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Ironman Arizona - TriathlonFull Ironman


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Tempe, Arizona
United States
Ironman North America
Sunny
Total Time = 15h 42m 53s
Overall Rank = 1681/2066
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 361/426
Pre-race routine:

I left from Augusta on 4/12/2007. The flight was fine and I watched Eragon on the plane (it was pretty bad). the Phoenix Airport seemed relatively calm and organized...at first. I got my new Tyr transition bag, which is a great bag by the way, and waited for my clothes in roller bag...and waited...and waited..no bag. They lost it. Lucky for me just clothes, but not an auspicious start to the trip.
I filed a claim and then went to the rental car shuttle. I inadvertantly skipped some of the line (I've never been to this airport), and this guy with hois wife and kids sayas to me,
"That's very rude, sir."
"What?"
"You cut in line."
"OK fine go ahead."
"No, if it means that much to you, just go ahead."
Now I had just lost my luggage and this guy was giving me crap for a small mistake. Welcome to Phoenix! I let him go ahead but I was in a foul mood and giving him the FU in my head. Anyway, They took forever getting me my bag (12/13 at 5PM!).
Friday morning I went to the Gatorade swim. I looked for KenyonTri but He ended up getting in late so I swam by myself. The 2XU wetsuit was great and the sleeveless was perfect (Good suggestion from Brian, thanks bro!). My time in the pool was much faster in the wetsuit and it was here as well. I swam about 1/4 of the course and back with frequent floating breaks. I used this to gauge the sun and landmarks for sighting on raceday. The Gatorade booth was cool. They gave you a freewaterbottle and bag for your wetsuit.
Then I registered for the race. The line was pretty long and some dude got hacked off: ' Do they run all of their races this way' I turned to the guy next to me and noted that maybe the first guy was wound a little tight and he laughed. I stuck up a conversation with him and another guy who was an Airforce pilot. We chatted for the next 1/2 hour and that really helped start to break the incredible building nervousness I had.
Downtown Tempe is really cool. ASU is there and there were lots of cool places to eat. There were also lots of hot tan young chicks as well (and hot tan young men according to Erin. I walked around down there and got a late breakfast.
Next I went to Tribike Transport. the night before it had rained and they left my bike bag in the rain. My clothes were all soaked and my cycling shoes were water logged. Oh well. I went back to the hotel and took a nap, and hang all my stuff to dry. I wiped my bike down and checked the lines. Oiled the chain. I don't know much more to do for my bike than that, and I realize I need to work on my bike repair and maint. skills.
I went to the athlete dinner and stuck up a conversation with some folks in line. We ate together cause I didn't see the BT sign. Eventually I found it and met a bunch of our BT buddies in the flesh. Everybody was warm and helpful! I was quite frankly, freaked out and scared for the race and the BT people helped me calm down.
I went to PHX Airport and got Erin and Nicholas. Nick was happy to see me and when he gave me a big tired hug I felt a lot better. Unfortunatly, I lost my rx sunglasses at that point, and when we got home i started freaking out. Could this trip be going any worse? Ack!
Swam again for 20 minutes Saturday morning for about 25 minutes at a nice easy pace, but I missed all my new BT buddies at the swim. Saturday night we went to the BT dinner and met some more folks. CubeFarmGopher makes good grilled pork! We talked with folks there for a while and, again, this started to ake me more at ease.
Went home, went to bed at 8PM. Woke up at 4:30 and ate a bagel with peanut butter and a Powerbar. Two gels as well per my nutrition guide.
Event warmup:

I got to the transition area and put the new rx sunglasses we bought Saturday at lenscrafters. My wife had kept me calm and we had called GA for the rx.
I was so nervous that my stomach was a knot. I got air in the tires, put on a full stick of bodyglide and sat down near the porta potties in case I had to barf. I could only see with my Rx goggles,and I put them on every now and then to see what was going on. I eventually realized I was sitting with a bunch of the pros. One gy made some smart a$$ remark about the goggles and I said "I hope you never get pancreatic cancer." He looked at me funny and then left me alone. Heh heh. So much for all triathlete's being nice.
I pu ton the wetsuit and goggles and went over to the swim start. The butterflies were going away. I saw a more experienced BT buddy (please send me a PM if you read this cause I forgot your handle!). He had helped me out the night before at the dinner cause I was going to miss the athlete orientation to get my family. He looked me in the eye and said, "You are going to do great! Have fun! Make sure you have fun!"
Now I realize I was emotional, but this meant a lot to me. It made me a lot less scared and he didn't need to spend even a second of his prerace time helping me out. So thanks!
We got in the water and I seeded myself on the left and to the front 1/3. I looked at all the crowd and suddenly, I was stoked! I'm doing an IRONMAN!
Swim
  • 1h 17m 38s
  • 3862 meters
  • 02m 01s / 100 meters
Comments:

