Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Longhorn 70.3

Austin 70.3
Last Sunday I got to race in the Longhorn 70.3 (closest WTC race to home) this is a great race and I recommend if you are planning your2014 to have it on the list. It always attracts a great Pro startlist and this year was no different. We had a large field with many household names and some soon to be 70.3 stars lining up to battle in ATX.

After some thunderstorms in the early hours of the morning we got pretty lucky for race time, with an overcast day and somewhat mild temps. But the action in the race was hot all the way ! The swim was out fast and I feel we were split into swim packs after 100-200m I missed the 2nd pack and swim in the third all  the way. My swimming has been up and down the last few weeks and to be honest I’ll take a 27:53 but needed to be in the 26-26:30 range.  I got out with 4 guys and quickly got on my bike, chasing hard as I could see another group up the road. My training partner Mark Saroni was one of them; he was unlucky to have an issue with his bike and had to withdraw to end his season. But made some great gains in fitness and will be stronger and ready in 2014. Around mile 8 I passed a strong rider and we ended up linking up and rode well together for the entire ride passing a lot of guys. I hit a bad pack around mile 35-40 ish but I knew it was mental and stayed focused on keeping 10 bike lengths behind. I came around by mile 45 and ended the ride strong. I rode a 2:14:06 on a no fast but fair bike course.  Only losing 3:45 to the fastest bike split on the day.

Here is me leaving T2 on a mission!

Getting off the bike I was excited to hear my Revolution Racing teammates and friends along with my wife Heather and Rory was even there to cheer!!!  The legs felt good on the initial run into T2 after hopping off the bike, so I was ready to go hunting after hearing I was just over 7min off the lead. Going out I saw the clock was 3:44ish so I knew a sub 4:00 was possible with my usual run split.  The legs were moving and my first km split was 3:19 (5:20 pace) I was holding my pace and catching guys early on. At the turn I got a little discouraged to see I was still many places down, but I stayed positive in my mind knowing a lot of racing was left. It looked like a a lot of guys got an “easier ride” than me as they were not that far part on the run. So lesson here is swim more!!! 
After the first lap I was so impressed with the amount of cheers I was getting on the course it felt like I was racing at home.  I was also getting support from all my friends doing the lead on the bike.  Maybe next year I will be alongside one of you guys.  Even many age groupers were shooting for me, I moved up well on the 2nd lap and as I hit my 3rd lap my body was telling me it was going to be a painful one. 

(Shout out to my friend Herb for the above pic) 

For two reasons, I was not enjoying my gels for some reason and could only get in three on the bike and one on the run. I needed another one on the bike and then one around mile 8 on the run. Something I've learned after doing 70.3's is you can't perform if you don't fuel. So I do my best to plan before the race what I need and when I need to take it. Sometimes your body tells you no. But lesson learned force it down!!

 But nevertheless I pushed on and took it one Km at a time late on in the run. Also I have been dealing with some Achilles issue in the last few weeks so my run workouts have be shorter than normal, hence my fad in the last 3 miles. When I'm normally still going strong.  I focused on my mindset and experience to get me home and I was happy to cross the line in 4:01 for 11th place.

Photo: Congratulations to Robbie for placing 11th overall at Longhorn 70.3!!  Solid race with a super fast pro field this year.  Way to go Robbie!!

This racing season I have been lucky to be supported by some amazing sponsors and without them this triathlon business for me would not be possible or fun, this allows me to chase my goals, So thanks you Revolution Racing, Simon at The Fit Kitchen. Jeremy and the crew at Cobb Cycling (more to come from them to get me faster on the bike) Superfeet of course my employer and makers of the best Insoles in the business, Immunotec, their product helps me train hard and recover strong  Just one more race to end 2013 so check back for more details.  

The main man(Rory) below enjoying his first Ironman event experience. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Buffalo Springs 70.3 2013

This year was my third year racing up in Lubbock, The first year  I had just moved to Texas and was not ready for the 100 deg plus weather that we got on race day.  I ended up dropping out at mile 4 and walking back to the start. Last year I had a breakthrough 70.3 performance and finished 3rd with a solid time on a hot day also. So for 2013 I had high expectations for a good result especially with the ok temperature and also based on my racing fitness and last year finish. If only things were that easy!!

The long and the short of it was I had a subpar day overall and thankfully my bad days are still ahead of 2012 average races and I was able to get some decent points towards 70.3 World Champs. I move up in the ranking and we will find out in a few weeks if I  get to race in Vegas this September.

