FIRST: Praise to My Heavenly Father for all the safe training and the strength to continue.
Big Thank You to the following people . . .Amy (wife), Kloden, Mom/Dad, Aunt Janet (from Seatttle who has been to all of my Ironman races), Family in general.
Gordo Byrn (Coach), Greg Goodman (cyling coach KMA),Bob Schloegel (Mentor), Ben Schloegel (Resident Pro/Expert), Ken Welsh (Friend/Boulder Training Partner), Training buddies that includes: Randy Booth, Eric Ervin, Dave Corwin, Dale Anderson, Brian Howell, Hugh Ryan, Chris Yows, Tim Freeland, Troy Smith, Eric Kratz, David Seay, Jason Taylor, Barry Ogden, Brian Evans, Sandy Cohen, Pepper Stokes, Thursday night Casey's ride group, the whole KMA class, Jewish Master's swim team, Prairie Life Master's swim crew. .Tim O'Donnell, Pat Beasley. . . The Bike Stop Bicycle Stores . . .and anyone/everyone else I might have forgotten. The Fugate Family. . . .anyone else? Sorry if I forgot anyone, shoot me a message and I will put you on here. .
As you can see, triathlon has brought a lot of people into my life and I am thankful for that. . ok, group hug. . . .
OK . . .. sit back, grab something to eat/drink and block about 20 minutes out of your day. . .this is a long one. For the short version. . here you go. PR!! 10:36.59 ok, leave a comment.
For the rest of you . . . read on. . . .
It is nice to feel welcomed. :)
Seriously, I was very serious this time around. The past two Ironmen I had trained for, I basically started training about 5.5 months out and spent a good amount of that time getting 35 lbs of fat off of my body that seemed to always find me during the winter months. Well this time around. . I was serious . . . seriously!. Training officially started on December 5th, 2008 for the August 30th, 2009 date and in short. . . things went exactly to plan. Probably a little better actually, which kindof scares me.
If you read the my previous post then you are well aware of the stressful events that led up to us arriving in Lousiville and also the good amount of time and stress that was spent on that little problem. . . to say that I completley blocked it out of my mind and it didn't have an impact at all on me would be telling something other than the complete truth. Although, with things being fixed and returned to normal the day before, everything was falling into place for race day.
BUT FIRST! . . . days leading up to Race day. . .
This picture is from Friday morning practice swim. . all friends from Kansas City or previously lived in KC.
from left to right. .. Tim Freeland, Me, Troy Smith, Bryan Fugate, Mark Carey
Getting all the gear on for the swim. . ..
My first time in the Ohio river. .I am a little concerned about the 15 foot catfish that have been known to swallow men whole. . . .
Almost done with the practice swim and see how happy I am to be alive!!!!
Saturday before bike check-in. . I am lucky to have my own bike mechanic there helping me out. Ready to turn the "Steed of Speed" in for the race. . .once you check it in, you can't get it back till after the race. . . See the stupid placement of my number on my bike? Yeah, that didn't work out to well come race day when my legs kept hitting it. On the seatpost stupid!!!
Race morning: Woke up at 4:30 am and downed a pb & jelly sandwich, some acclerade and a banana. . .went back to bed for a bit and then woke up again at 5:15AM. . . and then headed out with Dad and Amy. We met Troy on the way out and walked down to the Transition area about .5 mile away. The logistics of this race (in my humble opinion) are not the best. The swim start is approx. .75 miles away from the swim finish and transition area and then the run finish is about 1 mile away from the transition areas too. So in reality you have 3 different areas that you will be in all to start, change gear and then finish. Sorry. . got off on a little tangent there.
So we made it down to transition, got everything set up, tried to get to my transition bags, but apparently those are on high security lockdown, so that was a no go. Went back to my bike and put my HR strap on my handlebars and then headed down to the swim start. . about half way down, I remember that I am wearing my orthotics and will NEED those on the run. Great, this means that I HAVE to get to my Transition bags as I need my orthotics in my run gear bag. So I go down to the area and there are two girls standing guard over the bags. The first girl I take out using a bike pump to the back of the head and the second girl I gas with a CO2 cartridge. . just kidding. . :) I ask the girl very politely if she can put my orthotics in my bag, since I require them for a medical condition (half-truth). She looks at me and says, so "You need these for a medical reason?". Yup! She says ok, that is the only reason why they are allowed to put stuff in the bags. So she does so and comes back and verifies my info to make sure she put them in the right bag and I am all ready to go!
