Sunday, October 17, 2010

Kona Hawaii 2010

It was an awesome family vacation and oh yeah, a really cool race day too :)

Kona has been a goal of mine for years and years - every since high school swimming.

This year I was lucky enough to go back again for the big dance and I simply love the experience.

The Island is really incredible and there is truly energy to the place which is unmistakable and I think that is what brings so many people there every year.

We decided were going this year either way. Back in July we were thinking of a vacation and I wanted to be in Hawaii (racing or not) and we started making plans.

A good day at Ironman Louisville meant I would have a chance to race on a course I love and I have a hard time passing that up…so I was in.

I was really committed this year to making sure we were not focused on the race but instead did all of the vacation things that you want to do. Other than chilling a little more than usual Friday afternoon – it was a pretty normal week.

It is impossible not to get caught up in the hype of the event as the town is little turned upside down by this but I tried.

I did have to get my pre-race haircut :)

We swam, snorkeled – we did SUP (stand up paddle) – we boogie boarded, we went and saw the manta rays and we ate lots of shave ice…a lot :)

All in all it was an awesome week with the family and I was lucky enough to have Shane, Josh, Coen, Andi and my sister Miah all there.

I want to go back next year again and then take the boys to Oahu to surf afterward for a few days…that sounds like fun!!!

For anyone interested…only the triathletes would really care about this next part…the race specifics are listed below…

For the rest of you…here are a few pix and videos you might enjoy…

Aloha and Mahalo


Race Report:

I think “racing” Kona is still “over my head” and I not sure that I will ever be in those ranks but I am pretty committed to trying to get there again next year.

I felt great race morning and had no hip / back pain at all…which had been locked up and really bothering me all the week leading up to the race.

I popped my SI joint at 6:15am at the PowerBar Performance Bottle and it was so loud I think a few pros thought the race had started :)

Seriously – I was probably 95% on race day and that means no excuses…really fit, 7 hours sleep and perfectly tapered.

The Swim

For the swim I went to the South of the Ford Edge again like last year to avoid the melee and thought I was pretty smart.

I drew a good line to the 1st turn and I was not beat up too bad at the start.

I actually worked the swim pretty hard and made the turn for home in good shape I thought.

Then I got the sh!t beat out of me by a bunch of women and that was in the final 1K – crazy rough swim for the final 1K.

If I am to compete next year I need to shave some time here which is possible if I stop snorkeling and checking out the fish and swim harder during the season.

Came out of the water in 1:04 and not cooked at all.

My T’s were pretty fast (I think) as I didn’t change this year.

The Bike

The bike course was a mess as expected. Lots of drafting and pace lines for the 1st portion.

I came out with a BIG pack and sat legal on them for 20-30 miles until the fast train came by and went with them to Kawaihae.

At the start of the climb to Hawi I was having a REAL rough patch and my head was all over the place…I took some Vivarin and tried to ride steady and I tried to work through it…but I was struggling.

The cross to head winds were BRUTAL (30+mph) and the pace group was hammering so I let them go and rode 230 watts by myself – I seemed to settle in pretty well with this but I was losing places big time!!!

At the turn around at Hawi I got special needs bag and I slammed a Red Bull and the descent was a screamer – no chance for aero bars and it was crazy windy – really scary stuff.

I made up some ground and my head came around at mile 65 thanks to the Red Bull and I was again stoked to be racing (read as not wanting to quit anymore:)) and started to press hard.

Making the turn back onto the Queen K toward town I just kept saying relax – the winds will be the same for everyone and it is only 30 miles to town…

I made the turn and we had wind in the face as always but after 1-2 miles it switched and it was a tail cross and I got really excited.

My power jumped to a lot of 240-260 on the climbs as I was hammering trying to get in before the wind switched again.

This worked and I made it to 102 miles at 4:50 and soft pedaled the last 10 miles at 180 watts just holding north of 20mph…I figured I might have gone too hard and this would let me recover.

Came in at 5:17 even with resting the last 10 and my NP was 211 watts – VI of 1.08

T2 was fine and I was feeling good about the run.

The Run

I went out at just under 8’s and was feeling good for miles 1 and 2.

At mile 3 my head was out of it again and I was falling asleep at the wheel so I took another Vivarin and started hitting GU w/ caffeine.

I came correct again at mile 6 or 7 and the rest of the race was really pretty uneventful…just cruising 8-8:10’s and splitting 8:30’s with walking aid stations.

A few prolonged porto pot stops due to lines slowed me down a little but I would guess I “ran” 3:35 and finished in 3:45.

I wanted to enjoy miles 10-26 as last year they beat the shit out of me and made me “retire” – this year I chatted with an Aussie named Nathan and we yapped the whole way in.

The Finish

The finish was incredible as always and I got to chill with the family and was not at all beat up so I know I held back a lot…

If I had gone all out on this day with 100% effort and maybe gone medical I could have gone “maybe” 20-24 minutes faster over the course.

Even with that kind of effort I would have been 20 minutes off the pace for anything serious…so I got work to do for next year.

I have always said that if I am not in the hospital then I would be at the finish at midnight…I just love this and this year I got to enjoy it with Miah, Shane, Josh and Susan.

Midnight and the final finisher is really something...

So that’s a wrap…

The night of the race is always a very relaxing and enjoyable time for me…all the work is done and it is time to chill…

Now it’s the “off-season” and I need to address some weaknesses (core and strength) over the winter months and I will be ready to start back full stop Jan 1.

I will come into the season 1/1/11 ready to work with 70.3 New Orleans, maybe Gulf Coast ½ and then IM Houston in May as an A race for a Kona slot and a podium place.

Take my summer break for a few weeks and then hit it for Kona.

Overall it was a great year for racing…probably due to the great plan by my coach, the mad scientists of fitness, Alan Couzens.

He put together the plan and I did the work:

From 1/1/10 through Kona:

Swim - 93.05 hours / 253504 yards
Bike - 380.44 hours / 7058.91 miles
Run - 164.17 hours / 1213.16 miles
Strength - 28.25 hours

665.91 hours total - damn glad I went fast enough in Kona to not hit "66X" as that would have freaked me out :)

I hit all of my goals…two podiums in M dot events and a trip to the big dance…

But just to make sure...I asked the expert (Bone) was this all worth it?

I guess the juice was worth the squeeze :)

I also have my mental image for next year :)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Basics

The basics of triathlon...

Swim, bike, run and have fun but the most important - have fun :)

I'm still in Canada but this was emailed to me...

Here is Coen working on his skills and having some fun today.

Mom is working the cow bell...Oh yeah - he won his age group!!!