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Ironman St. George - Utah - TriathlonFull Ironman


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St. George, Utah
United States
WTC
60F / 16C
Sunny
Total Time = 15h 57m 14s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = 25-29
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Note 1 - This will get long, skip to swim bike run to skip pre-race activities and other non-day of thoughts.

Note 2 - I had nothing but an amazing time, positive thoughts and FUN. Did I have pain, and suffering? YES, and I will talk about that, but do not confuse that with not absolutely loving every second of this adventure.

Ironman Week - We arrived to St George on Monday the week before the race. My brother, his wife and my sister all came (from Philadelphia and San Francisco respectively). I was THRILLED to have supporters. We rented an AMAZING house (right on the bike course) with some of the most beautiful views I have ever seen. We would sit at the huge picture window and just hang out. I had not seen my brother in a year and a half! The week was spent hiking in Zion, touring St George and eating copious amounts of food. It was a BLAST!

Wed - Registration was at the Dixie Center and it was so well organized and smooth. It was a pretty large expo. I bought a lot of Ironman stuff. Cannot say I was overly confident, I just liked it. And thought I could give it away if I had to. ;)

Fri - Bike check and day before race - was pretty stressful as the wind was GUSTING and the reservoir was white capped. I had felt GREAT all week and this was my confidence hit. It was COLD and VERY VERY VERY windy. Our bikes were blowing all over the racks and I had no desire to ever get in that water. That night I did not sleep AT ALL. Just being real, it crossed my mind to NOT race. I know. ME?! Miss no nerves, "I got this" had a minor melt down the night before. I did all my usual postive self talk and visualization routines and NONE of it was working. You see, I had ridden the course at the end of March in 30+ mph winds and knew if we were faced with that in the swim and on the bike course I was not going to make it. The month before the race was a major mental battle after the pre-ride. I did my best to stay confident, but knowing what I could face out there would get to me. The wind and hills made for some major mental demons at times. I have to admit, this race got in my head - bad. But, thats why I signed up for it. For the adventure, the journey and to truly test my limits. If I was going to do an Ironman I wanted it to beat me up, spit me out and see if I could still make it out alive. ;) I knew that, but at times, I didnt want that and the night before was one of those nights.

Saturday - Race Day - The alarm went off at 3:45 AM and I told Josh my feelings. If I could remember the pep talk he gave me I would record it and sell it. The words he said stuck with me all day. I jumped out of bed thinking "I CAN DO THIS" in fact, he made me say it, and I truly felt that way. I was happy, joyous and SUPER excited to begin the adventure of IMSG (although I gagged up my breakfast about 3-4 times). ;) I was calm, confident and ready to go.
Event warmup:

We got to T2 in downtown at about 0430. It was dark and cold but the Ironman atmosphere was already apparent. We stood in a long line for the bus to T1 but were on a bus in less than 5 minutes. ANDY was on our bus and I said HI! It was really fun to be with a group of all Ironman wannabes (or previous Ironmen) for the 20 minute ride out. No nerves. Got to T1 and prep began.

Pumped up tires and good kharma all around with loaning out the pump Josh brought. The only complaint of the whole day was the lack of porta potties. I get super awesome prize for running to the back of Sand Hollow Park and finding open bathrooms for Josh. We found an awesome group of people back there and while we waited in a short line (5 or so people) I got in my wetsuit. Calm, cool and collected. Once Josh had done his business we headed back to the swim start, 10 minutes to go. My warm up consisted of about 3 100 meter sprints back and forth that parking lot.

It was SO GOOD to see Elliot and Mirg from home in the morning. It felt like any other race. And I saw my family as we walked back. I was thrilled to have so much support!
Swim
  • 1h 27m 24s
  • 3862 meters
  • 02m 16s / 100 meters
Comments:

The talk of this swim was of how cold the water was. I purposely did not feel it the week before because I did not need anything else to worry about with this course. We got in line to get in the water and about 4 minutes before the cannon went off Josh and I entered the lake. WOW its a GORGEOUS setting for a swim. I was in awe. The difficulty of this couse is truly trumped by the beauty. As soon as Josh and I got in, we looked at eachother and agreed it was 'not that bad!' We had been swimming at Lake Saguaro since early March and were comfortable with 50+ water temps. This felt the same. It was fine. It took your breath away but was not an issue. The highlight of this swim was when Mike Reilly told the crowd to give us a cheer and it was SO LOUD from the water. The support, the entire day, was AMAZING. I didnt think there would be so many people at the swim start due to being bussed but it was PACKED! I loved it. Then something that stuck with me, he said "you WILL be Ironmen" and I said "yes I will." And I truly felt it.

