More thoughts on the race:

1.  I definitely did not get enough calories before the race.  I ate an uncrustable at about 3:00am and another one at about 4:30am.  That's not enough, especially for a big guy.
2.  I did not practice transitions and I paid for it at T-1.  I was in a daze after the swim so I'm not sure how much practicing would have helped but I would have learned to put the Garmin on the bike before the race instead of having it in my T-1 bag.
3.  I didn't get nearly enough nutrition on the bike (again) and should have hydrated more.  On the bike my total caloric intake was around 1300, which works out to about 200 cal/hr.  In training I found that I could easily handle over 300 cal/hour on the bike and I should have done it in FL.  One of the reasons my BP got so low on the run is that I was very dehydrated.  That started on the bike where I drank less than 4 bottles in 6.5 hours.
4.  I guess I learned why they say slow is fast on the swim.  My turnover was extremely slow but my pace was great.  I'm going to crush the swim in my next sprint.
5.  Volunteers at most of the races I have done are good but the ones at IMFL were amazing.  I heard Mike Reilly say that there were over 3000 volunteers and I believe him.  Even late in the run they were very helpful and almost all of them were smiling and being supportive.  I'm going to volunteer at at least one IM next year.

On thing I liked about the IMFL swim was that I didn't come up behind many breastroke kickers.  In triathlons that have wave starts at some point I will catch up to the slow swimmers in the wave in front of me doing a breaststroke kick.  Sometimes it's hard to get around 2-3 of the guys doing it.  In Florida those guys generally started in the back and I got in front of the rest pretty quickly.  I was surprised by the number of people that were kicking like crazy but they were generally doing a flutter kick which posed a bit less danger to my head. 

I'm still sore but am walking much better.

The people in my office decorated my cube and had a big "Congratulations" sign up.  I guess they didn't all think I was crazy.

I usually get very annoyed by robo-calls during election season but we've been getting one that cracks me up every time.  We've been getting an automated call from NARAL about 5 times a day.  It's the standard "This is the most important election in the history of this country!" message.  The funny part about it is that the recorded speaker has a STRONG New York accent.  Almost as strong as "The Nanny".  I would have thought that for GA zip codes they would get someone with a southern, or at least neutral, accent to make the call.  The voice even annoys my wife.  And it's not like the person who recorded the message is famous.  Just funny.

I think I'm going to ramble a lot today.

It appears that Dr. Nik is a bit of a comedian.  He actually suggested that I go for a short run today.  I did walk for 10 minutes or so and then stretch.  That's about my limit right now.

I went to Dr. Nik to get him to work on my IT band a little.  He did kind of a whole lower body workover after which I felt much looser.  With the hamstring problems I had before the race I am a little surprised that they are in such good shape.  I guess that my lack of energy for the run kept me from hammering them like I did my quads.  I am walking almost normally now but going down stairs is still no fun.

For those of you who are thinking about doing your first Ironman I strongly recommend getting a coach if at all possible.  Throughout the process, except for a few medical isssues I really never worried if I were going to be able to make it.  I had confidence that as long as I did what my coach scheduled for me I would be alright.  With all of the things that take up your time when training, not having to think about creating, maintaining, and worrying about a schedule was huge.  I'm also sure that I would have done something stupid and hurt myself.  Brett was great at modifying my schedule when issues arose and giving me the feedback I needed.  I wouldn't have made it across the finish line without him.

During the swim, it was pretty cool to see the bottom for the first 200 yards or so from the beach.  On the way out on the first loop I saw a couple of rays swimming around.  I kept looking for jellyfish but I didn't see any.

Just after the first turn of the second loop I felt someone grab my ankle and jerk it backwards.  I then felt a had grab my shoulder and use it to move forward.  The person was clearly not accidentally hitting me while swimming.  I was just a ladder.  I looked up and saw a pink cap!  So I pulled hard for a couple of strokes and then reached and pushed her under a bit.  I'm hard to push under and feel very comfortable in the water but what she did could really have affected some swimmers.  Oh well, it helped to entertain me while I swam.

Ha ha ha.  I walked with Natalie up the hill to the bus stop and found out that my muscles are VERY sore.  Walking down was worse.  Now I'm going to curl up with a bunch of Advil and pat myself on the back for scheduling a vacation day for today.

I think I forgot to mention that I was very impressed with the organization of this race, particluarly the aid stations on the run course.  There were aid stations every mile and all of them had water, ice water, ice, gatorade, flat cola, chicken broth, pretzels, cookies, oranges, bananas, grapes, and gels.  They didn't run out of anything while I was out there.  On the bike course there were aid stations every 10 miles and there were 3 port-o-potties at each station.  The only thing that wasn't so good were the port-o-potties on the run course.  Be afraid.  Be very afraid.

