Category Archives: 70.3

Another race in the Caribbean in the books…. Ironman 70.3 Cartagena

So finally getting around writing my race report for our last adventure in Cartagena, Colombia. Two years ago while walking the streets of Mexico City we heard that Ironman had opened up a race in Colombia. What was even better was that it was in Cartagena, which is one of the most beautiful cities of Colombia. It didn’t take long after the announcement came out for Felipe’s brother and sister to start texting us and asking us to do it with them. Before we knew it, we were committed to it and we were anxiously waiting for registration to open. Surprisingly it didn’t sell out on the day it opened, but regardless we all signed up on that day. We didn’t want to risk it. The rest of this report is about our trip planning and what went down once we got there. Hope this is helpful for you if you are considering to jump on this wagon this year. 

Our Trip

IMG_2652.JPGWhen we started looking at our plans for the trip, we soon realized that JetBlue flies direct to Cartagena from JFK. This was a pretty good option, since JetBlue is one of the airlines that have the best prices when it comes to flying with bikes, and even better, they honor Active Duty Military when it comes to baggage fees no questions asked (other airlines tend to give us a hard time since USPHS isn’t usually considered a military branch which it is). Earlier in2016-11-26-14-36-43-hdr the year my sister in law had moved to Medellin and had told us to start our trip there. JetBlue also goes to Medellin after a short stop in Fort Lauderdale. We then planned our tri
p starting in Medellin. It was pretty nice to be in another city which I had never been and Felipe’s last trip there was more than 20 years ago when he was a kid. Felipe’s parents actually met us in Medellin so we were able to spend more time with them since they usually only get us for a short time on our trips. It was an added bonus to them.

2016-12-01-10-49-09After a week in Medellin we then all took the same flight to Cartagena. This time we flew Avianca which is one of the local airlines. It was only about $100 per person (one way) so it wasn’t too bad and it is a short 45 minute flight from Medellin to Cartagena and the bikes were flying for free since it was the official airline. Once we all got to Cartagena since we were meeting 2 other friends (one of them doing the race) we had gotten a bigger van to take us to the condo. It was about $20 for that trip. We did the math later and having 4 bikes would’ve made us have 4 Ubers which was probably $40 for the whole thing. That worked out great. We had decided to get a condo instead of a hotel since originally it was going to be just our family. Our friends, Margo, Shayla and Brian with his wife were going to rent another one. At the end, due to shuffling of trips and last minute cancellations we all ended up in a bigger condo where the 9 of us fit just ok. The condo for all of us for the 6 days was about $1000.

Race mode….  Friday

2016-12-02-06-55-19We all got up and since we (Felipe and his brother) just had put together all 4 bikes we wanted to go and ride them a little as well as check out a little bit of the route. The condo actually had the route going in front of us so it was just simply get on the road and we were on it. Leaving the condo was a little sketchy because it is only an undivided 2 lane road but a couple of miles north it converts to a 6 lane divided. The first few miles had me super nervous, trucks, motorcycles, cars, you name it passing us. We had a car as an escort but still some people don’t respect. Once we got to the divided road, it was a lot better. We were able to get aero, try the gears a bit more and about 9 miles up the road we made the return. I felt great, the heat for sure was hitting hard. We left at around 10 am so figured that’s how it was going to be on race day… only one word HOT!!!!. We made it back to the condo and made some minor adjustments to the bikes.

VIRB Picture

img_2954Packet pick up was on Friday too, so we got ready after the ride and wanted to get the packet pick up stuff out of the way as soon as possible but it seems like everyone else had the same idea. The convention center was packed and we stood in line for about 2 hours going through the checkin. Then we did the store stuff and bought our race gear. International races usually don’t make it to the online Ironman store so that’s why we bought it all there. Didn’t want to risk our chances of not getting anything. After about 3 hours of being in lines we went to get some food and then back to the Condo.

Saturday… pre-race day

We tried to go for a short swim in the ocean, we knew the swim was in a bay but wanted to get a swim in. We swam for about 10-15 mins before a little storm passed by and we got out. After that, we got ready to go get the bikes to transition. We were able to get a bigger group with Angela, Margo, Maria Claudia, Maribel and the two of us to go. Maribel’s hubby followed us so we had some protection going towards the convention center to drop them off. Still it was scary at times because of the same trucks, buses, motorcycles, and everyone just trying to “share” the road. Bikes were dropped off and then we met up the rest of the family to do dinner. After that, it was just time to put the legs up and go back to the condo to set up for the next day.

