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I AM AN IRONMAN lanza race report 2009
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woody32




Joined: 06 May 2007
Posts: 242
Location: Sussex

PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 4:06 pm    Post subject: I AM AN IRONMAN lanza race report 2009 Reply with quote

My first ironman lanzarote 2009


It was after my first middle distance race last yr June 2008 at new forest that I new deep down I desperate to do an ironman ,I was pleased with my time and booked lanza when I got home .I did another half ďsandy balls ď later in the yr, but wasnít as pleased with my time there and it never felt right ,with lanza booked I new I would have to work from a structured training schedule over the winter and brought don fink iron fit book , over the winter I trained to his 30 week intermediate programme stuck with it around 85 /90% threw in a couple of sportives , spring ball buster a half marathon and did a stand alone half IM from the gym. I lost my mojo with the swimming by march and cut that down lots plus, I really struggled near the end with the hard heavy weeks before taper and backed off a fair bit ,but overall I was really happy with how I felt. I had stayed injury free and wanted to be fully rested and feeling good about how I felt .I had done the best I could and if that wasnít enough to get me round then so be it. But boy I wasnít going to give up, without a massive fight.
The week before the race I canít believe how up and down my emotions were and all these pains and niggles my body was finding for me to worry about, plus the amount of colds and coughs everyone had ,I was getting paranoid something would go wrong.
Me and the wife were leaving from Gatwick Thursday morning at 7pm; I had packed my bike in its box first time ever flying with a bike. Iím glad I didnít have to take too much off it boy those things are massive; I had checked all my kit twice! Packed that, plus all my food for the race I no they said they supplying all the food but itís better to be safe than not have enough when out on the bike .I had arrange to meet stengun at the airport to say hi as he had kindly offered to take us to la Santa in his pre booked hire car. we only live a few miles from Gatwick so I went there wed night (very nervous and restless) to see if they could check my bike in early for me but you can not pre book bikes on this airline (monarch) and I was so worried there would be a problem, or I get there in the morning and every single passenger has a bike and they cant get mine on! Anyway they couldnít check me in tonight but check in opened at 3am, so we got there around 3.15 am with much delight of my wife who just went with the flow but prob thought I was completely stupid. Checked bike and luggage in all ok off it went down the Shute that was it no turning back now, so off we went air side no turning back now.

Land in lanzarote


Flight went well and I felt quite good not to nervous, got transfers etc hotel really nice (san Antonia )in PDC , the staff were really friendly and I thought they put them self out that little bit more to try to look after any ironman competitor .They said I could swap my eve meal tonight to lunch if I wanted as I was off to the pasta party in the eve ,food choice was really good and I tried to stuff my face as much as possible trying to carb load.Everytime I looked outside there was either people out on there bikes or running ,It was strange but also a good thing to see it made me feel like I was part of there gang and now knew that all those lonely winter training days ,I wasnít really on my own lots of other people around Europe were training as well .I put bike back together and met up with stengun went to local bike shop he had been to before .I thought it was a good idea just to get everything double checked on my bike as well while I was there plus it got a good scrub up !I went for a little twenty min spin felt so good mentally to get on my bike and go riding out on the roads of lanza, everything worked fine . Less than 42hrs to go till race start .Got back to hotel washed and changed, then waited for stengun to take us to la Santa to register and eat more grub at the pasta party.
I have been to la Santa before just to have a look while out on holiday in 2007, its not really my type of place all a bit to many posers for me and lots of numptys walking round with tops off strutting around wearing Kona hats t shirts etc etc, in my short time in tri (3yrs) I have found the really quick and friendliest guys are nothing like the posers here .But this is where we had to register.
Registered got all my goodyís and lots of info to read .Plus my ironman lanza warming up swim bike and run and special needs bags that I had to fill up , these made me realise my big day was nearly here ,had more food at pasta party my tum was so full I had eaten so much today , had a quick look round expo and was soon back in the car and getting driven back to our hotel in PDC ,arrived back at hotel around 8pm .
At this point I must say a massive thank you to stengun ,getting my bike checked over ,giving us a lift to la Santa,i didnít have to worry about directions or any thing .I could just chill out try not to worry about tomorrow . look at the scenery totally relax and just follow you round as you knew where everything was from the previous yrs .You put me at ease and I knew I could ask you any first timer stupid Ironman race questions thanks again .
Fri 7am 24hrs to go
Not sleeping v well but still feeling good and positive, I kept telling myself Iíve done as much as I can training wise, now its time to enjoy the atmosphere now and on race day.
Went down for breakfast tried to once again eat as much as possible then went back to room and started packing all my bags (warm up swim bike run )sort out all my food for bike etc a bit of a worry ,I didnít want to miss anything or put things in wrong bag etc I took my time and think I got everything all ok ,then got a bit nervous so took out my trainers and went for a v easy jog for twenty min to clear the mind tension was building up now ,But felt better after run ,put them back in bag and told myself thatís it ,I was done everything ready to go .Went down for lunch more pizza my poor tum never ate so much . Had a rest by the pool in the shade for a few hrs,just trying to relax , then it was time to take bike and bags down to get everything racked up and ready for tomorrow?
The transition area was fairly empty when I got there and there were lots of marshals to answer all my silly first timer questions .Racked my bike then just walked around a bit taken in the atmosphere and realising my dream is nearly upon me of hopefully becoming an ironman, had another look round boy there was some serious and v expensive bikes in here all the way up and down the whole transition area my little £700 bianchi was parked next to some sort of wild German bling bike that had those ďlightweight ďwheels on it (wiggle price £2200 ) .Oh well I have promised myself a nice new stead if I complete the race tomorrow .time to get back and try to get some sleep .


