A good end to a disastrous tri-season; Pumpkinman would go well for a change. No issues going into this race. The only question would be fitness and speed, as doing an Ironman every summer seems to bomb the rest of the season. All that endurance training and the long recovery (4 weeks for me this year) seems to eliminate any speed in the legs. This summer has been unusually hot, which I think makes training, especially interval training on the bike and definitely running, that much more difficult.
Well, I definitely finish my year satisfied. I realize next year I will have to make some adjustments, as I need to avoid the problems I had this year.
Anyway, the race report:
Two loops in a small pond. Swam well. Time 29:31 - I am pretty sure this is a PR. Very consistent with the way my swimming has gone. I seem to be PR'ing in the swim at all the races this year. 2010 has definitely been a great year for me is this discipline.
Course: Rolling hills with one decent climb.
Anyone who reads this blog always know there is going to be some kind of story. The long and the short. I thought my race was over at 5 miles into the bike! What happened? I had just passed the guy who would be my competitor in my age group. I was going down a long hill at about 30mph and look ahead to see a shiny piece of metal in the road. The sun is now peaking out of the clouds ... I see it then hit it. At 30 mph all I hear is the sound of air coming out of my front tire. A tubular disc in the back, my clincher in the front and I decided to take the risk; only a CO2 cartridge on my frame bag under my nutrition. I sat up, in shock, rolling along ... I can't believe my season ends like this; a disastrous end to a disastrous season!! I am now looking down at the tire expecting to see it starting to flat. I have to signal and actually find a driveway to pull-over, with no shoulder and I want to avoid someone crashing into me. I hunch over for a second, then look down at the tire. No more sound of air coming out??!! I quickly decide to start down the hill again only to get up to speed and hear what I thought was air coming out. I stop, jump off the bike and examine the entire tire - no air leaking. I quickly spin the wheel and I'm realizing there is something stuck. A powerbar wrapper trapped between my fork and wheel. I pull it out, jump back on the bike and start hammering; maybe I can catch back up. Why did it take me so much time 80 seconds, 90 seconds, 2 minutes to figure it out? It's called waking-up at 4:45am. My body will work, but my brain just doesn't do well getting up that early. I started to get a little out of control with 50 miles to go, but then had a sense of relief that I would finish this race ... tried to relax and have fun. I can make up a lot of ground on the run anyway.
What can I say? I always run hard. I run down a couple of 45+er's within the first mile and a half. Everyone I pass after that isn't in my age group. To my surprise, the run is very hilly with not much flat. I know they have changed this course to make it more accurate. A lot of looping back and forth over the hills, I pass a lot of people, but seem to be running alone after 10 miles. It's hard to tell because of the loops. The winner, a pro ran 1:23:40, which was where I hoped to be, but not on this course. I think the distance was accurate, but I could not just get into my target pace after the first two miles. I ran hard the whole way until the turn to go up the big hill to finish. I am running hard up the hill when one of the volunteers leans over and says "there is absolutely no one behind you" - I relax and cruise to the finish.
Slow time, but I ran hard and I need to get some speed back in my legs. It has been a long time since I have done a track workout or run a race at any distance for that matter.
Time: 4:44, 33rd Overall, 2nd Age Group
This was a great race! I really enjoyed it. It is in a nice setting in southern Maine and a nice place to have a race. Well organized, great food, beer, great massage, they take the prizes seriously with the podium set-up and all. I will definitely consider this race for next year.
So that's it. I switch back to runner mode for the fall and start looking at some races. I don't plan to put the bike away yet, so maybe that late season duo or some cyclocross and some mtn biking. I still don't have any races or marathons planned yet. Need to clear my head before I plan anything or maybe just have some fun this fall and not train for anything specific. As always, I expect there will be some ATT coming back at some point, but I still have a few weeks to decide. Manchester marathon is also a possibility, being so late in the season.
Above photos from this year's IMLP. Cheers!