Sunday…. race day

15799978_10154606341935783_387664569258036848_oSunday came pretty quick, by 3:30 am our alarms started to go off. We all got up and got ready for the day ahead. We had set up 2 vans to take us from the condo to the start. That trip was about $15 for each van which we pre-negotiated the night before. We got to transition and the setup started. Felipe and I went first to my bike to set up my transition. Felipe’s brother went to help their sister to set up hers since he wasn’t setting up transition. Margo set hers while I did mine and lastly Felipe set his. Then we were all ready to get going. Only problem is that we ended up waiting for about 2 hours or more to start. Some of the buoys had moved so the organizers had to re-set the swim course before the gun went off. The heat was really starting to climb while we waited. We were all getting worried because we had no water and the race people weren’t giving us any updates. Once they started things got moving pretty quick.
The swim went pretty uneventful, I felt strong however the swim is into the sun at first from the start to the first turn. I tried to sight as good as I could but it was hard. The Rokas did a great job but still the sun was in our eyes. I ended up swimming a little longer than I expected. My garmin called for a 2300 yd swim and not the 2100 yd. My time was 47:36 which was a bit longer than I expected. Considering that I swam 200 yds extra I think that was about 4-5 min extra that I ended up swimming. That is closer to the 40:00 I wanted to get for my swim so I consider it a success.

112_3rd-559250-digital_highres-1605_017235-5780061Once I got out of the water I felt the heat, I got into transition and tried to get all my stuff quickly and get on the bike. The first part of the bike was getting out of the city, the road has a little cheapaseal and then about 5 miles out there was a little rough because there was some construction which was cleaned up for that day but the roads weren’t in the greatest conditions. After that rough patch, it was a lot better, so for about 21 miles we were able to cruise. There wasn’t any major wind, just heat. Then the two short climbs came up towards the end. I’m not a big fun of any of those but got my way up those. The turn around came and those same climbs became downhills, that was fun getting a little push going back to transition. At about mile 40 or so, Felipe came up and the right after him Angela came by. I managed to finish my bike in 3:27, I compare this bike course with Atlantic City 70.3. It has about the same elevation gain. One thing that is true is that I was able to control my power and stay in the zone that Coach Mike and Felipe had told me to stay in. I’m hoping to understand the whole power training a little better but the result of keeping the numbers where I was told made me manage my legs and have some left for the run.

122_3rd-559250-digital_highres-1605_042809-5780071Once I got back to transition the heat was already up there. There was a short shower while we were on the bike so that brought our temps down on the bike. When we were on the run, it just made the walled city a cooking pot. We had no wind, sun was beating down and the humidity was high too. Luckily for us, the beauty of having an aid station every kilometer meant that instead of the usual 13 stations we had 20 instead. All I did on those was pour water on my and drink a little. I had lost my Base Salts vial in transition but was able to get Felipe’s when he was on his way back. Running in the walled city was surreal. The energy of the people from the volunteers, cheering squads (including ours) and the tourists walking the streets. The heat was pretty brutal and at one point it was matter of surviving and not doing anymore damage but needless to say I enjoyed every minute of it. At the end, the run ended with a 2:25, not as fast as others, but considering the heat I take it as a win. At the end, I finished with my usual big smile. Felipe had finished ahead of me and he was already waiting for me at the finish.

As a whole, I am glad we did this inaugural race. The whole experience of racing in Colombia with your family cheering is simply amazing. Cartagena is such a magical city that you have to visit once if not many more times in your life. This was my second time in the city and under two totally different conditions. The city caters to the tourists and if you are smart while traveling you get to see and do a lot in the city. We are glad we rented the condo, we got to spend time with Felipe’s family and also didn’t have any pressures of being with all the tourists either. It was pretty fun to do it that way. We got to enjoy a lot of the gastronomic awesomeness of Cartagena. Got to eat at so many places we’ve been wanting to go for years and honestly it wasn’t that expensive once you did the exchange to dollars. I definitely recommend this race to put on your list of 70.3s to do. Registrations are actually open now for 2017 so go on and sign up. It’s a great way to end a long season with a vacation. 



