at how often I was chaning gears to address the hills. I felt quite strong throughout the ride, although my legs were starting to burn on the hills at the end of loop 3.
I was worried about a sore "saddle area" prior to the race, but this thankfully didn't turn out to be an issue.
I rode with the same group of people throughout most of the ride.
I watched in amazement as some of the very strong men and women blew by me at absolutely AMAZING speeds (holy crap they were moving!!!)

To give some perspective on the hills, my fastest speed was 65kph and my slowest was 10kph.

I was happy with my nutrition on the bike. I ate 4 gels and lots of water. I never felt hungry (which I usually do on long rides), so I think the gels did the trick.

It really was a scenic and beautiful bike course, and the weather was ideal for biking... thankfully not much wind.
What would you do differently?:

I think I would push it harder on the flats next time, although not too much as my legs were getting a pretty good burn.
I would definitely dedicate more of my training time to bike for my next race of this distance (or any distance for that matter). The bike training helps with better bike time AND fresher legs going onto the run.
Transition 2
  • 01m 50s

Like T1, T2 was uneventful and in hindsight pretty quick.
I had decided not to use speed laces because I wanted to make sure that my shoes were on properly for the run (I was willing to sacrifice speed for comfort). This turned out to be a good strategy, and I don't think that tying my laces cost me much time at all.
This is the first time I've worn a tri-suit, and I think it was a huge benefit for both T1 and T2.
What would you do differently?:

not much... drink more water (see run)
  • 2h 06m 32s
  • 20 kms
  • 06m 20s  min/km

It took me about 1.5 km to get my running legs under me at which point I started to feel pretty good. I passed my friend Nick on the run at about the 3km mark. My guess is that I was running at about a 5:10 min/km pace for the first 5 or 6 km (too fast and NOT DRINKING!!!).
At about the 7km mark I started to feel quite dizzy and actually started to stagger. My self-doubt engine kicked in right on queue and I started to think there's no way I'm going to finish this race!!! I was almost starting to panic at the thought of not finishing. I then recalled reading on some of the BT forums and other tri mags that what I was experiencing was a result of not enough water and/or electrolyte drinks. So, I walked for about 3 min to the next aid station and drank about 3 cups of water and 3 cups of gator aid. I walked another minute or so and BLAMO... back in the game! PHEW, that was close. I slowed my pace and actually felt quite comfortable for the remaining 12km (walking at every other aid station while I continued to drink).

As I neared the 19km mark, I could hear the crowd cheering the racers on at the finish line. This totally pumped me up, and started what would be a pretty emotional final kilometer. I was on an absolute high as I ran the final km and crossed the finish line. ABSOLUTELY AMAZING! GOD I LOVE THIS SPORT!!! A few tears of joy for good measure. My friend Nick's family were all there to give me some congratulatory hugs and high fives which I really appreciated.
I was VERY lonley at that point for my wife and two boys back at home in St. Albert. I really wish they could have been there with me, but it didn't work out this time. I gave them a call to share the moment as soon as I got back into the transition area.
My main goal really was to just finish the race. I had an un-official target completion time of 6:30, so I was VERY happy with my 6:09 finish!
My friend Nick crossed the finish line about 6 minutes later... AWESOME!!!
What would you do differently?:

Pay much more attention to my fluid intake!!

Post race
Warm down:

Bask in the great tri spirit of my first Half Ironman and of all of the racers and volunteers at this VERY WELL run event (oh ya, forgot to stretch... a little stiff today... oops).

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I really didn't train nearly enough for this event. If I were to do again (which I would like to), I would start my training MUCH earlier.

Event comments:

(note: overall rank number is based only on male results)

Outstanding race!!
Great organization, great volunteers, amazing location, perfect weather, nice hoodies, cool medals, good post race food.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2005-06-21 12:00 AM
00:40:12 | 2000 meters | 02m 01s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/76
Overall: 265/337
Performance: Good
Suit: Full wetsuit
Course: single sqaure-ish loop
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 70F / 21C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Average
Time: 02:14
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
03:18:31 | 92 kms | 27.81 km/hr
Age Group: 0/76
Overall: 284/337
Performance: Average
Wind: Some
Course: An out and in segment (13km and 5km respectively) with 3 laps of about 25km each. I found the course to be quite hilly and took quite a toll on my legs. One aid station which I took full advantage of to refill my gel supply.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 85
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:50
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Good
02:06:32 | 20 kms | 06m 20s  min/km
Age Group: 0/76
Overall: 272/337
Performance: Below average
Course: Nice flat shaded trail run. Two laps around the lake.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %3
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
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] 4

2005-06-21 11:36 PM

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New user

St. Albert, Alberta
Subject: Victoria New Balance Half Ironman

2005-06-22 11:41 AM
in reply to: #180543

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Vancouver, BC
Subject: RE: Victoria New Balance Half Ironman
Hey Trevor,

You had a good race. Your times in all three events are pretty solid. Awesome. I had an awesome time at that race. It was very well organized and the weather was perfect. We are very lucky.

Yes those hills on the bike were pretty killer. I stuck with my strategy of pushing it on the downhills and spinning up and that worked well for me. It looks like whatever you did worked for you.

Hope you had a good trip home.

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