As for the race, I got out to what felt like a decent start in the swim, but didn't have that extra gear to keep moving up and lost the feet I needed to be on early. I came out of the water with 4 guys and 3 of us worked together for the bike for the most part. My thoughts were, "ok your not feeling great now but its a long day and anything can happen on this course" I also I kept reminding myself of how strong I rode the second half of the race last year. I was 5min + slower that last year on the bike and  would have been ok to catch 6th if I had my normal solid run. I didn't even need it to be great!! Anyway off the bike I felt fine but just couldn't find that extra gear again. I really just focused on running steady and hoped some guys up front would fall off. In the end I finished 8th and was pleased to finish this beast of a course. It's truly a gem and Marti and Mike Geer do a great job.

on Monday I didn't feel the effects of the race and got in a good swim and a easy bike. This morning I felt somewhat under the weather and think it might be have been in my system on Sunday. That would explain the subpar performance, if not it is more than likely  the lack of sleep!

In positive  news Rory was 7th weeks old on Sunday and it easy to forgot a bad race, when you had a amazing Son and supportive Wife to come home too!

Up next is Muncie 70.3 on July 13th


Thursday, May 2, 2013

NOLA 70.3

On Sunday April 21st, I raced the New Orleans 70.3 all week I had a good vibe leading into the race, a few weeks early I had my first outing of the season at the San Juan 70.3, and had gone back to the grind in training to get set to race hard and fast in New Orleans.  I lined up with my friends and great training buddies Wes Anderson and Carlos Miranda; we enjoy sharing our racing experiences and are always there for one another along the way to have a fun and positive race day.  Wes and I got off to and not so smooth start in the Pro field, when the race officials decided to not countdown and blow the horn early, I was still un fogging my goggles and then all of a sudden it was GO!! I sprinted as hard as I could with my goggles all fogged up still, and managed to get back on the group, I felt great from the first stroke and started with the pack to the first turn which was about 500/600 out then we split and I found myself up front of the pack I was in, up until the last 400 or so when the other guys came around me, before we had to climb up the steep stairs for our Transition run. I had a great T1 and was out on the bike with no problem. 

On the bike we rode into a strong headwind after a quick out and back up a steep overpass, the bike course can be summed up pretty easy: wind from every direction, with super bumpy roads, mostly flat with the only hills coming for steep highway over passes.  My favorite part of the ride was heading down the road towards the Irish Bayou; I was thinking ‘I wonder if there is a pub down there somewhere??’   On the bike I felt OK, nothing special. There is some work to be done before I’m rolling at what I believe is possible and need to be hitting. But I’ll take it right now during the race I couldn’t push or drive, but the effort was more so a steady state effort. I was happy to be able to feel good in last 10k after having a not so great feeling previous 20k.  It’s always a joy to hop off the bike and feel a spring in your step, so many times we get off to heavy crappy legs and spend the first few miles on the run trying to find your running legs, I guess one of the positives of biking what felt below par was my legs were fresh from the start of the run. I straight away attacked after seeing 14 or so bikes in T2 (had a ball park idea from counting on the last out and bike) I charged hard and caught the guy I was riding with within 1.5milles, helped by a 5:12 first miles and then I locked into pace and held strong until the finish. I kept thinking of my soon to be born baby and was excited to be feeling so effortless and just be so consistence with my splits; slowest mile was a 5:39 up one of the small hills that we had to run up. I was rolling guys down and ended up 9th at mile 10, after that I  couldn’t see another man up there road (afterwards found out the next guys was 2 mins up) On the last turn I was excited to hear my great friend Kyle Meyers of Silverback productions, shoot for me. He gave me the motivation to sprint to the line and I crossed in 3:56:09, which is the faster time by an Irishman.

Bill Burke and Premier Event Management did an excellent job with this race. We had a cool finish in historic Louis Armstrong Park. With lots of food afterward and a great free massage to speed up recovery!.

Couple of shootouts to my great support team,

My sponsors: Revolution Race Team San Antonio with the great backing of Alphia Warrior, The Fit Kitchen and Eoni, my employer Superfeet who just happens to make the best insole in the world which powers me to race fast and stay injury free.  My great training partners the Warpath’s!!! Susan Ingram and Tiitta Elias for all the work on my swim, it’s paying off.  Synergy Sports/Grey Wheels, Triathlete
Here is  photo of Kyle and I  @ the Finishline !

Friday, February 8, 2013

Race Plan 2013

 Schedule 2013
March 17th San Juan 70.3
March 31st Oceanside 70.3
April 21st New Orleans 70.3
April 28th Kemah Olympic
May 26th Austin Cap Tex Olympic
June 9th Kansas 70.3
June 30th Buffalo Springs 70.3
July 21th Racine 70.3
Aug 4th Bridgeland Sprint
Aug 25th Chicago Tri
Sept 2nd Houston Triathlon
Sept 8th Worlds 70.3 Las Vegas
Sept 14th Rose City Tri Sprint
Sept 15th Trifecta Olympic
Oct 10th Lifetime Dallas Olympic
Oct 27th Austin 70.3