I start the .75 mile walk to the swim start over again and find Troy, Amy and Dad all waiting for me. Now keep in mind this swim start is a time trial start and not a mass start so in reality we still have plenty of time to get down to the start. ..in fact we just fall in line with everyone else making their way over. We make it over and get bodymarked (see half naked picture below) and then make our way over to get in line. I see Jason Taylor there (triathlete friend from KC that has come to spectate and cheer us on). .he gives us the lowdown on what is going on and where to go, shows us the special T-Shirt he and Brian Evans made for the KC crew and then wishes us luck.
We walk down the line (which seemed to go on for miles) and finally meet up with Barry Ogden, Jason Wolfe. Also there (as spectators) are Brian Evans, Barry's girlfriend, and a couple others. Hope no one behind us minded Troy and I cutting in line. It was nice to have some friends to talk to and it made the waiting go faster. We heard the pros start and then 10 minutes later it was time for the rest of us to go.
Once the line started moving it wasn't too fast till you entered the "Point of No Return" and then it seemed as though we jogged down to the boat docks and jumped in.
Body marking at the swim start. . . . and yes, I have band-aids on my nipples. . no one said this is a manly sport!
The swim plan was to stay nice and relaxed and not push anything. . well, I had to push about 50 people out of my way, but once I made the turn into the main part of the river, I just put it in cruise control and started thinking about T1 (Transition to bike) and the bike portion. At what I thought was half way for the swim I looked at my watch and it said 33 minutes. . great, this was suppose to be one of the fastest swims in the Ironman circuit and here I was posting my slowest Ironman swim ever. . well, it turned out that mush have been more than halfway, because when I came out of the water and was about half way to T1, my watch said 55.XX, so I knew my acutal swim time was 53 minutes or so.
My official swim time was 55 minutes and 15 seconds.
Overall (including pros):
T1: The run from the water to T1 was quite a trek, they didn't record your actual swim time till you were about half way to T1 (running out of the water) so that is why T1 time is lower and swim time is a little longer. Not much to report here, changed into bike shorts, got the shoes on and race belt and then headed out of the tent. . . 4 minutes 21 seconds.
Bike: My goal on the bike was to keep HR at 150 Avg and not to push (spike) any hills. I knew that going in, I would have to hold back when others passed and just race my own race which can be very hard to do. I had a secret goal to go 5:30 on the bike and after driving the course the day before, that goal turned into 6 hours. .. . It was a HILLY course and truth be told, it psyched me out a little. . .oh well, no time for that now. . I had a 112 mile ride to do. The first 10 miles of the bike, the main focus was to bring the Heart Rate back down from the jog during T1. . note to self is to walk T1 next time so don't have to work for 10 miles to bring HR back down. I would say more people passed me in the first 28 to 35 miles than I passed, but I could tell by my Garmin 705 that I was right where I wanted to be. I made it to La Grange (a town where spectators could drive to, to watch the race) and I expected to see my family there, but I guess they were being a little slow on getting out there and missed me. I had the Fugate family there cheering Bryan on and me when I rolled through, so that was nice and also had Jason Taylor and Brian Evans there with the Air Horn scaring the crap out of me. Thanks Guys!
The next 36-80 miles was right where I wanted it to be and the HR kept coming down and each 28 mile "lap" was faster than the first (mentally I break the race into 4 x 28 mile laps to get the 112 total). Here is the data. .
Miles 1-28.7 Miles: 1 hour 26 minutes 4 seconds AVG 20mph
Miles 28.8-56.01: 1 hour 20 minutes 40 seconds AVG 20.3mph
Miles 56.02-84.01: 1 hour 23 minutes 15 seconds AVG 20.2 mph
Miles 84.02-112: 1 hour 16 minutes 26 seconds AVG 21.7 mph
The last 10-12 miles were death. . Coming back down to the river valley is fun and then you know it is flat back to Transition, but flat is a good and bad thing all at once. . flat seems to go on forever with no break and when you have hit 102 miles on the bike, you are ready to be off as soon as possible. The last 5 miles seemed to drag on forever, and I was excited to get off and see how my body would react since I held back on the bike. I had paced/raced the bike exactly as I planned and while the HR was a little higher than I would like, I knew that I had left plenty in the tank for the 26.2 mile run to come. . .
