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Ironman Louisville - Triathlon

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Louisville, Kentucky
United States
World Triathlon Corporation
90F / 32C
Total Time = 14h 16m 16s
Overall Rank = 1583/
Age Group = W30-34
Age Group Rank = 58/98
Pre-race routine:

Canned coffee and granola bar, foam rolled
Event warmup:

Ran to swim start line
  • 1h 29m 58s
  • 4156 yards
  • 02m 10s / 100 yards

The Ohio River is nasty. As soon as I got horizontal and put my face in the water I could just taste the dirt and grime in the water. Since I started in the very front I was getting a lot of contact from others. With a race this big and the fact that I put myself in the very front that was expected. Just like in 2011, getting past Towhead Island seemed like a big struggle. I was staying at my normal long-distance pace, telling myself not to get frantic and start sprinting. 2.4 miles is a really long way in the water. When I got around the first turn buoy after the island the competitors spread out a lot more and I didn't experience any more contact.

I could here coach Jennifer in my head yelling at me to keep my head straight. I could taste some kind of gas or oil in the water, and of course in a swim this long its inevitable I will swallow some on accident. The whole river is just gross. I crossed under the first of two bridges and got excited since I knew the swim was almost over. After the first bridge I picked up the pace some because I was really tired of swimming and wanted this portion of the race to be over. Made it under the second bridge and kept on swimming. A few hundred meters after crossing under the second bridge I could hear the music coming from transition. About 50 meters from the swim exit stairs I went at my 75% pace and finally made it. Its a deep water exit with stairs and volunteers are in the water grabbing hands and pulling us to the stairs. I reached out and was grabbed by a volunteer and pulled in. I climbed up the stairs, ran across the timing mat, and was relived the swim was over for the day
What would you do differently?:

swim faster
Transition 1
  • 08m 2s

Grabbed my bike gear bag from a volunteer and ran into the women's changing tent. Lots of smiles in here, I suspected a lot of other ladies were also relieved the swim was over. A volunteer grabbed me a few cups of water, was so nice to drink clean water. I put on my cycling shoes. Put on my Hoo Haa chamois cream, and wiped my hands the best I could with a hand towel. Put on my sunglasses and finally my hot pink Rudy helmet. Stuffed my tri top pockets with some Cliff Shot Bloks and headed out of the tent to get lathered up by the sunscreen volunteers. The volunteer took one look at my very pale upper arms, back, and shoulders and said "yes sweetie, you really need this". Got lathered up and hit the porta potty before grabbing my bike. Grabbed my bike, unlike last time, there were several bikes still on the rack. Last time mine was the last one
What would you do differently?:

Decent T1 for an ironman for me
  • 6h 45m 43s
  • 112 miles
  • 16.56 mile/hr

Mounted my bike at the line and I was off. I was planning on being really conservation on the bike ride. 112 mile of rolling hills really wears the legs off. I already knew this bike course was brutal. I even had a message to myself taped to the top tube, it said "be patient". I knew there were many sections of this bike course I could hammer it, but doing that would come at a cost later, I learned that the last time I did this race. The first 10 miles is flat. It would have been so easy to hammer this section, but I knew some brutal hills were coming up soon. I rode easy for these first 10 miles, and drank some water to try to flush out my stomach. There is an out and back section after this with some screaming downhills and some tough climbs. Fortunately this section is only done once. On my way out to the turn-around there was a competitor down on the other side of the road, scraped up, bloody, and unconscious. They were putting him on a backboard, I said a silent prayer for him.

I learned here that screaming downhills still scare the s**t out of me, but I can handle it better now and I don't have to ride the brakes. I also learned that in the past two years I have become a better climber. I grabbed a bonk breaker bar from the aid station on the section and ate it quickly. I was keeping up on my hydration as well. Make it out of the out and back and heading toward my first of 2 loops around LaGrange Township. LaGrange has a party going on for the Ironman spectators, so I was looking forward to rolling through there and seeing Loraine and Nikky. The whole course is rolling, its constantly up and down. It was starting to warm up outside as well with an expected high of 92 degrees. After going up and down another few hills I heard the party music and knew I was about to roll through LaGrange. Rolled through LaGrange getting lots of crowd love and saw Loraine and Nikky shouting and cheering for me. I gave them a wave and big smile letting them know I was feeling good.

