Thursday, April 3, 2014

Oceanside CA Ironman 2014- my first

I know I haven't done a good job keeping up with my promise to update daily. Sometimes there are things in life that become such a huge priority they cripple other efforts because there's just no energy left.

In my case it was heading out to my first ever half Ironman, I didn't feel 100% ready, I hadn't lost the weight I wanted to, I couldn't run like I needed to because of a problem with my achilles all my training ended up being on the elliptical for the run portion.

But ready or not I arrived in CA on Thursday the 27th.  I walked the beach, checked out Ironman village, picked up my packet which included swim cap and bib number. I also got my bags, where you put your gear. For example I would be in a wet suit for the swim and when I go to transition to the bike I would need my helmet, bike shorts, gloves, glasses, bike shirt, socks, shoes, and nutrition etc.

Bright and early, on March 29th I racked my bike, laid out my stuff and my bag with my bike clothes to change into after the swim...and I walking into the shoot and got ready to wade into freezing cold water.

Oceanside Ironman: Swim> 1.2 miles Time> 1 hour and 10 minutes

The water was 61 degrees, so freezing I couldn't think straight, when I first got in the water. I kept saying “Just keep swimming” in my head. I got kicked right on the bridge of my nose…that was fun. But I kept going and was really excited to finish my swim on time: 1 hour and 10 minutes. (I pretty much had to learn how to swim so I could do this, so it was a huge victory for me)

(I used a snorkel [you can use one during an Ironman] which was wonderful being so new to distance swimming. This can be great for a beginner like me because it helped me focus on proper swim technique and now that it is solid I can retire the snorkel. My next 70.3 [Lake Stevens Aug. 17/2014] I will do it without!)

I was so happy to be out of the water, I ran over to where my bike was waiting, but my bike bag was gone. The volunteers had stuck it somewhere with the 2,500 other bags...I had about 10 of them searching the truck for it and finally it was found. 13 minutes later I was able to get started on my ride.

Oceanside Ironman: Bike course, through camp Pendleton 56 miles> I did 45

I felt great on the first half of the bike ride, there were rolling hills but nothing I couldn't handle, I was guzzling Gatorade, and munching on snacks. I had trained for the bike portion by circling Mercer which is nice and hilly. Right before mile 30 I hit a mountain, and then an even bigger one that went straight up for almost 6 miles!

My chain came off about a 1/2 mile up the second mountain, I got it back on, but couldn't get going again so had to walk the bike to the top. I felt fine but I was going too slow. Eventually a van pulled up and I was told by a staffer that I'd made 45 miles or so but, while I hadn't missed the overall bike cut off, I'd missed a landmark cut off so would I please get in. He goes on to tell me that it was too bad because I'd only missed it by a few minutes and the next 10 miles was going to be all down hill and level and I would easily make the overall cut off . So I hauled off and punched him square in the jaw, jumped on my bike and took, I was good, I got in the darned van and my race was over.

In summary, I was in no way done, I had a run left in me I was just too slow. I'm looking forward to doing much better at Lake Stevens Aug. 17th. And sometime in June I'll be waiting to sign up for Oceanside California 2015...You didn't think I’d let that course beat me without giving it another shot?

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