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ChesapeakeMan Ultra Distance Triathlon - TriathlonFull Ironman

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Cambridge, Maryland
United States
Columbia Triathlon Association
70F / 21C
Total Time = 13h 14m 59s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = 55-59
Age Group Rank = 4/9
Pre-race routine:

I got about five solid hours of sleep but then woke up around 2 wide awake, so I just got up and got ready. I ate a bagel and peanut butter, then loaded my bags with food and beverages and headed to the high school, where T2 was and where I caught the bus to T1 at the Great Marsh.
Event warmup:

I hung my bag on the hook, checked my bike to make sure the tires were inflated. I discovered that the cover I bought to keep it somewhat protected from the heavy rains didn't really do much. The arm pads and seat were soaked anyway. Oh well. I walked around in the dark a bit, then sat down on a dry spot. I talked with a guy from the bus, who when he found out I was a psychiatrist couldn't help himself from telling me his life story, which was actually pretty interesting and inspiring, even in my pre-race state, in which I'm typically internally preoccupied and focused and not usually conversational. I ate half a bar about 30 minutes before the swim. I was glad that the possible thunderstorms did not materialize and that the swim was going to happen-- a sliver of moon was even visible. I got my wetsuit on and got in the water. The only warmup was to swim to the starting line. I was a little apprehensive about what this day was going to bring, to say the least!
  • 1h 16m 20s
  • 4224 yards
  • 01m 49s / 100 yards

There was a mass start, with all of the Ultra athletes at once, so it was pretty crowded. Not the worst crowding I've ever experienced, but close, but I'm way more comfortable with this than I used to be. Still, I was struggling a bit in the beginning with the crowds and was breathing more heavily than I would've liked. By the far buoy on the first loop, however, I was fine and settled into a nice, easy strong stroke and rhythm which I pretty much held throughout. I was slightly worried ahead of time about never having swum 4000 yards straight in training but it turned out to be not an issue. I wasn't really even breathing hard when I got out of the water and still had what was for me a great time. As for the jellyfish/sea nettle issue-- I felt many of them brush by me, but I never got stung.
What would you do differently?:

Maybe I could push the swim more.
Transition 1
  • 12m 44s

This was not a good transition, in part because of logistics. The tent was really crowded, and it was hard to find a spot to lay out my things and change. I had to pee, and the porta-potty was _after_ going through the transition area. So I had to change (and I decided to wear a bike jersey for the bigger pockets), go out of T1 to the PP (while avoiding going over the timing mat), and then go back to my bike. I also lost time because I couldn't get my old Garmin to boot up. Damn. Then I discovered when I got back to my bike that I'd forgotten to put my food in my pockets-- I'd left it in my bag in the changing tent. Fortunately the bag was still there and easy to find. I got my food and then headed out.
What would you do differently?:

Remember my stuff before leaving the tent!
  • 6h 30m 10s
  • 112 miles
  • 17.22 mile/hr

I consciously kept my riding easy, and even backed off from that during most of the first loop. I pushed a little harder on the second loop. I stayed in aero most of the time, although got out of it periodically to stretch my shoulders which did get a little sore at times. The wind was stronger for the first loop and wasn't much of a factor for the second. The section with the water on the road was interesting the first time and just plain irritating the second time. It was up over my pedals and just completely drenched my shoes and socks and tri shorts (and even though there was little traffic a car passed me in this section both times and couldn't help but splash me). After the rain all night my drive train was already squeaking a bit and after a trip through the water it was worse. Overall, though, it was an enjoyable ride, and despite being flat I thought the scenery was beautiful and peaceful. It drizzled on and off a bit, but the rain mostly held off. My nutrition plan worked well, I think-- I had two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, a power bar and a half, half a cliff bar, a few bottles of gatorade, and two or three gels. My legs felt a little tired early, but my energy held up pretty good throughout once I got warmed up. My left hamstring felt a little tight(after getting splashed by the water on the road) but never really became an issue.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing, really. Do more speedwork in training, I guess.
Transition 2
  • 09m 11s

I was so glad I packed a dry pair of socks to change into considering my socks were soaked in brackish standing water and my feet were wrinkly from being wet. There was a moment of truth sitting on the chair when I allowed myself to wonder how I was ever going to run 26 miles. I pushed it out of my mind and got up and headed out.
  • 5h 06m 36s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 11m 42s  min/mile

The first mile was tough. I felt really tired. But after the first water stop and a bathroom stop, I felt energized and was into it again. My strategy was to walk the water stops. I really enjoyed the run-- the three loops didn't bother me because it gave me a good idea of just how far I had to go, and it was cool to keep seeing people passing by, and get to know the spectators and water-stop people. I had a running conversation with one group who happened to be from Doylestown, and that was cool. I was in good spirits throughout-- joked with a bearded guy at a water stop whose beard (almost) rivaled mine and with some kids who called me Santa Claus. I did tire around 17 miles and thought I was going to end up having to walk the rest, but after about a quarter-mile of walking, I figured I was just as tired as I was running and just got going again. From then on I ran, and when I knew there was only a 5k left, I felt fantastic. What a difference from my first (stand-alone) marathon experience. I drank mostly water, just a couple of cups of Gatorade. I passed on the coke and soup and cookies.
What would you do differently?:

More speedwork in training.
Post race
Warm down:

The race director sat me down at the finish line and treated me like a creaky old man. I felt fine, though it _was_ nice to sit down. I walked around briefly and got something to eat and chatted with a few people I'd gotten to know on the run, then got my stuff and headed to the hotel.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I guess I was tired-- I would've liked to have run faster, but I'm completely happy with my swim and bike times, as well as my overall time, especially for my first Ultra.

Event comments:

This was an epic journey. I'm so glad I did it, and am looking forward to the next one!

Last updated: 2011-07-26 12:00 AM
01:16:20 | 4224 yards | 01m 49s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/9
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Suit: wetsuit, no tri top
Course: Right turns, two loops.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 72F / 22C Current: Low
200M Perf. Below average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Good Navigation: Good
Rounding: Average
Time: 12:44
Performance: Bad
Cap removal: Below average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
06:30:10 | 112 miles | 17.22 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/9
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: Flat, flat, and flat. Two loops through the Blackwater Refuge. Great roads, for the most part-- just one rough section with about a mile of rough road, followed by about a mile of standing water up to four inches or so deep.
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 09:11
Overall: Below average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
05:06:36 | 26.2 miles | 11m 42s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/9
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Course: It was a flat out-and-back course which we did three times.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
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: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2011-09-30 7:01 AM

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Subject: ChesapeakeMan Ultra Distance Triathlon
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