Saturday, March 29, 2014

Rev3 Cedar Point Iron Distance RR

Rev3 Cedar Point was my A race for 2013.  My goal was to have a solid race and forget the atrocious race that I had in Arizona on 2012. I did a lot of different in training for this race. I did my long on runs Thursdays, no matter how the weather was. Some Thursday I was able to put on the total distance while others I bonk due to the summer heat and humidity. The closer the race came the better I was able to handle the heat. This was a big confidence booster. The other runs where quality runs on the track or of the bike tempo run. I also rode more hoping to break 5:30 on the bike I did a lot of riding some weeks was able to nail 190 miles on the bike. On the swim I got some help on my swim with a friend that use to be an NCAA Division 1 top swimmer and he help me with stroke. All of this in hopes of breaking 1:10.

The drive to Sandusky Ohio from the DC was around 6 ½ hours. I got there the Friday before the race. It was my first time in Ohio. Cedar Point is an amusement park in a small peninsula in Lake Eire. The area was really nice and great for a race. The bunker (hotel) included an indoor water park. Since it was in the northern latitudes you could feel the colder weather late in the afternoon. Since it was the end of the summer season the area was not crowded.  
Where the swim was suppose to happen
 On Saturday I woke up rested and feeling good. I went to test the bike. I felt really good but noted how windy it was getting. I went to transition to packet pick up and rack my bike. Then went for the practice swim, I was told that bad weather would probably switch the swim venue to the protected water of the marina. They also warn me that the bike was going to be really windy. In the afternoon I went for the athlete briefing. It was great to see all the athletes there. The rest of the day was at the bunker to prepare all the nutrition and rest. I went to bed relax a little bit nervous about the weather.
Early morning Ready and nervous

Sunday, I woke up excited and rested. My breakfast was Coconut Milk with bread, a banana and peanut butter + 1/2 a protein shake. My supporting crew aka the GF drove me to the transition. The first thing notice is that indeed the swim was change to the marina and how windy it was. You could hear the waves coming from the lake. I set up everything and head over to the new swim start which was almost ½ a mile away from transition. The swim was starting on a boat ramp so it was going to be a TT start. I put my wetsuit and went for a short warm up. 
Entering the swim
  The Swim (1:09:59)

My goal for this swim was to break 1:10 base on all the work all summer that I have been doing I thought I could be close. I got in to the water 5 or 6 minutes after the first competitors. The swim started smooth. No bumps or contact at all. You have a nice current push when you got inside the marina. It was nice to swim next to big yachts. Once out of the marina the current stops and you were swimming in to more movable waters at the turn around it was a mix of currents and choppy water that made it hard to see and navigate. This part was the most difficult part of the swim. After this you swim straight to start the 2nd loop. The second loop I started to push a little bit and with the mix of swimmers from the ½ iron you could draft of them. In the last turn around in the choppy water area I started to feel the swim a little bit once I pass this part and saw the right turn I checked my watch and read 1:06 I began to hammer I remember all the early morning swims and all the sprint workouts .When I made it out of the water I hit the lap bottom and was happy to see a 1:09:59. I just hope the official time would say the same thing.

T1 (8:40)

The wetsuit strippers did their job quick. I was running 800 mts through the parking lot. Once I got there I put my wetsuit on the bag and got ready to go the bike. 

Bike Course
Bike  (5:58:09)

Base on all the research I did on the bike course this was suppose to be a fairly fast course. So my goals were between the 5:30-35 and keep my watts between 170 and 180. The problem was that none of the previous years the wind was a factor. This year IT WAS in a big way add to this that the road surface at points turned to horrible, watt-sucking, spirit-destroying chip seal. For all this reasons the bike ride turns in to a really tough ride. The bike started cold 66 degrees cloudy and raining. This mentally took me out of my comfort zone. After mile 20 something the ride went through a nice hill and small town things began to get ugly. You got a never ending head wind. This unfocused me, stop checking my watts and just dealing mentally with it. Everybody around me also was mad about the wind including a guy that told me that he has done the race all 4 years and the wind never has been this bad. After basically from mile 20 to mile 40 it was dealing with a headwind and side wind. From mile 40 to 50 it was to deal with rough road and the spirit-destroying chip seal. Once you pass this area you get the special need bag and ride together with the ½ racers. This gets you going and keeps your spirit high in order to deal with the wind for a second time.  The next 35 mile was more of the same wind, rough road and chip seal. By mile 90 I was so ready to be done with the bike. The wind has taken a toll on me, my watts were low I couldn’t get them up any more and mentally I was beat up. The last 12 miles of this ride were with a side and head wind all over. Once you took the road that takes you to the park you could see the lake. The waves on the lake were so high that you could surf. That was so impressive and confirmed how bad the weather has been. Finally I made it to the end of the ride honestly I was happy to be of the bike and at the same time frustrated as this has been my slowest 112 mile bike ride ever.

Finishing the Ride
T2 (7:06) a picnic

Leaving the Don John to Run
Normally I fly here on T2 but first I couldn’t find my transition bag. Then I had said to my self that I would wear compression socks no matter how long it would take to put them because I has been training with them and I has been noticing the difference on my long runs when I were them. So it took me longer than expected but I was ready to tackle the marathon.

Run Course
Run (3:54:25)

The goal here was to run most of the race and be between 3:45-4:00. Base on my long runs and the way I has adapted to the heat I knew I could be around that time. After coming out of T2 I hit the don john and came out ready to tackle the run. The first thing that happened was that all the clouds began to disappear and the sun came out. So a cloudy windy bike turns in to a sunny not so windy run. This run was a 2 loop course from the park to the downtown of Sandusky and back. I felt good for most of the 1st loop. I kept my pace on check my HR also and kept my nutrition drinking water at every aid station and taking a gel and salt tables every 45 minutes. 

Starting the 2nd loop
 The real run started on the 2nd loop. When I hit mile 14 my body started to fall out I walk the aid station to properly full my self. I was able to run high 8s low 9s minute mile pace until mile 21. My GF kept me motivated through those miles with music that I like and talking to my mom letting her know that I was doing great. From mile 21-25 It was a suffer fest the sun was out I was beat up. I just said to my self keep going you are almost there. Miles 24 and 25 were my slowest I knew it and I was ready to make a final push. I said to my self that once I climb the bridge (It was small but with 25 on the body felt like a mountain), I was going to go for it. The last mile I started to move, everything hurt but I knew I was going to PR at the distance. The good thing about rev3 is that they aloud you family to cross the finish line with the competitor so my GF was able to cross the finish line. That was really cool. After finishing I was exhausted and happy that I PR at the distance.

Time (11:18:18) 31 of 245 (overall) AG 9 of 28

This was my best performance at Iron distance. I pr in the swim and the run. The bike caught me of guard and mentally I wasn’t prepared to deal with those conditions. Lesson learned that I have to be ready for everything. Over all rev 3 puts a great event. Its small scale compare to IM but if you are looking for a more family environment get an amusement park exclusively for the athletes families this is a most do race. The hotels around the area are not expensive. The hotel that I stayed had a water park inside the hotel so it was pretty cool to have Jacuzzi. Over all I highly recommend rev3cedar point or any other Rev3 race.   

For overall results click Here


Etienne said...

que bien mano, le metiste! felicitaciones!

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