RACE DAY
Didnít get hardly any sleep surprise surprise kept trying to run the race through my head and crossing that finishing line .I felt ok not that nervous and getting more excited now this was MY big day and every single cheer I heard out there would be for ME to keep ME going ,I went down to breakfast ( the hotel had opened it up from 3am for us ďironmen ď ) I got down there around 3.30 ,I left the poor wife in bed so she should get a nice lie in ,I would wake her up around 4.15 . I couldnít eat hardly anything but didnít feel too bad the amount of food Iíve had in the last few days must surely be enough!
By 4.45 time to wander down was a real strange feeling one minute v excited next nervous as hell then we would see a group of blokes really drunk staggering around or a couple coming out of clubs shouting and arguing with each other, this made me laugh and put me at ease, this was my choice to be here .I had trained real hard, I want this so so bad today I will become an ironman positive positive thinking from now on,
Transition area was a hive of activity Iíve never seen so many lovely bikes or nervous people, done my final little checks pumped up tyres put food in bento box put on wet suit kissed my wife goodbye gave her the biggest cuddle I could muster, then walked down to the beach with my goggles, the sun was just coming up nearly time.


Hundreds of people all in black with orange hats on and I see stengun sit down sat next to him had a little chat and once again he made me feel nice and relaxed I was ready now .They all called us over to the start line ,the tension was electric 1300 people hardly a word spoken all bunched up eyes bulging out from under there goggles the sun was just starting to rise up over the horizon the crowd were cheering blowing there horns and compare was building everything up over the tanoy 30sec to go the crowd went silent then BANG
Weíre off . My Ironman race is go go go

My main aim for this whole race is just to finish 17hrs, I want that medal and to come back an Ironman no matter how slow I get I wont ever ever give up my biggest concern is making the bike cut off then next to that blowing up badly on the run, I worked out my min bike speed to make cut off and if I have the perfect race, I have predicted my time to be around 14 hrs
Swim looking for around 1hr 20min
Bang the gun went off the cheers started and we slowly started making our way towards the water, I started about three quarters to the back by the time I got my feet in the water there was a mass washing machine in front of me. my plan was to try to stick more on the outside of the pack even if it took a little longer, I didnít want to get kicked punched or swam over for the sake of trying to make a couple of minutes .I saw Mr. and Mrs. slako standing in the water with the tri talk banner cheering everyone on fantastic guys said a quick hi, then I was off.
I found myself more in the middle of the pack trying to avoid being kicked or punched, the first lap was really busy not a lot of room, I had to be careful to stay out of trouble, so many people couldnít seem to swim in a straight line .Turned the third buoy on the first lap and at last it seemed to be spreading out a bit, I could start to really relax and find a nice rhythm. Buoy four came up round that then lap one done. Started walking up beach loads of people shouting and cheering, should I check my watch or not sod it I had a look. But it must have got knocked because stopwatch had changed to totals! Stop worrying about time I told myself, just relax and enjoy the day, this is all new to you, I didnít need to look at my watch or chase time relax relax relax.
Lap 1 done back in to the water where I got another massive cheer from the slackos. This lap was easier more room between swimmers so as long as I kept sighting I could stay out of trouble from the weaving swimmers .By now the sun had come up a bit more and you could see all the fish swimming around god knows what they must of thought .I stayed relax for the rest of the swim and just tried to focus on my stroke and stay calm its going to be a long day .Turned the last buoy and started coming out of the water ,had a quick look round loads of people still in the water ,started slow jog up the beach ,everyone was cheering it was wild for some reason I decided to stop and take my wet suit off early and run with it
Ran off the beach picked up my bike bag and in to changing tent ,still not sure of time ,bad move taken my wetsuit off there was sand everywhere donít panic ,I found a quite area by my racked bags tipped out all my bike stuff ,took a few good minutes to make sure I had wiped off as much sand as poss. from my upper legs got changed in to cycling shorts ,tri talk cycling top put on helmet race belt shocks and shoes only Vaseline gels and bit of food left in bag didnít bother with that then I was out and off. Got my bike slow jog up to start /finish mounting line, looked up to clock it said 1hr 20min 40 sec I was really pleased with that ,things were starting off well .
Swim 1hr 9min 45sec
T1 10min 55 sec
Bike EST. Time.
Not really sure wanted around 7.30 to 9.00 so long as I stayed aerobic in my hr training zone, take it steady and get in before the cut off time I would be happy ,my main aim was to still feel ok when I started running .

