Sunday, December 06, 2009

Let's Ride 112 miles!

This is the link to the IRONMAN video – I show up about the middle-ish. Red Transition black spuik helmet – BIG OLE BOY – eating a sandwich!!!

If you want to go directly to where I am in the video – PUT the play cursor (the circle that moves while video is playing) right above the A in ironmAn.

Let’s go ride 112 miles!

Before I begin my Ironman race recap – Let me apologies for taking so long with my Race Report. It is a very busy time at the end of the year, but I will complete this in its entirety by next week.

Now to the good stuff!

As I jogged through transition I repeated my cycling mantra – EASY DOES IT!

Again, I had good people sharing their experiences with me (Which I suggest everyone do.) regarding the do’s and don’ts of an Ironman. I heard loud and clear from each of them . . . Don’t go out too hard on the bike. They warned me of the experience and the push you may get from the cheering spectators and then once that is over I might experience the desire to push hard when someone passes me in the first couple miles. “Stay focused, stay calm, stay easy” is what I was told and I did just that, but it wasn’t easy.

As I jumped on the bike I could hear the screams of people around me, “GO 1129!” or the same ole “Go Big Boy!” (I think I will always be big boy!!!) When you ride through the chute it is exciting and remains so until you get on the first stretch of road along the beach. People are cheering you on non-stop in that stretch on Thomas Drive, but I just settled in remained calm within myself and began to think about the day.

Once I was on the gulf front road I was surprised at how low my HR was while I was holding 23mph? Odd? I was passed about 4 or 5 times and it WAS difficult to sit back, but I had my plan and I was going to stick with it. The good news was that I was passing many more folks (Not that I get pleasure out of that, but If I am being passed, I don’t mind passing!) After about 4 miles I felt ready to roll. My sea legs were gone quickly, which I didn’t expect.

As we turned North headed to the only real hill on the course (which is an overpass) I noticed the wind pick up slightly. From this point it would be about 20 miles until the turn east. They have been doing a great deal of work on this hwy. I have ridden the Gulf Coast Half course many times and this road has changed over the years.

There was a guy with a cowbell wearing a cowboy had and an accent. I am not sure, but I think it was Australian? He would park across the hwy, come over and cheer us on with his cowbell. Then jump in his car ride ahead 20 miles or so and cheer us on again. He did this the entire ride. I appreciated it, A LOT!

I saw him the first time about 3 miles before the overpass. My goal on the overpass . . . SPIN BABY SPIN! But some may argue with my spin method. See, I never ever get out of the big ring. I know I am working on it! As I reached the top of the overpass I felt great. As I descended at a wicked speed I used my same old boring on bike conversation starter, as I would fly past people – I say “Man if this were an all down hill triathlon!” I know, goofy, but for some reason I feel guilty flying by everyone!!!???

The road surface after the overpass was smooth as a baby’s butt. The next 15 or so miles were heaven. I thought to myself, (self) if this is what the day has in store for me – Today will be a GREAT day!


It wasn’t 2 seconds after we made the right turn east onto hwy 20 that I was introduced to some really sucky headwind! I told myself it wasn’t going to last . . .

As I passed the first penalty tent I hollered out to my peeps! Luke, Vanilla, and all those folk were working the first penalty tent. It was nice seeing them if only for a second.

The wind never let up. The long stretch on Hwy 20 was miserable. There were a couple highlights.

As I was at about mile 50 a van pulled up beside me and the rear tailgate was up and there was a guy with a camera. I said hello. Of course I am eating!!!! Speaking of . . .

I am a planner. It is what I do for a living. I plan everything to a T. Here was my nutrition. At the top of every hour I had an Uncrustable peanut butter and honey sandwich, 200 calories. These are great. My friend Caroline introduced them to me. They are in the frozen section of your supermarket. At the 15 minute mark I would take in 2 endurolites from Hammer Nutrition and lots of fluid (I use NUUN cola). At the 30 minute mark I take in one gel which I use Hammer Banana and again, lots of fluid. At the 45 minute mark I take 2 more endurolites and more fluid. Then repeat this every hour!

This is the link to the IRONMAN video – I show up about the middle-ish. Red Transition black spuik helmet – BIG OLE BOY – eating a sandwich!!!

If you want to go directly to where I am in the video – PUT the play cursor (the circle that moves while video is playing) right above the A in ironmAn.