Once the cannon went off I just did what I knew what to do, long smooth strokes. I loved the melee, and embraced it. The swim out was fantastic. It chopped up a bit on the way back. It was so cool sighting to the big rock island. There was a TON of buoys, I truly enjoyed every second of the swim and kept saying to myself "this is fun!" The water was clear enough to see bodies and feet so drafting was simple. I expended no energy. Got out of the water fresh! Loved it.
Transition 1
  • 12m 7s
Comments:

So this is where things got TOUGH. About 20+ people were pulled from the swim for hypothermia so the change tent people were VERY cautious of the health of those coming into T1. I didn't feel cold until I got into the tent and realized my hands were paralyzed. I call it "the claw" I couldn't move my fingers out of this weird cramped position. SO, in true AMAZING Utah volunteer fashion the change tent woman literally dressed me as I sat with a towel wrapped around me. Whoever she was I love her and I want her to be my mom. :) She literally put my bike gloves on finger by finger. I saw other volunteers rubbing the arms of women vigourously and holding them wrapped in towels to give body heat. It was amazing. I got my stuff on relatively quick and feeling pretty cold ran out of the tent, got sunscreened and found my bike. This is when I got a little whacked out. I saw a clock that said 1:47. I freaked a bit as I knew I was going to be close on bike cut offs as it was (duh this was the pro clock) everyone told me later that I looked upset coming out of T1...this was why! I was already doing math!
What would you do differently?:

Realize the pro clock was 15 minutes ahead!!!
Bike
  • 8h 02m 20s
  • 112 miles
  • 13.93 mile/hr
Comments:

Ah the bike course. How many nights of sleep had I lost because of you? ;) My main concern was not enjoying this race because I was so concerned about making the cut offs (5 total), but I was in such good spirits that I decided to put my Garmin in my bento and just enjoy the ride. The day was so gorgeous, and I was having so much fun just doing an Ironman that I knew I would do what I could and no use in stressing.

0-22: From the swim to the bike loop turn. About 5 miles in is a large hill (this is where Andy passed me), I spun up it and enjoyed looking around and the amazing crowd support, as early as this was I knew I was feeling great and it would be a good day. This part also takes you on part of the run course, up another steep hill and I truly felt I would be seeing it later in the day, had fun talking to people on the hills and generally staying within myself.

22-68: Making the turn onto the loop was making the first cutoff, hey a small victory and I was going to take every little one I could get! I knew I was actually quite ahead of it and could just really enjoy myself. I had in the back of my mind that the wind could get VERY VERY nast outside of Ivins and was a little antsy to get there and see how it was. Again, the crowd support was insane and the miles FLEW by. There was a good wind on 91 but I was with a lot of people and this felt good. Making the way out to Gunlock I didnt see white caps on the reservoir like I had last time, I kept saying in my head how blessed we were to have a day like we did, as I knew it could be so much worse. I knew we were getting close to 3 nasty hills now and as Eagle hill came into view I reverted to my old favorite "they can say whatever, I can do whatever, no pain is forever yep, you know this. Tougher than a lion, aint no need in trying, I live where the sky ends yep you know this." Because, you know - Rihanna has this Ironman thing DOWN! ;) Hey, I was having fun. No doubt, those hills SUCK. But it was doable...and I never disliked it. Shortly therafter is THE WALL and people were already walking it. I didnt, but I wasnt fast, again, lots of crowd support. I was STOKED to make it up as I knew it was smooth sailing from there on out. Alot of people say the hill out of Veyo is tough but I dont mind it. Ah. That was a good feeling. And not having a horrible headwind on the downhill had me hitting 40+mph into town. I hit the timing mat and was STOKED!

66-108: Relatively uneventful. I was still happy as could be. The wind picked up, I climbed slower, it hurt a littl worse, but it was about the same as the first lap. My stomach wasnt loving things as much but I adjusted. I took on more bananas and abandoned my fig newtons. I knew I was going to make all of the cut offs and life was about as good as it could be.

109-112: As we came back into town I felt like a freaking rock star. I had about an hour to spare, I KNEW I was going to finish Ironman. I had NO DOUBT I was just so damn happy. I saw lots of people out on the run and I started slowing down looking for Josh. It had been almost 10 hours since I had seen him and I knew he would be DYING to know how I was doing, and then I SAW HIM! I was coming in off the bike and he was about 2 miles in on the run! He jumped up soo high and was so happy. It was by far the highlight of my day, I knew we were BOTH going to do it. What more could I ask for?

