Friday, August 31, 2007

Ironman Lake Placid -- Part II: This Time It's Impersonal

I don't have too much to say about the bike section. It's long. It's hard. It's quite scenic. A lot of people think they're faster than they really are.

I had traveled to LP in early June to ride the course and got myself walloped. After that experience, my entire goal was to train to ride conservatively and set myself up for the marathon. So, it was all business (slow, slow business). I executed my (slow) race plan flawlessly, so flawlessly (slow) in fact that I rode within 11 seconds of my (slow) Wisconsin bike time from '05 (that's a 6:57 for those of you keeping track).

While you might think I was slow, I was happy with my overall bike performance. The only low point was into a wicked headwind on the downhill and flattest parts of the course (naturally). I typically don't do well in headwinds, and this was no exception. Here's me trying to be as aero as possible and hoping the headwind will be a tailwind on the climb back to town (try not to be blinded by the pasty white skin).

Well, I don't know if there was a tailwind into town or not, but clearly I paced myself well, because I rode the back climb only three minutes slower than the first lap. It was probably the first time in any triathlon I've done where I passed a bunch of people on the bike. Of course, none of us were moving that fast, but it was nice to be the demoralizer instead of the demoralizee for once.

T2 was a complete wardrobe change -- new shorts, shirt and socks. I kept telling the volunteer in the change tent that I was going to change everything and that, while appreciated, I didn't need his help, but he seemed intent on helping me put on my race belt. It wasn't until I dropped trou that he realized he might want to back off a little. Awkward.

Then I got glopped with sunscreen by another helpful volunteer (who I did not get nude for) and I was off on the run.

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