Wednesday, October 16, 2013

66 Seconds to Spare

A Medal the size of your head!
Kona 2013 is in the books, and it was a day that I won't soon ever forget.  For those skimming and looking at pics, here's the short recap. Arrived in Kona the Saturday before race day, had a great time prepping and then managed to break 10 hours in an Ironman for the first time ever, on one of the toughest courses on the circuit.  Landed in 8th place in the AG and while it wasn't the podium spot I was dreaming of, I am OVER THE MOON with the day and having broke 10 hours.

Finally found my rocks!
I came to Kona a week early this year, having a few extra vacation days to spare and can't believe I ever came "so late" on Wednesday's in previous years.  Being out here a week early and staying outside of town with friends at Hualalai was amazing.  I got to do almost my entire taper here on the island in the heat and spent the other days catching up with friends and some of my super support crew!  Who wouldn't prefer to taper off of the Kona pier vs. your normal masters pool?  Although that being said, Stanford masters is a pretty spectacular pool with an awesome coach.

My family and Mark arrived Wednesday and we moved into town to stay with 2 other couples, neither of whom were racing.  Instead of partying it up, they took care of me as if it were their own race.  They cooked for me, braided my hair for me (it was in tact even after the race!), went everywhere on my schedule and then cheered for me ALL day long on race day.  Who does that, and what did I do to deserve such an amazing support crew?  I tried to make a small piece of it up to them by making breakfast ok they may have still assisted but I tried on Sunday after the race.  There may be some wine gifting in order!  I'm secretly hoping Robyn and Brian will sign up for a 100 miler so I can crew/pace them for a change!

Team Betty at the Underpants Run

Pre-Race fun included the underpants run.  It is for a good cause, and it can't be missed!  This year I was lucky to be invited onto the Betty Designs team and man did we have some HOT looking gals, guys and kits!  Thank you Kristen!! Other pre race fun included lots of good food! Thursday night we went to dinner at the TYR house and the Compex House....I swear I only had one dinner!  We also got treated to breakfast at the Muscle Milk House Friday before the race...maybe it was the pancakes and bacon!!!

Pre-Race with coach/hubby/SUPER Sherpa Mark
Race day arrived and I have always thought and professed out loud that I think you are full of horse poo if you tell me you sleep well race eve.  So here I sit, telling you that I actually was able to quiet my mind and sleep for about 5 hours straight on race eve...after that though, I tossed and turned as per usual.  I think having done all of my race visualization on previous nights helped as I did none of that race eve and instead just counted sheep until I fell asleep.

Race morning we were all up at 4:30, I was eating, sun screening and getting my hair did!  Robyn could seriously make money with her skillz.  If I don't have braids, I would likely have to cut hair out after each race with the amount of knots that would work themselves into my hair.  Soon enough it was off to the start and to prep my bike and kiss everyone farewell.

Pre race meal:  Osmo Pre-Load, water/Cytomax, rice with egg mixed in (think fried rice) and a banana. Total kcal's 900.  Best to start off with a well topped off tank!

TYR Swim: 1:01:38  previous best in 2012 1:04:51
Can't you see me? 
First of all, THANK YOU Tim from Stanford masters...I was able to send him a note on my PR and am thankful it was a non wetsuit swim as he considers all wetsuit legal swims, non swims and the times don't count.  This time was LEGIT.  I started WAY left, further left than even my usual here in Hawaii after having 2 consecutive years of being beat to a pulp by my German male brethren.  I told myself to go hard for the first 400 meters to get clear water and on good feet.  Check!  I rounded the turn for home in just over 28 minutes.  I thought, HOLY SMOKE!!!  I may break an hour for the first time ever in an Ironman and IN Kona!  The swim is usually slower on the way home and this year was no different.  I was on feet, but felt like I should have been going faster but couldn't really escape so I just sat in and waited it out.  I had the most clear, non violent swim of my ironman joke.  I only got hit once and it was 3/4 of the way through the swim, and completely unnecessary.  The start was beautiful and I had clear water and great swim buddies most of the way. Highlight of the swim?  Looking down and seeing a honu after I rounded the turn for home.  I took it as a good omen, as those guys are my fave!!!

Argon18/Smith Optics Bike: 5:16:31  previous best 2011 5:21:48
Cause if you ain't smiling, you ain't having FUN!
Quickly into T1 and I had the great fortune of having my cousin (who was volunteering) be my changing tent idea how that actually happened that she was free at the exact moment I ran into the tent, but it was great to have someone I know and love send me off onto the bike.  I had heard that it was supposed to be a calm day with relatively little wind, but I hadn't allowed myself to actually believe it...I kept waiting for those cross winds to start!  The first 20 miles were impossibly clustered, but after that it was easier to ride your own race and chose if you were going to draft or is always frustrating to see women atop the podium that you saw tucked in with men, but there is absolutely nothing you can do about it, so I don't let it take any of my energy. The wind was at our backs all the way to Hawi.  This day truly flew by and I couldn't believe that we were already at the turn around!  I also kept telling myself that if it was this wonderful on the way out, the last 30 miles on the Queen K were going to be a bit rough...and indeed they were!  Coming through Kawaihae is kind of your first slow down.  Thankfully Mark and Jenny were there to cheer us on.  My best strategy for those last 30 miles is to continue to execute your nutrition to avoid low spots.  On the way back, I saw super supporters in Puako as well who had made signs for me and this was a TOTAL pick me up!  Sonja passed me somewhere along this stretch and made sure I was OK....yep! just battling the head wind that I knew was coming! Rolling into town you get all of he cheers again and it was time to get off my bike and run.