Also, although some of the wetsuit strippers didn't have the expected muscle, as I approached the finish line I was glad to see a whole bunch of big dudes.  I was alright and could walk fine but after seeing a bunch of high school girls trying to catch large men at Louisville it was nice to see those guys.

This week's plan:
M - R & R
T - R & R
W - Easy swim
Th - Easy ride
F - Easy swim
Sa - Ride on SCT
Su - Easy run

Race Report is up

I made it!  It was a tough day, a number of things did not go as planned, but I made it.

Thanks to all of you who have been supporting me for the last 2 1/2 years as I've gone from barely being able to run a mile to finishing an Ironman.  Without your constant encouragement and advice I never would have done even one triathlon. 

I'll try to post more details and respond to inspires a little later but right now I need to reintroduce myself to my family.

  • 6h 29m 43s
  • 112.00 miles
  • 17.24 Mi/hr
  • 5h 44m 07s
  • 26.20 miles
  • 13m 08s /Mi
  • 1h 10m 36s
  • 4155.73 yards
  • 01m 42s /100 yards

I appreciate the inspires you guys have left. Anna copied them into an email last night but I can't respond. It's nice to know that there are so many people who are looking out for me and who wil be tracking my progress tomorrow. 7:00 - Last pre-race post. I'm not feeling very nervous but my BP suggests otherwise. I'm going to take a hot bath (I hate baths but it's supposed to bring down my BP) and then go to bed. The plan for tomorrow is to go very easy on the swim, bike at a pce that makes me feel guilty, run very easy the first half of the run, and then do the best I can on the second half of the run. If I stick to my nutrition/hydration plan I should finish before the cutoffs. 2:00 - Dang it. I went by the med tent to get my BP checked and it wasn't bad - 142/77. The problem is that my temperature was 100.2. I guess that is why my BP has been so high. It's better that I have a slightly elevated temp than my BP be too high to race. Noon - I turned in my bike and transition bags. If I forgot something - tough. I know I have shoes, shirt, and helmet in there and that's enough. I'm feeling very tired so I think I'm going to take a nap and hope that I'm not sick. 9:00am - I got the wheel taken care of and went for a 20 minute spin. It turns out that the flats were not due to my questionable skills but instead were due to bad plastic rim tape. Now I am loading my bags. I have to turn in my T-1 and T-2 bags along with my bike today. That puts a little crimp in my nutrition plan for tomorrow. I had planned to eat 4-5 uncrustables on the bike tomorrow. But if I have to turn in my bag with the uncrudstables today will they still be alright tomorrow? I've got 6 hours to decided what to do. Morning BP - 150/84 - 20 points less than yesterday I swear that I have successfully changed tires/tubes before but I ust don't seem to be able to do it here. Yesterday evening one tube went flat. I changed it and all seemed well until I was woken up in the night by a "pssssss" sound. Yep, the other one went flat. I'm going to take it by the professionals to get it taken care of today.
7:30pm - I am at the athlete's dinner/meeting. Pat Lafontaine is speaking. I plan to head back to the condo after this and go to bed. I'm still hoping for 10+ hours of sleep tonight. 4:20 - It turns out that the 2 internet cafes in PCB are closed for the season. I took a nap and afterwards my BP was 142/67. Tonight I'm going for 12 hours of sleep! Replacing my rear tire went fine until about 10 minutes after I was done I heard "psssss". Crap. I should have replaced the tube in the first place. I replaced the tube and will take it for a spin tomorrow morning. 10:10 - I am now in the huuuuge registration line. Word is that it'll take an hour or so. Once I get done here I'll head back to the condo to replace the rear tire on my bike. It's got a bulging sidewall. My legs feel good though I have a bunch of small joint pains. I think that's to be expected at this point. I saw Dollar and a bunch of BTers at the practice swim this morning. The swim went well. The water is cold out to the sandbar then it warms up. I found one more spot that I need to bodyglide. Last night I woke up at 2:30 local time and couldn't get back to sleep. BP was really bad this morning. I will spend the rest of today and all day tomorrow trying to bring it down. I'll also try to find an internet cafe or something so I can read/respond to inspires.
I made it down to PCB. My BP is still misbehaving but I am hopeful that a good night's sleep will bring it down. I will probably meet up with Dollar tomorrow morning for a swim. Lots of people are out running and riding. It's pretty cool. This morning my daughter was running a little late for the bus and we could see it coming just as we left the house.  We ran to the bus stop and got there in plenty of time.  Unfortunately I got the pounding in my neck and the back of my head that signals a too-high BP.  The little one is sick and was up a lot last night and I am definitely low on sleep so maybe that's what's doing it.  I am going to head down to Florida, sleep a ton in the next two days, and hope that brings my BP down to where it needs to be for me to race.  I have resigned myself to pulling out if my BP is too high.

zaichikmiller's Training Log

 November 2008 
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