Sunday, July 08, 2007

Pacific Crest 1/2 Iron Triathlon

I don't even know where to start with an update since it's been so long! I raced, went on a mini-vacation, dealt / dealing with the saga of my injured feet. Maybe chronological order will work?

Pacific Crest 1/2 Iron
I wish I had a more exciting race report but it was a pretty standard race. In hindsight, I wish I would've skipped it based on how F'd my feet were post-race. I could have used the taper & race week to get some additional solid aerobic volume under my belt for Ironman Canada.

I *thought* I did everything right this year. I got in the water early, did some warm-ups to get the HR up and clear the jets, etc. When the gun went off I made a conscious effort to go out very easy to avoid hyperventilating since this was only my second wetsuit swim and we were at elevation. It didn't seem to matter because I was right on the edge of gasping for breath after only 2-3 minutes of racing. I was able to talk myself off the ledge and get it under control, thank god! After about 2-300 yards, I thought I was doing okay when I saw a kayaker fast-approaching from the right. F&#%! I was veering off course so had to cut a hard left to get back on course, pretty uneventful after that....just settled in and worked it to the finish. One bummer is that there is absolutely no draft at Pac Crest due to the murky water. It really makes it difficult to find any feet and to stick to them. You can only see about an arm length out so it made it a tough swim for those, like me, who are aquatically-challenged.
Swim Finish: 37:06
1:45 pace OUCH. Oh, well...where's that bike!?

T1 4:22 Yeah, that's gotta problem wid it!? ;-) We had to bag up all our stuff for transport to T2 but still not an excuse for that loong transition.

I was a bit bummed that they had to change the course this year due to road construction. They eliminated the climb up Mount Bachelor and the screaming fast descent down the other side and replaced it with a *yaaaawn* boring course with a horrible road surface. I'm talking teeth-jarringly bad. I didn't have time to drive the bike course but had heard that it was flat and fast. The first 15-20 miles were anything but. Right out of the gate, there were some good rollers and a couple climbs....I made it a point to push it up the rollers / climbs and settle in on the flats. After about 25-30 miles it was pretty flat with several sections of false flats but nothing that forced you to get out of the aerobars. I was a bit nervous with the big fat 808 wheel up front but glad to report that it was very manageable in the wind....granted there weren't any gusts but some pretty good wind in certain sections. Besides pushing it up the climbs/rollers I just rode the bike at a pretty steady pace.

Race-ready....stunning eh!? ;-)

Uummm, does this disc wheel make my butt look big?

Ok, back to the race...I did three stops - 2 stops to dismount and use the bathroom, 1 to park it at an aid station for a quick fill-up on the bottles. Isn't there an unwritten rule not to pee on the bike if it isn't an A race?! I couldn't force myself to sully my beautiful new bike so took the time penalties to keep her nice and pretty. The whole ride went well until the dismount area where the rider immediately in front of me slammed on his brakes at the front of the dismount area while I was right behind....not good! There was approximately 15-20 feet where he could have gradually come to a stop but he panicked and thought he had to be off the bike at the front line. I almost laid it down right there but was able to save it by making a wacky brake / turn combo while making some strange moaning sound. You had to be there- good times.
Bike Time 2:30
22.4 mph ave

T2 2:35 I was actually happy with this transition since it was old school all the way. I sat down to put my socks on and also tie my regular laces. I was too lazy to put on race locks or easy laces. I even used the bathroom before exiting the transition so not too shabby.