A new found love… trail running

Since I started this whole thing of running, considering that I am not a real big fan of running I didn’t really see a point in it. If you hang with me for a second, or two, maybe I can get my point across. Sometimes when I run, I just looked at my TrainingPeaks workout and usually roll my eyes and then figure out how to get it done. A lot of times I simply just go for a run, more often than not I don’t execute the workout and simply hit the trail or the treadmill and get my time and finish it up. I know that’s not the way to get faster either, and of course that didn’t help to enhance my relationship with running. It didn’t get any better.

We have a nice trail by our house, an old rail road line that got paved and became an 11 mile trail. We can get it pretty much by going about half a mile into town and jumping on the trail. Well, the trail after numerous runs got old too. It just didn’t do it, it was just not helping the situation. We have the NYC Marathon coming up and those long runs simply were dreaded long runs. After checking in with the coach, and going over that running flunk we were in, he suggested a couple of things:


  1. Run without any devices, forget about those and go about it just by feel, more on that later.
  2. The second and best suggestion was go on trail runs, it was towards the end of the summer when we asked him and the heat was still out there so he suggested to take our runs to the woods.

Now, getting to the woods and no devices kind of freaked me out. It was one of those that I wanted to have a safety blanket that I could track back with my Garmin back to the trailhead, particularly since probably our run was going to be a brand new place to us. So No. 1 above wasn’t really a good option if we wanted to explore No. 2. So we started then looking at trails. To our surprise, we have a ton of trails around us. We kind of knew about them but didn’t really explore them because it was one of those things I was always afraid of. What if I tripped? Where are the trails? How hard are they? Do I need new shoes? all those questions of entering into the unknown. Well… Felipe one day after going to the pool and finding out it was closed said, “let’s go to Minnewaska“. I was like “for what?” He goes, “we need to get 2 hrs on our run, there is not way we will do it here on the trail, it will suck” so he proceeded to get the address on the GPS and off we went. We knew more or less the area, since we had done a few rides that take us around that area of New Paltz, so we knew it wasn’t that far. I was just a bit nervous since I didn’t know what it was going to be. We get there about 30 min after leaving the pool, and we enter the park (note it is $10 to enter the park). Then we asked the guy at the booth what would be the best thing to do, he said to go to the top to the Lake and then take it from there. We followed his direction and headed to Lake Minnewaska. Once there we headed to the trail, into the woods. We clearly didn’t know what we were doing, we looked briefly at the map we got at the entrance, but luckily there were markers and maps along the way. We used those and kept going. While it has been one of the hardest runs I’ve done, and we didn’t get nearly as close to the miles we would’ve done at our trail back home, it was priceless to be out there. The views were incredible and we know we hardly scratched the surface of the trails out there. We headed back to the car and while we pretty much were done with a mile to go, legs pretty much toast, we took it all in and we sort of crawled back to the car. Needless to say, trail running exceeded my expectations and I’ve been hooked since. We did another sort of long run at another trail near us, the Black Rock Forest Park  in Cornwall, NY. It was probably harder than the first one, but still loved it. Can’t wait to do it again and to keep exploring trail running. Even now I’m to the point that I want to do a trail run race (half marathon or something like that). My whole point is what I always say about this crazy triathlon and endurance sports is about. We need to continuously get out of our comfort zone, explore new venues and enjoy each moment, each trail, each path we are put in front of us. We don’t know when or how we would not get a chance to do it again and we are always grateful for it. Nothing beats enjoying nature, lakes and pure air. Wouldn’t change this life for anything and definitely will continue to explore our local/non-local trails in the off season to continue the mojo and keep getting stronger and better each day. For a few tips on Trail Running you can check here


3rd time is a charm… Well maybe

OK, so it’s been a couple of weeks already since we finished our third 70.3 Ironman. In a sense it was a race that we were kind of looking forward to but not really if it makes sense. Yup…. Confusing we know. Maybe you have seen my previous post about motivation or lack thereof and how the winter was keeping us from training. So that’s the “not really” part of it. We felt a bit unprepared, and maybe were underestimating the distance. It kind of happens… But don’t let that fool you it is still a big race and a long day. We went in with our training as much as we got in, one thing for sure we were rested. We did our long workouts and hit them hard but we felt strong on them, long swims were great, long rides didn’t really bothered us so much and the runs…. Well the runs suffered but we had some miles in the running shoes that made us think we were going to be OK.