In my opinion, the roads a few miles past the LaGrange party are the most difficult. I struggled in the granny gear in many of the climbs and my legs were burning, feeling like acid was pumping through the veins in my legs. At mile 47 I stopped at an aid station to pee. I had rashes on my underarms and back of my neck and they were really starting to bother me. I was still keeping with my hydration plan and squirting water on my back where the sun was hitting. I stopped at special needs at mile 66 and chugged my Starbucks Espresso Shot and put my Payday candy bar in my tri top pocket. I asked the volunteer to help me apply the spray-on sunscreen on my back and when it hit the rash on my neck it burned like fire, ouch! Took off down the road again. A few miles later we rode through the party in LaGrange again. Once again I got to see Loraine and Nikky and got some more spectator love. I gave my sherpas another smile and wave to let them know I was still ok, but really I was starting to feel bad.

Heading out for the second LaGrange loop, I was happy this was the last time I would have to experience these gnarly hills, but I felt some dread knowing I would have to ride up and down them again. I ate my Payday bar which was actually quite difficult while riding. Around this time my legs were really starting to hurt, my hamstrings were aching. Around mile 85 the ride went south quick. I was feeling very nauseous. I had no idea why. I did everything right, my nutrition was the same as it was in training all year. I had no idea why I was experiencing this now. The nausea got worse going up and down the hills. Finally made it to the last 10 miles, which was the same flat 10 mile stretch that the bike course began with. What happened next was really strange. My plan was to ride easy in the aero bars on this 10 mile stretch back to transition. Every time I got in the aero bars, I would be in there for 2 minutes and have to sit up quickly to keep from puking all over my bike, had a few close calls. This has never happened before, I really didn't know how to react to this. To play it safe I rode on the hoods all the way back to transition. Rode back into Downtown Louisville and heard the music and saw the crowd and was relieved the bike was over. Dismounted the bike and handed it to the bike catcher. Took off my helmet and walked down the chute headed to my run gear bag and the changing tent.
What would you do differently?:

Not sure
Transition 2
  • 15m 10s

I was hoping I only had some sort of strange seasickness thing and my nausea would go away once I got off the bike. Grabbed my run gear bag from the volunteer and headed into the women's changing tent. Even in my misery at this point I was excited all I had left was a run and I would finish another Ironman. I sat down in a chair and didn't do anything, I just sat there. 3 different volunteers asked me if I was ok because apparently I looked sick. I told them I was fine and that I just needed a minute to gather myself. I took off my cycling shoes and put on my pink Swiftwick socks and my Zoot running shoes. I drank a few cups of water and put my running hat on. I was still feeling very nauseous but knew I still had to get a marathon out of this body to finish this thing. I stood up, stuffed my tri top pockets with more Cliff Shot Bloks, put on my race number belt, and headed out to get lathered with sunscreen again. One last porta potty stop and I left T2
What would you do differently?:

go faster
  • 5h 37m 33s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 12m 53s  min/mile

With my nausea and the way my stomach was feeling, my plan of running the first 10 miles at a 9:40-10:00 pace quickly went out the window. I knew this marathon was going to be about survival and making it to the finish line. I was able to run the first 2 miles, I was happy about that. A little after the first mile I saw Loraine and Nikky cheering for me telling me I look good. I smiled and told them I wasn't feeling very good. The smile was because I didn't want them to worry about me.

After mile 2 I started walking 3 minutes, running 7 minutes. This worked out well for the first 10 miles of the run. At this time I was struggling with nutrition, every solid I tired to eat, my stomach pouch would start contracting to push it back up. All I could do at this point was liquids. I gave some encouragement to a 22 year old kid, he was really hurting and having a bad time, his legs were cramping bad. I told him at this point he could walk and still be an ironman. Around mile 12 I was heading back downtown for the turnaround to go out for the second loop of the run. When I saw Loraine and Nikky there was no hiding behind a smile this time, it was evident that I was really hurting and having issues. Every muscle in my leg was cramping, my rashes I obtained in the swim were burning, and I couldn't take in any solid foods like I trained with. Heading back out toward the second loop after the turnaround, Loraine ran alongside me a few feet to give me a few encouraging words.

