Thursday, October 22, 2009

Kona race report (part 2 Bike)

As soon as I got onto the bike I was getting stomach cramps. I thought it will disappear if I am on the bike for some time but it got worst. On a lot of the downhills I was free wheeling to see if the cramping can disappear.

It felt like I was having gas but I could not let go of it.

The first segment in town was done before I even realised and then it was onto the Queen K highway. At the 50 kilometer mark, the Tri Travel bus was waiting with our family members. It was extra motivation seeing Kim and DJ waving at me when they spotted me.

With the cramping I just could not find any rhythm and as soon as the cramping disappear I will go strongly but then as soon as it hits me all the people I passed will re pass me again.

Just after the turnaround I got my special needs bag and although I froze the Milky Way bars and the Red Bull the night before it was all melted and the Red Bull was warm.

Luckily with all the cramping I could still eat and drink. The first half of the bike leg I didn't take any food or gels to see if the cramps disappear but when I kept having them I decided to start eating.

The first part after the turnaround is a nice downhill section and I could gain some time there flying at 60km/h+ at some stages.

But as I got to 40 kilometers to transition the headwind came up and was blowing strongly. I suddenly dropped to 20 to 25km/h.

I also had to remind myself constantly not to get too close to the person in front of me as I saw more Marshall's on the bike course than I've seen at three Ironman South Africa races. Not thinking at one stage of drafting but with most of the athletes going at a similar pace, the athletes tend to stick closer to each other than at Ironman South Africa where the abilities vary a lot.

The bike segment was done in 5h33, and needless to say way off the pace. I aimed for a 5 hour bike split but it was not to be. I consider myself as a strong biker, finishing the bike leg at Ironman South Africa this year in the Top 20 and that's including the Pro's.

I usually make up a lot of time on the bike which I lose during the swim leg but today was a disappointment and I saw my sub 10 disappearing over the Lava fields.

My average heart rate for the bike was 144 bpm which is where it was suppose to be ( not exceeding 148) but my power wattage was way off. It was 219 and it was suppose to be 245. I guess this is what happen if you freewheel a lot to try and contain the stomach cramps. At IM South Africa this year my average Watts were 236 and that was on a much flatter course than Kona. I trained and was prepared to maintained 245 but just could not get the power up.

Entering T2 I decided to go to the toilet to see if I can get rid of the cramps. Nothing happened and all I did was wasting time. Out of T2 in just over 5 minutes.

Bike Detail:
Time: 5h32:58
HR: 144 ave
Kcal: 3937
Watts: 219 ave
Cadence: 73 ave
Speed: 32.3 km/h

Interesting fact: According to Polar RS800CX watch there were 97 slopes on bike route?

Part 3 to follow.

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