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IM Puerto Rico - Triathlon

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San Juan, Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
81F / 27C
Total Time = 5h 52m 4s
Overall Rank = 174/539
Age Group = M60-64
Age Group Rank = 1/16
Pre-race routine:

I did my usual routine, but I did not sleep well at all. Garmin said I was up 10 times. Fortunately, the more important night of sleeping is 2 days prior to the race, and I slept really well that night. Got up at 4:30am, took a shower and started the eating process-Boost, banana, RK treat and had several coffees. Gotta get the bowels going and that worked well. We went to Morton's last evening and had a delish dinner, mine was very light. Put my mix bottles in fridge and bed early. In the AM, we packed all the stuff to take to transition and headed out. Going out the door, DW remembered my mix bottles which I had forgotten about in the fridge. Love that girl. Got to transition. Laid out the transition stuff, went to swim exit to place my cut shoes/pickle juice and UCAN gel. To swim start which was about a mile away. Seeing red warning flags at the hotel every day did not help. Knowing there were rip tide current and high surf advisories also did not help.
Event warmup:

I knew it was windy and the water looked rough. Swim warmup did not change my mind. Tried to stay calm and just go with it. DW always helps keep me pretty centered and I felt pretty good and wasn't even that nervous...
  • 41m 42s
  • 2111 yards
  • 01m 59s / 100 yards

well, I shouldn't follow people who do not take straight lines, but I did rest on feet for the first time in a long time--not sure if it helped or hurt; only did a very little of 2:1 breathing even though the plan was do 2:1, then 1:1 x 2--repeat; never felt I pushed myself too hard; did get kicked hard again several times and took salt water in my R eye--again, having to stop and drain that out a few times
What would you do differently?:

I don't know, try to just swim straight and if feet are there, fine, if not-that's ok too
Transition 1
  • 05m 17s

I ran in my cut shoes so I could go really fast and I passed a lot of people. I knew my breathing would calm down before I got on the bike. Took pickle juice and ate my UCAN gel en route. Sat on my bucket/towel-sock/sock/bike shoe/bike shoe/wrist band/helmet-GO GO GO!!
What would you do differently?:

nothing-I was fastest in my AG and I'll bet I beat a lot of people out of transition.
  • 2h 44m 12s
  • 56 miles
  • 20.46 mile/hr

Didn't think I was getting behind in fluid/nutrition, but I was. I drank both of my mix bottles with 250 cal of UCAN. Also drank both water bottles-BTA and the frame bottle and even took one more water bottle because it was hot. Lost the top of my water bottle and launched my empty Camelback. At least I didn't lose the one with my nutrition.
What would you do differently?:

Drink more. Pretty sure it was hydration that was the problem, not calories. And I got behind on the bike. I now see that my Garmin has a calculator which I can look at in real time to get an idea of my hydration status and I'll use that in my next race.
Transition 2
  • 01m 49s

I was super fast with this transition! Shit was flying everywhere. Kicked my bike shoes off-previously loosened coming into transition. Grabbed my run shoes and put them on. Race belt w bib/visor/quick UCAN gel and drank a pickle juice. Got up and started to run.

What would you do differently?:

nothing 1 AG in this also.
  • 2h 19m 7s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 10m 37s  min/mile

I felt very dehydrated and took 3 waters and one gatorade at the first aid station. Walked every one of the aid stations. Man that was hard. The sun was beating down and the muscles had had enough. I pushed through the best I could but felt my race was slipping away with a poor performance. Tried to get ice at every station. Put it down my back to try to numb my cramping lower back. Felt like I was getting a bit of energy back and even had a few miles near the end which were some of the fastest on the day. Took my last pickle juice from my run belt on mile 2.
What would you do differently?:

Well, in hindsight, not much. The goal was to keep moving, walk as little as possible and try to keep moving if not running. Goal accomplished!
Post race
Warm down:

For a change, I didn't feel like I wanted to die. Just hung out and told DW about the race and various things that happened. She was pretty sure I was 1 AG but I really didn't believe it. I kept expecting people to be ahead of me at some point. I knew awards were a few hours away, so we took the bike to TBT and headed back to the hotel. I took a shower and we then went back for awards and I took my offering of a World Championship slot in Finland!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Wind, heat and bad hydration.