What would you do differently?:

Be stronger physically, otherwise nothing.
Transition 2
  • 09m 8s
Comments:

My family was right at the bike dismount line. They had "highlighter" color shirts that sais "Sportybot Crew" and carried signs of the like "Gaga Says GO GO GO" and "Dont Stop Make it Pop" I mean come on, how cool are these people? I was so damn happy when I saw them, I was cheering and jumping around. I then grabbed my T2 bag and went into the "Igloo" (AKA worlds largest change tent). I had another amazing volunteer who asked how I was and I said "I am GREAT I am just so hungry" and she said "OH we just had pizza delivered you want some?" HELL YES I WANT SOME! So she goes and gets me pizza, helps me out, and I move along.
What would you do differently?:

Nada...I like transitions in IM's.
Run
  • 6h 06m 15s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 13m 59s  min/mile
Comments:

So I take off running ever so slightly, this big slice of pizza in my hand. The streets are PACKED with people as the first 2 - 3 miles are downtown. EVERYONE is like "that girl has pizza?" I'd wave it around. Yeah, people love me. ;) It was pretty uphill so I walked a bit and ate my pizza. My heart rate was going crazy. I made it to the first aid station and used the restroom for the first time that day, yeah I NEVER got off the bike. That felt amazing to go pee. I grabbed a handful of cookies and kept walking. I decided then and there that I would be walking all uphills. I felt GREAT, was having a BLAST and just decided that would be my plan. There would be other Ironmans to go fast on and today was obviously not that day and this COURSE was obviously not that course. I PROMISED myself anything that was flat or downhill I would run. This course was brutal.

Again the volunteers were insane, the amount of people on that course was phenomenal and the entire vibe was like a PARTY out there. I was having too much fun to be doing an Ironman. Did I hurt? YES. I hurt BADLY, the hills on the bike took a major toll and the hills on the run were just MEAN. I wont even try to describe this run, but cruel pretty much describes it. I have to admit I saw Robin and Dean out there running it and was so impressed. To run those hills after the bike takes a ton of fitness - good on you!

What is great about Utah is it stays light until almost 9PM so I was only running in the dark for about 2 hours. I loved this. I also loved the out and back aspect as the athletes would support eachother and you would get the aid station support double time! I finally got to talk to Josh about 5 miles in and we both congratulated eachother, gave hugs and chatted a little. As I came back in from the first lap Elliot, Mirg and my whole family were there cheering. I was stoked to only have on more lap until I would become an Ironman! I headed back out confident it would take me about the same time. Lap 2 was pretty much the same, I saw Sanchez, Andy coming in to finish and Josh again. I could not believe he was headed in!!! That alone gave me so much motivation. I never once hit a low. Sure I had stomach pain, my legs hurt so much, it was so hard, but never once did I not love every second. Heading back in I took the last 6 miles to just reflect and be thankful for the journey.

I had ran with a gentleman for the last 6 miles but I fell back to just be alone for the last 2 miles and be in my own head to think about it all. What an adventure, what a day.

I made the turn and the streets were still lined with fans! All day long I was told how "inspirational" and how we were all "heroes" - St George LOVES their Ironmen and I was minutes away from becoming one. I felt numb, I really could not believe it. It's a long finishing chute and I slowed down to really soak it all in, the bright lights, the people, the kids, Elliot and Mirg, and then - Josh, my family. High fives, hugs. Arms up and a finish line. It could not have been a more perfect day.
What would you do differently?:

Not a damn thing.
Post race
Warm down:

My finish line catcher was amazing. He could not believe how happy and "perky" I was. I thanked him and told him how fantastic the people of Utah had been to us. He talked to me for a little while, got me my hat, shirt and had my picture taken. Walked me over the where my family was. I sat and chatted with them and then...left. I stayed up that night until after 1 just high on excitement. I never wanted the day to end!

Event comments:

If it's not already obvious I kind of loved this race. After months of dread, fear, etc. to come and experience it in this way, I could not have asked for anything more.


Profile Album


Last updated: 2009-12-05 12:00 AM
Swimming
01:27:24 | 3862 meters | 02m 16s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Suit: Zoot Full
Course: Rectangle
Start type: Deep Water Plus:
Water temp: 59F / 15C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Navigation: Average
Rounding:
T1
Time: 12:07
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Yes
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Average
Biking
08:02:20 | 112 miles | 13.93 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: Hilly mofo
Road: Rough  Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
T2
Time: 09:08
Overall:
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
Running
06:06:15 | 26.2 miles | 13m 59s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance:
Course: UMMM HILLS and oh yeah more HILLS.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall:
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Evaluation
Course challenge
Organized?
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

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2010-05-03 10:23 AM

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Elite
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Mesa, AZ
Subject: Ironman St. George - Utah


2010-05-03 10:44 AM
in reply to: #2833128

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Expert
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Big Bear City, California
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
I can't even put into words how proud of you I am. Everything that you put into this paid off and you earned that finish line.

