|Thanks Grant for this pic...while I was running through here, it really captures how I felt in the final 100 yards. From the high fives with my road washed hand to the stress I see in my face and upper body...great ad for Cinemark too ;-)|
|My card from the family that I opened race day morning...love them so much!|
|....first time Sophia has written I love you to me...a treasure!|
|Jenny sent me this pic before the race...another treasure!|
|Here he is, Coach Hauth...right out of the pool with a mop on his head....|
I'm over it, I think, but here are some odds and ends about Texas, mostly just notes and pics from the trip. These are basically for reference...they seem to work very well for me leading into an IM, so I thought I'd post them while it is fresh in my mind and for the future. I also put some off the cuff stuff in there from Texas just so I have an organized place for this stuff.
Hydration/Nutriton leading into Race Day:
I start cutting coffee out of my routine about 2 weeks prior to an IM. I find that coffee does exactly what they say it does---dehydrate you. I want my cells stuffed with water, so I start my hydration focus about 2 weeks out. I don't overdo it, but I just make sure I am giving my body all it needs to recover and prepare for race day. When I get that craving for coffee (I'm a 2+ cups of coffee/day kind of guy), I go for some frooffy tea...like pomegranate or lemon ginger...I find that its the hot beverage that is appealing moreso than the coffee...and maybe I am just tricking myself into believing that .
Sweet potato fries: I go for salt any way I can, even if its fried...this for some reason is becoming a pre-race tradition..dunno why, but they are tasty.
Orzo: some veggies in there--straight out of the kitchen there...good stuff, and i took home the same size serving for part of my early dinner...trying to reduce the amount of gluten...not always successful, but rice is the way to go to reduce it.
Coconut water: yes, I follow the fad. This may not be the best choice in brands, but it was better than just plain old water in my mind at the time.
Synergy kombucha tea: Ok, now I a full on fad follower, but I love this stuff (they say its loaded with probiotics--good belly they say...I'm a follower). Honestly though, it's hard to not feel great drinking the stuff.
And yes, I did eat all this, and was searching the store for more goodies...add a banana in there, plus a liter of EFS, then I headed back to my room for solitary confinement (hint: this is when you just simply don't want to be near me...it's full on warfare tactics 100% of the time while watching some television---annoyingly focused on the next day).
So after lunch, I keep sipping on EFS...I don't want to "wash out" the electrolytes, and now want to top them off---I never don't have a bottle with me through the afternoon, and i am typically on a bed with my feet up, watching sports, a movie, on the computer...CHILLAXING for sure, but the mind is in full tilt...BUT, it looks like and feel like I am in full couch potato mode for sure. I watched "The Last Lecture" at this point in Kona...it still is sticking with me now, so I highly recommend it, especially if one of your inspirations is your kids.
Before my 5-6pm light, bland dinner, I go for an easy walk...In Texas, it was to Walmart ;-) I just needed to get some fresh air, move the legs, and distract myself before prepping for bed. I look around and notice that life is still moving for the rest of the world versus what is going on in my life...for some reason it is really relaxing to see that life is just the way it has always been ;-)
So, dinner in Texas was that serving of Orzo, some sliced turkey (bland!), and a bowl of oatmeal---it may seem like a lot, but it is at 5-6pm, and compared to both lunch and what i typically eat in an evening, this is an appetizer. I stay away from the high veggie driven diet I am typically on because A) it has fiber, and B) its not what my body needs for the following day---I am repaired from the heavy IM builds, I just need fuel. I will graze a bit after this meal, but I make sure it is only to curb the little bit of hunger I feel. I am fully tapped at this point, and if I was to step on a scale (which I don't) I am sure I am 3-4 pounds heavier than I have been over the past week...I don't care of course, I need the fuel, and all these foods have given me a layered dosage of energy....and I feel like a topped off diesel engine. The snacks tend to be granola bars, bananas, Ezekiel tortilla with nut butter.
Race Day breakfast:
There are so many options here, but I have always stuck to the same thing, and it works perfect for me, and i try to get this in by 4 am (3 hours before start time)....big glass of water first, Oatmeal, scoop of Ultragen (First Endurance), nut butter, banana (typically), more EFS...somewhere in the range of 800 calories. I also take my daily dose of Optygen HP, MultiV (First Endurance again), and a decently massive does of CoQ10 for my heart, which I have been taking all week leading up to the race. I will have the television going, and will eat slowly, and still relaxing in bed if possible---I want this food in my belly as fast I can get it there, but not eating it fast. I will relax in bed for ~20 minutes post meal going through my morning regime.