I was very happy with this. I swam bilateral breathing the whole way. I was very limited by the mass of people and bumping into folks. Swimming over them takes some effort and I wanted to keep a relaxed approach to the swim. When I hit the bouy at 32 minutes, I slowed down on purpose. I went a little wide on the swim back, but the slower time was due to me slowing down to not get worn out on the swim.
What would you do differently?:

Not much, This is better than I expected and given my lack of big race experience, this is OK.
Transition 1
  • 10m 34s
Comments:

Meh. I didn't care about transitions. If they were both 5 minutes less so what? I wanted to be comfortable for the next 8 hours.
What would you do differently?:

Dry off better first. My AJs bike jersey was binding up on me.
Bike
  • 7h 53m 49s
  • 112 miles
  • 14.18 mile/hr
Comments:

Man did this really really hurt. I felt good on the first leg out because the tailwind was strong. I was going 18-19 for most of it. It was a little disheartening having five million people pass me right away on the bike after my good swim. On the second loop, my aerobottle straw fell off and I couldn't find it. I had to use my one cage which messed up my nutrition. I alternated between GE and water and I kept the Gus at every 20 minutes until the last half of the third lap.
Before I started the last half of the third lap, I took about a five to seven minute break. I was dreading going back into the wind. At times my bike computer said I was going 15kph into the wind!!!!!! Damn you McDowell Street! Damn you McKellips Street! By the time I finished the bike I was nearly in tears. I imagined my sons face and yelled at the wind "F*** Y**!" I'm going to finsh this race! I'm going to be an Ironman! F*** Y**, wind!!!"
What would you do differently?:

Less trainer time. I did too much night time training and not enough road situation training. I was completely unprepared for the wind. I also let my nutrtion lapse, which hurt me a great deal on the run (see below). More TITS as I had some serious chafing (but no perineal pain). I did a great job stayijng in aero about 90% of the time out of necessity.
Transition 2
  • 11m 6s
Comments:

Meh x2. Who cares. I saw my wife at T2 and gave her this doomed look. I felt so awful. I went into the changing tent and the men there looked so defeated. we all laughed a bit about the bike ride.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. I don't think my time will matter so much that I needa 5:00 transition time. 15:32 does sound better than 15:42 ;).
Run
  • 6h 09m 48s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 14m 07s  min/mile
Comments:

I started my run at 9:33 into the race. I felt like complete crap. I was behind on hydration because of the straw mishap. So I drank a ton during the first 2 miles or so. What a mistake! My stomach got bloated and I was just not processing any thing. I ran the first mile and then realized I could never run the rest of the race. I stopped taking much for the first half of loop one to let my stomach empty and this was a good strategy. When I finished the first loop in two hours I started to dispair. I was so upset that I might not finish.
Lucky for me, I met two people on the course tht really helped me. I was walking nearly exclusively by the middle of loop two. I made a silver warmer thingie into a poncho and then saw this German guy at the aid station. He was 62 (!) and had a limp. I asked if he was OK. He said yes and I walked with him for about 10 minutes. He told me I could easily finish if I just walked fast. He had flatted the year before three times, and by the time the truck got to him on the third flat, he missed the cuttoff. He said, "You will make it, now start running."
So I went back to run walking at a 3/2 ratio. My stomach started emptying and I started taking Gus rather than broth and soda. No solid food. within about a half hour I started feeling better.
I met Mike Conboy on the second half of loop two. We were going the same pace and we struck up a conversation. We ran walked together. He pushed us for lap 1.5-2.5. I would never have run as much without him helping. In the last 1/2 loop Mike began to get tired. his knee hurt him as well. So I started to push. I was feeling much better and we were running 50% of the time. I kept looking back and telling him to "hurry the f*** up, you want to beat your time from last year right?" He laughed and then caught up.
We got to the final bridge and I knew we could break 15:45. I started to run and ran most of the final bridge. Mike told me to go ahead and finish first because he was going to meet his goal and he couldn't run any more. I had left a bit in the tank to run across the finish line. 20 weeks! I pulled off my warmer and ran through in my race shirt! I fist pumped and high fived the gallery! It was sooooooooo cool! I felt so good after a day of so much dispair. I found my wife and Noicholas and gave them a hug! I was an Ironman!
What would you do differently?:

HMMMM. It's easy in retrospect to be critical, but I'm not going to be too hard on myself. I think there was more in me than I thought and I could have pushed a bit harder to run more. I wish I had found a partner earlier. Don't gorge yourself during an Ironman! Bike more! Run more!