You are the queen of endurance, I wish I could pace as evenly as you do :D
2010-05-03 11:36 AM
in reply to: #2833128

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Extreme Veteran
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San Luis Obispo County, CA
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Great report.  Way to go!
2010-05-03 11:50 AM
in reply to: #2833128

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Veteran
185
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Sunny Binghamton
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Nice job!
2010-05-03 12:09 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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Veteran
196
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Houston
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

Thanks for your report and showing us what it feels like to take it all in and enjoy an IM.

2010-05-03 12:27 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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Veteran
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100100
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah


2010-05-03 12:45 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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Extreme Veteran
386
100100100252525
Rio Rancho - where you can ride year round!
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
reading these reports is amazing! it makes me feel like I'm next to you the entire time! CONGRATS!
2010-05-03 12:56 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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Master
1696
1000500100252525
Surprise, Arizona
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

Congratulations, and GREAT race report!!!  You had such a great attitude and spirit - perfect approach and you will have a lifetime of wonderful memories of this day.  I'm so, so happy for you - congratulations, Ironman - you EARNED it!!!

2010-05-03 1:08 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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Regular
89
252525
Mesa, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
YEAH!  Congrats!  You did it!  You are an inspiration to all of us Ironmen-wannabes.
2010-05-03 1:28 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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Expert
1224
1000100100
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Tik tok on the dot... you rocked that race like P diddy!

Congrats IRON HOTTY! Welcome to the club.
2010-05-03 1:38 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Pro
3715
20001000500100100
AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!  I knew that once you set your mind to it, you would train your little butt off and tackle all the mind goblins that would try to derail you along the way.  You overcame it all, and are now an IRONMAN! Totally awesome!!


2010-05-03 1:42 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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2010-05-03 2:45 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Master
1882
1000500100100100252525
Chandler, Arizona
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

Huge congrats on an awesome race Jen. It was a lot of fun watching you out there. I'm jealous!

2010-05-03 2:51 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Master
2216
2000100100
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Reading your report was fun!  This was an awesome quote: "Ah the bike course. How many nights of sleep had I lost because of you"?  You kicked it's butt! 

After tackling a course like that with the attitude you have, I can't think of a course you couldn't handle. VERY proud of you Sporty!!!  I would have liked to have heard all the songs you were singing to yourself the whole day 

Congratulations IRONMAN!!!


2010-05-03 3:49 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Expert
937
50010010010010025
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
First off, congratulations. Second, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN. Third, what an amazing attitude. I also agree that your race report was amazing because it was like I was there with you. An amazing experience to say that your first IM was the toughest one ever.
2010-05-03 3:51 PM
in reply to: #2834189

Sensei
Sin City
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

VERY good job!  Great RR!



2010-05-03 3:52 PM
in reply to: #2833128

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2010-05-03 4:01 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Champion
5491
5000100100100100252525
Whizzzzzlandia
Silver member
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Congratulations, and welcome to the club! Laughing
2010-05-03 4:32 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Master
2411
2000100100100100
Goodyear, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

Wow! Jen, what an awesome race report. I knew when you and Josh took on the Ironman, it would be amazing, it would be epic and of course, it would be the most challenging course you could find. I also had no doubt that you would finish it!

Congratulations Ironman!

2010-05-03 4:49 PM
in reply to: #2834292

Expert
911
500100100100100
Somewhere over there in Az
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

So After grabbing a bagof popcorn, i set down and to read your RR.  Wow congrats on the finish  You guys did so well out there.  Now you can sit back and relax for a few days before another one.

2010-05-03 4:53 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Regular
137
10025
Fort Collins, CO
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Every "wannabe Ironman" as you elegantly put it, should be required to read this race report.  Your report inspires me to not forget what Ironman is all about, family, friends, and sharing a good time together.  Amen to putting the watch away, those gadgets only cause worry and stress.  Congrats on your accomplishment, you can do anything!


2010-05-03 6:35 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Veteran
186
100252525
Flagstaff, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Congratulations!  You had a great race not even to mention it being your first IM and an uber-tough course.  I'm glad you enjoyed the whole experience so much.  Your report was so awesome it might inspire me to try one of these triathlons.
2010-05-03 7:04 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Gilbert, Arizona
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Awesome race report Jen or should I say sportyironman.  Congrats to both you and Josh.
2010-05-03 7:19 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Regular
439
10010010010025
Tempe
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah
Congratulations Jen. I'm so happy hear that you had the race you were looking for.  It was also cool to chat with you on the run.
2010-05-03 7:26 PM
in reply to: #2833128

Master
1655
10005001002525
NJ
Subject: RE: Ironman St. George - Utah

Congratulations! What a great RR to read! Great to hear all the wonderful highs of the day

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