Rockman Race Report

This morning was the Rockman Half Ironman. The early weather report was a little sketchy - upper 50s and rain. That's cold. It was only about 60 degrees at the start of the race, but it was a warm 60 degrees if that makes sense. It was suprisingly comfortable. Not nearly as bad as I expected.

The water temp was decent. A little cold, but nothing to complain about. I haven't been putting in enough time in the pool, but was thinking I could pull off a 32-33 minute swim. I came out of the water in about 36 minutes. I'm very disappointed. I give up way too much time in the water, and I need to get in some hard work in the pool and improve my times.

When I came out of the water, it was already raining.

My transitions are typically pretty quick and smooth, but not today. For half ironmans and ironmans, I like to put on my garmin in T1. I turn it on toward the end of the bike so it can find satellites and then I have it for the run. I also wear my timex so I have my total time for the race (I can't wait to get the new waterproof garmin so I can wear it for the whole event) so yes, I wear two watches. It's goofy, but having my garmin for pace and distance is really helpful so it works for me.

But I screwed up...I put my Timex on my left wrist. I always put my watches on my left wrist, so when I plan on putting a watch on in T1 I put my Timex on my right wrist. Why? Because, for some reason, I can't put a watch on my right wrist. It takes me forever, but I can put one on my left wrist quickly. So I fumbled around trying to put my garmin on my right wrist in T1...then I tried to put on arm warmers which is really tough when your arms are wet. I should've gone without. I also lost some time in T1 when I headed back to the rack to get rid of my glasses. I couldn't see through them from the rain so I decided to bike without glasses.

The bike....it was good. I passed a lot of people, which says more about my lack of swim skills than my bike skills. I don't always wear glasses when I bike so that wasn't a big deal, and it actually worked out great. Visibility was never a problem. I stayed within my power zone and finished around 2:30-2:31. Right about where I expected to be. I thought I might go under 2:30 but the course was a little hillier than I thought (far from hilly...just hillier than I thought it would be).

Coming into T2 I got out of my shoes early (too early) and did my usual side saddle dismount. Sometimes when I do this, my shoe comes off and it did today. One of the volunteers grabbed and yelled that I dropped my shoe. I tried to stop on the wet timing mat and slipped and nearly fell...close call. Very close.

The run was tough. It's very hilly. Nothing too brutal, although there were a few hills that were really tough. Mostly it's just rollers. I don't think there was a flat stretch on the whole course. I was hoping to run 7:45s but realized early on that wasn't going to happen. The course was too hilly for me to hold that pace. So I made my goal sub 8 minute miles. The run was tough and I was hurtin, but I kept pushing and finished in 1:43 - a 7:54 pace so I'm happy with that.

They don't have official results posted yet, but I have my total time at 4:53. I was hoping for sub 4:45 so I'm a little disappointed, but not much. I signed up a week ago so I haven't been training for this race so I can't beat myself up for not hitting a goal I came up with a few days ago.

What I really wanted from this event, I got. Renewed motivation and a sense of where my current fitness level is. My bike is where I want it right now and my run is getting there. Swimming is way off so I now know where I need to put my focus and what I need to do to prepare for Racine.

My next two weeks of training will be screwed up because I'll be in Utah for 5 days, but after I return I'm going to be focused on making improvements and getting in some solid training for Racine.

Upcoming races: Aquathon #2 and Pleasant Pairie Open Water Challenge


bigmike600 said...

Great job Mike. Sounds like you learned from what you didn't like and know how to make it better. See you at the aquathon and pleasant prairie. Nice bike time. Man you are an animal on the bike.

Icarus Steve said...

I really understand your comments about the swim. Look at my swim time and T1 time in Lake Mills today. I gave up a total of 5 minutes. Not good. Suggestions?