I had planned on completing a half-iron since about March or April. However, I thought it would be the Prarieman. That was back when I thought I'd still be in New Mexico. A new job and a move to Oklahoma, my new goal was the Redman. It fit into what was left of my training, given the disruptions. I wasn't too terribly undertrained for the race, but I could have been fitter.
The start is about 1.5 miles away, so if I didn't have to rack my bike the night before, I would have ridden to the race. As it happened, I had breakfast (peanut butter toast, OJ, and yogurt), watched TV, sipped some coffee and put everything together. Paula dropped me off and I got ready. I got everything ready in transition, sipping on water the whole way through. A gel about 20 minutes before go time, and I was ready.
I haven't been swimming consistently since the move. I've managed to swim in Arcadia lake once a week for the past three months, but that's it. I knew my time would suffer for it.
I started with the second wave after watching the first wave "wade" through the first leg of the swim. I tried to swim, but with my hand hitting the bottom, I decided to walk. Many other did the same. Throughout the swim, I felt lost. I've been sighting pretty well in practice swims, but based on where everyone else was, I thought I was zig zagging. Either way, I was worried I would have a real slow swim. However, that didn't concern me too much. Today was about finishing the distance.
Time: 39:49 (1:53/100yds)
First time with wetsuit strippers. Awesome. Glad my shorts didn't come off with the suit. Quick hello to Paula, and headed to the bike racks. I went super duper slow. Had to make sure I remembered everything.
Right out of T1, I notice my rear wheel was rubbing. This annoyed me. I had it tuned up for a decent sum of money and noticed the brakes were rubbing during my pre-race ride. I thought I took care of it. Also, the rear derailleur wasn't properly adjusted. That's another gripe I had with the tune-up. I'm not hitting that shop up again.
Oh, yeah. I had to pee right out of the gate. Luckily there was a well placed porto-potty.
The plan was to keep the HR around 145-150 for the first half or so and 155-160 for the second. I was caught up in the excitement of the first few miles, but settled in nicely. The course was well marked with plenty of support in the form of cops and aid stations. I took the first 28 mile loop in about 1:24/1:25. Pretty uneventful second loop. My back started hurting, and I also decided to ease up on the gas heading into the run.
Time: 2:51:38 (19.58mph)
Took my sweet time. Needed new socks. Decided against fuel belt. Stretched back. Thought I had everything, but forgot my race number. In the end, it didn't matter.
Wanted to start slow, but steady. First mile was a sub 8. I knew that was trouble. I eased up to about an 8:30 pace, but by mile 5, I was hurting pretty good. It was hot and my shoes became water logged. Eventually, the run became a zombie march to the aid stations, followed by an unnecessarily long walk nursing a gatorade cup. I traded places with one guy for a bit and we chuckled at how slow we were going.
Leading up to the race, I knew it was going to come down to the run. If I could post a sub 2hr run, I thought I'd have a decent time. After I fell apart, my goal became a sub 6 hr race.
One more note, as sad as my half-marathon time was, it was faster than 1/2 of my first marathon time in LA.
Time: 2:16:36 (10:25min/mi, eek!)
Total time: 5:53:45 (97th out of 227 males; 15th out of 29 in AG).
While I'm not unhappy with my time, I hoped to be around 5:30. I want to try another 70.3 race and put a dent in that time. I now know what to expect.
As for the race itself, it was run very well. Its a great venue for the race. Spectator friendly and flat. I'm not sure about making Redman my first 140.6 race (given the four loops on both the bike and the run).
I'm not sure what's next. I think I'll lift some weights and work on my run. We'll probably join the Y for the pool. I'd like to get my swim form back.
thanks for reading!