Tuesday, September 14, 2010

IMWI 2010 Race Report - Summary

There is so much to write and many pictures to post so I will provide a summary first and then get all detaily over the next couple of days.

Before I do anything else, I need to say thanks.
  • Thanks A for putting up with my obsession for the last year. Your support made the training so much easier and you kept me focused on what was most important - family.
  • Mom, thanks for listening to me talk incessantly about the training and race. And thanks for coming to watch. It was great having you there.
  • Sis, thanks for listening as well and making sure I don't embarrass the family. The Olson's do have a reputation to maintain.
  • Thanks to my wonderful coach and friend (who I have still never met face to face,) Amy Kloner. Who would have guessed that after I implied you were fat, when in fact you were recovering from a concussion, that we would make such a great team and I'd have just the most amazing day out there? My wife even bestowed you with the title of "The Other Woman," but she seemed OK with that.
  • Huge thanks (again) to Kerry and Cathy Yndestad ("TFY") for saving my ass by lending me a bike. It worked great and I didn't pee on it. You two are perfect examples of why it's so great to be part of the tri community.
  • Thanks to two of my favorite pros - Ian ("You're my hero") Mikelson and Charisa ("I love you") Wernick. You guys were unbelievably helpful with my bike situation, super to cool to talk to, gave great pre-race advice and have made this whole adventure funny and fun.
  • Thanks to Maggs Morris for trying to save me from myself and reminding me to wear sunscreen, but then I left it (Scape SPF 30) in the hotel room and had to rely on the "slatherers" (who did an admirable job) but I still got a nice burn.
  • Thanks to Rachel Ross for reminding me that I am white.
  • Thanks to my Aunt Judi for her "words of encouragement (?)"
  • Thanks to all of you who sent tweets and FaceBook messages and good luck. It was fun to know you were all out there following little ol' me around the farm fields of WI.
I'll just get the meat of the race.

