General Discussion Race Reports! » Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance Rss Feed  
Moderators: k9car363, alicefoeller Reply

Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance - Triathlon

View Member's Race Log View other race reports
Flagstaff, Arizona
United States
Mountain Man Events
69F / 21C
Total Time = 6h 13m 59s
Overall Rank = 50/90
Age Group = 35-39
Age Group Rank = 11/15
Pre-race routine:

It was cold...and I was tired. This was an out-of-town event for me so it was a cheap hotel rooms and sleepless nights kind of race. I laid in bed the night before for hours without being able to sleep...11pm, 12am, 1am...I watched as the time went by. At one point I started wondering if I was really going to be able to do a Half Ironman distance race with close to 3000 ft. of totally climbing AT elevation without out any sleep at all. Finally I woke up at 2am. "Thank you" , I thought...Even if it was just an hour, an hour is something. I eventually had 2 more hour-or-so naps and I was ready to race.

Breakfast was a couple cups of coffee, a banana and a gel...Not nearly enough to get me through such a tough race.
Event warmup:

There wasn't a whole lot of warming up...Chatted it up with some friends I had racing, set up transition and put on the wetsuit. I was in the low 50's at the start of the race. So for me, very cold. The water, however, was around 70...perfect swimming temps and I was ready to warm up.
  • 42m 31s
  • 2112 yards
  • 02m 01s / 100 yards

My swim was fine...Nothing spectacular, but at elevation I wanted to make sure that I didn't get too crazy at anytime during the race. It never fails at Mountain Man; within the first buoy turn you'll always see about 20 guys on their backs who went out too hard not accounting for the thin air. I was not one of them...

...That doesn't mean that I didn't have to stop every once in a while, though. There were NO middle siting buoy(s). Literally NONE. That means that I was trying to site off of a tiny yellow buoy that was well over 1000m away. Of course, I was mostly siting off people who were ahead of me, but it's nice to know where you're at during a 1.2 mile swim.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing...Siting went well, swam in a fairly straight line and avoided too much drama in the water. (Although I did did whacked in the eye pretty good.)

I'm pretty sure I PRed my swim time here which was a nice surprise since I took it easy. My watch showed 41:33...
Transition 1
  • 04m 21s

No hurry here...I was very cold, "shivering bad" cold. I just wanted to make sure I had all of my nutrition since there weren't any aid stations on the bike. (Unless you count the one guy out there handing out bottles of water)
What would you do differently?:

I suppose I could of had a little more urgency, but lets face it, it wouldn't have made a huge difference.
  • 3h 02m 12s
  • 56 miles
  • 18.46 mile/hr

Coming out of that water I was COLD!! In fact, I was shivering almost to a point to where I thought I was going to have to stop pedaling. Muscles tensing up, no feeling in my limbs...It wasn't fun. Luckily that didn't last long. As soon as I got into the sunshine and started to dry off I felt least temperature wise.

The course was very tough...Not only was I at altitude, but the roads were recently chip sealed and even on the older pavement it wasn't easy to find a super smooth spot to ride. Couple that with the fact that there is 2300 feet of climbing on this course and you've got a pretty tough bike leg. I had one goal for this ride: Don't burn out. I can at least say that I executed that plan perfectly. My fastest time on the bike course in training was 3:17 so I was hoping for a 3:15-3:20 split. I was happy to see that I came in at 3:02, 15 minutes faster than any other time I'd been out there.
What would you do differently?:

I think just train harder and become faster...I would pass a lot of folks on the climbs who would then pass me again on the flats so I'm sure there's something I can do about that. I also had to pee the entire time I was on my bike...Hard to push super hard when your bladder hurts. And since there wasn't any porta-potties on the course, (literally not one) this was pretty big deal.
Transition 2
  • 03m 20s

Not fast, but a little faster...I was so not looking forward to this run. Like before, I took my time to make sure I had everything I needed and took off on what would be a challenging 13.1 miles. Kim and Tom, who had already finished the OLY distance race, kept me company and offered me encouragement...
  • 2h 21m 33s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 10m 47s  min/mile

This is really where the whole race fell apart...Exceeded my expectation on both the swim and the bike just to have my run completely fall apart. I actually felt great at the beginning and maybe I pushed it a little too hard...I haven't been running consistently due to injury and I'm sure that didn't help, but leading up to my demise, my legs actually felt fine.

About 1.5 miles into the run, we had to climb the dreaded Lake Marshall hill. This road zig zags up a mountain climbing 453 feet within a mile and a half...The bad news, it hurt. The good news, I was finally able to find a semi private tree to pee on before coming back down.

After coming back down the hill I was still feeling good. I was well on my way to smash my goal of 6:00 and even though I started feeling a little woozy, I still felt that I could keep my pace and finish strong. Well, as we all know, feeling a little woozy 4 miles into a 13 mile run is never a good thing. I tried taking in some "heed" (put in quotations because it was more like water with a hint of Heed residue) at one of the aid stations, but it was not helping a bit. And while I was glad they had water every mile and a half, would it have killed them to have a little fruit available?!

Seeing the 6 mile marker only reminded me that I still had 7 miles to go...I was feeling quiet light headed at this point and I knew I had to do something to finish this race. It was at this point I decided that I'd do a 5:1 minute run/walk to get to the finish line.

