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  • Katja's Ford Ironman Arizona.

    Wed, 18 Apr 2007 16:13:00 -0700

    An Ironman day always offers up a lesson or two,even with a podium finish.
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    Starting the marathon it was smooth sailing.

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    Too focused on getting to the front.....

    Another learning experience!
    Every Ironman is different. It is a long day, where you feel great one minute, but it can turn on you any minute. You would think doing the sport for 10 years there arenít mistakes anymore. I had trained well have a race strategy and a nutrition plan. I stuck to my race strategy; the race went well until about 12 miles into the run my stomach shut down. I couldnít get any food or drinks down for about 8 miles and my pace slowed dramatically. Running a little over 7 min/mile before I was running 8-9min per mile now. Finally after walking some aid stations, my stomach settled and the last 6 miles I was running well again. Well, an Ironman is never easy and there are always tough stretches. Good thing I have Paula, my mentor and great friend, who was able to analyze what I did wrong, so hopefully I will be able to have a solid run next time, with no major break downs. It was simply a nutrition mistake; I had taken too many calories at once and shut my system down.

    There are a lot of great things I am taking home from this race. It was not only a good week with friends in Tempe, but also a great-organized race, that I will recommend to anybody.
    I also learned that you canít trust looking at the pros around you in the swim and being happy with your position, just because you see a fellow competitor, that usually swims better that yourself besides you. I did that, I saw Lisbeth Christensen next to me and figured thatís good, and instead of pushing the group, I just settled in. Little I knew, Heather Golnick and Joanna Zeiger were far, far ahead of us. On the bike I was planning on taking it fairly easy for the first lap and then push a little more. I was able to pass everybody except Joanna, who had swim a lot faster, than me and was still far ahead. The bike was though; we had a headwind stretch of about 20miles and a tailwind stretch of about 20 miles. I tried to take care of nutrition on the tailwind sections, but still tell myself to keep pushing, even though I felt like I was flying, with a 25mile/h tailwind.

    I was very happy with my running performance (besides the little 8mile stretch), the new NEWTON shoes are seriously amazing. I am not even really sore. Feel more like after a long training day, than an Ironman.

    I am glad I decided to this early season race, where seriously I wasnít sure, what my performance was going t be. I was in the mix the whole day and even had a great chance of winning. Considering I had only decided to do the race 6 weeks before and did no speed work, it gives me great hope for the rest of the season.

    My plans are to take a little recover break now and then do some shorter training and racing. And then take that speed into my Hawaii training.