Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Long Lost Calgary 70.3 Race Report

I found this in my drafts on my blog. It's a bit rough around the edges but it'll do.

I had a great swim - took over two mintues off last year's time. I started way further to the front than last year and had no issues with the washing machine for the first third. Kept ending up behind swimmers who couldn't sight and ran into them when they stopped to look for the bouys, annoying but fun to pass people. It was a bad decision to wear my blue goggles, have had trouble sighting the red bouys all summer with them but in the gloom at 6:30am it was impossible to see them - I looked where the swimmers in front of me were and aimed for the middle of the pack, assuming the swim support would herd the outside stragglers.

After a great swim had a stupid T1 and set out on the bike about the same time as last year - I was a bit spiny after the swim and not moving straight plus it was super muddy and slick after a night of hard rain so hard to move quickly without going down.

Wet roads and a slight headwind made for a slower bike. I raced the first 60 or so km as usual - found a pace group and leap-frogged with a few people. On the second big hill it started to fall apart, I couldn't keep up and suddenly everyone was passing me. The last 10 km was a slog and all I wanted was to get off the bike.

Decent T2 then a horrible run. I had nothing in my legs and my lungs weren't cooperating, I just wanted to quit and finally decided I'd do 10 and 1 and ignore splits as by 4km I was already off my target pace by 5 minutes. I couldn't push the pace as my breathing would get out of control, and halfway in I had nothing in my legs. The upside was that I didn't "catastrophize" and managed to keep positive and adjust my game plan to suit the reality of the day.

Lot of little things I did wrong - didn't adjust sleep patterns in advance (late-ish nights and slept in), not the greatest diet, more alcohol than usual - but I think it was the throat infection that killed me as I've been knocking out long rides for months and while I can see a bad run from the above I don't see why I'd die on the ride. I think my big mistake was not opting for a slower bike pace to account for being sick. I could be deluding myself.

My feedback on the race - the pre-race logistics are a serious pain in the butt. Made for a long Saturday, I was pretty tired and cranky by the time I got to the hotel on Saturday afternoon even though I'd drank lots of water and eaten well. Also the post-race food was nasty - a can of pop, small bag of chips and a subway sandwich. That's it. For $230.00 I expect a bit more. Think this is my last time at this race.

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