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Ironhead Dallas Triathlon

My goal for this race was simple. Go very easy on the bike and then see how much I had left for the run. Having completed a miserable run in a Half Ironman two weeks early I was finally willing to go slow on the bike and see what would happen.

As per plan I took the swim steady but not too fast. The only issue with the swim was the seaweed that lurked just below the surface. On the return portion of the first lap it was bad enough that it felt like I was pulling myself along by grabbing on the weeds instead of pulling on water. The second lap went like the first with similar issues with the weeds. I hit the transition with a decent swim time of 29:57

On the bike I was determined to take it easy. The moment I felt myself pushing I either eased up a little or shifted to an easier gear. It wasn't easy letting people pass on by that I knew I could keep up with but my goal was to avoid collapse on the run. I kept asking myself the question 'Do you feel ready to start the run now' everytime I felt I was going to slow. I was able to finish the 42km bike with a reasonable time of 1:12:45. 85th overall out of 400+ competitors. A little slower than the 1:08 - 1:09 that I would normally shoot for at this distance. The bonus was my legs did feel ready to run. In fact they felt like they had barely done any work yet.

I felt very good starting the run. My best time at this race had been around 55 minutes. My usual effort was closer to 60-70 minutes. My first mile checked in at just over 8 minutes. I was pleased with this and kept up a steady effort. After miles 2 and 3 passed with a pace under 8 minutes a mile I realized that my strategy had paid off. For once in a race I was actually passing a few people and hardly anyone was passing me. I sprinted to the finish with a 10km time of 48:10 over 6 minutes faster than I had ever gone at this race. I was very pleased with my overall time of 2:34:27 which was a 9 minute PR for this course. The 2-3 minutes I slowed up on the bike easily netted me 6-10 minutes on the run. The lesson learned: Hammer the bike in training so that you can coast at a decent pace in the race and have lots of legs left for the run.

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