Ok...nothing to see here, keep it moving.
The run was disappointing but it's not like I was expecting to PR based on the plantar fasciitis I've been dealing with. My feet hurt during the first 5-6 miles of the run but nothing I could do but suck it up. To put it in perspective, I was able to shuffle through this whole run without walking and still have the same run time as last year where I could actually run but spent quite a bit of time walking. No walking just an overall slower pace this year. At least endurance wasn't an issue on the run, all the bike mileage in training seems to have helped me here.
Run Time 1:48
8:15/mile pace

Finish 5:02:20
13/63 Age Division

One major positive from this race was my successful fueling / hydration plan. I seem to have nailed this aspect of the race and didn't have any stomach issues on the run AT ALL. After a ton of research and pestering guys who have raced well in the heat (thanks Crash), I now realize that my racing m.o. was to get off the bike woefully dehydrated, try to ingest calories on the run and have my stomach immediately shut down. I carried a bottle of my mix (2 scoops malto / 1 scoop cytomax / 2 endurolyte tabs = 350 calories) out of T2 and was able to drink it with no problems. This was HUGE for me. It really got me fired up about how I was going to tackle the fueling at IMC. I definitely DON'T want a repeat of last year where I ended up in the med tent puking my guts out!

The major negative from the race was the state of my feet, post-race. They felt like someone beat them with hammers but I figured as much based on how sore they were while I was actually running during the race. They are still bothering me 2 weeks later but I have taken some other measures to help in that area but that'll be a topic of another post. Also, I guess I should have paid more attention to the race clock since I had no clue I was close to the 5 hour mark. Oh well, STILL A PR sore feet and all, so I'll take it! :-)

I'll have to tell you about my great vacation up the coast of Oregon with Deb in my next post- stay tuned!

Also- thanks for your patience in dealing with my sorry blog updates. I'm dancing as fast as I can!



Blogger stronger said...

Great race, nice ride...and no, the disk does not make your butt look big but that was a big laugh!

7:23 AM  
Blogger Spokane Al said...

Very impressive race in spite of your foot problems. I hope you can get them resolved before IM Canada. If so you will rock.

7:32 AM  
Blogger robtherunner said...

Sorry to hear about the continued feet problems. Congrats on the PR despite the issues.

10:06 AM  
Blogger olga said...

Nice one, no matter what trouble. My husband is dealing with plantar for a month now and can't rid of it. I had it 3 times (last one for a really short period) and have no memory how it was gone. Did Graston, a bit of ice, but never rested. Wish I could help either one of you:)

11:27 AM  
Blogger qcmier said...

Nice race.

Nice rear


8:28 PM  
Blogger Jeremy said...

Awesome PR! Keep it rollin'.

7:59 AM  
Blogger Darrell said...

I've been wondering what your thoughts were on this one. Glad to hear it was a PR.

1:12 PM  
Blogger JeffM said...

Great race! That's a good bike time. So you're one of those guys that pass you going "whoosh whoosh" with the disc wheel.

1:51 PM  
Blogger Crash said...

5:02:20 with stops!? How do you do it. Great race report - Great race!

4:38 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

Nice racing, Mike. Hopefully your feet come back soon. Hang in there!

7:03 PM  
Blogger Jessi said...

Sweet, you're back! Dude, you better stop associating with me - my run splits seem to be contagious. :)

9:34 PM  
Blogger Cliff Tam said...


Thanks for this post. The pics are hilarious!!! This report is just what i need before my big race on July 22nd :) Especially the open water bit. I might freak out and i need to keep that under control.

I hope you enjoy your vacation and the legs be well rested and healed.

5:10 AM  
Blogger jgirl said...

You are too funny. I love checking in and seeing what is up in your world. Thanks for keeping it real. ~j

8:44 AM  
Blogger Darren said...

And here I was worried that you weren't biking enough. A very solid 2:30 split, excellent work brother Mike.
HOWEVER, that disc makes your rear look huge. Coincidently, I'm rather challenged in the hiney dept, so perhaps it's best you send that disc my way.
Cheers bro!

11:21 AM  
Blogger BethB said...

My husband had a bout with Plantar, still gets pains sometimes. How does it look for IM Canada? We may have some other folks back on the site with the same goal run. If you find the time, stop by and share a post and do a bit of networking. We have some good tips from folks like Dave Scott and should have some great live chat events soon with him where you can post training questions. Nice blog and good luck with your goals.

1:39 PM  

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