  • Got out of the room without waking my wife. Ate as planned. Drank as planned. Dressed as planned.
  • Met MS and CS in the lobby and we piled our crap in the car. Got down to Capital Square easily and found great place to park. Dropped off special needs bags and I had to keep returning to the car because I kept forgetting stuff - like all my bike nutrition.
  • Met CS & MS at Starbucks and followed my better judgment by not having any coffee - we don't need to be reminded what happens.
  • Went and got body marked, threw the computer and nutrition on the bike and went inside to get ready for the swim. Since I was riding a borrowed bike I threw the "don't try anything new on race day" rule right out the window and proceeded to struggle into a wetsuit I borrowed from the TYR rep (thanks Mark Evenson!) the day before, tried on once and never swam in. It was the top of the line TYR Hurricane Category 5. It's super sweet!
  • Walking to the swim start I was still getting my sleeves on and trying not to accidentally punch anyone.
  • Finally got in the water as they were singing the national anthem. Was totally unpatriotic and swam to my starting spot in the front line.
The Swim
  • Not to toot my own horn (which has to hurt, btw,) but my swim kicked ass! I was in the front row and busted ass out of there at the cannon. I think I might have been leading for like 15 seconds and then I could see people coming from the outside.
  • I felt strong and comfortable the entire swim. No thoughts of when will this be over, why am I doing this, etc. Totally in the moment. Still can't swim in a fricking straight line, but wasn't all over the place.
  • Finishing the swim I was coming up on the slower swimmers and just making sure I was sighting on the "Swim Out" arch. Didn't want to start going around again.
  • Missed my time coming out, but didn't worry about it. Got my wetsuit stripped off with no problems and trotted up "The Helix." Made sure I didn't kill myself.
  • No problems. The volunteers are fantastic. Headed out to get my bike. Saw friends along the way. Go to my bike, got my shoes on and away I went. I have to say (again, not tooting my own horn) it's surreal running through T1 with so many bikes still racked - I felt like I may have done something wrong to be in this position.
The Bike
  • Coming out of T1 I caught the time 1:15:xx. Thought, "All right, probably a couple minutes over an hour. I'll take that."
  • On the bike and everything is fine. Everything is fairly comfortable and I'm just touring.
  • We get to a short no passing zone at the very beginning of the race and I get behind someone going slower - some douchebag is yelling, "GET MOVING! PICK UP THE PACE! C'MON, GET MOVING!" from behind me. I mean we are less than 3 miles out and the no passing area is like a 1/2 mile at the most. It's interesting I didn't see this guy jet around me when we could pass again - douchebag!
  • Bike was good. It's a challenging course to say the least, but nothing impossible. My training was perfect even if my bike wasn't.
  • First hill that required the small ring, I dropped my chain. FUCK! Realized why (bad shifting on my part) fixed it quick and it didn't happen again.
  • Hour 1 and it's time to take my salt tabs (very important for a heavy sweater like me) and I drop them. FUCK! I have extras in my special needs bag and know that I'll be fine with the GUs and fluids I have. One less thing to worry about on this first lap.
  • Grabbed water bottles at the water stops like a pro. Only missed one when I came in too hot and probably broke the volunteer's hand and gave the next volunteer down a black eye with flying bottle.
  • At some point started to think about my swim time and realized that the 1:15 I had seen more than likely included the pro's 10 minute head start. My swim was an hour or possibly under. That buoyed my spirits for awhile.
  • Two stops - one to take a leak (can't pee on the bike, especially a borrowed bike) and one at special needs. Both were nice breaks if only for a minute or two.
  • Second lap I was getting a bad tension headache from the bike not being fit perfectly. I found myself sitting up more in the last quarter of the bike to try get some relief in my neck and shoulders. I knew what was happening and knew that as soon as I got off the bike I'd be good.
  • Coming back into town I was wondering where I might find a marathon to run and laughing to myself.
  • Up "The Helix" feeling fresh and actually excited to run. Off my bike with no incidents. Into T2 changing. Drop my bike shorts as planned and practiced. On with the run shorts and other gear.
  • I stopped to fill my hand bottle at the fricking slowest thermos. Good thing I had it, even if it really was more psychological.
The Run
  • My legs felt perfect! First mile by my watch = 7:45. WAY too fast. Slowed down the next miles - on purpose, knowing I couldn't maintain that pace. Flew through five or six miles and was concerned that I was still going to have a hard time maintaining this pace and still get enough fluids and fuel.
  • Walked the water stops to make sure I had time to eat and drink.
  • First lap came and went like nothing. Got to about mile 15 or 16 and I was tired (I know, understatement of the century,) but my mind was just telling my body to lay down. All I could think of was a nap. I compromised and decided to walk about a block and half. Other than the water stops that was the only walking I did, which made me feel pretty good about myself.
  • From there on I started drinking Coke at the water stops and that took care of my need for a nap.
  • At mile 21 I was still feeling pretty good. I wasn't falling apart. I was getting right back on pace after the water stops. No GI issues. Really, feeling as good or even better than I expected at this point. It was about here that I started to think about finishing time. Obviously, I would be finishing in daylight, but I was trying to be more precise. Then I remembered I have the time of day on my watch and I started doing the math. I figure, "OK probably about 11:15 or 11:20." Then I'd run a mile or so and check the time again and redo the math. About 3 miles from the finish I did the math again and realized I could very well finish in 11:0X hours. Then I looked at my mile splits as they came up and two miles out I am realizing I can actually break 11 hours if I continue at this pace and don't stop. My combination of adequate fueling/hydration and "finish line fever" propelled me through the last couple of water stops without slowing.
  • I had been following a couple of people pretty closely and they picked it up a little going into the final straight before the finish chute and since there wasn't anyone super close behind me, I let them go. I was going to finish under 11 hours and I was going to have a clean finish line photo.
  • I tucked my sunglasses in my back pocket and came across the line with arms up, a smile and salt caked around my eyes.


SSB said...

Congrats! I can't believe you forgot the sunscreen! What's next?

Tasha the Triathlon Goddess said...

You rock!!

But....but...you forgot to thank ME, the triathlon goddess, for all the training tips. The VLCD, ramping up, etc. What up with that, bro? :-(

Beth said...

So, so exciting!!! So happy for you and that you had such a great day!! Can't wait to see the pictures! :) HUGE CONGRATS!

Amy Beth Kloner said...

So very proud of you! And now we get a 6-part race report, too! YESSSS! (The former was sincere; the latter was a joke.) ;)

You were spot-on, committed, and accurate in your training. You did this. And I was beaming with pride as I saw you cross that line. It's not often than everything comes together, but you came pretty darn close. And the power of your positive attitude (riding on a borrowed bike) was tremendous.

Congratulations, Todd!

Teresa said...

Way to go!!!!!
and so respectful of you to not pee on the borrowed bike, you can borrow mine anytime!


RP said...

Yes, you are an Ironman! Now get over yourself already dude! ;-)

Oh, and you should have that decal with all of it's squiggles on your calf, put on perm in just the same way.

Congratz again.

Jill Costantino said...

That is SO Frickin AWESOME! Way to go! Post the pics already!

Meg said...

Congrats, awesome report! I'd love to hear more about the "other woman!"

beth said...

YAY! all around YAY! can you teach me to swim?

ADC said...

Woo hooo!!!!

Charisa said...

Awesome seeing you out there! Congrats!!! Such an awesome first IM you had!!!