If I can, I take a hot shower to loosen up the muscles, stretch a bit (especially the hips), then find my way to the race HQ. I will sip on EFS the entire time---1bottle through transition tidying, with some water following as well as adding a Clif Bar in small bites throughout the morning, and more if I feel hungry, but that is never the case. Once I am an hour out, no more solid food at all, and I should be taking my Pre-Race about 30 minutes to GO time. Before jumping in the water, I put a GU into the stomach with some swigs of water. Peeing while waiting for the gun is always a good sign---everyone does it...kind of sick to think about when you are treading water feeling "warm spots" in the water---oh well, so is the life of an IM athlete. At IMAZ 2011 I actually had to pee half way through the swim, and again at mile 60 on the bike (a perfect place to need to pee on the bike as you are reassured that you are hydrating properly)...why all this talk about pee!!! IM Texas, no such issue on the mid swim and on the bike---a bit of shock therapy on the bike probably kept everything in, an i had lost my appetite and thirst to boot.
This plan leaves me feeling perfect, and there is no way I am not topped off with hydration and nutrition....the gun goes off, and away I go!
|It's a simple down and back, keeping the buoys always on your left...hint: as you approach the canal, hug the right side shore line and sight off of the kayaks lining the approach...that line was the perfect line...|
|Another look at the canal...|
I also carried a Clif Bar (270 cals) in my back pocket, and wished I carried 2 for IM Texas. But again, my nutrition plan went by the wayside as I lost my appetite because of the crash. I take in plenty of on course PERFORM as well. With aid stations 10 miles apart, I am guaranteed fresh bottles at least every 30 minutes. I will take water at one (one into the cage on the aeros, grab another, drink half of it, and pour the remainder over me, and grab another if I can, if it is hot like Texas), and then grab a PERFORM at the next (and grab a water again, but dump the entire bottle over myself). I alternate like this throughout, and change it up if I feel I really want more Perform. If I am ahead on calories due to being more hungry than normal, I then ditch the super bottle and start taking a water and a PERFORM at each aid station, and maybe even a GU now that they serve it on course ;-)
|bike cockpit that worked out well|
|Bike Setup...best yet, but another bottle would have taken some concern off my mind in the later miles when I needed maybe just a bit more fluids|
|Racked and ready to go...|
|sideways view of the Bike Gear Bag...didn't use the arm coolers, so just helmet and shoes, and a bar or two for the pockets...|
Oh, and Pre-Race: I take another 3 caps (I use the larger SaltStick dispenser to hold pills...) when I feel the mid bike lethargy set in...works like a charm every single time!!!! The dispenser typically is loaded to have 2 Saltstick tabs come out first (taken at 1 and 2 hours in), then 3 Pre-Race tabs somewhere around the 3rd hour, and a final Saltstick tab for prep before the the run. That is all it holds, and I just work with that, and count on the EFS liquid shot as well as the PERFORM to supplement the electrolytes, and that seems to work!
Onto the run...
you are on your own here...grab whatever sounds good, but don't overdo it...you can get a real dinner after the race that will be much more rewarding than the extra 20 minutes of stoppage that occurs when you treat them like buffet tables. For me, I go with an alternating plan here as well if all is going well.....PERFORM at one aid station, then water with a Gu at the next. I can and will skip stations depending on how well I am fueled from the bike, and how i am feeling about taking in calories on the run. Again I ride that edge of satisfied, slightly hungry line and it works well for me in training and racing. At some point Coke always comes front and center for me, and then it is Coke all the way, with some water here and there to dilute it a bit, as well as Orange slices. Once i go with Coke, I am done with Gu/gels....the sequence goes solid calories (bars), semi-solid calories (gels), then full on liquid calories...and when I switch totally depends on what I feel like. And I try to hold off on switching to the next category until I just can tolerate where I'm at anymore.
|my hand the day after the race...not too bad, and wasn't really an issue other than it was a bloody mess the entire ride|
|and healing well 8 days post race. Thanks to Pinky for the Tegaderm recommendation, which allowed me to work with gloves without affecting healing...in comparison to....|
|it doesn't look terrible here, but it was how deep it went versus how large the rash looks...of course my smile doesn't help sell it....on my 3rd loop walkathon....|