A week after finishing up the Lifetime Triathlon Series, I headed to Miami to prove that I could finish a half ironman. I chose Miami because I wanted to compete against the best field (there were two smaller 70.3 races to choose from the same weekend) and because I LOVE racing in Miami.
I finished in 3:45, but that was only strong enough for a 5th place on the day. I rode 2:02 and ran 1:16, which were both about four minutes slower than my goal times, but when we get to the end of October itâ€™s good just to be fit enough to race.
The short version of the play-by-play is this: I swam with the front pack, I went solo on the bike and had a 3 minute lead at the turnaround. Unfortunately I gave up a bunch of that time on the second 28 miles and by the second mile of the run I had already been passed. My first mile was under 6 minutes, but then I ran about 5 miles in the 6:40 range and dropped to seventh place before recovering enough to resume fast running and move into 5th.
Memorable moments of the race:
I was blown sideways at one point by a helicopter filming me that got too close.
There was a Ferrari on the course that drove next to me for a short period of time while I was leading the bike.
Even though I wasnâ€™t sure I could run when my legs started cramping off the bike, the second half of my run was in the 5:40 pace range where I wanted to be â€“ I didnâ€™t know that could happen!
Iâ€™m pretty happy with the race. Anyone who has been following me knows that the half-iron distance has been frustrating for me this year, and while I certainly wanted to ride 56 miles in less than 2 hours again, Iâ€™m really happy just to prove that I can ride hard and still finish a half marathon. Plus, the effort was there for a sub-2 hour bike ride, even if my end-of-season strength was less impressive than the 1:58 I posted in San Juan (on my way to nearly killing myself).
Next up is the UWC Bahamas Triathlon next weekend, which is the last race of an awesome year of racing. Iâ€™m learning so much this year, and I canâ€™t wait to put it together in 2014. Until then I have to finish up racing and school.