Monday, August 2, 2010

Oliver Half Ironman Race Report - June 6, 2010

  • 35m and change, 1:41 per 100 yards. Fastest half iron swim for me by over 2 minutes.
  • Perfect water temp – not too cold, not too warm.
  • Mentally focused on my form the whole swim – it seems to do the trick when I start falling apart by the end of my long workouts, I guess it works in races as well.
  • Pretty violent start. The waves were huge with all women under 45 starting at once. I got whacked with an elbow in my head a couple times and swallowed some water one of those times, but managed to keep it under control, cough it out and keep going.
  • Didn’t catch any feet to draft off. Still need to work on that.
  • Fast run between the lake exit and the transition (it’s over a 1/4 mile run!) – 2:29. Passed quite a few people there.
  • Wet suit strippers rock!
  • 3:11 for the actual transition – from when I got into the transition area till when I clipped into my bike pedals. Slow
  • Messed with my helmet too long – probably lost all the advantage that I gained in the quick run between the lake and the transition.
  • Knocked over my behind the seat water bottle while hopping on my bike – need to practice with that setup some more.
  • 2h40m, 21.3 mph, despite the fact that the course is at least 1 mile long. Fastest bike split ever for me.
  • Fun course – rolling hills are my favorite terrain, gorgeous views of the lakes, mountains and vineyards. Perfect for spectators with the athletes passing the transition area 6 times.
  • Lucked out on the weather – nice temps in the 70s, cloud cover kept us sheltered from the sun and the winds were very mild.
  • I love my SRM power meter! Used it religiously to keep the wattage up in the 170-180 range on the flats and to keep it controlled on the uphills.
  • It was nice to see Polita out there and pass each other back and forth a few times. Always good to cheer each other on!
  • I need to change my saddle. My inner thighs started cramping in the last 10K. I think the saddle is too wide for me.
  • I do not like it when people draft. After working hard against the wind all by myself for the whole last stretch of Hwy 97, I got caught and passed by a pack of 3 girls who were clearly working together. On the positive note, it got me kind of angry and gave me an extra boost of energy to crank out those last 10K and not let them get far ahead of me.
  • Some guys just can’t get over the fact that there are women who are faster than them. If a rider catches you from behind despite the fact that they started the swim 10 min later, and passes you – there is a good chance that they are stronger than you. No need to crank it up and try to get ahead of them repeatedly for the next 5 miles just because it happens to be a girl.
  • Nothing w00t about this transition :-(
  • 2:11, slow T2!
  • I was slow getting off my bike, slow changing and managed to forget my race belt and had to run back to grab it after I was almost out of the transition
  • 1:31, 6:57 per mile. Fastest half iron run split and second fastest half marathon time for me. Wow, didn’t know I could go sub 7 in a half iron!
  • Didn’t get passed once.
  • It was great to see Rhae finishing her first lap as I was just starting on the run and then again, in the final winning stretch as I was starting on my second lap.
  • Narrow bike path and bridges/sidewalks made for a crowded second lap. A lot of folks were still on their first lap and I had to pass a lot of people.
  • Gravel which makes up about half the course is not my favorite surface to run on.
  • I planned well and executed well
  • 1 Cliff shot before the swim start (100 Kcal)
  • 2 bottles with 2 scoops of Hammer Perpetuem in each + one package of Cliff blocks (total of 740 Kcal) during the bike
  • 1 Cliff shot (100 Kcal) + a random mix of Gatorade, water and Coke at aid stations during the run
  • Never felt too hungry, too full, too thirsty or too fatigued, never cramped except for the inner thighs cramping which, I believe, resulted from my less-than-perfect bike saddle fit.
  • No complaints here, I think I did well.
  • Took off over 16 min from my previous half iron PR of 5:11 at Clearwater 2008. (Full disclosure: I did quite a bit of drafting myself in that race, so breaking that dishonest bike split makes me feel doubly good! Also, after my experience yesterday, I never want to draft in a race again!)
  • Came in 2nd in my age group and 9th overall. I’ve never made top three my age group or top 10 overall before in a half ironman. It feels really good!
  • Great race. Fun course, nice town, well organized, good for spectators. I recommend!
  • Both of my transitions were really slow and I made stupid mistakes in both of them. What’s up with that? I guess I just lost my short distance racing edge. In an Ironman, 3 min transitions are normal and you have volunteers that help you make sure you have everything and put your stuff away. I must have gotten lazy. Need to practice more and race more!

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