Sunday, April 29, 2012

Post Ironman Activity

What do you do the week after Ironman and you have plenty of time during the weekend.

I buy rubbish from street vendors and irritate Eddy.

Well it's not that I don't wanna get out and ride my mountain bike or do an easy run but I've been booked off for two weeks. My breathing didn't get any better after IM, still struggling to breath and developed a nasty cough. I eventually went to the Doc. Reckon I have some lung infection and has put me on antibiotics and some forced rest before I can get back into training.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Ironman South Africa Race Report

This past weekend was Ironman SA and it was definitely my hardest Ironman to date and a big disappointment after all the long hours and hard training the past few months.

Finished in 11h59:54 (my worst time ever)
Swim: 1h26:58
Bike: 5h48:50
Run: 4h38:51

The weather was just terrible, it was cold, raining and the wind was pumping at more than 60km/h.
This wet and it's before swim start

For someone who does all his swim training in the pool at the gym and is not used to open water swimming in the sea the swim was just terrible. The swell and the chop was so bad that I became sea sick but I could carry on although it was awful.

To put it in perspective I suffer heavily from motion sickness. I must always take tablets when I'm flying and can't even sit in a Bus or Train facing the opposite direction of where it's going. It's so bad that I can't even watch these angling programs on TV where it shows a boat floating while they catch fish, I get sick just looking at the boat going up and down on TV.

The day really went pear shape when I swallowed/inhaled seawater at the second turn buoy on the second lap, about 3km into the swim. I couldn't breath and it felt like I was about to drown. I tried looking for a life guard but couldn't see one and decided to just slowly swim breast stroke until I could see someone.

I couldn't find anyone and struggled along until I felt a little bit better and swam back home for the last odd kilometer.

Well that was my day, although I didn't realized it yet. My chest just tightened up and I couldn't breath properly for the rest of the day.

Onto the bike and I was puking my lungs out for the first 10 odd kilometers from being sea sick and it was just sea water all the way. As soon as I drank some water it all came out again. After a while I felt better and decided to start pushing the pace but then I had develop stomach cramps and before I knew it I was looking for a bush to do my thing.

Stopped at about 30km and then again at just after 65km and lost almost 8minutes just spending time in the bush with diarrhea. Luckily that stopped but my days was slowly falling apart. I still tried to push and get my heart rate and power levels up but as soon as my heart rate went up, I couldn't breath and had to slow down just to be able to breath.
portaloo nr 2

Not to mention the 60+ km/h wind that kept me hanging on for dear life on my bike. Have heard people say that they've seen athletes being blown off their bikes in races. Well this was the first time I saw it myself, when a guy about 30meters in front of me at about the 90km mark was on his bike and the next moment lying on the road.

I took the last 20minutes on the bike easy as it was a strong tailwind pushing me along and thought that it  might help to regain my form on the run.

Onto the run I could manage just over 5min/km for the first few kilometers but as soon as I tried to up the pace, I just couldn't breath. I then knew that this is not my day and went into survival mode just to finish.

At the end of lap one I saw Kim and DJ next to the road and asked them to meet me at the personal seconding station to hand me my long sleeve running top as I was freezing. When I met them coming back I told them I think I must call it a day as I can't breath.

Then Kim told me to finish no matter what, even if you walk the next 25km and as long as you walk you will finish. DJ gave me also some encouraging words and I realized that they are also having a bad day as spectators in this crap weather and I can't disappoint them.
Die-Hard supporters
I then jogged until I struggled to breath and then walked until I felt better, repeating this until the finish line.

As I said not my best day but sometimes you need these days to appreciate the good ones. For now it's back to the drawing board and to the beginners class and some well deserved R&R to bounce back stronger.