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Delaware Diamondman Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Bear, Delaware
United States
Piranha Sports
85F / 29C
Total Time = 7h 25m 24s
Overall Rank = 244/269
Age Group = 35-39
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Was up until after midnight watching UFC fights. After 4 hours of sleep, showered, packed up my tri-bag, and ate a clif bar and a banana, drank some coffee and gatorade. My brother, Kevin, and I then headed to the race site (30 minute drive), and set up our equipment at the transition area. Even though this would be my first HIM experience, I wasn't that concerned or nervous. I should have been!!!!!!!!!!
Event warmup:

1/4 mile walk to the swim start.
  • 49m 35s
  • 2112 yards
  • 02m 21s / 100 yards

Swim started badly. Didn't get to the start line 50 or so yards in the lake before the gun went off for our wave. As I only know how to breath to my right, my sighting is horrible for a counterclockwise swim. I found myself too far to the right and was doing a lot of zig-zagging. My breathing was off this time as well. I normally breath every fourth stroke, but I was breathing every stroke. I don't know what my problem was. I never got into a rythm. I came out of the water pissed at my performance with my heartrate way too high. I wasn't expecting a fast time, I just wanted a fun swim. It wasn't.
What would you do differently?:

Need to learn how to breath bilaterally. Should help to swim in a straight line and to navigate regardless of whether the course is clockwise or counterclockwise.
Transition 1
  • 03m 28s

It took me six minutes to run from the pond to the transition area. Spent only 3.28 at T-1. Had some trouble getting my wetsuit off, but overall, T-1 went well.
What would you do differently?:

  • 3h 30m 34s
  • 56 miles
  • 15.96 mile/hr

I had a relatively good time. Didn't push my pace. As long as I was averaging 16 mph, I was satisfied. My lower back and crotch started hurting about halfway through the ride. Every few miles, I had to stand on the pedals and push my pelvis forward to relieve the pain. My hydration was good as I had approximately 3 bottles of gatorade and 1 bottle of water on the ride. Nutrition was okay as I averaged about 230 calories and 413 mg of sodium an hour.
What would you do differently?:

Need more time in the saddle.
Transition 2
  • 04m 51s

I was exhausted coming into T-2, so I took my time.
What would you do differently?:

  • 2h 50m 49s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 13m 02s  min/mile

I had never started a run in such an exhausted state. In the last ten years, I had never excercised longer than four hours (e.g., 1998 NYC marathon), and here I was starting a half marathon after 4.5 hours of swimming and biking - in 90 degree weather to boot. My plan was to average a 10 minute mile for the entire run course. I was on plan for only 3 miles, and then I started slowing down. It took me 55 minutes to get through the first 5 miles, and it got worse from there. At mile 8, my calves and quads started twitching, pulling, and locking up. Not only was I exhausted and overheated, I no longer had full control over my legs. I walked, shuffled, and jogged intermittenly for the balance of the course. It was torture, and I kept asking myself what the f#$k was I thinking doing an HIM.

Looking back, my downfall was my lack of nutrition and inadequate electrolyte consumption. I didn't bring my own gels for the run as there was supposed to be gels at every water station (every mile). Unfortunately, by the time I needed some gels, the water stations had run out. I ended up consuming only 1 gel packet during my first 2 hours on the run course, and only drank a few ounces of gatorade every other mile. I had four salt pills (50 mg each), but this wasn't nearly enough to replace what I was losing via sweat. I was in such bad shape that at mile 10 or so, I asked a fellow BOP'er if I could bum a couple gel packets from him. I think those extra 200 calories allowed me to finish.

I was never so happy to finish a race. Regardless of my lackluster (understatement to the extreme) performance, my family greeted me at the finish line, and my daughter was so proud to run over the finish line with me.
What would you do differently?:

Train longer (distance & time). Don't rely on water/aid stations for nutrition. Buy a large bottle of salt pills/endurolytes.
Post race
Warm down:

My brother found a chair I could sit on as my calves and quads were spasming and locking up. I had hoped to get a leg massage, but the massage therapists had been gone some two or three hours earlier. Poured cold water on my head, drank some gatorade, and ate a sandwhich. Took some pictures. Celebrated that I finished and didn't die.

As an aside, in stark contrast to my performance, my brother, who hasn't trained in over a month, is only a couple weeks post surgery for kidney stones, has scar tissue for an achilles tendon, and suffers from knee pain (likely meniscus tear), decides to do the Sprint distance on a whim. He ends up taking 3rd place in his age group! Ignoring the fact that I'm tremondously proud of him, where is the justice?!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Not in HIM shape. There's a big difference between an Olympic and a HIM - and I under-estimated the difficulty of completing a HIM and over-estimated my conditioning and ability. Also having only one gel packet in two hours of running was a performance limiter.

Event comments:

Well organized. Highly recommend this HIM for those in proper shape.

Last updated: 2007-03-21 12:00 AM
00:49:35 | 2112 yards | 02m 21s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 245/269
Performance: Below average
Suit: Orca sleeveless
Course: Lums Pond. One counterclockwise loop.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 78F / 26C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Below average
Breathing: Below average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Good
Time: 03:28
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Average
03:30:34 | 56 miles | 15.96 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 253/269
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: Relatively flat course through farmland and small towns and new developments. Nice country roads.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 04:51
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Average
02:50:49 | 13.1 miles | 13m 02s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 226/269
Performance: Bad
Course: 9 of the 13 miles was on a gravely dirt road along side a canal. No shade, just blistering heat.
Keeping cool Bad Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Bad
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? No
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] 4

2007-09-10 2:00 PM

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Wilmington, Delaware
Subject: Delaware Diamondman Triathlon

2007-09-10 2:45 PM
in reply to: #958475

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Lansdale, PA
Subject: RE: Delaware Diamondman Triathlon
Great job on the race. That run was tough with or without nutrition. I'm just glad I didn't turn an ankle or fall. Awesome job on your first HIM!!!
2007-09-10 4:30 PM
in reply to: #958475

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New user

Subject: RE: Delaware Diamondman Triathlon
Great job finishing the HIM. I've got one scheduled for the 22nd - after reading your report, I hope I haven't bitten off more than I can chew! We will see...
2007-09-10 4:41 PM
in reply to: #958475

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Delaware Diamondman Triathlon
Wow! Way to tough it out! You certainly proved how strong your mental game is... Congrats on your Half IM finish!
2007-09-10 10:31 PM
in reply to: #958475

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Subject: RE: Delaware Diamondman Triathlon
Congrats on your finish! Sounds like your run and my run were similar - kind of a hot, crampy sufferfest. Ouch.

But you kept moving and you crossed the finish line. You earned your medal - be proud. And if you every decide to tackle a 1/2 iron again, you'll be ready for it!

2007-09-11 10:09 AM
in reply to: #958475

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New user

Fairfax, VA
Subject: RE: Delaware Diamondman Triathlon
Congrats again man, I am glad I could be there and support you! I am also glad I had an excuse not to do the HIM in that heat...not many would have survived the conditions I am thinking....I will let you know how my Doctor appointment goes on the knee...Kidneys feel great!

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