Swim: An eek under 26.
I felt pretty good on the swim and was on feet of what I think was the first chase pack until the turn. I lost the feet, swam some Zs and found myself alone for the haul back. I need to work on my drafting skills. I was happy with the first half of the swim. In the end it was ~1.5min faster than last year.
My plan was to really push the bike. I seem to have somewhat of an internal, subconscious governor that has always prevented me from going "too hard" on the bike. Some might think this is a good thing, and maybe it is. It has served me well in the past. But racing in the pro ranks means I need to be able to push the limits. To race a half ironman like I would an olympic distance. In order to push the limits, I have to know what they are.
Long story short, in the swim my right quad started acting up, and began to give me pause for my plan for the bike. Onto the bike and I made 2 rookie errors. 1st, I forgot to unstrap my shoes after clipping them into the pedals. So I come out of T1 look down and realize my shoes are closed up tight. My friend Mac was kind enough to tell me my place and time down on the lead (2:50ish) and then witnessed me come to a complete stop to unstrap my shoes before mounting. 2nd, I used a new gel flask mounting system without ever testing it. About 2mi into the bumpy roads I lost my gel flask with all my gels for the ride. I had to stop, turn around and go get it and then start back up. I must have looked like an idiot (I am).
For the first 15mi of the bike I was NOT feeling it. My heart rate was up, but my power was down. Finally, after the turn things kinda fell into place and I was able to bring the power up. Not the ride I wanted at all, but it was ~6.5mins faster than last year.
I ran the first 3mi of the run on Nick Thompson's heels. When we hit the hills, he was gone. I didn't feel drained or dead, but just never really got into a rhythm and my quad really began to voice its discontent as the miles (slowly) ticked by. About 2.5mins faster than last year.
Overall I am pretty happy with a 10+ minute improvement over last year. But I am frustrated that my body didn't fully cooperate and I wasn't able to dig as deep as I wanted. I was looking to totally bury myself, and didn't quite get there. No excuses though. I just need to figure it out and learn that I have to be able to suffer right from the gun to try and hang with these guys. A little tweak to the training in this coming block and I am hoping for a better outing come Boise.
Big thanks to ZOOT as the TTs felt great all run long, not a misstep and didn't feel one rock. My BLUE Triad rode great once my legs came around. Every race I am only more impressed with that bike. And to TriSports.com, some awesome cheering and great support getting me to and through the race. POWERBAR is the best nutrition company there is... HANDS DOWN. Having them sponsor races is awesome as I know what I need is on hand. Cheers to you all for making it possible.