Panama City, FL - November 1, 2014
Swim Cancelled due to Dangerous Rip Currents
5:41:52 (19.75 MPH) + 4:00 Penalty (BAD CALL)
5:07:42 (11:44 min/Mi) - PR
What a crazy race.
The weather seemed perfect for this race the days leading up to it. The day before was incredibly perfect. The day after, coincidently, was as well. But as it turned out, race day arrived at the same time as a major cold front, bringing steady 22-24 MPH winds gusting upwards of 30 MPH. All day. All night.
The swim was called just about 10 minutes from the start time. They would now make it a Time Trial start going from number 1 up... I was lucky i was number 606. I “only” stood in T1, by my bike for about 45 minutes. Others werent so lucky. That time standing, waiting, was making us all quite cold. I was glad to have bought a cheap pair of gloves at Walmart. I planned on throwing it away once i warmed up, although that never happened !
The bike started really tough as the first 22 or so miles were against the wind. After the turn, it became better. From there, it was up and down depending on the turns.
I did get my very first penalty in this race. It was for drafting. And it came during a part of the race with the wind on our backs. I wasnt drafting... Due to the TT start, the road was super crowed. We all got bunched up at a point. Too many bikes, no place to pass. A few secs later, a motorcycle hands myself and 3 others penalties. We were all extremely pissed off. Not to mention that after, there were several instances while in a head wind, with blatant drafting, that referees drove right by...
I did have a decent average, but not what i was hoping for or expecting. The last 18 or so miles were with the wind on our backs, and i should have been flying, but my legs didnt have it at that point. I decided to keep the pace and not force it, and save what i had left for the run.
T2 went ok. I took my time getting all my gear off and on, making sure i had my nutrition belt this time :) It was a bit slower than any other transition times i’ve had, but for the circumstances, it was fine. I stopped at the port-a-potty and off i went.
The run started really well. I felt really good. Fresh. I am sure the mild temperatures had a lot to do with it.
My first mile was really fast, at 8:43 pace. I couldnt believe it. I wasnt forcing it, i was just going.
Unfortunately, it didnt last very long. The second mile i was still going pretty well, at 9:08 pace. Mile 3, 4 and 5 went to 9:48, 10:12 and 10:23. Thats when it really started to hurt... from there till about mile 13 i averaged around 12:00 pace. Mile 14 and 15 were my slowest, at 14:16 and 13:25 pace. Then i was able to pick it up a bit. From mile 16 to 21, I averaged around 12:40 pace. Mile 22 to 25 I averaged around 11:40 pace, then mile 26 was at 10:38 pace, and finished it with a 9:26 pace for the last quarter mile. Overall, the 5:07 (11:44 pace) was a major IM Run PR, of more than 33 minutes.
Looking back at it, I was pretty happy about it. I kept moving, kept running. Didnt walk very much when i did walk. However, I still feel that i could have pushed even more. I am sure the weather was a big factor in my performance, so next time i need to make sure to really take advantage of it.
Cant wait for next year to come back and get a complete IM PR !!!