IMG_5704The week leading to it was of course crazy busy with work. We didn’t do our typical day off before the race. We typically leave Friday as a day off and since the race is on Sunday it leaves us Saturday to “rest” more. Well… If you know what happens at the Expo day then you know you do anything but rest. So our approach this year was leave the house on Saturday, go in to check-in, eat, rack bikes and leave… It actually worked out pretty good in our opinion. It eliminates the amount of walking you do trying to walk to places you don’t really need to be at. Also it helped with the nerves, which were pretty high due to the weablogger-image--201752111ther conditions we were going to have so the less time we spent at the expo and around athletes the better for us… Yes… Antisocial mode helps sometimes.

We were able to see the coach, he gave us some last minute weather related tips and off we went. We went to the hotel with K (our Sherpa of choice for the weekend). She wasn’t doing the race since she got sick but still offered to come down and help us with cheering, and also for the drive back home after the race. Anyways we went to the hotel and stayed there until the next Sunday morning. Did the usual pre race stuff.

blogger-image-21273471Sunday came, we enjoyed the benefits of being in the club village this year. It is pretty nice to have that since we have a place to camp near transition. We just got there while the team people got ready. We chatted a bit but not much, usually we are not too chatty without being rude. There were a lot of nerves because of the bad weather which at that point we had nothing else we could do other than let Mother Nature take her course with our day.

This year our waves were different than last year, I went in maybe 30 min before Felipe. The swim was rough, chop and current took at beat on us and it was not fun to see people taken out as we were getting off the dock. The bike while uneventful we were being very cautious as the roads where wet. A little of a tail wind on the way out and cross wind on the way back made it for a fun bike. Galveston is an out and back bike which it’s cool because you see everyone and we saw pretty much the whole team. Getting off the bike we hit the run. Puli didn’t feel well, he was getting belly cramps after probably taking too much salt water on the swim, Res keep pushing forward with her awesome steady pace.

blogger-image--1918549458blogger-image--39903413It was a great day. Felipe managed to have a PR on this course and a sub 6:00 70.3 with a 5:59. I managed a 6:40 which wasn’t a PR but knowing our load over the next months a number I can work with since we don’t want to get injured nor push too much too early as the year will be long and this is just the beginning. We definitely have learned to read our bodies, our fitness and endurance are there, we need to put longer hours and get some speed but other than that we have a tough couple of months coming up and want to do well without breaking apart.

We were also glad to spend time with almost all our teammates and our cheering crowd who were awesome. One more for our 70.3 distance… Again one of our fave races and we will probably do it again, being so close to home.


Time to get motivated so we can get the peak of our Challenge Atlantic City training in and work on our weak points. Other than that… Let’s continue having some fun. 🙂IMG_0136

We are off to the races…

You might wonder, what does that all mean. Races??? yes many of them… last year Felipe and I did 13 races, actually signed up for 14 and one got cancelled. It was a bit too much, even though not regretting any of it. I got to learn so much about myself that just that made all the sweat, blood and tears all worth it.

This year has been a bit of a slow start. My in-laws are still here visiting and we feel bad just leaving them in the evenings to go workout, and honestly getting up at 4 am doesn’t sound appealing at all. So while our workouts are still happening, our focus this year has been different. For once, I personally want to make sure I take it easy and not overdue it, avoiding injures and allowing recovery is more important to me. No… I’m not slacking, if anything last year I learned to listen to my body and let me tell you, you better listen to those signals.

Felipe and I have set what we call our 2014 season, look at us trying to be all pros…:) but here is an overview of things we (note I say “we”, I’m not doing this alone) will done to stay on track and our races:

  1. Our training schedule will be focused on our 2 iron distances and longer races. Staying healthy and injury free is key for the success of our races.
  2. not adding short races, we want to keep it simple…and cheap… see No. 3
  3. Financially, limiting our races since we have to travel for all of them. That makes it probably more fun so we can plan mini vacations for them.

Among a few others, those are the 3 main reasons of why we will keep our 2014 simple. In case you wondered, here is our plan for 2014:

  1. 20140126-225258.jpgCowtown Half Marathon in February
  2. Half Ironman Texas, Galveston in April
  3. MS150 Bike Ride from Frisco to Fort Worth (Training ride for Challenge)
  4. Challenge USA – Challenge Atlantic City June 29th (140.6)
  5. Ironman Arizona – Tempe in November (140.6)

We will have a few 5ks probably here and there, but most importantly we will have F-U-N. We are not going to kill ourselves, yes we are going to train because we know better not to underestimate the distances and to respect them.