(15 minutes later)

It was at this point I decided that I'd do a 3:1 run/walk.

Okay, let's try a 1:1 run/walk...Which eventually turned into a 1:2 and unfortunately it didn't stop slowing down there.

This was my race for about 5 miles until I reach that "2 miles left marker"...A cyclist was cruising by offering everybody words of encouragement and said to me, "90% of the pain is above your shoulders". It's weird how sometimes stupid sayings you'd expect to see on a Runner's World Meme can get you going again. I agreed that a majority of my angst was in my head and convinced myself that if I hadn't passed out yet I wasn't going to and ran the last 2 miles without stopping. A small victory in an other wise disappointing run...
What would you do differently?:

Fuel better...I knew that there wasn't any support on this course, but thought that what I brought would be good enough. Never take for granted a well supported race!
Also, If I wouldn't have gone out so fast I may have gotten through it without having to walk...I do believe that that first walk break was my first step on the downward spiral.

2:21 on the run...almost 30 minutes slower than other other at that distance.
Post race
Warm down:

Feeling slightly defeated, I just packed up my stuff and waited for some friends to finish...There were a lot of familiar faces up there who asked about my race. Of course I had to go into the long winded explanation about why I wasn't finished a half hour ago. But considering everything that went wrong, I was ecstatic about everything that went right...70.3 miles is no easy task, especially that course, and I felt accomplished at the end of the day and excited for my next race.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

1.) Nutrition
2.) Elevation
3.) Proper rest
4.) Training

In that order...

Event comments:

"The toughest race you'll ever love"

I vowed to do the half last year after finishing the OLY and I'm glad I did...Not sure if I'll ever do it again, (although I do think I should redeem myself for the poor performance) but I will most definitely be up here for the OLY at least. Still to this day, one of my favorite courses ever...

Last updated: 2013-02-04 12:00 AM
00:42:31 | 2112 yards | 02m 01s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/15
Overall: 0/90
Performance: Good
Suit: xterra vortex sleeveless
Course: Large "rectangular-ish" course...
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 69F / 21C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Good Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 04:21
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
03:02:12 | 56 miles | 18.46 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/15
Overall: 0/90
Course: Chip sealed road down Lake Mary and around Mormon Lake. Very pretty course...
Road: Rough Dry Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Too much
Time: 03:20
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
02:21:33 | 13.1 miles | 10m 47s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/15
Overall: 0/90
Performance: Bad
Course: South on Lake Mary RD with a quick detour UP Lake Marshall RD.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Ok
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? No
Plenty of drinks? No
Post race activities: Bad
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2013-08-15 4:16 PM

User image

Chandler, AZ
Subject: Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance

2013-08-16 12:09 PM
in reply to: #4830312

User image

Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance
Nice RR... you dealt with some adversity, perservered... next time, get some rest... the first time is the hardest on this course... next year you'll do a lot better. Yep, catch up with ya in Tempe.
General Discussion-> Race Reports!
General Discussion Race Reports! » Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance Rss Feed  

Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance

Started by Synon
Views: 1405 Posts: 2

2010-08-09 5:35 PM SauseEnte

Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance

Started by bryancd
Views: 2802 Posts: 19

2009-07-22 10:45 AM sgoehner

Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance

Started by SauseEnte
Views: 2054 Posts: 11

2009-07-30 4:25 PM DoloresM2

Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance

Started by Pilgrim
Views: 952 Posts: 1

2007-11-23 11:45 AM Pilgrim

Mountain Man Triathlon - Half Iron Distance

Started by HoffmanMLH
Views: 988 Posts: 1

2007-08-27 9:41 PM HoffmanMLH
date : June 28, 2012
author : writingrunner
comments : 0
How my first half iron distance triathlon brought back feelings of high school competition.
date : September 22, 2009
author : Ali Winslow
comments : 0
Is it realistic to race a sprint and Olympic distance race within 2-3 weeks of one another to gauge my progress before tackling the half Ironman?
date : June 17, 2009
comments : 0
With stroke improvements I find that when I try and swim long I have lost any speed gains that I had because my stroke count just creeps up and up. I also feel like I'm running out of air.
date : August 21, 2008
author : vm354
comments : 1
How Pilates training helped a wanna-be triathlete realize the goal of completing a half-Ironman, Ironman 70.3 Rhode Island.
date : August 17, 2007
author : scoli121
comments : 6
I quickly browsed an article in Men's Health that talked about doing a triathlon, and how it wasn't really that hard. With a "tsk!" I quickly turned the page while thinking, "Yeah, right!"
date : October 30, 2005
author : mikericci
comments : 0
This program should be used for an athlete who has been following the progression of the Half Iron Distance program and is 12 weeks out from their first Iron distance race.
date : September 3, 2005
author : chrisandniki
comments : 0
This is not an easy task, especially for the “9-to-5er” with family. But you can do it – all without sacrificing your marriage, job or family.
date : September 10, 2004
author : steve
comments : 0
So after about 10,000 emails, dozens of phone calls, and one pre-race pasta dinner, the 1st meeting of the Steve's in a triathlon finally arrived.