FL Challenge 1/2 Ironman 1998 Report Page 1

E-mail Adam

Updated Site Updated: 12/20/04

1.2Mile Swim: 30:50
T1: 2:17
56 Mile Bike: 2:31:43
T2: 2:50
13.1 Mile Run: 1:42:30
TOTAL: 4:50:08
3rd in 30-34 AG. 17th Overall

This was my first Triathlon since the end of June and my third half Ironman race ever. Since then I have been very focused on Ironman training for the Great Floridian this year in October. I have been doing century rides, long runs and long swims. Two weeks before this race I was VERY concerned about my left knee. I have had a torn ACL for seventeen years and always had soreness after almost any activity. In this, my second, year doing triathlons, it has been getting worse. I originally had distant time goals in mind for GFT and this race, but due to my worsening knee, I decided finishing is the best goal. (I plan on having the knee worked on this off-season).

I had many emotions going into this race. My knee has been bothering me and I wondered if it would hold up. I had a fun time at this race last year and hoped this year would be good too. I wondered if doing this half Ironman was a smart thing six weeks before my first full Ironman race. Lisa and I drove from Atl, GA to Clermont on Friday (8 hours with stops). Listened to our first book on tape. It was Into The Wild by Krakower (?). Great story!

Day before Race:
I did a swim at the race site. Water was like tea, you could clearly see 6 feet out, but everything had a brownish tint to it (healthy?). I cut my planned twenty-minute swim to eight minutes. "I'M READY!" I biked the run course. Is this an Adventure race? I forgot my repelling gear for the hill we go up then down at mile 2-3. "I'll be walking this baby." That was not here last year. I drove the bike course as a reminder. It is the same as last year, a 30 mile loop out of town up some good size hills (my strength), loop back in to town with several tricky turns on some busy streets (new) and 25 mile flat loop to the transition. Lisa and I ate lunch at Subway and we met 2 nice guys from Cleveland. I never did catch their name but this was their 1st half Ironman and they were excited. They reminded me of myself last year at this race.

Race Morning:
The forecast was for rain and they were right. Woke up at 4AM. Everything was soaking wet and there was a light drizzly rain that did not stop until after the awards ceremony 13 hours later. I ate Breakfast: 450 calories of Metabol II chocolate drink, 1 Stoker bar, 1 plain bagel and about a half gallon of water and some Gatorade. My (4th) wave was to start at 7:30AM. The transition area is on grass that is already very wet. I wrapped all my run gear in a big garbage bag. I coated the contacts of my cycle-computer with SportsSlick and tested it. Worked great. But would it hold?

Ready, Set, Go (Siren)

The course is a rectangular, keeping the buoys on our left. I jump in staying to the right of the crowd. 40 seconds into swim I realize I forgot to hit my HR monitor timer. I hit it. I felt very good and was pulling ahead of everyone who chose the outside track with me. There was a small group of guys in my wave hugging the buoys. I stayed on my course heading for the corner. Generally, the swim was uneventful. I saw a couple of people treading water and breast-stroking. As I passed clusters of people from the previous waves I was very careful not to startle or disturb them. At one point I felt someone cross over onto my legs. I immediately stopped kicking not wanting to knock them out. I felt my heels slide up their chest as I pulled forward. My swim felt average, but I did not see many people pass me so I figured I was about 5th in my age group out of the water.

Swim Time: 30:50 (:40 seconds better then last year)
5th in my AG (wave)

Transition 1:
Before the race I decided I was not going to race this race. I was going to take it easy for the sake of my knee and use it as a prep for GFT Ironman in 6 weeks. I even set my HRM zone alarm to go off 12 beats below my AT. Because I was not so concerned with time, I had a slower than usual transition. The rain was still coming down. I put on my new pearly white Ultimax socks, shoes and got the rest of my gear. I hoped on the bike and was off.

Transition 1 Time: 2:17 13th in AG (last year I had some of the quickest transition times)