So the sun was shining brightly which meant that one leg of the swim would be directly into the now rising sun. The swim course was slightly different this year in that it was long and narrow with the short leg headed into the sun which was nice. Last year it was more of a triangle. I started toward the top 1/3 of my wave and felt pretty decent. I was soon catching people from the wave before me which is very rare! My sighting was great again, until I made that right turn. I had to trust those around me because I couldn't see a buoy until it was right one me. It worked, and as we headed home I was feeling relieved. The swim(s) had me concerned due to my lack of time in the water over the past 9 months. I climbed out of the water and got to work taking my wetsuit off.
SWIM: 36:31, 52/168 in my AG. I'll take it!
|Exiting the water, the lake in the background is one of the best I've swam in, very clean.|
As we were climbing the big hill about 25 miles in I realized that I needed a potty break. So I stopped and no sooner did I stop, I heard the motorcycle with the official on it. SHIT! Hopped back on the bike and kept riding. Not sure if it's illegal or not, but no use taking a chance. So I stopped a mile or two up the road and then I had company...two other riders had the same call from Mother Nature! Wow, I felt MUCH better. Slowed down and grabbed a bottle at the next aid station and it was go time. The course is beautiful and always changing so you never get bored. We made the left hand turn at the top of the big gradual climb and it was onto my favorite parts of the course. I wasn't feeling too bad and the legs were cooperating so I went with it. Held a good average and picked off A LOT of people in the last 25 miles or so.
|As I said, some great scenery on a BEAUTIFUL day!|
BIKE: 2:49:52, 20.63mph, now up to 38/168 in my AG.
|All smiles headed out onto the run.|
As I got into a groove, the splits just kept consistently coming in around the 6:30 mark depending on what "obstacles" (READ:HILLS) were in my way. I ran completely by effort which really paid dividends. I ate a gel at about 5 miles in, then another after 8 miles. I was consistently catching and passing people the whole time which really helps you to feel even better. I also really like the 82GO water bags that they used at the aid stations. Easy to open and carry and great to drink / cool you off. Shameless plug here, but Rev 3 does things right, down to the last detail. Up that last dreadful hill and crossed the line.
RUN: 1:26:27, 6:19 and up to 15th in my AG!
|Aaahhh, that finish line! Thanks to REV3 for the free finish line photos.|
All in all it was a great race for me, especially considering that I raced pretty hard just 24 hours prior. It was a PR on this course at 4:56:01 and a PR in my limited half ironman "career". The run was the fastest that I've run off a bike at the half distance by more than 90 seconds which makes me feel even better given the challenge of the terrain.
So over the course of the two days I raced over 102 miles in about 7:15 or so. I climbed about 7,700' of elevation gain over the 100 or so miles of riding and running. Again, REV3 did an awesome job for the whole weekend of events, not a stone left unturned. I'm so thankful to be a part of their team and thank you for our generous sponsors, Pearl Iszumi, Power Bar, TriSlide, etc.
Now to figure out what's next!