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EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Cambridge, Maryland
United States
Columbia Triathlon Association
75F / 24C
Total Time = 5h 51m 33s
Overall Rank = 826/1170
Age Group = M30-34
Age Group Rank = 112/141
Pre-race routine:

On Saturday night, I woke up startled and looked at the clock. It said 10:30. I actually yelled out 'Oh F*CK!', until I gained my senses and realized that it was 10:30pm, not 10:30am.

Woke up at 4:30 and got a shower. Got dressed, packed up the last of the stuff (since most had been packed and put in the car the night before) and headed for the race site by 5:10.

I really wanted to get into the lot right by transition but, by 5:25, they weren't letting anyone else in it so I had to schlep over to the school to park. Not being able to get to park where I wanted threw me off my game for a bit. But, if that was the worst thing to happen, I can't complain.

Walked from the school parking lot (5' walk) to transition area and headed to set up. My friend Eric had a race spot only a couple down from me so it was good to see his face in the morning and helped to calm some of the nerves.

I set up my gear for the run, and clipped the shoes into the pedals. I checked the air in the tires and headed over to my tri club's tent.
Event warmup:

No real warmup per se. Just tried to keep an upbeat mood and enjoy the morning.

My parents came up from Raleigh for the race, so I spent some time chatting with them and giving them the lay of the land.

  • 35m 52s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 42s / 100 yards

The swim felt really fast because there was a solid current going on with it. I was never able to grab anyone's feet b/c I usually swam by them once I caught their draft.

My sighting has improved tremendously this year and this race was no exception. I was direct and right on the bouys. Only point of confusion was at the boat where they said "Go to the yellow bouys" and there were two sets close together, one right (outbound) and one left (inbound).

I kept my stroke steady and solid and swapped around between breathing 4 strokes to the right and 3 strokes bi-lateral depending on the waves, who was around me, and generally how I was feeling.
What would you do differently?:

Train more. Sounds obvious, but I love OWS MUUUCH more than pool swimming.
Transition 1
  • 02m 59s

As I headed into transition, I saw my parents along the rope with these GOD-AWFUL purple clappy hand thingys. It was good to see them, though. :)

I got to the bike rack, got out of the wetsuit, and grabbed the bike.
What would you do differently?:

  • 2h 44m 14s
  • 56 miles
  • 20.46 mile/hr

The bike is BY FAR the discipline that I have trained the most on and that I feel is my strongest area.

My coach had me focusing on my bike nutrition as a tune up for IMWI, so I had 2x600 calories bottles of eFuel on the bike. Every 10 minutes, I was to take a drink and wash it down with some plain water from my aero bottle. At each water stop, I was to grab a fresh bottle of water, top up my aerobottle, and spray the rest on my head and back, if I was warm.

It took me about 20-30 minutes before I could settle into my appropriate pace and bring my HR down into the range of 150 which is my Z2 level. Once I did, though, I felt really strong because I knew I could hold that pace for forever and a day, if I had to.

At the halfway mark, I realized that I *REALLY* had to pee. I tried 3-4 times to release it while on the bike but I was never able to relax enough to get it flowing. Eventually, I had to stop by the side of the road. That cost me probably 1-2 minutes (I told you I REALLY had to go).

I was passing people pretty consistently for the entire ride, but there were certain areas where it was more frequent. When the headwind picked up and people started dropping their pace, I kept the hammer down because these were exactly the same conditions that I had trained in for the last 2 months. Then, at the 45 mile mark when most others' tanks were starting to run empty, I picked up the pace.

Only once did someone try to draft off of me. I looked back, saw him there, pushed my pace for about a minute, looked back, and he was nowhere in sight.

The nutrition was spot on and I felt really strong at the end.

When I got in and saw my time, I couldn't believe it. I knew I had 20mph while I was on the bike, but knowing it when I got into T2 was completely different. Last October was the first time I'd ridden 20+ in a race, and that was a sprint. Now I've done it in a Sprint, an Oly, and a HIM. There's just something special about crushing a 20mph avg over 56 miles.
What would you do differently?:

Learn to pee on the bike.
Transition 2
  • 04m 32s

I still haven't learned to time my 'out of shoes' element, so I actually kept the shoes on all the way to dismount and just ran into T2 with them on.

