after waking up at 4:00am, stoob and i made our way to the race site up in chisago city, mn. stoob drove so i could eat my breakfast of peanut butter toast, ensure, and yogurt which is always hard to get down at 4:30am. i picked up my race packet yesterday, so setting up for the race was cake. after a quick bike check, a double check of my spot in transition, and getting on my wetsuit, i made my way down to the swim start shown below.
this one shows all the half iron racers lined up in their wave just before the start of the race. i’m the one in the black wetsuit with the green cap.
the opening image shows me just prior to my swim start taken courtesy of Ms. Anne Cartman (my old supervisor from Polk County) who came to watch the race. (my suit is red in the back and has white lettering down the sleeve) stoob also took her turn shooting the pictures in the blog, so thanks to both of you for that.
the swim started well, and with the water temp in the high 70’s, i was able to settle in and find my groove rather quickly. the course was an out and back, made slightly difficult by the fog that rolled in just before the start making sighting the course buoys a bit tough.
i came out of the water in 35:48:50, and considering i was shooting for 35 minutes, i can’t complain. the water was a bit weedy, and i had to break my stroke a few times to pull the weeds off my face. other than that, i had no problems.
upon getting back up into the transition area, i noticed there were tons of bikes around me. that’s a good sign – it means you are one of the first out of the water in your heat. stoob and anne were waiting near my transition spot to snap a picture, and stoob said i was the 6th runner out of the water. i was super happy knowing there were about 50 people i’m my wave and i was 6th! 2:46 after i left the water, i was on my bike and heading out for the 56 mile bike.
the ride, although a bit windy at times, was fantastic. at race start, it was a really comfortable 61 degrees with cloudy skies. PERFECT weather for racing. it remained cloudy until the last 5 minutes of the bike, so i was super happy about that. i rode at a steady pace, and didn’t push things too hard knowing i had a long run after. i finished the ride in 2:48:23, which is just a hair over a 20 mph average pace. and like the swim, i was hoping for anything less than three hours, so 12 minutes less? perfect.
i was into transition 2 and out running in just over a minute and a half. slower than i had hoped, but the transition area was packed making it hard to get in and out quickly.
see what i mean? crazy.
like i mentioned earlier, the sun reared it’s ugly face just 5 minutes before the start of the run, and while it never got too hot, it made for a tough run. i felt good through mile 6, got a bit of a stomach cramp from 6-8, and felt like i could never pick up the pace through the finish like i had hoped to. even with dumping ice down my race top every mile or so, i just felt like my core temp was crazy high. i ended up running the 13.3 miles in 1:48:57 which works out to an 8:11 minute mile pace. i was hoping for a 1 hour, 40 minute run, but what are you going to do. could i have found 9 minutes out there, probably. am i going to beat myself up over it considering how well the race went overall? not for a minute.
total time: 5:17:26 which was 26th position in my age group (out of 66 total) and 140th overall out of 405 dudes that ran the race. success? yes. time for a break? nope. i’m up tomorrow morning at 5:00am to swim, and will be riding tomorrow night. time’s ticking for Ironman Wisconsin in SEP, and since all the distances in that race are double what i ran today, there’s definitely work to be done.