St George Ironman 70.3 Race Report

This race has been my main focus for the last 6 months at least and so I was excited for race day but also keen to enjoy it for every single mile despite how difficult I knew it would get. I travelled up with Leta Rose on the Thursday who was the perfect travel and race partner for this trip – we both had business to take care of! Unfortunately my order of LG gels had not arrived in time and my plan B for nutrition, in hindsight, sucked. Nevertheless I went into the race knowing that training wise I’d done all I could.
The swim was not nearly as cold as I thought it would be and with a calm deep water start we got underway. I couldnt find someone to draft from but was aware of someone drafting my feet almost the entire swim. On the second turn where we head back to the shore I was feeling very dizzy and almost seasick – Im still not sure why. With a couple hundred metres to go this girl who had been drafting swam on my hip, we then get out at the same time where she thanked me for the pull….
On to the bike I felt good, nice and strong. There are many long climbs on this course but plenty room to settle into a rhythm and really work. I felt really good and continued to power through until my energy started fading around mile 30. I had a couple GU gels on the bike and water but my tank was getting low. Snow canyon although beautiful…was brutal! The most inspiring thing however are the signs that the locals of st george put up through snow canyon to motivate you…”Remember that guy that gave up? Yeah nobody else does either”.
I completed the bike and headed out on the run feeling strong tapping into new muscles and into a groove. I stayed pretty strong up the initial ascents and through mile 4, after this it started to go downhill, and not in a good way. My tank was cursing at me by this point, I was starting to get a stitch, my legs were heavy and I pee’d my pants…whilst running..although somewhat intentional…yeah I never said Triathlon was glamourous…
I had maybe thought I was leading my age group until this point but at that moment a girl passed me on her way back, one mile ahead of me and in my age group. I think mentally I started to doubt myself; everything was getting so difficult. Shortly after the turnaround this gazelle-like avatar girl from my age group ran past me…why arent my legs a little longer. I got to about mile 9 and consumed my last gel with a splash of cola and water. At this moment the girl who beat me to second by less than one minute last year, overtook me. I couldnt let this happen again! I stayed tucked in behind her and just built up all my mental motivation – “there are only 4 miles left then it will be over…suck it up princess”. I gradually let mind take over and we both picked up the pace. We passed the gazelle who looked like she was hurting and continued downhill, I slowly overtook her but maintained the downhill pace. I kept running and although I could no longer hear her footsteps I didn’t dare turn around until I had one mile left. I could see her but as long as I kept that pace I was good – but the pace was HARD! I gave it my all and it paid off. I maintained 2nd place in my age group, 8th amateur female overall and qualified for the World Championships for Ironman 70.3 in Canada! Despite a nutrition disaster I PR’d by 5minutes on last years time so I’ll take that.
Time to eat, relax and do a few bike races before settling back in to 70.3 training.
Swim 00:32:18
Bike 2:44:48
Run 01:38:23
Overall 05:00:08
Nutrition 5xGU gels, 2xLG gels, water, cola

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