I was holding my goal of LOW heart rate. Taking it really easy. This was my first IM and I wasn’t going to blow up. But, I was a little frustrated to be going 16-17mph heading east on Hwy20. BUT THEN . . .

We turned South.

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSH!!! I averaged 25mph on the short stretch south before heading to 388 west. I felt great. I had just stopped at my special needs bag and re-lubed (you can’t do this enough!) I dug into my small bag of Pringles (yeah yeah – I’ve heard enough from you skinny tri freaks of nature on my Pringles – It worked for me!) and I was off.

How funny was this – My Momma drove all the way out to the turn to see me pass – I was literally making the turn and she was getting out of her car with her chair and all to set up shop!!!! How funny! I love you Momma!!!!!

I held a pretty nice speed and a low HR all the way up to 388 where we turn right for about 6 miles then make a U-Turn and come back. THIS ROAD SUCKED!!!!!!!!

Not only was the wind back in our face but this road surface was miserable. MISERABLE!!!!!!! I think the only good news was that I THINK the road was so bad at a perfect place in the race (about the middle) and it made the remaining bike spectacular!

When we did make the U-Turn . . . The road was still crappy, BUT the wind was beneath our wings!

My next concern was the Gulf Coast Half IM course on 388 heading west is UGLY and the road surface is not pretty. But to my surprise . . . THEY have redone the road surface and this road is now like BUTTER!

I couldn’t have been happier. As I passed the last penalty tent ON THE COURSE I hollered out to my friends Susan and Nancy and Greg Cole who were working that tent.

I was having a hard time holding back and keeping my HR at the 145 to 155 I had set for myself. But I knew I had to because my run is so horrible.

As I came to the overpass I powered up it and knew I was home free and feeling well. Just before we turned onto the Overpass road I saw my friend with his cowbell and he gave me a “Cheers! Good job!” I thanked him and headed to the house!

When I hit gulf front road and headed towards transition . . . I admit – I picked it up a little. I also did what I said I wouldn’t . . . As I hit the chute off of Thomas Drive I was a little hyper. After New Orleans 70.3 I thought I had learned not to act a fool and exert a lot of un-needed energy. NOT!

I hollered and screamed like a moron. I flew into transition – gave up my bike and headed to get my transition bag.

As I did I saw my friend Will. He is a hell of an athlete and a better coach/trainer. I don’t plug things on here. This is his website and he does a hell of a job.

I was all kind of pumped up! I grabbed my Transition bag and headed into the transition room.

Good news was – Not so many swinging Richards this time!

I sat down and took off my cycling shorts. I wore my tri shorts underneath and I think it worked out very well. I lubed again! This time I hit my toes and between my toes really well. I thanked the transition team and headed out to run 26.2 miles.

Up to this point I am loving life!

Run Race report coming soon!


Rich said...

Dude, you rock!! Great job on your race and changing your life thru Ironman. When they showed your clip at the Ironman awards ceremony and Mike Reilly asked if you were there, I so wanted you to stand up cause I knew you had a story to tell. Glad I found your blog and could see how great a person you are. It was my 1st IM, #74, and I shared many of the same thoughts as you throughout. None of us are alone. "The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don't want it badly enough." - Randy Pausch

Tri-ing Fat Man said...

Thanks Randy,

You are the second person to tell me about the wards. I wish I'd been there. I have a new born (as you can see in the pics) and we had to get home for her. Dr. appts and she was out of her element!!

I loved that of the 112 miles they got me chowing down on some PB and honey sandwiches! Perfect!

Thanks again and you are right about the proverbial wall . . . I will be talking about that on my run portion which I hope to have up by Friday. My wall happened on the second loop in the park - took me by surprise too - was feeling great and BAM - WALL!

I hope to meet you at a future IM. I am doing CDA 2010 which I am registered for and I am hoping to get a charity spot for IM Arizona in November - Yep, I'm hooked, but triathlon and IM goal has saved my life so what the hell!

Thanks again for the message bro.


Anonymous said...
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IronSnoopy said...


I'm so glad I found your blog. I met your Mama on the bike course. She literally did get there just in the nick of time! She was so excited she saw you. She told us all about you, and showed us her t-shirt and then cheered with us for our friend. :-)

I took a photo of her and e-mailed it to her work people. Let me know if she did not get it. I think it's a great photo.

And congratulations to you on your journey. You're remarkable. Keep it up, keep inspiring people and it will come back to you in spades.

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