Ironman Canada RR #2 – A male perspective

I’d have to give a very big thumbs up to my overall 2008 Ironman Canada experience.  As Heather mentioned, the days leading up to the race weren’t ideal with a final week bike swap and some major in house tension because of it.  The bike positions were very similar, the only major change was a downsizing of the cranks to 175 from 177.5.  That was really the only thing that had me slightly nervous for the pending 180km day.  In the 5 hours of training we were able to get on the fully built up bikes I was pretty psyched at the upgrade and confident all would go well.  Moving from my old bike that weighed probably close to 25lbs along with a nice flex in the midsection, to the Blue T16 turning the scales at under 20 and no flex made for a wicked ride.  I can’t imagine what the Blue Triad will be like.

I started the day very confident in my form across all three sports.  The overall goal was to break 9hrs and be consistent all day.  It started well getting out of the water in 54:30, having swam relaxed and within myself.  I’m not sure why, but Ironman Canada swims have always been very comfortable.  I don’t get stressed, I don’t care when I get hit in the head or kicked in the chest.  In fact, I’m happy to just dish it right back and hold my draft.  “Get out of my way you **Word that used to be here but was recently upgraded to the do not use on blog list** ” (Does it really matter?) ran through my head on more than one occasion.  I was able to really keep a handle on who was donig what, and managed to get across a small gap that opened up as we came into the final 500m.  Still 1:30 behind some of the key players, and 5 behind the eventual winner but things are improving every year. 



Getting on to the bike I was feeling good.  I took it very very easy going out to McLean creek road(15km in).  Probably way too easy.  I was riding with Gordo, and quite happy to be riding with Gordo.  He was going slow and I was itching to follow the many riders ripping by us. I told myself to be patient, Gordo knows what he’s doing.  But then it got really slow, like slow enough that I couldn’t even keep my distance without coasting so I had to go round and sort out my day on my own, away from whatever tactics Gordo was dealing with.  I luckily managed to get in a decent group of four 40km in to share in some pacing going down to Osoyoos.   Belinda Granger was among the three that came up to me…clearly a contrast of interest for myself.  Am I really going to help pace Belinda Granger who my wife is trying to beat?  Hmmmmmmmm.  Had to think long and hard about that one.  Either way, we weren’t far from Richter pass where I planned to ramp up the effort a bit so I just went with it.   As soon as we hit the first climb I gave it a bit more gas and started making my way through the remainder of the ride.  Nothing major happened, which is great.  An uneventful IM bike is a good thing.  As we hit the rollers I put in a very solid effort to real in Justin Daerr and Nigel Gray.  It was as if my arrival triggered their desire to put the hammer down.  Maybe it was a mental switch that went off in my head ’cause the timing was crazy.  “Got em”…. “Lost em” in a matter of a couple minutes.  That was it for my riding in a group and the remaining 80km were solo.  Not feeling strong, but not feeling pathetic either.  On the mini turn around I saw the big group coming out.  It would have been nice to be with those guys but they were probably a good 3-4minutes ahead.  Guys that I got out of the water with were there so perhaps it was a bad tactical decision to go easy off the start of the ride.  I can’t say that though, maybe I would have paid for it later in the day.  Things were rolling along nicely but the legs had no pop on the climb up to yellow lake.  Coming into town after the long decent I was feeling very good and cruised with the final tail wind to a 4:47…20minutes faster than last year and 11minutes faster than I’ve ever ridden before, feeling ready to run.

The Ironman Marathon run has been a struggle.  I’ve notched some very respectable Half Ironman runs, but the full has been a kick to the junk on more than one occasion.  I turned it around this year, though it didn’t really show in the time split of 3:15.  Looking at it positively I had a storming final 10km of just under 42minutes.  It was partly sheer desire to break 9hrs, and partly something unknown that brought that on.  Given how rough I was going from 18km to 30km it was very surprising I was able to actually pick it up and RUN what is always regarded as the hardest part of an Ironman.  For me, this year, the hardest part was that 12km mid-section.  I suffered badly into the headwind and hills at the far end of the lake.  Even after the turn around it took a very long time to start feeling good.  To my shame I couldn’t even muster a good run as I passed the Peter Reid/TV crew section on the way back home.  You know things are rough when you can’t put it together for a 3 minutes section of showmanship, even if it is totally fake.  But yeah, something turned around and I trucked it home good and strong.  That darn final 2km’s at IM Canada, though.  Whooollly crap does that drag on.  I was the first guy to NOT break 9hrs.  Kind of like that Seinfeld skit where the 2nd place guy is the first loser.  Of that group, you are number 1, you are the best loser.  Haha.  Is that better than the last guy to get under 9hrs?  Kind of a pessimistic way of looking at it, but funny none the less.  Seinfeld rocks.

Super happy with the day.  Blue – – bike was flipping awesome, Carbon never felt so good.  My number #1 piss off in long distance triathlon is the stuff you have to put on your nice bike.  Bottles/spare tire/food.  I think I finally found the sweetest spot for a spare tire.  I didn’t take a picture so you’ll have to check it out next time.  It looks kinda dorky when admiring the bike up close, but it’s fast.  See if you can guess where it is on the first race shot.  Not hard to spot once you see it, and it’s not in the ‘bento box’ thing…which I also hate adding but had to break down this year.







And the AVIA Lite II’s were great.  Not one blister, sore spot, or lost toenail. The first shoe that I’ve ever had in both training and racing where I experience no problems over the longer distances.  Addidas were second best, Asics after that…and New Balance used to rip my feet apart something fierce.

And a huge thanks to the family up there supporting us.  Heather’s parents for letting us use their place for our mini training camp and making us totally amazing Vegan food every night.  Not to mention all your support along the way in other aspects of our life as well.  My Mom, Dad, and Lynne for giving us so much help.  Paving the way to our new life of living in an RV (pics coming soon) and eventually making the leap to full time training and racing in 2009.  Not to mention cooking us wicked awesome steaks and fish for the other half of our mini training camp.

Next stop for H – Hawaii.  Next stop for T – Arizona.

Finishing just as the rain set in.

And a video of Lisa Bentley and Heather about to cat fight on the bike. Haha.


~ by trevorandheather on August 31, 2008.

2 Responses to “Ironman Canada RR #2 – A male perspective”

  1. Great work, both of you! Thanks for the reports.
    I saw you coming back on the run, looking good. 🙂

  2. Great race Trev! Glad you are out of the ag race…

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