So I traveled up to Providence this past weekend for the 70.3. I was forewarned that the weather was 'hot' and the swim might be in the mid-70's. After the sub-60 degree swim of Mooseman a few weeks back I was actually pretty excited about some warmed temps and ready to enjoy a solid 'B' race as I gear up for Toughman in September.
Pre-race: Woke for my usual 2:30am peanut butter bagel & ensure shake. Set the hotel alarm for 4:10 to get ready for the main event. The time came and did the usual get up ritual when my wife chimes in "can't sleep? It's only 3..." Turns out the hotel clock was never set back and I was already off on my race day. Back to bed for an hour in my race suit and then off to the race start with the predicable paranoia of did I already miss the start?
Swim: Mid-70's? HA! Turns out the water 85 and therefore non-wetsuit legal, a first for me. I also found out upon arriving on the beach that I was seeded in the 14th wave - a whole hour after the gun start time. I entered the water upset that I had thoroughly ruined my pre-race nutrition but whatever! This was a fun race for me. And turns out, it's a trip swimming in a tri-top/bottom without a wetsuit, the top rides up and gets all bunchy.... Anywho, I felt good at first and then great towards the end, cruising in for a 41:17. A bit off my usual ~31 minute swim pace but I'll take it.
41:17 58/100 I thought I did better? *shrug*
Bike: Felt great the first 2/3 of the course. Powered up the hills and nailed the straight-aways. Some locals had warned me that RI roads are the worst in the country and to keep my head up, having run the Pittsburgh marathon I know that title is already taken but it looks like many of my fellow riders didn't receive the same warning. I saw DOZENS of riders at the side of the road filling tubes, cursing, and hanging out with the roadside assistance van. The course was also littered with fallen spares, GUs & bottles, I passed at least one rider who had just had a total yardsale and was busy trying to reassemble his P3. The last third of the race was over hilariously poor roads and the riders I was bunched up with were all out of the saddle and laughing. Together we bunny hopped ancient, abused rail road crossings and entered downtown Providence.
Run: It was nearly 11am before I started the run and the sun was cooking. The run was actually quite challenging with some serious hills but the biggest challenge was the heat. I treated each aid station like a buffet and focused on cooling down. Sponges in the hat, two in the tri-top and a few cups of ice down my face slowly started to help but it was a slog through downtown. I focused on completing a solid race but once it passed noon and the sun was overhead I was ready to finish it up and get into the hotel pool quite frankly. I crossed the line and sought out the nearest water available. An end to a surprising day.
1:44:51 - 55/100
Overall 5:43:05 - 55/100
Glad to be done! The hotel pool was heavenly!