General Discussion Race Reports! » Ironman World Championship 70.3 Rss Feed  
Moderators: k9car363, alicefoeller Reply

Ironman World Championship 70.3 - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

View Member's Race Log View other race reports
Henderson, Nevada
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
85F / 29C
Total Time = 4h 26m 42s
Overall Rank = 52/1722
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 4/196
Pre-race routine:

Alarm set for 3 AM and breakfast was ordered for the same time to be delivered to the room. Room service arrived and it was time to get moving. I got some food in me and started to loosed up. Was easy to get up at 3 as it was really only 6 AM EST for me. Had the car ready down in the lobby of the hotel courtesy a very friendly hotel staff at Green Valley. We took off for the race site and I was pretty much one of the first ones down there. No traffic and we had the car parked in no time. We made our way down to the transition area and got the bike set up. Tires pumped and added a few things to my T1 bag. Really made quick work of setting things up.

I met up with David Morris at that point and he had a flat tire on his front wheel. He got that fixed and I took off for my wife and his. Once David was done with his bike we headed back over to his hotel which was the Ravelle located right on the swim course. We walked up and over the bridge and hit the outside court yard and just chilled out. About 20 mins before the pro start it was time to get the speed suit on and get situated. Time to head up onto the bridge for the start of the race. Opsss.... we were supposed to be down in T1 at that point. I almost missed the morning clothes bag truck. Oh well. Not a big deal.
Event warmup:

Light Swimming while waiting for the wave to start.
  • 27m 28s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 18s / 100 yards

Lots of waiting for this one. I was the first one in the water from our wave and before that we had ten minutes after the wave in front of us. We got in the water and swam just to the finish side of the bridge. Then another five minutes of treading water and swimming until we were told to move to the other side of the bridge where the race starts. Once they moved us we had another ten minutes to wait until our wave went off. This was perfect for me as it gave us a huge amount of open water to swim in for almost all of the swim.

I was tired of treading at one point and decided to swim over to the rocks and stand up for a bit. With about 3 minutes to go I made my way back over to the start line in the water and waited. With 1 minute to go it got really packed. I had a good spot on the bouy line which was not the best place to be but I stuck to it anyway. I probably should have started more left but it was way to crowded over there.

Cannon goes off and I almost forgot to go because of all of the background music playing. I hit the gas and mixed it up for about 50-100 meters with 3-4 guys. Straight into the sun. I could not see a thing. Just swim... I got right on the hip of one guy and had a great draft for another 50-100. Then he pulled ahead and I stayed on his feet for a good 10 minutes. I'm pretty sure it was Tim Hola as he was the only guy in my wave to beat me in the swim times. The other guys were in wave 2 for our AG that had faster times. The AG leader pulled away on the back side of the course and truthfully, I was not about to continue the chase. I was more than happy with the open water and the pace I was swimming. I was not breathing hard and I could tell it was going to be hot. No need to take it to threshold just yet. There was plenty of time for that the rest of the day.

I had a bit of a tough time navigating on the way back. I wanted to swim left for some reason but really needed to be going kinda right. I made my way under the bridge and that was the first time I made contact with any of the people in the waves in front of me. I got to the turn buoy, made the left and up the ramp I went.
What would you do differently?:

Transition 1
  • 02m 54s

T1 was a long run around the entire back side of the swim course. As soon as I got out of the water I had a huge cheer from Kim and Davids wife and it was great to see them right there. Up a hill and then down a muddy grassy section. I slipped and sunk into the wet grass on the back side and almost wiped out. I was running really hard with a good sense of urgency, a very attentive volunteer had my bag right there for me. I hit the change tent and took my time. I put the Garmin 310 on and then got the speed suit off the rest of the way. Helmet on and bolted for my bike. I grabbed the bike and was off again. The hill out of T1 was goofy. A full on switch back up a really steep hill right into the parking lot. I hit my bike at full speed and was off. Probably the fastest mount I've ever done.
What would you do differently?:

  • 2h 25m 57s
  • 56 miles
  • 23.02 mile/hr

I'm going to be really hard on myself here. This was a pretty awful ride for me. Was it the hills? Was it the heat? Did I ride to hard to early? Gears not right on the bike? It was a combination of a lot of things. I just didn't execute as well as I could have. I was only passed once on the course and that was by the guy who won my AG. He didn't get me until mile 51 or so.

