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Race Result

Racer: Steve Smith
Race: Ironman Coeur d'Alene
Date: Sunday, June 21, 2009
Location: Coeur d'Alene, ID
Race Type: Triathlon - Ironman
Age Group: Male 35 - 39
Time: 12:13:59
Overall Place: 786 / 2153
Age Group Place: 157 / 362
Comment: 1:05 / 6:08 / 4:43 ... not bad for an off-the-couch race, nailed predictions

Race Report:

Here's what I sent out before the race.

In a rather stunning turn of events, I was within MINUTES of each of my best-case predictions.



As some of you may know, I'm registered for Ironman Coeur d'Alene this Sunday. It wasn't until last week I decided that I would actually go up and participate.

I have not trained for this at all**. So basically, I'm sending out this note so no one gets all scared that I fell off my bike when in reality I'm probably just sitting on a curb cursing myself for doing something so stupid as starting an Ironman with no training.

If for some reason you feel the need to watch this disaster unravel, you can follow on-line at http://www.ironman.com/ I am bib 1081.

So ... if you're bored, read on.

With three Ironman starts/finishes, all 10:20-10:29, here's the what I figure as the new IronMe:

Overall: 12:00 - 13:30 +
[[ Actual: 12:13:59 ]]

I think the less slow estimates for the swim and bike are reasonable, even likely. The marathon is a total crap-shoot. Just for fun, I'll guess 12:48:12 as an exact time.

All told, having even a faint glimmer of hope for a 12-13 hour Ironman on limited training is nothing to sneeze at. I'm fortunate to be healthy and fit, if not a bit on the stupid side.

Swim 2.4 miles: 1:01 - 1:06 (15:48/1km - 17:05/1km)
[[ Actual: 1:05 ... woulda been faster but for swells ]]

Pretty much no training this year. I can still do an easy-effort 200m in 2:50-2:55 ... and if I did more than 2-3 at a time, I'm sure they'd slow down. I would be shocked if I swam better than 59:00. But I suppose it could happen ... so could 1:15:00.

Bike 112 miles: 6:05 - 6:35 (18.4 mph - 17.0 mph)
[[ Actual: 6:08 ]]

This is the hardest for me to guess. I did one (and only one) 100 mile ride this year (and none longer) a few weeks ago. I did the first 75 miles in a pretty good time, and then fell apart (barely 15mph) on the way home. Anything below 5:25 is outright impossible. 5:25 to 5:45 is highly improbable and, if done, incredibly stupid on my part. Seven hours is not unreasonable if I don't eat right. Even if I finish in 6:05 I am gonna be really, really tired, which makes the next part ...

Run 26.2 miles: 4:40 - 5:30 (10:21 min/mile - 12:35 min/mile)
[[ Actual: 4:43 ]]

... painful. It's one thing to ride an easy 5:45 and feel fresh (IM-USA 2004); it's another thing entirely to ride 6 hours and feel like poo, 10 minutes before starting a marathon. I think I can run for 8 or 10 miles off the bike, putzing (for me) along at 8:25 to 8:45 ... but after that, lots of walking. Hard to say here. I only hope I don't hurt myself. Now that I think about it 4:40 seems like a stretch ... more like 4:59.

Transitions: 15-20 minutes
[[ Actual: 0:17, phone call made! ]]

It's Father's Day & I'm gonna call dad before I start running. Plus, I'm in no hurry.

Reading this I have to wonder why I'm doing this at all.
a) I said I would
b) I'm curious what an off-the-couch Ironman is like
c) I'm thinking this will push me to either stop triathlons altogether or at least do a bit of regular training.
d) The fishing around Lander is still lame while the spring melt-off finishes
e) To prove that I'm not cursed/blessed with a 10:2x Ironman

Hope to see ya on the other side

** Almost no training, in stv-speak. So far this year:

* Only one week of more than 5+ km swimming. 11 weeks of 0 km swimming.

* Only 3 weeks of more than 100 - 120+ miles biking. Only 3 rides longer than 3 hours for the year. Only 4 rides between 2 and 3 hours.

* Only one week of 30+ miles of running. 8 weeks with 20 - 30 miles of running; the rest ... ugly.

Just to put this in perspective, here are weekly averages for Jan-May in 2005 and 2009

2005 / 2009 Swim KM: 13.0 / 1.3
2005 / 2009 Bike Miles: 155.5 / 62.9
2005 / 2009 Run Miles: 44.1 / 18.0

I wasn't even training for an Ironman in 2005. This reflects my traditional winter swim focus (Jan - Apr) followed by much more serious biking over the summer. I averaged 189.4 miles/week cycling Jun 1 - Oct 31. Now that I look at it it, I was pretty insane between 2003 and 2005 ... but boy was it fun.