April 6th, 2011 | 4 Comments
But not a great start. I didn’t go into Oceanside 70.3 2011 with particularly high expectations, first time on a new course, first race of the year and all I’ve done so far is base. So, I can’t be too disappointed with a 4:50:46.
Race day started out like most, up at 0430, coffee, breakfast (cereal, yogurt, and a bottle of First Endurance Ultragen for a total of ~ 800 cal). We stayed close enough to the race to be able to get there with a short ride. I *really* dislike trying to fight for race parking, and with both of us racing it would have been a trick to get two assembled bikes and all the gear into a rental car.
Water temp was cold but not intense, and the short swim out to the start was sufficient to get acclimated. Unfortunately there is no real time for an actual warm-up. My swim was comfortable, probably too comfortable, coming out at 34:13. Yikes. Not a good way to start. Got through T1 (which is really long) and out on the bike.
Decided to go with a new nutrition plan for 70.3 this year and use EFS Liquid Shot diluted in water bottles as my primary source of fuel on the bike, worked great in the overcast/cool conditions (800 cal total on the bike). This was also my first 70.3 racing with power data. Coach Eric and I made a rough estimate of some power targets for the race based on some of the work I’ve done this spring, but with no race specific prep there wasn’t much data to go on. Since the bike is my strength I’ve long had a tendency to over bike, so I tried to stick to the plan as best as possible. I knew at the bottom of the first hill I wasn’t going to have the bike split I wanted if I stuck to the plan, but decided to trust and just see what happens. This race was intended as a bit of an experiment anyway… So, while not too surprising I was pretty sub-thrilled to finish the bike at 2:36:42, I haven’t had a 70.3 bike over 2:27:00 in 2+ years. The good news is, I barely felt a hint of fatigue in the legs so I was good and fresh going into the run.
The run went better than any I’ve had before. I got out of T2 reasonably well, and was slightly surprised when I first checked my pace. Other than a bad patch at mile 9 all my splits were < 7:10, for a final run of 1:33:12 (7:06 avg). This is my 13.1 PR, open or otherwise. Run nutrition consisted of water+powerbar perform at each aid except 1, 5, and 9 which was a caffeinated powergel+water (330 cal from powegel, and ~ 15 cal per cup of perform for about 450 cal total on the run). That may have been more calories on the run than necessary, may have been able to skip the Perform. The run was a great confidence boost as it has long been my limitation due to my years of hip issues.
Overall I think I finished somewhere around 120th amateur male out of ~ 2100. I think this bodes well for the upcoming season and with a little more race specific training and taper I think there is plenty of opportunity for improvement.
Following the race we spent one more night in Oceanside, then packed up and headed to Mission Beach for Sunday night. Had a nice relaxing afternoon on the beach before having to get back to reality on Monday.