Saturday morning was the Patriot Half-Ironman. It’s a good warmup race and a good point to figure out where I am with my training for the Ironman. Learned plenty of things from this race. Hopefully I will be able to correct them for Ironman.
I was in the last wave for the swim, for individual racers, behind me were the Aquabike. This is the first triathlon I have been in where I started so far back, usually I’m one of the first waves and come out of the water and all the bikes are still racked and then everyone passes me. It was a little different for this race, the wave starts were seperated by 4 minutes, so it was fun to pass the yellow caps, by the first turn, at the second turn started to pass white caps and as I was coming into the shore I even passed a few of the orange ones. I just relaxed for the swim, kept my breathing even and didn’t push. My pace was 1:30 for 100s. I think that is easily maintainable for Ironman. If I had pushed hard I couuld have taken at least 2 minutes off that, maybe more, but I don’t think it would have been worth it when I got to the bike. I was the 5th person out of the water in my age group, that’s out of 72.
Uneventful transition, took my time and made sure I had everything and headed out.
I knew the bike course was flat and going into the race I had set the goal of 2o mph for the ride. I felt like that was reasonable. When I had come out of the water Julie was there, she started 8 minutes ahead of me and so we started out on the bike together, sort of. She blew past me and I could see her out in front of me. I was keeping my cadence high and spinning to get my legs warmed up after the swim. Julie probably stayed about a half mile in front of me for the first few miles, then I caught and passed her on one of the slight inclines on the course. Which followed her passing me on the downhill. I have to say she had an amazing bike ride. I just couldn’t believe how easily she passed me and would get so far out in front then we would come to another incline and I would finally catch and pass her. That happened for pretty much the whole ride, maybe I just don’t try to push myself enough on the downhill or she isn’t pushing on the uphill. I don’t know, but she needs to pull more on the Sunday rides!!!!
Learned many things on the bike ride. One, I need to work harder on my tuesday and thursday rides to increase my biking fitness. Two, drink, drink, drink and make sure to take more salt sticks. I lost a lot of electrolytes during the race and became dehydrated. When I finished the race I though I just pushed too hard on the bike. Having looked back on it and weighing myself when I got home from the race I learned that I lost 4lbs. Far too much weight to lose during a race and that is AFTER having a large milk shake on the way home and drinking a couple bottle of water after the race. NOT GOOD! Third, don’t mix ice with your drink, it dilutes it too much! Four, water bottle exchange, make sure to squeeze ALL the water, Heed, or water you get into the tank. I ran out of water with 5 miles to go on the bike. That caused problems on the run.
This was another uneventful transition, the one thing I did learn from it was to make sure that I have my watch find the satellites earlier in the day so that when I start the run the watch is ready to go!
After letting myself get dehydrated on the bike the run was not good. I knew I was in trouble about a half mile in. I was relaxed and running and the watched said 8:30 pace, but I felt I was running too hard and couldn’t catch my breath and backed off. I could feel my quads tightening up and at the time I thought I had just pushed too hard on the bike. Looking back, I was dehydrated. From this point on I ran from one water stop to the next and then walked through them taking ice and water, mixing them and drinking it to cool down. I took a Salt tablet as well as two gels on the run. The result was one of my slowest half-marthon times ever.
The race overall was very well supported and run. I would definitely do the race again. Even though I didn’t do well with my nutrition I was still able to set a personal record for a half-ironman. I also had a personal best on the bike ride at 20.3 mph. This was the first event of any distance that I was able to maintain over 20 mph. I still wonder how I was able to maintain 19.3 on the Timberman bike course that is much hiller.
Total Time 5:24:50