The course was a lot of fun. Simply put, there are NO roads like this near me. Almost 4000+ feet of climbing and more climbing then descending. Watts are watts though and I did realize that when I planned out how I would ride the race. In retrospect I could have used a 12-25. I was not dying in the 11-23 but I could have eased up just a bit on some of the longer climbs and I think that would have made the difference. Lets just look back to Timberman in 2010. I rode 2:23 on that course and stood on the side of the road for 5 minutes trying to figure out why my disk was rubbing on my chain stay. Timberman was similar but different to this course. I rode 12-25 there. Also last year I was not in anywhere near the same fitness as I am right now and 25 lbs heavier. This ride at LLV will leave me wanting to prove I can ride that course faster and more efficiently in the coming year.

Back to the race.

Coming out of the swim its about a 2 mile climb out of Lake Las Vegas. I was feeling great, HR was high as expected and I was passing people like mad. I don't think I rode to hard here. I made my way to the highway then to the single file no pass section where you go under the highway. A 30-34 female of course decides to pass me there. Unreal. We get back onto the highway and it's now about 20+ miles of rollers until the turn around which is located on the surface of the moon. Downhills are fun. I'm in my 53/11 and killing it. Several times I'm well over 45+ MPH on those sections. The up hills are not that hard but they just never end. Some go for miles in length. I was not blown away by any one particular climb it's just endless up's and down's. Then you turn back around and do it all over again.

I got stuck on the road a few times due to car traffic. A few pickup trucks towing jet skis killed me and some other riders. That killed me and slowed me down a ton. But overall the course was pretty empty for me. I did see massive draft packs in M30-34 coming back the other way on my way out. That was a little annoying. Also a few other people tucked in on peoples wheels. What I noticed about this was that almost all of the single rider drafting I saw was people from other countries.

The last long climb of Lake Mead Park was killer. It went on for quite a bit. I think it was 6+ miles long. This leaves you back at the top of Lake Las Vegas where you started the ride. Then from there it's back to Henderson along the highway and into some industrial areas. At that point I was feeling it. Legs starting to cramp a bit and feeling like I had exerted way to much. We had a tough headwind there and I was going down hill thinking out loud why am I only going 20-22 MPH? I should be riding at like 26+ right now. Very tough mentally at that point.

The last few miles are all uphill again and really not that bad. But my pace just drop a lot. At mile 40 I was averaging close to 25 MPH. I lost almost 2 full MPH off my average in those last 15 miles. That's what bothers me more than anything. I was having a really tough time with the wind and the power was just low at that point.

Hydration was an issue for me. I love the dry heat since the humidity kills me, however, I didn't plan for the fact that I was so dehydrated. I could have used two more water bottles with me on my hydrotail. I took that off for this race and just raced with the aero drink and one bottle on my down tube. I grabbed gatorade and water at almost every aid stop on the bike. I just think it might have been better to have it with me and not have to stop. The plan was to supplement with the aid stations as I did at Eagleman but the plan was not to be so dehydrated either. You live and learn I guess. All part of the 4+ hour equation.

