This months Ironman news has been almost all about Ironman Texas. I’ve found a couple of really good race reports from female pro Jocelyn Gardner McAuley and fast Irish age grouper Ian Farrell.
Ironman Texas also saw an incredible return to racing for big yank über biker Andrew Starykowicz who, after a horrific crash where he was dragged along under a truck ended up with a back brace and leg in a full cast. Texas was his first Ironman since the crash and his bike and run splits are pretty impressive considering his accident was only eight months ago.
IM Talk also have a really inspiring interview with an athlete called John Young who’s the first person with dwarfism to complete an Ironman.
Click on through for all of the stories. Read More
A race normally warrants a race report but in this instance it doesn’t. When we started training properly for the Boston Marathon I thought that a low 3 hour finish was possible. Especially after my half marathon on New Years eve where I was quite a bit fitter than expected at that stage. In fact Ais commented afterwards that she had no idea where I had pulled that run out of given our lack of training in the preceding month and if Ais was impressed then I was happy that I was starting out in reasonably good shape.
Anyway the training went well for the next couple of months and for the first time in a long time I felt like it was working well, the body was handling and absorbing the increasing load. I was seeing constant steady improvements as the year progressed. At some point along the journey my aim became to go sub 3 which I haven’t done in a number of years. The numbers I was seeing in training indicated that I was close and we reckoned that with a good day I had a really good chance of a finish time starting with a 2. Read More
This is one of my favourite races (that’s probably got a lot to do with the fact that it’s one of my very few race wins back in 2013) That was three years ago though and I was in better shape back then so this time around I didn’t have any real expectations going into it. That being said there’s always a little part of you that hopes that no one fast will show up, or if they do maybe they’ll get lost or slip into the canal or something… Anyway that’s enough of a glimpse into the nasty side of my mind. Lets move on.
I was asked a while ago if I had old race reports and if I could pop them up on the blog. Here’s my 2011 Ironman Florida write up. A good day and a PB and quite a few lessons learned. Click on through to check it out.
One thing that kept on coming back to me over the 24 and 48 hours afterward the race was how ridiculous it seemed to be chasing tiny gains like trying a new aero helmet or a faster chain or wearing a swim skin in the hope of gaining seconds or minutes when in fact what I needed to be competitive is almost an hour. It feels like putting the cart before the horse. I’ve always said that I didn’t want to lose out on a Kona slot by seconds or minutes for the lack of investing in the best equipment I could afford. But I think I first need to be in the right ballpark before chasing those gains.
Given both of our results it’s by far the worst I’ve ever felt after a race. I crossed the line feeling I’d failed myself, failed Aisling and all of the people who’d helped and supported me.
It feels selfish to write a race report given how badly Aisling’s day ended up. She was taken out of the water after getting into trouble early in the swim. I had one DNF in a race a couple of years ago and I know how sick I felt and how utterly disappointed I was.
This was written at close to 1 am the night of the race. I had it rolling around in my head and was so wired on all the caffeine and sugar I’d taken on during the race and I was so bloody sore I had no hope of sleeping so I went to the kitchen and made food and wrote this. I eventually managed to get about 2-3 hours of sleep. It’s also written with all the emotion, exhaustion, elation and disappointment of race day still clouding my response to it a little. I’ll post a less emotional review and analysis of how it went and how I feel about it in my next post.
Race Report Ironman Mallorca 2016
The day started with a surprise announcement. Our apartment was 10 feet from transition and at 6am I heard Paul Kaye say over the PA system that the water temperature had dropped surprisingly overnight and we were going to be allowed to swim in wetsuits. We immediately texted everyone we knew who was racing to let them know before they left their hotels. After all the usual transition stuff which I won’t bore you with we headed to the swim, wished each other luck and headed to our respective start corrals. Ais had been nervous about the prospect of a non wetsuit swim and I think she was quite relieved it had been changed.
Someone contacted me recently to say that they had been following the blog and enjoyed it (thank you, it’s a relief to know that someone is reading and enjoying) and asked if I had race reports of any of my Ironman races. I told him I would go and find them and post them up here over the next few weeks. I will start with my first attempt at qualifying for Kona at Ironman UK in 2011. I have changed it slightly editing a couple of spelling mistakes and adding a couple of small details so it’s a fairly accurate telling of the race while it was fresh in my mind. Of course my recollections of the day now five years later are slightly coloured by time. I still think this was one of my best executed races ever and one that taught me some of the most important lessons about racing Ironman. I have called it a race report despite the fact that pro triathlete Jesse Thomas warns against that here. I just cant think of another more exciting yet fitting title at the moment. I hope you’re not put off by it and that it brings some small bit of enjoyment to your day. Anyway lets get on with it.
What an epic day spent spectating at Ironman UK. Funny enough it’s my first time to watch an Ironman and I think it will be my last. If I’m going to go to the trouble of traveling then getting out of bed at 4am I would rather be doing a swim bike and run rather than just watching. Seeing the swim start gave me goosebumps that didn’t really go away all day. I can normally watch a race without feeling the need to partake but this was different, I just wanted to be out there. We had traveled to watch four friends who were racing. One broke the bike course record, led the race at one point against some of the strongest European and UK pros won not only his age group but the age group race overall and placed 5th beating over half of the pros. Two were there for their first Ironman’s. One of them got onto the podium and finished 68th the other was 182nd despite spending close to 20 minutes in transition. I’m not pointing any fingers but you need to sort that shit out Eoin. The fourth was chasing a Kona slot, an increasingly hard thing to do and was in the hunt until the last hour but still managed a top 10 age group performance. We had another athlete racing Challenge Roth who fairly stormed through the field after a decent swim. We didn’t have access to the tracker so were being sent updates from home but I believe he passed almost 1000 people on the bike and just kept on moving up through the run in one of the best executed Ironman’s I’ve seen. Read More