Well, I finished my first Ironman 70.3 on Saturday and had a great time… I’m not saying it wasn’t hard but I felt prepared and really enjoyed myself. My total time was 5:23 which I feel really good about. When I signed up, I wanted to go under 6 hours and as I got training I thought maybe I could go 5:40 so 5:23 is great for me.
Swim 1.2 miles (39:17)
I’m not a strong open water swimmer so I was happy to be out of the water in 39:17. The start was a little rough but I think I did a lot better swimming straight and staying under control in the open cold water. I thought I did a better not drinking the ocean but when I got out of the water I had some stomach cramps so I most of drank some.
The volunteers were a great help in helping me unzip my wetsuit. The run through the long transition was tough but at least I didn’t fall as 2 different guys in front of me both slipped and fell hard.
Bike 56 miles (2:54:34 and an average HR of 152)
When I got on the bike I was feeling all the salt water in my gut but I drank water and that helped and by mile 15 I was feeling better. I didn’t have a lot of power and speed the first 10 mile and a lot of guys passed me… I didn’t want to push it as I knew the hills were to come and wanted to stay under control. I think I did a good job drinking and ate a total of 3 gels on the bike. I started to pick up some speed miles 15 – 30 but there was a lot of traffic to work through. When the hills hit I felt good and worked through them without a big spike in my heart rate. There were a couple of descends with really bad cross winds so I slowed down as I didn’t want to crash. At mile 45 I was feeling good but my quads were getting tight and I knew that was going to be an issue on the run. I finished strong into the wind back to T2 feeling good about my bike time of 2:54.
T2 (2:06 and an average HR of 150)
I had a descent transition as I put on socks but I knew my quads were going to be an issue…
Run 13.1 miles (1:44:04 and an average HR of 164)
I started pretty good, my feet didn’t hurt as in previous races but my quads were cramping so I just told myself “just go for a run and don’t worry about things”. I did the first 2 miles in 15:05 and started to feel better but as soon as one part of my quads stopped hurting another section of the quads or the other leg would tighten up. I never wanted to walk and I’m glad I didn’t have too. I think I did the first 6 miles in 50 minutes. I grabbed water at one aid station then Gatorade at the next all the way but I didn’t want to walk so I didn’t really drink much out of the cups. I didn’t feel like eating so I keep on running. At mile 9 I tried to pick up the pace but a blister prevented me from going much faster. I did have a little sprint to the finishing line with a smile on my face. Many times during the run I wanted to go faster but was afraid my legs would totally lock up if lengthened my stride and picked up the pace. I saw a lot of people stopping and walking and I just wanted to keep running.
Overall I’m very happy with my time of 5:22! I wish my legs would have done better on the run as I feel like I could have run faster. Next day my hamstrings feel tight but overall I’m doing great just a little sore and dealing with a blister from the run.
Ironman put on a great event in Oceanside and I hope to return in 2011, you learn lot about yourself in these longer races. This was the first time for me at this distance but also the first time using heart rate based training and racing. I followed a program from Mark Allen Online and think it really helped me physical and mentally.
Next race is Big Rock Olympic distances at Lake Perris April 17th.