Commitment - Dedication - Desire

...I vs I

Monday, September 30, 2013

Augusta 70.3 Race Report

Augusta Half Ironman 70.3

Sometimes stubborn wins out over common sense. This can be good- make you dig deeper, push past your limit and go harder and longer than ever before. It can also be bad- leave you dependent on port-a-potty after port-a-potty... With the week leading up to the race I should have known it was not the time to choose stubborn but I wanted no excuses and leave nothing to regret.

Augusta HIM beat me down a few years ago. The heat hurt me like I have never experienced. It also left me wanting revenge. A course that was designed for speed and played to my strengths was not about to win because of the conditions, NO WAY!! Well in realty…YES WAY!

 (No Way!! Yes Way!!!)

 My coach had me primed for this race.“A” race of the year and goals were lofty! We were looking for a 23 minute swim, 2:25 bike and 1:30 run. All of these very doable given my training leading up to race day. As with every year there are always typical set-backs and we overcame them. I was primed and ready to go ! One week out running and cycling faster than I had all season. Then I got sick.

 On a business trip the week before the race, my boss gave me the plague. Attempting to alleviate it as quick as possible, Monday I jumped on the antibiotic/prednisone bandwagon that is typically avoided. 5 days of Prednisone, 10 days of antibiotics, mixed with Mucinex-D and drinking constantly to the point I could pee on demand. I was sure I would kick it. Not the case. Race morning came and although I didn’t feel 100%, I was still certain I could get close to my goals. Even if we came up a little short, it would be a win and I would have my revenge on Augusta.

Two key notes: Chris called me the night before- we went over everything. It made me calm. It gave me confidence. It was an important piece. The second- my friend Jim text me early that day: “race with your heart” That stayed with me. All the way through.


The plan: go out hard, get in the lead group, settle in and draft.

The reality: went out hard, got in the lead group, couldn’t breath, backstroked the rest of the way. The amount of snot I swallowed may have lead to a demise further in the race but only a doctor could confirm. Haha!

Time: 26:05


The plan: Attack! This is where we wanted to have some fun. Burn some matches, recover, burn a couple more. This didn’t go way off target. It was slower than expected as my breathing was more snotting than anything but all in all, I didn’t feel too bad and was pretty ok with my time. I eased up the last 3k to get my legs ready to run and come into transition recovered.

Where I did mess up was nutrition. My peanut butter sandwich stayed in my back until I chucked it at the last trash drop. Pretty sure I should have eaten it and I am completely done with Infinit. Custome blend or not, it makes my stomach turn. 

Time: 2:34


The plan: Go out running the first mile at a decent pace,  ease off into race pace, lay it all on the line the last 10k.

The reality: My legs weren’t there. It seemed to take forever getting out of transition and onto the street. My stomach was gurgling and my mind immediately went to telling myself, “it’s not hot, you are feeling fine, burry that shit and get your ass back into the race!” So I pressed on. The first aid station I took in water, coke, water and grabbed some ice. The weather was perfect but I was hot. Why? No idea. My legs were starting to come back but my stomach starting feeling worse. I thought if I can just make it to the ATC tent, I will get the cheers and support I need to pick it up. That trek seemed to last forever and my stomach was not having it. I stopped at a port-a-potty right around mile 2. Feeling much better I trekked on! Seeing the tent ahead, Lewis, my wife, Robin and the other spectathletes, I was pumped!! My stomach- it needed pumped. :P Down to the turn around and  another port-a-potty stop. The plan continued at each rest stop. The last big pump came from my friend Bergin. She drove down from Pittsburgh to race. She yelled to me on the run and I asked if she hit her goals- she screamed “YES!!!” I was so excited for her I got chills and for a few minutes all the sick went away!! (Proud of you Bergin!!) Even though I knew my race was long gone, my pace steadily increased and my mind/heart was in it. This made me extremely happy! This is what’s been missing for the last two years and again- the ATC, Time Warner, my coach, my friends, my wife- they brought it back. “Fuck the time! Fuck my stomach! I will not stop running!” Slow, fast, I didn’t give a shit…well actually I gave a few…but if my feet were moving it was a jog, not a walk. My mind was in it!!

Time: 2:00:42

T3- I crossed the line with Lewis, instantly handed back to Tami and sat down. Then I lay down. Then I curled up into a ball. Then I spent the next 2.5 hours either in a ball on the ground or in the port-a-potty. Perhaps I should have listened to my body and stopped. My coach said its one thing to feel like that if you win- justifiable, but not for this. Perhaps. But as I think about the drive that wouldn’t let me stop I’m happy its back. I never want to feel that way again. It’s a day later and I still feel like hell but its one step closer to putting it all together. Having the urge to go is a better outcome than I could have hoped for.

1 comment:

  1. "Slow, fast, I didn’t give a shit…well actually I gave a few…" haha! way to lay it ALL out there for your A race. Insides and out... I think it was hotter than people thought. I definitely ended up coated in way more salt than I thought that I had lost. I guess when you're expecting it to be (and have been training) in the 90's, 80 seems cool by comparison--even though it's still a toasty temp. Letting your heart push you through the race is very inspirational. Whenever you figure out how to settle your stomach, let Rich know please :)