Official Bike Time: 5 hours 26 minutes 52 seconds 20.56 Avg Speed MPH
Overall (including pros):
Picture of me heading out on the bike. . .
READY TO GET OFF THIS THING!!!!!!
Making way to Transition. Getting ready mentally to run. . ..
T2: 4minutes, 6 seconds. .
Heading out on the run . . .
Run: All year was focused on this. . . .to RUN. . . .
I knew I had to hold back on the bike to have a decent run. . so we wil see. . ..
I came out of Transition feeling pretty good. . the plan was to hold a 9:13 per mile pace for the first 4 miles and then come down from there. . well the excitement of the day, me not thinking and well, just plain being in the moment caused the first 4 miles to look like this:
Mile 1: :8:36
Mile 2: 6:59
Mile 3: 8:14
Mile 4: 9:22
Hey, I got mile 4 about right! :) My other plan was to walk the aid stations starting with Mile 1 and well, that didn't happen till Mile 4. I was feeling good, but I knew that if I didn't walk now, then I would be walking A LOT later on. . So starting at Mile 4, I walked every aid station which as probably around 30 seconds on average.
I was anxious to get to the turn around part on the south end of Louisville, so I could see others that I knew and so I could see how far behind me they were. . .the only person I wasn't 100% sure on as to starting position was Tim Freeland. I didn't know if he started in front of me or behind me. . He was the only one I saw on the bike though. . .
I hit the turnaround and looked at my watch to get the time till when I saw the next person I knew. . Josh Wolfe has passed me on the bike at mile 100 or so and I knew there was no catching him. I was looking for Barry and knew he would be the first one that I saw. . sure enough about 6 minutes back when I saw him and he was looking strong. . .I figured it was only a matter of time at that point. Next I saw Jeff Whitecotton (better known as Whitey) and he was about 10 minutes back. . ..then I saw Tim, he was about 12 minutes back, but I figured he had started way behind me and he was on pace to crush 11 hours. . .. Not that I am competitive or anything, but seeing those guys gave me a little boost and the per min mile average dropped for the next 2-3 miles. . .
Coming back into downtown is rewarding yet cruel at the same time. . .the race organization basically brings you to the footsteps of the finish chute and then WHAM!!! You make a turn to head back out on your second loop. .
Normally at this distance of running I seem to feel good at mile 8 and then things start getting hard at around at around mile 14-16. . . at the far turnaround (last one till finish) I wanted to get a time check on everyone else again. . I could see that Barry and I were still about the same time distance apart and I put a little more time on Whitey and Tim. I saw Troy this time too and he was looking good for his first.
Miles 23-25 was the darkest point by far and I could see my pace dropping into the 10 min mile range. . As everyone, I told myself to keep going and I had run 2-4 miles a thousand times over the past 9 months and this was nothing. .. .
Coming back into downtown Louisville was the greatest feeling. . .knowing that I had about 1 miles to go and my family and friends would be waiting to see the finish. I knew I was going to set a PR of around 10:3X something and while I would have loved to have broken 10:30 minutes, I knew at about mile 18 that, that was not going to happen, but I knew breaking 11 hours was done and breaking 10:45 was probably going to happen too. . .
Running down the finish chute is one of the greatest feelings one can have. . .all pain leaves the body, what was once a tired and decayed spirit, comes alive and for a brief moment, you are the only racer in the world and as far as everyone cheering is concerned, you are the winner.
Then you cross the finish line and reality sets in. . for at least the next 2-3 days. :)
Run Time: 4 hours 6 minutes 25 seconds. . .. 9 minute 25 second Per Mile Average. .
Overall (including pros):
TOTAL TIME: 10 hours 36 minutes 59 seconds
Overall Rank = 182/2435
35-39 MaleAge Group Rank = 34/453
BIG THANK YOU and I LOVE YOU to Amy for all of her support and putting up with my 5 hour training rides/runs/swims. . ..
If you made it this far. . then leave a comment below. .at least let me know that my mom and wife are not the only ones that read this stuff. :)