I was glad to hit T2. I jumped off with a flying dismount and handed my bike to a bike catcher.
What would you do differently?:

Lots of things. For another conversation in time though. clearly I left 5-10 mins on that course. That's being conservative to say the least.
Transition 2
  • 01m 36s

I hit T2 really hard and was not sure how my legs were going to respond to standing up. I knew riding was getting old and I was getting some light cramping over the last 15 miles of the bike. I hit the bag area, grabbed my bag, hit the change tent and dumped it all out. Got my shoes and socks on, visor on and was out of there. Took two gels with me. Ate one right away and the other wound up in the trash. I wanted the caffine and some calories but I really needed was liquid at that point.
What would you do differently?:

  • 1h 28m 47s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 06m 47s  min/mile

I didn't really look at the run course before the race. I knew the area was hilly based on the walks I did with my wife. The course did not disappoint. There is a short section out of the T2 tent up a hill then a left turn onto the middle section of the course. Then it's pretty much downhill for a mile. A right turn with a short out and back to a timing mat and then left and back uphill for over a mile to the middle of the course again. Then a left onto Green Valley Pkwy and a constant climb up the highway to the point where you can't even see the top of the hill. I'd say another solid mile plus up hill and then a quick left out and back then a mad kamakazi run down the hill to the finish line and middle of the course. Do that 3 times and your done. Really? Each look between 4.3-4.5 miles.

The downhills were great. Problem was, my legs didn't like them. I'd get to the bottom and things would start to twinge and lock up. That started for me at the end of mile 1. Certainly a byproduct of not enough fluid on the bike and probably a little to hard at some point in Lake Mead Park as well. The uphills where as hard as you'd expect by my body was ok. It was just hot and hard. HR in the low 160s for most of this which is where I'd expect it.

I'd get to the middle of the course and Kim and David's wife where there cheering and going nuts. A great boost every time we passed through. I was passing people on the run course like mad and not getting passed at all. I saw Tim Hola and Chris Thomas a ways back and knew I had my work cut out for me. Over the first 6-7 miles I was averaging under 6:20 for my pace. I was passing a few of the male Pro's and a decent amount of the women. So I just stuck with it. I really was not feeling good at all. I was really happy with that despite the cramping that was going on and the fact that it was warming up temp wise. Overall pace was slower than where I wanted to be but I also didn't realize the affect of riding with that much elevation gain. So I was happy with my pace. Some place around mile 7-8 the $hit hit the fan for me. I came down the back end of one of the hills and as I came off the hill my VMO and hamstrings went into full on spasm and lock mode. I stopped and stretched. But not only did I stop I was talking outloud and yelling, "No, No, Not now!" Pretty funny in retrospect. Not funny at the time. I kept moving and got some kind words from people. They all keep telling me to keep on moving don't stop.... I tried. At this point I was about to walk off the course. Get it together. I was losing it mentally but I really didn't want to be in that much pain either.

At some point I realized that no one had really passed me yet in my AG. So back on track and running again, I was moving. I figured if I was in a bad spot, they must be as well. The gaps were still the same to the AG guys chasing.

The last lap was tough. The last 2.5 miles was not easy at all. The uphill was a huge struggle. I got to the top, did the out and back and saw that the gap to the Timex guys had shrunk a lot. I decided at this point I had nothing to lose. I knew I was in 2-3rd spot in my AG at that point and I had a mile downhill to go. I leaned into it and started after it. Legs moving and thanking god that I was a larger guy with a lot of body weight momentum on that downhill. Chris Thomas makes his pass on me. Crap. Now what.... I latch onto him and run from about half mile to go with him as fast I can. No aid station for either of us. Just race. He pulls away a bit and I stay on the gas. I make the last right turn to the middle of the course and see the left to the finish line. I cross what I think is the timing mat and hear a beep. Dam, Tim Hola is on my shoulder and is still racing for the finish arch. 2 seconds. He beat me for 3rd by 2 seconds right there. We had a pretty good laugh about it in the moments after the race and at the awards banquet. I was glad to be done. Happy I finished and ready to relax. Then my body told me that it was about to totally lock up. Let the post race fun begin...
What would you do differently?:

Post race
Warm down:

Could not get a massage. Legs were locking. Went to med tent and was freezing cold. Drank about 5 gatorades to get rehydrated and some electrolytes back in me.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Smarter pacing early in the bike.