Grabbed the FuelBelt and slipped on the running shoes.

As I got out of the transition area, right before I was about to cross the timing mat, I ran back b/c I knew that I needed to pee again before I went out on the run. So, that cost me about a minute.
What would you do differently?:

Learn to ride with my feet on my shoes.
  • 2h 24m
  • 13.1 miles
  • 10m 59s  min/mile

In my run training, I have been following a 4/1 run/walk method to build my endurance and that was the same process I was to follow on race day.

When I got out of T2, I looked at the clock and knew that I had a fighting chance at 5:45 if everything went well.

The opening 5k was really good. I was clipping out 10:00/mile using the run/walk and thought it would be great to keep up this pace and come in strong at the end.

After mile 5, though, things started to change. I was carrying 2 gel flasks with me. 1 was eGel and the other was Gu. I was supposed to take a pull from one of them at each water stop and wash it down with a cup of water. The problem was that it tasted so thick after 5 miles that I really didn't want to keep taking it. Plus, because they were from flasks and not packets, I didn't know if I was getting the right amount each time.

At the turn around, I was at 1:09 and knew that I had to beat 1:07 to get home in 5:45. I tried to make my run splits longer and my walk splits shorter, but it didn't work. My mile splits just wouldn't come down.

Around mile 9, my left hamstring started to seize up on me.

At mile 10, I was supposed to open it up and give it everything I had left. Unfortunately, I knew there wasn't enough left to meet the 9:30/mile needed to make 5:45.

After the last water stop, I knew I had to run it all the way in. I had given up on 5:45 but now it was about pride. The pride to slug it out and not walk for the last 1.5 miles. It hurt. It hurt A LOT! But I didn't stop running.

As I turned the corner and saw the park with the finish line, I knew that I had, at least, broken 6 hours.

All in all, I should be happy with my run. I raced 15-30 sec/mile faster than I did my training. But I'm probably not going to be happy until i can run the whole 13.1 after coming off the bike.
What would you do differently?:

Simply more years of training the run. I'll never be lightning fast, but I can become more consistent.
Post race
Warm down:

I grabbed some water and headed over to my tri club tent. On the way there, I ran into Eric and he gave me hug and walked with me. At one point, my left hamstring finally cramped and I crumpled to the ground. He helped me stretch it out and then helped me up and over to the tri tent.

Once I got to the tent, I found my parents and gave them a hug. I sat down by them and one of my other friends brought me over some food and put a cold towel on my shoulders.

I just sat there for quite a long time. Thinking. Feeling. Understanding what I had just done. And realizing what I have to do over the next 12 weeks.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Conditioning base.

Event comments:

I know that I should be happier about my results than I am. I crushed my previous best HIM time by over 30 minutes. I broke 6 hours. I broke 20mph on the bike. But, I feel like I let my coach down because he said I should do 5:45. Maybe it was a stretch goal and his way of motivating me to push beyond what my own expectations were. But still, I feel like I came up short.

Plus, I raced in the uber-competitive M30-34 AG instead of in the Clydesdale category b/c I didn't want to be going off last and coming in when there was no one in the park to cheer me on. However, after all the improvements I've made and all the training I've pushed through, realizing that I'm still just a BOP age grouper is tough to swallow.

Maybe, if my run nutrition had been a little better, I could have broken 5:45. But its just something I can take with me and improve upon for my next race.