Event comments:

This is a great destination race with real challenges. The bike is usually pretty easy as it's flat but the wind made it very hard. The water was very choppy and every day had red flags warning people not to swim. There were rip current and high surf advisories. The heat was challenging, even with my weak attempt at heat acclimation from cold NE weather. Still highly recommended.

Last updated: 2022-12-02 12:00 AM
00:41:42 | 2111 yards | 01m 59s / 100yards
Age Group: 7/16
Overall: 263/539
Performance: Average
my times on the garmin were a bit different but I hdld about 1:55/100 yards. 23 spm is way low. HR varied-av127/141 max. This is new data as the new Garmin 945 has a terrific optical HR sensor. I swam 2200 yards-much too far.
Suit: Kiwarmi Sleeveless Race Kit
Course: clockwise-out into the bay, past the sighting buoys to the red turn buoy, turn again and head back towards the bridge. Water was choppy in the bay but way worse in the inlet with current from R>L
Start type: Run Plus: Time Trial
Water temp: 86F / 30C Current: Medium
200M Perf. Below average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
Time: 05:17
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed:
02:44:12 | 56 miles | 20.46 mile/hr
Age Group: 3/16
Overall: 139/539
Performance: Good
I held 20.5 mph but the wind was unbearable. Didn't realize I'd be getting as badly burned as I did. The back of my hand is nearly dark brown and my fingers are all white. AP/NP-171/178w. Slowed a lot in the last 1/4 of the bike as the wind got worse. Muscles in my low back were cramping trying to hold the bike steady in the wind. 77 rpm is very low. HR av131/145 max. I was doing bursts of high power just to try to keep moving a bit faster and I'm sure I burned a lot of matches. IF 0.76 which should be IM pace not HIM.
Wind: Strong
Course: Out and headed west, turned left, looped back, did a mini loop and then out to the turnaround again and back into San Juan. There were a lot of flats and places on the roads/bridges where you had to bunny hop to protect against a flat. I used 80 psi in the front/back of my tires with the heat also and to further protect from pinch flats. Both tires were 23's with conti 5K tires.
Road: Rough Dry Cadence: 77
Turns: Average Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills:
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 01:49
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
02:19:07 | 13.1 miles | 10m 37s  min/mile
Age Group: 1/16
Overall: 174/539
Performance: Good
10:34 pace. OMG. I was just trying not to slow down as much as everyone else. I walked the hill into town each time (x3) and walked whenever I felt my HR was spiking. Felt faint a few times. HR av126/147 max. Held 166 spm even with the walking.
Course: Changed at the last minute and cut off the section down around the fort. Now 3 laps but still get to go up the big hill-now 3 times! Lots of people out and cheering the athletes which was great. Finish up the little hill and turn left for home.
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Not enough
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: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2023-03-26 8:18 PM

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South Windsor, CT
Subject: IM Puerto Rico

2023-03-27 9:41 AM
in reply to: #5284829

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Atlanta, Georgia
Bronze member
Subject: RE: IM Puerto Rico
Awesome job! Tons of wisdom about adapting to conditions evident in that RR..well done.

And a slot to the WC's to boot!
2023-04-12 1:20 PM
in reply to: alltom1

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Middle River, Maryland
Bronze member
Subject: RE: IM Puerto Rico

Great job, Dale.  Taking home the hardware!!!  (and the slot - that's fantastic and will be a great trip).  And you showed how important transitions are as well - no picnics during yours for sure.

2023-04-17 4:12 PM
in reply to: jmhpsu93

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South Windsor, CT
Subject: RE: IM Puerto Rico
thx guys!!

much appreciated-
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