So there you have it, my (our) 2014 season… hope you enjoy the journey, will try to keep you entertained and looking forward to your support 🙂


IM 70.3 Texas (Galveston) race report by Felipe

Alright, we thought we were going to get to this one a bit sooner but we were actually pretty busy the last few days with Puli’s conference in Galveston (how convenient right?). So while we drive back home we decided to do our race reports.

We better start off with Friday. Heading there was uneventful, we were able to get some time off from work and left at around 4 after loading the bikes and the usual load that takes for a racing weekend and some extra days of R&R for Res and work for Puli. Got to the hotel at around 9:30 and went for a light dinner after check-in. Definitely something to plan for the future as there isn’t really anything open in Galveston after around 9:00 PM, so we know for future reference.

Saturday we got to sleep in a bit, got breakfast at the hotel and headed to the expo. Picked up our packages, saw coach M and a few others from the team and then headed for breakfast No. 2. It was actually good since we got to catchup a bit with everyone. Then we headed back to check in our bikes. That went pretty quick. It does help when is a one transition area only.

After that we just headed back to the hotel and got to prepare our bags for the next day before heading to the group dinner. Which is a tradition of our team. Coach gave us his pep talk and we just relaxed a bit, as much as you can relax on the day before the race. We were pretty calm actually. Just taking it all in as we were doing this for fun, there were a few first timers on the team which were a bit nervous, and we were supporting them more.

Sunday morning, alarms went off at 4:00 am, got ready, and headed to have breakfast at the hotel. Of course everyone was doing the same but it went pretty quick. We then headed to transition, body marking and setting it all up. It was actually quick to set it up. To the point we thought we were forgetting something, but we didn’t. Met the coach, the others and then by 6:30 we got wetsuits half on, it was a chilly morning, and we parked relatively close which was really good.

Here is were the individual reports start.

Race according to Puli:
After we headed to the dock we met a couple of the guys from the team that were on the previous wave and on my wave and we just chatted there for a bit. Then we headed to the dock… the wait before jumping in was the worse, once we were up we jumped in with about 3 minutes left. The water was actually not that cold, I stayed to the back as I didn’t want to get into the mix of the wave. I think I stayed too much to the back, I could’ve done it without the extra 200 yds (lesson learned). Then I did the usual, counted until about 7 or 8 and then headed out, I started a bit fast but then got into a good pace I was at about 2:05’/100m before I hit the 1st buoy. I hit a bit of traffic and then the gave after me started to catch up to me. It was actually a bit hard to see those girls swimming passed us so early, but then I just got back into my pace which by then was started to get slow. Ended the swim at 44:31 with a 2:18’/100m. Faster than Austin, not as fast as I expected but I take it. It is a good pace to keep for the Ironman in a few weeks.

Finished the swim, then off to T1… it was for some reason a long transition, just a lot of running through it because of the layout so it took what it seemed like forever to leave transition. Once out of transition the bike was pretty simple, get on Seawall Blvd after a few turns around Moody Gardens and 28 miles out turn around and 28 miles back. The first 28 miles were fast, averaged 21 mph. It was a bit deceiving because the wind which wasn’t fully on our back was a mix of side and back wind. So the side wind made it feel like a head wind… err NOT!!! not a head wind, it was all in the back (not all but you get the idea). Turned around and the side wind was still there and NOW the head wind was more prevalent. Dropped to about 18 mph and some sections a bit slower. Pushed a bit too hard to keep the average which I started to feel by mile 45 or so. Legs were starting to feel it so I slowed down a bit because I knew I was going to pay for it on the run. I was being passed by the 40-45 male and females (those old folks are FAST!!!! I want to be like them when I grow up). Something funny actually happened around that time, I was passing a few people and came up to a 50 yr old lady, I chatted a bit with her on how the wind was taking it all from me and that she was doing a good job and I passed her, I didn’t think I slowed down, she picked up some speed and passed me maybe half a mile later and comes to my side and says to me: “ha… did you slowdown?”, told her: “just having my gel” and let her go of course passing her a few seconds later and never seeing her again. I know I should’ve let it/her go but c’mon… I was being nice :). Anyways, aside from that, people were actually being nice, except a few guys who were clearly drafting and flying by everyone (more power to them I guess). Got off from Seawall Blvd and on 81st towards Moddy Gardens, didn’t count with them making us go inside the airport, it was actually nice because I was able to get my feet off my shoes without any traffic as it was a wide open area. By then one of the guys from the team caught up to me as he had gotten a flat so I passed him on the course. Bike was over in 2:57 avg 18.93 mph (18 minutes faster than Austin)