Also, thanks to CubeFarmGopher for the pick-me-up on the run!
Post race
Warm down:

I had no appetitite and no thirst. I felt better than I thought I would. I didn't stretch or do much else. Nick was tired and Erin was too. I just wanted to go home.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I will do another Ironman, probably in 2009. I want to be able to race the Ironman rather than just survive it. I need to add weights to the routine, strengthen core and lose some weight. 220# weigh in does not help on the bike. I had some mishaps that hurt my nutrition. But overall, I think power for the bike so I can do 6-7 hour bike would help keep me most.

Event comments:

First off, Thanks to:

1. My wife and son. Erin supported my massive training hours despite being an OG/Gyn attending. She is the best wife a man could have. I tried to train after Nicholas went to sleep and I hope he didn't have to miss his Daddy too much.
2. My Augusta BT buddies: Runnergirl and Run4yrlf have been great friends and have followed and encouraged me for this event. Their experience and caring helped me a great deal! Katiefrog and Swankguy have been good Augusta BT friends as well. GO AUGUSTA, GA TRIATHLETES!!!
3. My BT friends and mentor group: Brian and Donto were my unpaid coaches. They encouraged me when I felt lame or didn't want to work. Jonathan2, Lhablas, DarrellC and TitanIV were a great help to me as well.
4. **RANT ON** All you doubters out there (sorry for this language): "F*** O**" To the rednecks trying to run me off the road. The mom of the kid who threw the rock. the dudes drinking onthe side of the road and laughing at me falling when I was getting used to my clips. To the guy who started the thread that says you aren't an Ironman if you just finish. Kiss my butt. You work 60-80 saving folks from colon and pancreatic cancer and then train and then finish. Then give me a call, OK?

Sorry for that, yes there is some anger in here.

I've always had a chip on my shoulder. Not good enough. Varsity athlete in HS 9 letters: not good enough, Steve. Dean's List throughout college: not good enough, Steve. Surgeon: not good enough, Steve. Well, I set out to do this because I don't want anyone to say not good enough. Mostly me. I'm an Ironman, forever. It was hard, it was so worth it. No one can give me s***. I can do what I set my mind to. This experience has convinced me that we can all do great things when we set our minds to them. I'm going to be a great father, I'm going to write Sci-Fi books, I'm going to have this life be what it can be.

So to all those people and my friends here at BT THANK YOU! I"M AN IRONMAN!





Last updated: 2006-05-03 12:00 AM
Swimming
01:17:38 | 3862 meters | 02m 01s / 100meters
Age Group: 258/426
Overall: 0/2066
Performance: Good
I hit the turn around at 32 minutes. No HR data.
Suit: 2XU Sleeveless
Course: This was a box around Tempe town lake.
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Shot
Water temp: 72F / 22C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
T1
Time: 10:34
Performance: Below average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
No
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Below average
Biking
07:53:49 | 112 miles | 14.18 mile/hr
Age Group: 394/426
Overall: 1829/2066
Performance: Below average
I decided, after reading some race reports, not to use my HRM or Garmin.
Wind: Headwind with gusts
Course: This course is about 4 miles of roads in town and then about 15 on the Beeline Highway. There is a very low grade uphill going out. The headwinds on the return trip were severe and nearly ended my day by the third loop.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Too hard Drinks: Just right
T2
Time: 11:06
Overall: Bad
Riding w/ feet on shoes Bad
Jumping off bike Bad
Running with bike Bad
Racking bike Bad
Shoe and helmet removal Bad
Running
06:09:48 | 26.2 miles | 14m 07s  min/mile
Age Group: 336/426
Overall: 1578/2066
Performance: Bad
No Garmin.
Course: Figure of eight loop around Tempe Town Lake. A few very small hills. Well supported.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Too much
Post race
Weight change: %2.3
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Evaluation
Course challenge Too hard
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

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2007-04-19 9:39 AM

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Elite
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Evans, GA
Subject: Ironman Arizona


2007-04-19 10:17 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Master
2299
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New York
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Awesome job Steve! You are forever an IRONMAN!

Great to meet you at the race - hope to see you around at others!
2007-04-19 10:58 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Master
1292
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McKinney, TX
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Awesome report and a great race! Congratulations IRONMAN!
2007-04-19 11:53 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Elite
2552
20005002525
Evans, GA
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
More tired than I thought. My grammar is horrible. Sorry folks!
2007-04-19 12:28 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Buttercup
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Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Great race report! Congratulations!!!
2007-04-19 12:53 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
721
500100100
Chandler, AZ
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Hey Bluejack, that's excellent!! I think I saw you out there a few times. And thought, is that Bluejack? Way to stick it out and FINISH! Nothing like being a finisher, eh??? Congrats!