Total bike nutrition: 7 salty balls (150kcal each), 5 bottles active mango, 1 bottle coke, half bottle perform and water!  1650kcals/314 average per hour

keep the feet, just keep the feet
Coeur Run: 3:35:23  previous best 2011 3:33:14  I had felt awesome pretty much all day from the swim through the and of the bike.  I got off the bike and had that first wobbly leg feeling as I was running through transition.  Who made the run around the pier like a mile?!!  It was forever on the green astroturf and then finally into the change tent.  I grabbed some nutrition, my Garmin, a bottle of Pre Load to top of my salt and my white wings in the hopes of not getting too burnt.  Those things are SO hard to get on and I had already started to swell a bit so it felt like it was cutting off my circulation on my wrists.  I don't think I'll wear this again (at least not this type)...I only need protection on my shoulders and back and having it go all the way down the arms is unnecessary and it takes a lot of work to make sure they stay wet enough each mile to keep you "cool". Home made mod coming up! The first 10 miles along Alii were ROUGH...I walked a few times and was just hot and pooped.  I saw Mark and my family and all just kept telling me to keep chugging.  I got cooled off a bit and by the time I shuffled up Palani, I was in a better groove.  I had allowed myself to do the math just a bit at mile 16 on the way into the energy lab.  If I had 10 miles to go, and xx time...I MAY be able to squeak in under 10 hours.  This is where I also tell myself to not get overly excited as 10 miles is still a LONG way to go and ANYTHING can happen, so keep your head together please Hailey.  Into and out of the energy lab we went.  It was particularly barren this year as they stopped spectators from the 13 mile point, so we were without any spectators/family support for 10 miles.  Don't know what that was about, but it STUNK and there was no warning that it was going to be like that.  At about mile 20 I found the guy in the picture with me and for some reason, once I got on his feet, he picked up the pace just a tad.  I could hang on, but every once in a while he would try to add a bit more speed and I would fall of the back.  He would turn around and slow up for me to get back on his feet.  I muttered a thank you and he said he wasn't having his day so he was happy to help.  What a guy! After about 3 miles, I slowed at an aid station and he must have felt the finish line calling as that was the last I saw of him (he finished about a minute ahead of me).
How Badly do you want it?

With 3.2 miles to go I had 26 minutes.  That's not a lot of time after your body has already pushed for 9:30 and it wasn't all downhill.  Mark told me I needed to run hard and get this done.  I have never had to push so hard to achieve a goal.  As I was running with a little over a mile to go, I saw Kebby and desperately asked if I was going to make it.  She told me I had plenty of time, but MAN did that last beautiful mile along Alii take FOREVER!  I am usually able to soak it all in and high five everyone, but I HAD to get to the finish line before 10:00.  I looked up and saw that it was going to happen and I was going to even have time to spare!  I don't normally do much at the finish line, but I was SO excited that I did as much of a jump as I could muster.

Total Run nutrition: 1 banana, 1 gel (mile 24), loads of coke, few cups of perform, glucose tabs, 1 bag of Cytomax Energy Drops 450 in known kcal's, the rest in coke- estimate 150/hour so roughly 250/hour

Super Support crew...only missing my dad!
Day is done.
After the finish, I had swollen quite a bit so they took me to the med tent just to make sure all was good.  I had gained 2lbs over the course of the day which they say isn't too bad.  I asked if I could go and find my family and with that i broke free from the med tent and went to find my crew!  They all did SO much over the day and I needed every ounce of theer cheers to get me through the day successfully.

After the race it's time to enjoy some down time and fun activities!  I have been wanting to go Manta Ray diving for years, and I tell Mark each year we are here, we are going to go.  Finally I made the reservations this year and if you have the opportunity, it is beyond spectacular...they come within inches of you and you can see inside their mouths, and it is unreal.
Upside Down Manta!

Now for the THANK YOU's!  To all of my family and friends, the support offered on a daily basis is incredible.  Not all of my friends are triathletes, but they still get behind me and only tell me I'm crazy occasionally.  Thank you Lance and Argon18 for the best bike, Smith Optics for awesome sunnies, Coeur Sports for the best chaffing, Muscle Milk for keeping me recovered, Osmo for keeping me hydrated and dialed in with my nutrition plan, TYR sports for goods that take me to new PR's, and Compex for keeping me recovered after key sessions.

Now it's time for the off season!  See you all soon!

Girls Twitter meet up!


Doctor Loomis said...

What about the DQ??? Congrats. Very well done.

Anonymous said...

Way to go! I was super impressed. You were like the 11th or 12th amateur overall too, right? IN THE WORLD.

Element Multisport said...

Awesome recap!! So fun to be there with you and watch you THROW DOWN. I'm happy to do a hair assist ANY time! And yes please on the 100 miler pacing!! CoNgRaTs again on a well deserved and awesome day!

Stack said...

So awesome to see you out there racing and so excited to see you reach your sub-ten goal!!!!!!!!

Haley Chura said...

Congrats again Hailey! So great catching up with you post race at the TYR Brunch! Hope to see you at more races in 2014!!

Page said...

You are not only a stud, but seriously, my inspiration. GREAT job out there!

The Hippie Triathlete said...

Fun to find your blog! See ya this weekend. And oh, I'm the doofus wearing the while helmet in this post. :)

Unknown said...

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