Sunday, September 9, 2012

Shoreman Highlights

I competed in the Shoreman Half-Ironman distance race yesterday.  My performance was certainly less than I would have expected and hoped for and a far cry from last year's pre-IM HIM preprace, SkipJack.  I'll post a full race report shortly but here are some highlights.

1.  The conditions and the length of the course conspired against a fast time yesterday.  I had hoped to go under 5 hours but race day featured 20-35 mph winds and severral boughts of torrential rains--so much so that I was just about blinded at times during the ride.  Lots of standing water on the ride course was also a concern (that said, it was a very simple course technically so I never felt particularly challenged--safety wise--on the bike).  The temp hovered around 80 degrees and was generlly overcast with a few periods where the sun peaked out--wild weather day.  The humidity was very high--in fact around 90% and so the dew point was above 70 degrees--which at the end of the day is just too high for me to do a long-course triathlon in.  The swim turned out to be 1.32 miles long--a little over 200 yards longer than the standard--this added about 3:10 to my swim time.  The bike turned out to be 57.3 miles in length--this added about 3:50 to my time, relative to standard distance.  The run however, was short at 13.02 miles--this shaved 47 seconds vs. a standard 13.1 miles.  Net-net, I lost 6:13 vs. a well-measured course.  None of this is a surprise as they announded before hand that the course was long.

2. I swam pretty well, but not great.  My swim time was 34:32--I was 4+ minutes faster than any of the other 15 55-59 YO competitors in my AG.  I was 7-15 minutes ahead of the key competitors.  With the distance adjustment above, my time would have been 31:02, which would have been my fastest HIM split ever, but still, I think I have more potential on my swim.  I's give my swim a B+/A-.

3. I transitioned very well and picked up valuable time in both Ts.

4.  My bike was very disappointing.  Right from the start, I had real power-shortage issues.  I just couldn't stress my aerobic system enough due to leg power issues.  This may be due to a lack of fitness, but more likely due to a possible sickness (Alex has been sick recently) or my calorie-deficit that I am running in prep for Hawaii.  Further, my recent back issues flared up and I just couldn't power through my stroke like I normally do and I couldn't stay down in the aero-position due to the pain--it was a most unpleasant ride.  Further, my new front-end hydration system didn't arrive and time and I went out their with only one bottle.  As it turned out, they only had one bottle exchange on the course (though I snagged an 8 oz bottle from a nice lady) and this was water only--no nutrition.  As a result, I was only able to drink about 45 oz for the ride and I consumed only 700 calories or so--this led to caloric and hydration deficit--which created some issues for me  (this is all just bad planning on my part).  Anyways, I had my worst bike of the year, only splitting 2:40.  this was probably a good 12-14 minutes slower than it should have been.  As bad as it was, it did have the virtue of being 10+ minutes faster than anyone else in my AG.

5.  I left T2 with an 18+ minute advantage--it should have been more than 30 minutes but it did prove to be enough.

6.  My run was very challenging as I was undernurished and dehydrated.  I persevered and had to suck it up down the stretch to hold off a fast-closing competitor.  I ended up winning  by just 33 seconds and my final run was 2:08 and my OA time was 5:27:35

So, pretty disappointing all-in-all.  Oh well--it's money in the bank.  also, it's nice to string 3 AG wins in a row heading into Kona.  At this point, I have 5 wins and 4 seconds in my 10 races this year.

Now, it's time for the BIG PUSH over the next three weeks--The next time I race will be Kona....

Race report shortly....

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