Event comments:

In all, for the first year for this race in LLV it was pretty good. I think they still have some logistical stuff to work out. Cars on the course in the park is a nightmare. Pre-Race registration lacked a bit. Clearwater was way more organized. Transition was a mess in T1 if you ask me. The goofy switch back was not necessary. Overall a fair course. You needed to be prepared and strong on this day. Show up with out the proper race prep and it would have been a really long day out there.

Last updated: 2011-07-06 12:00 AM
00:27:28 | 2112 yards | 01m 18s / 100yards
Age Group: 4/196
Overall: 65/1722
Performance: Average
Suit: XTerra Velocity M
Course: Clockwise rectangle located in Lake Las Vegas
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 80F / 27C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Good Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
Time: 02:54
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Good
02:25:57 | 56 miles | 23.02 mile/hr
Age Group: 4/196
Overall: 0/1722
Performance: Below average
Ride Time (Time Moving) 02:26:22 Distance, mi 56.2 Work, kJ 5309 Temperature, °F 80.04 Average Power, Watts 268 Average Cadence 100 Average Speed, mph 10.25 Average Heart Rate 154 Weight, lbs 177.9 VAM 214
Wind: Some
Course: Rolling Lake Mead Rec Park and Then back to Henderson
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 100
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Not enough
Time: 01:36
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
01:28:47 | 13.1 miles | 06m 47s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/196
Overall: 0/1722
Performance: Good
Course: 3 loop course
Keeping cool Good Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
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

2011-09-16 8:32 AM

User image

Subject: Ironman World Championship 70.3

2011-09-16 8:48 AM
in reply to: #3689107

User image

Fountain Hills, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
I have been looking forward to reading your report Mike. First off it was so great to meet you finally and spend some quality time. I think your result was outstanding. Regarding the bike, I think you did have a great ride cosidering the specificity of the course and conditions vs. what you train in. It makes a big difference and I think you rode it correctly. I ran an 11/23 as I am so acclimated to climbing and like a big gear. And when a guy like Jalbert rides a 2:17, I don't think that course can be run a whole lot faster then what we did, ceratinly not 10min. It was great seeing you out on the run course, you helped keep me focused and motivated. Awesome job, my man!
2011-09-16 9:02 AM
in reply to: #3689107

User image

Westlake Village , Ca.
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Great race Mike. I was standing at the finishing chute by the Ford Suv yelling my off at you! He's coming! He's coming...speaking of Tim. It was pretty exciting at the time....again, great job man.
2011-09-16 9:39 AM
in reply to: #3689107

User image

Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Great race!!  I am amazed at your speed!
2011-09-16 11:44 AM
in reply to: #3689107

Northern IL
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Nice job Mike!  This is something reading these race reports.
2011-09-16 12:45 PM
in reply to: #3689107

User image

Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Great race.  Congrats.  

2011-09-16 2:03 PM
in reply to: #3689642

User image

Extreme Veteran
Spokane, Wa
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Great race mike! Very good in all three disciplines. Sucks to get passed on the final downhill but 4th in that AG is very impressive!
2011-09-16 8:21 PM
in reply to: #3689107

User image

Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Thanks all for the kind words.  It was a fun one!
2011-09-17 5:41 AM
in reply to: #3689107

Subject: ...
This user's post has been ignored.
2011-09-18 4:48 PM
in reply to: #3689107

Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
That's an awesome race.  Good stuff.  Congrats on the podium.  You worked hard and deserve it.
2011-09-19 7:10 AM
in reply to: #3689107

Reston, VA
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Your training has been spot on all year and it showed in this race. Congratulations on a great race and a killer season!

2011-09-21 1:38 PM
in reply to: #3689107

Barrington, NJ
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3

Well done.

2011-09-23 2:41 PM
in reply to: #3689107

Guilford, CT
Subject: RE: Ironman World Championship 70.3
Inspiring performance.   I enjoy your race reports.  Really solid work!
General Discussion-> Race Reports!
General Discussion Race Reports! » Ironman World Championship 70.3 Rss Feed