Finished the bike, then off to T2… T2 was fast, get my socks on, shoes, grab the hat, put some sunblock and off I went. Not before visiting the port-a-potty and missing a fight of two guys fighting for the 1… couldn’t believe it but there are still some people like that out there (breaking records for the fastest port-a-porty brake I guess). On the run I focussed on trying to keep a 8:45’/mi to 9:00’/mi pace, which I did for a little bit, but then realized it was more of a 10:00’/mi pace what my legs had left. First 10K at 53 minutes. I got to see Res on my second loop, and then started to see our teammates that was a relief as I got some energy to continue running. By the end of the second loop heat was getting to me and just was feeling the previous push on the bike, by around mile 9 I started to do a lot more walking than running, on the start of the 3 loop Coach M must have seen my face because he asked how I was feeling… I waved at him and gave him 1 thumb up telling him: “last one” and left. Went for my last loop and got done. That loop took forever, probably because I was slow, got to the last stretch before the turn and got to the finish line. Run time:  2:23 with an avg of 10:58’/mi (9 minutes faster than Austin)

Total time 6:14:01, a few lessons learned mainly on pacing and learning to listen to my body (listen more to what the legs say). Also hold on to the temptation when people pass me on the bike… wasting the energy on the bike catching up will make me pay for it later on the run. I guess I will have to be smarter than that on IM TX in a few weeks.

Our First IM 70.3 @ Austin

The time finally came, it happened last Sunday. We left to Austin on Friday with some teammates, one of them had done it last year so it was good to have him with us as he knew the routes and what to expect. So on the way down he gave us his honest download of what would be ahead of us.

We got to the Expo before close time, so we had plenty of time to pick up our packages and check out some goodies at the store… yes… it is almost impossible to not get something. Then we went to the hotel to check in and dinner with friends.

Her bike ready to roll
His bike ready

Saturday was a not so early start, got the bikes in the truck and down to the expo again for bike check-in. It was all starting to settle in. As we were walking the bikes one our friends got a flat, so needless to say, it wasn’t going to be a “walking” of the bikes, it was more like carrying the bikes to transition. Checked the water, it was so much warmer than the air, so it was good to know that the water was going to be nice. Then we had plans to drive the bike route. Map in hand, our friend giving us ins and outs on the course was very helpful. Noticed the hills, the pavement, the turns, all the details, so it gave us a good sense of security that it was going to be doable, might looked a bit tough but overall doable. Dinner with the team, off to finish packing, setting up transition bags and get in bed to rest… rest yes… sleep was limited.

Mercedes and Cristian before me hitting the water

Alarms off at 4:30 am, we got up and did our morning rituals, oatmeal breakfast, bananas, a bit of juice and a bagel. Then by 5:30 we were getting to park the car. Transition bags in hand, dropped off the transition 2 bag first, got in the bus to take us to T1. It is a bit overwhelming having 2 transitions in a race, but overall it went fairly smooth. Got to T1, body marking, and setup. It was a clean transition, only a few items were allowed outside the bag, nothing touching the ground except 1 tire of the bike. Check the tires for air and got out of transition. By then it was almost 6:30 and we had long ways to wait, some of our friends had early waves so they left to their swim starts. Res and I had an 8:10 and 8:40 (last wave) wave times. We hang out with some friends from the team that came to cheer us on and our neighbors and friends as well. Res went to her swim start and I went to drop our morning bags. needless to say I started to freeze. It was cold, 40’s and all I had on was the wetsuit. Then it was finally 8:40 and I was then up for my swim.

Res getting to the strippers

My swim went fairly well. Water was nice and warm, I had an uninterrupted swim, I did what Coach M had told us, count until 10 (not really more like until 5) and the start, by then I had no traffic to fight. I stayed close to the bouys as I wasn’t planning to swim more than I really needed to considering that my shoulder had been bothering me from the accident. I was really concerned about the swim as I didn’t want to ruin the bike by not being able to go aero. I didn’t have any pain on the shoulder, but yet I think I wasn’t pushing as hard as I would normally do, it was a slow swim 50:54 (2:37 100/m) that’s a lot slower but I’ll take it, I came out of the water. T1 was pretty interesting, being cold and wet don’t mix well together, neither does the fact that we had to put on some more layers than usual for our 56 mile stroll :). After almost 9 minutes of T1 finally got out and started the bike ride.