The second loop was a dark time for me. Everything hurt, inside and out. I would run 1-3 minutes at a time when I could, it was so painful. I thought about my family and my girls, and my journey up to this point. I was getting really loopy and swearing all over the road. Since my body kept rejecting any solid food I tried to eat, I would sip perform and drink water at the aid stations. Annoyingly, at the last 5 aid stations I had to pee at every one of them. I was monitoring my urine at this point to make sure there wasn't any blood, which is an indicator of kidney failure. Thankfully, as horrible as I felt, I wasn't experiencing this. At mile 22 the pain was just getting more and more intense, but I knew it was almost over. I was really hoping I wasn't letting anyone down at this point, since my run splits were probably looking terrible.

It was such a fight to the finish, one foot in front of the other. Just keep moving forward. The pain and darkness were overcoming me and I was fighting back determined to finish this thing. Mile 23 and 24 came slowly, my legs no longer powered by their own muscles, only by my mind. Jogged when my mind gathered up enough strength to make my legs move. Finally made it to the last aid station at mile 25 and told myself after a 2 minutes walk after the aid station I will run all the way to the finish line with whatever I could muster out of this tired body. Stared at my Garmin until the 2 minutes passed, took a deep breath, and went. Pain, pain piercing throughout my body, but I cannot stop now. Intense pain, gritting teeth, face clenched. Hold on for a little while longer. I could hear the music and the cheering. I made it! I was going to finish another Ironman! This former morbidly obese mom of 2 was going to finish a second Ironman! I ran into the finishing chute and I started crying, tears started flowing. I ran into the white light, raised my arms, and crossed the finish line
What would you do differently?:

Better training maybe
Post race
Warm down:

Got a massage and tried to eat some food but throat was burning

What limited your ability to perform faster:

honestly not sure

Event comments:

WTC always puts on world class races. This was my second Ironman and they did not dissapoint

Last updated: 2012-12-28 12:00 AM
01:29:58 | 4156 yards | 02m 10s / 100yards
Age Group: 81/98
Overall: 2014/
Performance: Average
Course: Around an island then down river
Start type: Dive Plus: Time Trial
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current:
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting:
Waves: Navigation: Average
Rounding: Average
Time: 08:02
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
06:45:43 | 112 miles | 16.56 mile/hr
Age Group: 49/98
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Course: Lollypop with 2 loops with an added out and back
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 15:10
Overall: Below average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
05:37:33 | 26.2 miles | 12m 53s  min/mile
Age Group: 58/98
Overall: 1538/
Performance: Below average
Course: 2 loops
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Too hard
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2013-08-29 8:46 PM

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Fort Riley, Kansas
Subject: Ironman Louisville

2013-08-30 7:58 AM
in reply to: #4842739

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Atlanta, Georgia
Bronze member
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Congrats on your day and great RR!

Jeez that race looks tough...
2013-08-30 7:51 PM
in reply to: #4842739

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Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville

Congrats on your 2nd IM finish!

No doubt about it you are tough determined women. Being nauseous during an IM really sucks.

How was your training compared to your first?

Looks like you got a PB as well.


2013-08-30 8:08 PM
in reply to: KathyG

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Western WI
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Hey - way to go. Really tough good work out there!! Sometimes, the it's the mind that keeps you going, not the body. Great job finishing in that heat!!
2013-08-31 8:14 AM
in reply to: KathyG

User image

Fort Riley, Kansas
Subject: RE: Ironman Louisville
Originally posted by KathyG

Congrats on your 2nd IM finish!

No doubt about it you are tough determined women. Being nauseous during an IM really sucks.

How was your training compared to your first?

Looks like you got a PB as well.


Thank you! My training was much better compared to my first, I did a lot more swimming and cycling and felt ready on race morning
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