In May 2019, I joined Pro Triathlete Pedro Gomes on the Mt Lemmon Crusher. He was going to Ironman Boulder, and I was going to Ironman Cairns, 3 weeks later. I rode my road bike that day going all the way up to the Ski Resort. I had got it done. The first rep on Pedro’s wheel was 2:04. The Garmin died (I now use Wahoo Bolt). The 2nd rep, not sure. Maybe 2:15 for the 21.2mile, 5,500′ ascend at 4.9%. It was an epic day of 114miles, 7hr15min of cycle time, and 13,250′ ascend. 3 weeks later, I had a poor bike at Cairns in Tropical North Queensalnd going 10:08 overall, 19th A/G and a 5:08 bike. I was tired, fatigued, and had travelled half way around the world.
Now I am 8 weeks from my 3rd Ironman Arizona (18th overall). I typically do Joe Friels Big Day Out: 1hr swim, 5hr bike, 2hr run all at race pace with 90min breaks. But I have not looked at my training plan at all and judged based on feel, volume, and fitness. I am 100% self coached.
So Friday I did another 3.8km swim test in 1:02:05 with pull bouy improving 16sec over the last 2 weeks and stronger on the back half with now 3, 6KM swims in the bank. Then 6mile run.
Saturday I woke up a litlle later like 730am. 2 redbulls, 2 toast, maybe 2 eggs. Drove 55min to Le Buzz Cafe. My Argon18 Bentobox scew busted so I had 2 bottles on the bike with Gatorade and 1 bottle of water on my back. I had Kind Bars, Cliff shot bloks, Gu gels, and 2 tubes. I headed out warming up 12min to the start. Then I went for it. Ultimate goal would be 300watts for both ascends but I doubted I was at that fitness level. So solid Ironman intensity was the goal. Started 10min at 305watts, 20min at 301watts, 60min 284watts, and 2hrs at 275watts, solid. I finished in 1:54:34 at 278watts and 132HR. Definrely strong IM goal intensity all around. Heat was OK early on and “cool” at the top. At the general store I skipped coke because I am realizing that there is not enough salt in it so drank an Arnold Palmer and put 2 Powerades in my bottles because of the Potassium that Gatorade doesnt have and salt and sugar were both good enough. I rode down super fast in 38:29 at 33.7mph with lots of cars heading up.
I turned around and legs felt ok holding 253watts the first 30min. Then I heard lightning and saw the storm clouds. By this time it was 95F+ and humid so I welcomed the rain while also scared, saying my prayers. I decided to continue on and then the rain opened up with more thunder and some lightning but the rain was just awesome. Soon, the waterfalls were opened and I stopped to take photos missing one of a deer I saw on the side at 4,500′. Cars were now returning and I went through 10,000′ of total ascend feeling strong. I continued to fuel drinking every 10min and eating every 20-30min. Then I heard a top car behind me. At 7,000′ I saw 6 lambos, several ferraris, acuras, audi A8s, and I think a pagani,.. and a McLaren for good meausre. I was lovin it. I told myself to keep ears and eyes open to get a video! The heat was now gone, sun out, and on to the cookie cabin after going 2:09 on lap2 at 245watts and 127HR in Zone 2. Yes I have a low HR. Always have. Resting HR is 37BPM now and HR rarely gets to 155+.
I got an Oatmeal Raisin at the Cookie Cabin after another Arnold Palmer. More cars on the decent apent most of the time behind a Harley. Somehow I went 8s faster at 33.8mph and a PR. Ranked 408 of 10,554 for the decent. The ascend is still 1:49. Ranked 665 of 12,251.
Sunday was a full day of training. 4 workouts, 5hrs. 13.1mile run, 1hr easy bike, 2.9km swim, 7mule run. Since foot iant without pain, long runs are super easy at 8:57/mile. I am also splitting the 20mile long run up based on feel and pain but aimIng for 20miles nonstop.
The large take away us that my muacular endurance ia getting quite high. I feared lap 2 but was way stronger than anticipated. Salt is also working out for me much better. For many Ironmans now, coke is all i had on the run and my head spinning was what i thought to be too much caffiene. But it has really been lack of salt. So our major fuel has veen Gatorade Endurance with subscriptions of the powder from Amazon. I alao juat bought LMNT from Miguel on Youtube because it carries 1 GM of salt. Mental fatigue brought on by salt deficits is what I think I have been missing. This will also help my gut as 4 immodiums on race day have been hit and miss. Stay tuned!