Where’s Wally?

Posted: May 13, 2011 in Uncategorized

After my last blog post about racing to train,  this last race could have not been more in fitting with this concept.

The swim went pretty well.  One guy shot out in front early doors and I missed the chance to get on his feet as I got smacked in the face and lost my goggles.  As a result I lead the second group around the course coming out of the water second in 26mins 30 seconds and feeling relatively fresh.

Happy with that I hit the bike hard as planned.  I think the lead swimmer had about 1-2 mins lead on me, but I caught him after 10mins and shot off the front.

I felt strong and was plowing along at around 30mph.  Things were looking good, very good.  I was holding mid to high 300 watts and the pace felt comfortable.  Happy days.  Then it all went very wrong.

After about 45mins I missed a right hand turn.  Not really sure how I managed that.  A mixture of excitement and lack of a marshal to direct me did not prove to be a great combination.

15 minutes later I was back near the start of the bike! I had been absolutely flying up to that point.  My average speed had been 28.5 mph and I was set to break 2 hours for the 90km on the bike.  Not any more though 😦

Instead of calling it a day I decided I would just turn around and head back out on the bike course.  I was so so pissed off at this point I think I needed to let off a bit of steam anyway.  2 hours later I came into T2 after having clocked 125km instead of the 90km I was supposed to have done.  Doohooo!

My bike split, excluding the 10 minutes stop back at the start trying to work out where I had gone wrong, was 2hrs 56mins.

The original plan was to take it easy on the run at around 4min/km pace.  I stuck to this pace for the first 30mins and my legs felt surprisingly good.

Out on the bike I had got really quite dehydrated as I had been out on the course for an hour longer than planned.  I had tried to take back on the fluids in the early part of the run.  This turned out to have not been such a great idea as I got the mother of all stitches.

The race plan for the day had always been to hit the bike hard and take it easy on the run, using this race more like a training day than anything else.  I felt pretty happy with the bike, even if it did include a 35km detour, and especially pleased to find my legs were still fresh when I hit the run.  So with all this in mind I decided to pull back and slowly jog the rest of the course saving my legs as much as possible.  Any possibility of a top position had gone out of the window a long time ago and at this stage I just soaked up the view and started to chat to all the other runners out on the course.

I love the way people encourage each other on at the back of the race.  There is a real sense of being in this race together and that is something you really miss out on at the front.  As I crossed the line I was having a great chat to this guy doing his first half as he was met by his wife and child.  What an awesome end to his first half distance race!  Yes, I was gutted to have missed out on a potential win, however I was happy to have had a good days training and enjoyed the day out on the course with everyone else.  Like I have said before, there is always next time.

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