This past year I had the privilege of working a little bit with an athlete (Mel Woolsey), who, one year ago could not complete two laps in the swimming pool without stopping. He recently completed IM Cozumel this past Sunday in 13 hours. I would like to share with you his race report (which came to me in an email), because it is a great example of how hard work, dedication and a smart race plan can really pay off. Happy Reading :)
Well it was one heck of a day that I will remember forever and I guess I was part of a new record with 300 plus people not finishing the swim and over 1000 DNF. I stuck to the plan you gave me and it really paid off.
SWIM- Although I got in the water just as they blew the horn which started me out about 5 minutes behind was somewhat a good thing because I could not think about things to much I just had to swim. It was a battle for ¾ of the swim trying to get a spot to swim but I did what everyone else did and just battled. The current on our last turn was ridiculously strong as we went against it but when I hit that I just went back to what I was tought doing the zipper, reach far as I could, flick at the end and remembered you telling me to hug the barrel. My buddy who did Arizona last year got out of the water there in 1hr 15 min and he was 2 hrs here so between the 300 not finishing and my friends time I was very happy with my swim.
Both transitions I as you could see took my time and just made sure I had everything in order and that I was not forgetting anything including sun screen, nutrition etc. The bike course aid stations were disappointing as I tried to get food after the second lap and they were all out but I made sure I carried extra with me so I was ok.
The bike first lap was not too bad as I did it in about 2 hours and I felt good and strong. I kept telling myself to just stick with the plan and keep my cadence above 80 and no higher than 100 no matter what the speed was it did not matter I had to concentrate on my cadence. The second lap for about 30 miles was very windy as we hit the open coast and the heat jumped way up and you could see people starting to conk out sitting on the side of the road with their bikes. I just kept telling myself to stick with the plan no matter how I felt as I did not want to get dehydrated and continued this plan through the third lap which was just as windy and hot. Going through about 10 miles of town was so amazing with all the locals sitting there cheering us on for the entire race and with my family there watching me on every lap was very inspiring regenerating me for each lap out of town. I stopped twice on the bike to dump some water over my head, go to the bathroom and stretch my foot out that was cramping up on the bottom.
When I got off the bike I felt good and took my time again getting changed as I changed everything and the volunteers were so helpful as they were putting stuff back in my bag as I took it off but I did not realize they put my shorts and visor in until I ran out in front of everyone in my underwear when realizing oh damn my shorts so I ran back in and got them LOL and away I went.
As you know I have had knee problems from the IT band but all the work on this paid off as it did not bother me a much better. I met up with a guy who had a good pace doing about 9:30 miles and I ran with him for about 3 miles when my buddy who was trying to catch me caught me as he busted his but in the run to catch me and when he did he told me his story for the day as I walked with him and I let the other guy who was running with me go on his own. My friend ran so hard to catch me that he now was getting dehydrated when he told me he could not run everything was getting blury so I said lets walk to each aid station and get you hydrated and I gave him a couple of salt capsules I had and our last lap and a half we started doing a 3 minute run 1 minute walk and we both crossed the line together which was great. I feel my time would have been about 12:25 otherwise but for the fact I helped him finish and we crossed together made that extra hour I sacrificed well worth it.
Thank you for all your coaching from training to nutrition. This was one heck of a race that definitely had its challenges but truth be known I did not know any different so I stuck to my plan which helped me cross the line.
Now time to pick number 2!
Thank you again!
PS - We booked our travel through EnduranceSports Travel Services (www.endurancesportstravel.com) which is run by Ken Glah who has done over 80 Ironman. They looked after us as soon as we got off the plane to leaving and their attitude was you relax and let us do everything for you. They had practise swims, biles and runs set up, they had a mechanic on site who put my bike together and packed itn had a great ART therapist which really helped my leg and all this included.. They were always one step ahead of us. When going to a place you are not familiar with it is worth a little extra money to have these guys look after you. I highly recommend these guys as they not only make the experience fantastic but make it relaxing not having to worry about anything. I will use these guys forsure in the future.