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Ironman 70.3 Vineman - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Windsor, California
United States
Vineman, Inc.
75F / 24C
Total Time = 7h 42m 41s
Overall Rank = 1957/2172
Age Group = 45 - 49
Age Group Rank = 198/210
Pre-race routine:

Woke up a little after 4:00 am. Ate some corn flakes with a sliced banana on top. Used restroom and got dressed. Body glide and sunblock applied. Gathered my swim/bike things and headed to Gurneville.

Dropped running gear and race belt at T2 Saturday after orientation meeting.
Event warmup:

Arrived in time to watch the Pro start at 6:25. Set up transition and walked over to the pedestrian bridge to watch the pro's finish the swim. Watched the top Pro men and women start on the bike and then headed down to transition again to use the porta-potties
  • 37m 25s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 46s / 100 yards

AMAZING! This was the coolest race swim ever. At the start I hung back just a bit to keep out of the main fray, but soon was passing the slower swimmers in the wave. A couple hundred feet into the swim you pass under a pedestrian bridge. I had been keeping an eye on the bridge when breathing and sighting until I was clear of the bridge, then I rolled onto my back and waved (knowing my wife was somewhere on the bridge) she was right above me waving and hollering. Huge confidence boost to see her up there. The swim went smooth. My hands hit bottom quite a few times and my fingertips were sore later in the day from the contact with the gravel, but not so much as to distract from anything. Had to stand and wade around the turn around buoy because the water was so shallow. The rest of the swim went great. Only light contact from time to time with other swimmers.
What would you do differently?:

maybe work on my sighting more in practice and figure out how to swim without swallowing the air that caused problems later.
Transition 1
  • 04m 44s

T1 was pretty smooth. I took my time knowing that it was going to be a long day and I wasn't worried about the time. Transfered my garmin to the bike mount. Did my best to dry my feet and then get into sock and bike shoes. pulled on a bike jersey over my tri top before putting my helmet and glasses. bagged all of my gear, grabbed my bike and headed for the transition exit.
What would you do differently?:

  • 3h 33m 47s
  • 56 miles
  • 15.72 mile/hr

I love riding my bike, but I don't have much power so my speeds are low for my age group. I was hoping to average 16 mph and finish in 3:30. Early in the ride it seemed like I was on pace to meet or even beat that goal. The course was beautiful. Yes you are riding alongside a busy road for a while but not too far into the ride you take a very sharp and downhill turn *BE CAREFUL* and then you are off the busy streets for the rest of the ride. All seemed to be going well until about 20 miles into the ride I started getting some stomach discomfort. It got progressively worse over the next 20 miles. I tried stopping to use a port-a-potty around mile 40, but it gave me no relief from the stomach pains. The hills were challenging, especially when in pain. Coming down the other side and into Windsor should have been the easiest part of the ride, but it was the most difficult. I could not maintain the pace I had hoped for and I felt as though I was riding into a headwind for much of the last 15 miles. I did manage to come in close to my goal here but I was really hurting g by the end.
What would you do differently?:

Looking back I'm sure the stomach pain had to do with swallowing excess air during the swim. It's something I've experienced before after training days in the pool, but I'd never experienced it like that during a race. SO next time I need to go easier on the swim and focus more on steady breathing. Possible eat something mild before and right after the swim to help steady my stomach while the air moves through my system.
Transition 2
  • 11m 34s

The bike dismount is a long way from transition. Normally I'd have run/jogged with the bike for that, but in this case I was walking fairly slowly.
I racked the bike and switched shoes. Then while swapping helmet for hat and race belt I looked for the port-a-pottys. I spent several minutes to no avail trying to get relief from the stomach cramps I was now having.
What would you do differently?:

hopefully be able to run with the bike and skip the long port-a-potty stop
  • 3h 15m 11s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 14m 54s  min/mile

This is where things fell completely apart and then my journey became not about myself but someone else.
I came out of transition running my hoped for 10 minute per mile pace. I saw my wife across the street and she yelled "you are doing great!" little did she know how terrible I felt. I managed to finish the first mile just a couple second slower than may planned 10 minutes, but it took every bit of my mental fortitude to keep running that whole mile. After that I just didn't have it in me to run through the pain for very long at a time. When I went back and looked at my Garmin tracking I actually ran a lot more than I remembered. This run was one of the most painful physical activities I've ever been through. At just about mile 10 of the run I was coming down a hill in the portion of the course that has runners going both ways and I saw a participant drop from cramping calves. I ran over to him and helped stretch his calves until he could stand again. Once he was able to walk I told him I couldn't run anyway and that I'd walk with him so he could grab ahold of me if he needed to. We walked the final 3 miles together and then at his insistence we each ran the finish chute.
Post race
Warm down:

Walking, walking, walking

What limited your ability to perform faster:


Event comments:

Ironman 70.3 Vineman is awesome. I have no immediate plans to do another HIM race, but if I do one this will be my first choice.

Last updated: 2014-11-05 12:00 AM
00:37:25 | 2112 yards | 01m 46s / 100yards
Age Group: 111/210
Overall: 912/2172
Performance: Good
Suit: Synergy Adrenaline
Course: Out and back swim in the Russian River - buoys on left both directions, no current, shallow - many places where someone could walk, hands hit the bottom (large gravell) many times, To shallow at turnaround, had to walk for a short distance there.
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Waves
Water temp: 66F / 19C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Average
Time: 04:44
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed:
03:33:47 | 56 miles | 15.72 mile/hr
Age Group: 198/210
Overall: 1870/2172
Performance: Average
Wind: Headwind
Course: The bike mount line is at the base of a short but steep hill. I ran the bike up the hill, past some trying to clip in and mucle their way up the climb. The course follows the Russian River for about 5 miles and then heads up into the hills. Fun rolling hills with great views of the countryside. I understand that much of the course was recently repaved. The course was mostly smooth. A few potholes in some older sections of pavement. Chalk hill road has a shorter climb that makes you think "was that all?" then you hit the real climb and you curse the course designers while climbing it. Once you reach the top there is a fairly high speed decent (watch the potholes) and then it is mostly flat into Windsor.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Below average
Gear changes: Average Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 11:34
Overall: Bad
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
03:15:11 | 13.1 miles | 14m 54s  min/mile
Age Group: 198/210
Overall: 1957/2172
Performance: Bad
Course: The run course takes you through the back streets of Windsor. The course winds around to the south and has a stretch where you see inbound athletes while on your way out towards the winery. For a stretch of the run, near the middle point, you run through and around a winery and vineyard. Then its back onto the streets for the return trip to Windsor High School.
Keeping cool Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Below average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 2
Good race? No
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] 5

2016-09-29 11:51 PM

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Redding, CA
Subject: Ironman 70.3 Vineman

2016-09-29 11:53 PM
in reply to: #5200342

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Redding, CA
Subject: RE: Ironman 70.3 Vineman

A year later I finally got around to adding this race report

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