2007-04-19 1:27 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Official BT Coach
2210
2000100100
Englewood, CO
Gold member
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Alright man!  That was me the night of the dinner, your welcome and you did do great!  Great Race report I loved all of it an your no give up attitude.  You will and have already done, great things.  Again great to meet you Ironman Steve!
2007-04-19 1:43 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
762
5001001002525
San Antonio, TX
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Congrats Ironman...you did a fantastic job.
2007-04-19 1:57 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
713
500100100
Rockledge, Fl
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Wow Steve, you are an ironman! Way to hang in there! That sounded like a very tough day and you overcame it! I loved your details race report and you are an inspiration!
2007-04-19 2:15 PM
in reply to: #768185

New user
21

Katy, TX
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Wow!  A father, a doctor, and an Ironman...you rock!
2007-04-19 2:32 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Got Wahoo?
5423
5000100100100100
San Antonio
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona

Outstanding, dude. Way to take the pre-race issues in stride.

...and don't be too hard on yourself - that wind wasn't easily dealt with by anyone.

Finisher!!!!!!



2007-04-19 2:35 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Veteran
272
1001002525
Albuquerque, NM
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Great Job Steve!!! You will forever be an IRONMAN.
2007-04-19 2:57 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
1013
1000
Orange County, CA
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
I enjoyed reading your race  report- good job not giving up when you thought you weren't going to make it!! You are an Ironman
2007-04-19 3:11 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Extreme Veteran
363
1001001002525
Georgia
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
I'm really proud of you Steve!  I don't know how you managed everything.  I have a hard enough time trying to train for a half marathon and I don't work nearly as many hours as you do.  Doing an IronMan is such an amazing feat and you haven't even been doing tri's for that long.  I think you do have a little super hero in you.  Great Job, I'm proud to know you!
2007-04-19 4:32 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Elite
3223
20001000100100
Hendersonville
Gold member
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Wow, awesome race report! I loved it! Congratulations, Ironman!!!
2007-04-19 5:22 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
839
50010010010025
Portland, OR
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Awesome! I've been following your training and have been amazed with your schedule given the day job you have. Way to gut it out and become an Ironman!!!!!!!!


2007-04-19 6:31 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Champion
8936
50002000100050010010010010025
Gold member
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona

Grammar schmammar.  You have my undying respect to do what you did knowing the schedule you keep.

Congrats, Ironman!

2007-04-19 7:32 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
853
5001001001002525
Fort Worth, Texas
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Enjoyed your RR and congrats on becoming an Ironman!
2007-04-20 6:23 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Extreme Veteran
1491
1000100100100100252525
northeast Ohio
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Congratulations!  I am in awe of anyone who has the commitment it takes to even get to the starting line.  Even more so to you who have completed an Ironman race.  Thanks for the great race report.  You should be very proud of yourself for pushing through all that stuff that happened to you before and during the race.   
2007-04-20 7:09 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Master
2125
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Silver member
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona

Awesome job Steven. 

Dude, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!

2007-04-20 7:50 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Extreme Veteran
527
50025
Jacksonville, FL
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Congratulations - IRONMAN!


2007-04-20 10:42 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Pro
3705
20001000500100100
Vestavia Hills
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona

Brother, that is one awesome race report. 

It is amazing how race day mimic's training - the high's, the low's, the self-doubt, the grueling perserverance and mental fortitude it takes to slough through the rough patches to get to the good.

As for those that may have doubted or that were unsupportive, who cares?  You are an IRONMAN. You earned it.  You put in the time, effort, blood (see clipless pedal blog ) and tears. No one can take away this life accomplishment, of which I am very proud for you.

We got in the water and I seeded myself on the left and to the front 1/3. I looked at all the crowd and suddenly, I was stoked! I'm doing an IRONMAN!

This will be one of those fond thoughts you can conjure up when sitting on your rocking chair staring out into the distance.

CONGRATULATIONS!

 

2007-04-20 10:58 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Champion
10471
500050001001001001002525
Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona
Great job on the race! You didn't let all the mishaps up until race day get into your head.

I can see you yelling at the wind, sounds like something I would do... and if I were loopy enough I'd probably do it with people around me and not care.

You are an Ironman! Congratulations.
2007-04-23 2:49 PM
in reply to: #768185

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Elite
2777
2000500100100252525
In my bunk with new shoes and purple sweats.
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona

Steve you are an Ironman. Congratulations  seems such a pale word when compared with the effort required to be an Ironman. 

Keep racing and I hope to see you around the circuit.

2007-04-24 6:01 AM
in reply to: #768185

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Expert
936
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Springfield, MO
Subject: RE: Ironman Arizona

4. **RANT ON** All you doubters out there (sorry for this language): "F*** O**" To the rednecks trying to run me off the road. The mom of the kid who threw the rock. the dudes drinking onthe side of the road and laughing at me falling when I was getting used to my clips. To the guy who started the thread that says you aren't an Ironman if you just finish. Kiss my butt. You work 60-80 saving folks from colon and pancreatic cancer and then train and then finish. Then give me a call, OK?
-------------------

Love the rant!!!

Good job - I'm happy for you!

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