The bike looked good

It was cold, don’t think I warm up for maybe 20 miles. The hills came and went, turns, the pavement was actually better than we had seen on the car. No tech problems, saw a lot of people on the side of the road changing flats or simply just hanging by the side of the bike. Res got to see a few accidents, luckily for me no accidents. All I did all day was pass people, being the last wave I had a chance to pass a lot of people, had only a few passed me. The wind started to pick up as we were approaching mile 30 or so, it was not the 5 mph North wind that the weather man had promised… it sure felt like 15 mph from all directions, no matter where we were turning. Nutrition on the bike worked well, I think I had a bit too much Infinit at one point so I felt a bit full, managed to get more water and not that much Infinit at that point. I then saw I was getting close so I had one powerbar energy gel, that was the plan. I had a few other snacks on the bike but nothing too big, had my uncrustable but didn’t eat it, wasn’t that hungry at all. Then came in, had a few sips of Infinit towards the end, and got off the bike. T2 was a bit more reasonable, only 3:43, considering had to take the long sleeve shirt and put on the singlet and off I think it was ok.

I had a feeling she was close by
There she was a few miles ahead of me

The run started good, as it always does, legs went for a few miles without knowing what was really going on, it took about 3 miles for them to catch up. By then I saw Res at the distance so I just set my goal to catch her and run/walk/jog/stroll/ the rest of the run with her. We did the first loop (4.3mi) running, slowing down at aid stations, then the second loop came and the slowing down became more of walking a bit longer at the aid stations, by the time the 3 loop came it was a lot more walking and less running, but we managed to at least finish it running. Our times 6:50 and 7:20 respectively, considering the elements thrown at us, we consider it a great success. 

Told ya…. I was going to catch you eventually

Overall it was a great race, yes we were in pain at times, but it wasn’t too unbearable. The training that included 29 miles in the speedos, 770 miles on the pedals (which included 8 miles of an ambulance ride) and 213 miles with the kicks definitely paid off.  Thanks to Coach M, for his patience, wisdom, and words of advice during our training… oh and also for picking us up at the hospital after our crash :). We are very happy with our results, and being our first 70.3 it definitely is a journey to our next official crazy adventure Woodlands 2013 – 140.6 – Full IM. Are we ready now? not really… we are definitely sore, will we be ready? you bet!!!.

Stay tuned for our updates of that journey, I’m sure we will have ups and downs, good times, bad times, pains, glories, short races, a half a marathon, a full (maybe), another 70.3 maybe… so we will keep you updated. For now all we can say is… we finished our first 70.3 and we are happy!!!!

Finishing together… priceless 🙂

7 days and counting

Today marks our final week countdown before our first 70.3. After our episode from last Sunday has been a slow week recovering, cleaning up wounds, trips to the drug store and short workouts as recommended by Coach M. Yesterday we got on the bikes, we haven’t been on since Sunday, bikes were also being checked and tuned up at the shop. It wasn’t too bad a little stiff and sore in a few places but luckily there was no wind (surprising) at the speedway so it was actually a fun, fast ride, we were supposed to get 1:30 on the bike but since its getting dark so early we only were able to get 1:00 before it got dark. Today we were ready for the speedos (more for the wetsuits) but Coach M recommended us not to hit the water as my wounds were still a little fresh, Res didn’t push the issue and decided not to get her feet week. Considering the 58-deg outside temperature and 77-deg water, I would’ve preferred to be in the water. Instead we decided to get our run in. We had 1:05, we did 1:00 (6.2 miles) and walked the last 5 minutes to the car. Note that we shortened our 10k time by 3 minutes, not too bad.

Now we just reflect on our workouts for the week, seem to be easy workouts nothing too stressful or long, just anxious to get out there and hit the course in Austin. Anxious to know what is waiting for us, have had a few friends give us reports of the bike course and it seems not to be so bad just have to be smart to reserve some legs for the run.

Res and I think we are ready, ready to get our minds over our body and ready to get this accomplishment, we have trained hard over the last 4 months putting a lot of laps in the pool, miles on the wheels and miles on the sneakers, we will leave the totals for a later post when we compile them.

All and all, just bring it on Austin, we are ready.