And that next race is going to be even MORE brutal. That next race is my first IronMan. :gulp:

Last updated: 2007-06-13 12:00 AM
00:35:52 | 2112 yards | 01m 42s / 100yards
Age Group: 94/141
Overall: 755/1170
Performance: Average
Suit: QR SuperFull
Course: Triangular
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current: Medium
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 02:59
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Average
02:44:14 | 56 miles | 20.46 mile/hr
Age Group: 76/141
Overall: 622/1170
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: Flat and fast through country farms
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills:
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 04:32
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Average
02:24:00 | 13.1 miles | 10m 59s  min/mile
Age Group: 128/141
Overall: 945/1170
Performance: Average
Course: Out and back
Keeping cool Average Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %3
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
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: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2007-06-13 9:10 AM

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Subject: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

2007-06-13 9:46 AM
in reply to: #842352

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2007-06-13 9:55 AM
in reply to: #842352

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2007-06-13 10:14 AM
in reply to: #842352

Tiger's Den
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

AWESOME JOB!!! A sub 6 HIM is nothing to sneeze at. And good job racing AG instead of Clyde- you know, I've thought a lot about this since I am still BOP too, and I have realized that the longer the tri, the stronger the competition. I maybe MOP in a sprint, but BOP and possible DFL in an OLY and HIM. And you know what, that's ok, cause I keep getting faster and you are too. Eventually we won't be BOP. Of course, there's not a lot of competition in the 60-64 AG. LOL.

You really did GREAT. Your bike is very strong and it sounds like it's gonna keep getting stronger.

2007-06-13 11:40 AM
in reply to: #842352

Williamston, Michigan
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
You did awesome   I'm thinking coach should be happy with a 35 minute improvement!!!   Maybe the best way for you to train swimming is not swimming?  I don't know.   I'm betting he just wanted to push you.  ASK HIM!!  Great job and hope thehammy is better
2007-06-13 12:18 PM
in reply to: #842352

Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
Nice race and have fun ramping up and tapering for IMOO !!!!

2007-06-13 12:25 PM
in reply to: #842352

Cycling Guru
Fulton, MD
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

Shaun, you had a great day and followed your plan.  The run will come .... give it more time!!

Congrats on crushing the bike and sticking with what you wanted to do.  It is a great build-up for your IM!

2007-06-13 1:00 PM
in reply to: #842352

Reston VA
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
Great race! A PR is outstanding!! Even though everybody said the conditions were "perfect" it was still pretty hot out there for the run!
2007-06-13 2:06 PM
in reply to: #842352

Clifton, NJ
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

what a great job! improving 30 minutes from your last HIM is a major accomplishment, so is hitting 20mph in a race and breaking 6 hours - well done!


2007-06-13 10:27 PM
in reply to: #842352

St Petersburg, Florida
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

Well done!!

Great times on the bike and pushing it through the run..

Kudos Laughing

2007-06-14 6:29 AM
in reply to: #842352

Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
Congrats on the PR. Good luck at IMWI!

2007-06-14 11:29 AM
in reply to: #842352

Herndon VA
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

Congrats on the PR for a 1/2.  It was great to meet to you at the race and you were looking strong when you passed me on the bike.  You're going to do well at your IM.


2007-06-15 1:19 PM
in reply to: #842352

Charlottesville, VA
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
Nice job at the race. Beautiful day, wasn't it?
2007-06-15 3:20 PM
in reply to: #842352

Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon
You put a lot of work into this race, and achieved some pretty spectacular PRs.  Be proud!
2007-06-15 4:26 PM
in reply to: #842352

Silver member
Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon

My goal is just to break 6 hours. **GULP**

I can't believe I wrote that on a public forum. In fact, I'm going to make your EagleMan time my goal. (That may be a little aggressive for me, actually... I'll let you know how it turns out...)

You are going to be great @ IMWI.



2007-06-15 4:44 PM
in reply to: #842352

Subject: RE: EagleMan Ironman 70.3 Triathlon did well executing your nutrition went flawless...need some adapting for run gels.....this was to learn and you did; you'll be better prepared for IMWI.

Great race Shaun!

Reading your RR it sound eerie familiar to kicked butt but are awful hard on yourself.

Improving 30 minutes on a HIM...averaging 20+ on the bike where last season you did that in a sprint.

Great job...sets you up well for IMWI.

You race 351 minutes and are bummed about 6...about 2%....maybe learn to pee on the bike...I'm mastered it if you want any tips


Edited by KathyG 2007-06-15 4:44 PM

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