Monday, July 27, 2009

Chisago Lakes 1/2 Ironman Race Report

Whoo hoo - so glad I decided to try a 1/2 Ironman - I had a blast out there..... well perhaps until mile 10 of the run. This was the third race in the four straight weeks of racing and I felt great coming into it. I had gotten over my cold and was excited to try my hand at this distance. The weather could not had been better and there was going to be some great competition to race out there.

The swim went well, except that I lost my timing chip in the water. I felt it get more and more loose and then it finally came off. I knew there was no way I was going to find it so I kept on swimming. I came out of the water and yelled at Derek that I lost my chip and looked for a volunteer on my way to my bike. I told a volunteer what had happened and he said he would have a chip waiting for me when I got off of the bike.

With this being my first 1/2 Ironman I knew I needed to get my nutrition right and to push the bike pace, but not like I do on an Olympic race. I didn't think I was going out hard enough at first and started to pick up the pace at about mile 5. I took about 4 gels on the bike and consumed all of the liquids I could. It was hard to focus out there for so long so I kept picturing the Tour de France guys and how hard they have to focus!

Coming off of the bike I was in fourth place and knew that the girls ahead of me were good runners. My coach told me to pace myself on the run because I have a tendency to go out too fast and I wanted to build the pace. When I reached mile 1 I knew I was going too fast so I backed down and then saw at mile 3 I was at about 20 minutes into the run. I knew I needed to slow down to be able to last ten more miles. At mile 5 I decided to go for it, so I picked up the pace and started running with a guy who called himself "Crash".

Here is a picture of "Crash" and I coming out of T2 together

We were really cruising and it felt good. I was hoping to keep that pace up until the end but at about mile 10 I felt my legs get pretty tired and heavy. I knew if I kept my feet going I would get there. I finally saw Derek, my sister, my friend Becky and Owen at the end and it was so nice to see them and hear them cheering for me - I needed it! I thought about my run after the race and it was clear that I should had taken more nutrition. I only took one gel and some sport beans so for the next half - definitely more gel!!

I ended up getting third place overall and I'm very happy with the result. Next weekend is Big Creek in Iowa and it is the Midwest Region Age Group Championships. I did this race last year and liked the course and it is really close to my in-laws house so we won't have to wake up at 3:45am to get there!!!


richvans said...

Great job out there - 4 races in 4 weekends including a 1/2 IM. Now I can show my wife someone out there is more nuts than I am. Good luck next weekend.

Donald "Crash" Sawyer said...

Great job on your first half!

Thanks for keeping me company for about 2 hours (as I chased you and Jim F for 27 miles on the bike). I caught that guy we were chasing, but he had more in the last 1/2 mile.

Good luck next weekend.