Here I am. Home. I'm sure glad Linda came because I was in no fit state to drive anywhere. I think I"ll make this short and sweet today, and maybe tomorrow I'll add some pics and put some more details.
Race day started sunny and warm, then clouded over just as we were going into the water. I saw Jenna, Tisha, Leana, Adrian, and for once I saw Kelly R first!!! I'm one for six there. The big adventure in the water was on each of the 6 legs (twice around a triangular course) some guy cut right across me as I'm heading reasonable directly for the buoy. I mean he was heading for the weeds full tilt. I don't know if it was the same guy or not. About 800 people started all in one wave so it was a bit of a mixer at first. By the first buoy things had sorted themselves out. We did the run around the buoy on the beach thing, I did that about 17:25, and out of the water 36:16. 2 K done, feeling pretty good!
I think I'm getting better at transition, plus I had a good spot, plus we didn't have to run forever to get through. 3 minutes in T1 which seems really really fast, but I was on the bike at 39:19 elapsed time, even dealing with a ham cramp.
Up a little hill out of T1, and up a little hill to the highway. Then I was in the big ring for the rest of the race. The first part of the bike is perfect for getting your legs together. Downhill, with the wind. Whoosh!! Down through Stoney Plain. Then the tough leg. Turn right, due west, gradual uphill, into a stiff wind. Everybody was head down, pedaling. Then south toward the Genesee power plant. There's a wee bit of a dip down to the river valley, but that was no big deal. This is where I caught Jenna. I haven't seen her times yet, but I'm expecting a smoking fast time out of the water, maybe one of the first females. Going back was fast fast fast. Mostly downhill, with the wind again. Then a stiff crosswind into town. There had been a couple spatters of rain but nothing to hardly notice. 2:54 bike time!!! That's one of my fastest 90 K rides ever, maybe even the very fastest. Yet I was on top of my breathing the whole way, not pushing too hard. I got passed a bunch, but not as much as I was expecting. 92K done, feeling pretty good.
1:44 transition. No pee, that happened in the first K. At this point I'm looking at 3:35 or so elapsed time out of transition, and I'm ecstatic! I was going to be really happy with getting out of T2 in 3:45, and here was even faster. I'm wondering now if I can break 6 hours, but I wasn't terribly hopeful. My feet were running ok, but my hams were on the verge of cramping the entire run. I had to nurse them along carefully. I'd taken some endurolytes along the bike, and I think those helped.
The run is a nice route through the town. The only beef I have with it is the turnaround point is forever out there. I didn't think it was ever going to come. I'm looking at my watch and trying to do the math in my head, and thinking I still had a shot at sub 6 hours but I was getting more dubious. I was having to watch my footing carefully to be sure I didn't trip over any curbs. The tiny little uphills slowed me down big time. Saw everybody on the run, including Dano, at least I'm pretty sure it was him. From turnaround to 15 K was a real slog, and I could feel myself slowing down. I started in on the flat coke hoping to get a boost. I ran one really good K in there, but it was beginning to stress my hams so I backed off. By the 18 K mark I was looking at the time and getting very dubious given how I was feeling. I chugged along as best as possible, and crossed at 6:01:20 or so.
Even knowing 6 hours was almost in my grasp I couldn't push me any harder. Am I happy?
You betcher ever-loving A that I am!!!
My over the moon goal time was 6 hours. If I had to predict a realistic finish time that I would be very pleased with I'd have gone with 6:15. A 6:30 time would have been an acceptable result depending on weather and other conditions. To put this in perspective, my half IM time at the Calgary 70.3 last August was 6:47:30. So I took slightly over 45 minutes off my time. Yes, I'm happy.
The finishers medallian is easily the nicest one so far. Lots of good stuff in the swag bag. More details tomorrow. Maybe photos (not of the race) if I get organized. A link to the results. You know, all that stuff. Time to take some pills and go to bed.