Got to the bike start line , it was weird seeing everyone around me taking there time getting on the bike ,nothing like the mad panics of sprints and Olympic races .Got on and set off ,this was a great feeling to be in the lanza ironman wow what a dream I was in the biggest race of my life I was really here doing it .I started pedalling and felt fantastic round a few bends then out on to the open roads .Then it hit me this is where I really need to stay so focused, I had such a long way to go ,I have only ever gone 100miles twice in training and did feel pretty tired after them and I didnít have to run a marathon after ,focus Dunk donít get caught up in going to hard or worry about anyone overtaken you. Turned bike computer on and settled down for a ďniceĒ bike ride around lanza.
My plan was to have water for the first 40 min or so then switch to sipping energy drink every 10 min and taking a third of an energy bar that I already had cut up in my bento box every 20 min, I had decided to change my bike computer to show big normal day time in the middle of the screen cadence and hr down the bottom and mph in the top corner but I had told myself I wasnít allowed to look at that one! I didnít no the course and had printed off an elevation map which I stuck to my aero bottle

The clock hit 9am time to start sipping energy drink and eating every 20min keep hr down ,find a nice rhythm ,watch the world go buy I passed some people others were passing me ,every one around me seemed to have a lovely v expensive bike .
It was good people having there names on the race numbers gave my mind something else to think about .I was really settling in now and enjoying this race my feeding plan was working out really well .There were 8 feed stations along the course and this was all new and exciting to me .They were more or less spaced just right for my fuelling ,just as I was running out of drink another feed station came along ,there was a big type of butterfly net that they wanted you to throw your empty bike bottles in this was a good game and managed it a few times .At every feed station there were lots of volunteers holding out dif bottles and shouting out what they had in them Water ,Energy ,Cola ,and some stations also had food gels bananas energy bar ,I did feel like a superstar tour rider throwing my old bottles out ,trying to get them in the net ,grabbing nice new full ones saying thanks and only slowing down a little ,that was great ,
Because I wasnít looking at mileage I had told myself there was going to be 5 climbs on the course ,so I would have a rough idea where I was ,to be honest I did get a bit confused and Still am DOH !
The first climb on my map was around 15k But I wasnít really sure when it started and finished!!!! I found because of the wind and the barren landscape I couldnít really tell if we were going uphill or not some times everything looked really flat, yet I was in my smallest gear with a cadence of around 60 just trying to keep moving whilst still keeping my hr down .I wasnít sure if I was going up a hill or it was just the wind!!!!
Not sure where this photo was taken but I think it was fairly early on into the bike course .Plus I donít really care ,because Iím Looking really good and Iím nice and aero Tee Hee

I remember climbing up fire mountain I looked up ahead to a really really long open stretch and in a perverse kind of way, I loved the strong winds and the sudden gusts ,the sun and heat haze coming off the road ,Plus the big long open stretches of roads this is what lanza was for me .I didnít care how tough and windy it got I was loving it feeling great and loving being part of this race .I got to the top of fire mountain and remember turning around and looking back it seemed such a long way but just boosted me even more I had just climbed that I was super fit and I am in an Ironman race wow .
I tried to thank everyone who cheered me out on the bike course, I always get such a lift from spectators whoever they are when they cheer or clap. we went through one town and they had a band playing and pom pom girls ,that made me laugh . I thought back to the Ball Buster when the Tri Talk girls were waving there pom poms .Another few climbs then up to the top of mirador del rio ,this was a great place with stunning views ,turned the bend and everyone I spoke to who had done this race said hard bit done its all down hill from here ,a bit of v bumpy road which wasnít v nice ,then another part where I turned the bend and the wind hits you full on ,so back down to easy gear and grind it out ,before I no it Iím nearly home see the signs to PDC .I feel absolutely fantastic my feeding plan went spot on ,this is the first time I have cycled 112 miles ,I still feel like I got loads of energy left .Round a few more bends back along the high street see all the runners on my left and the cheering crowds ,stop my bike Iím done .
Bike 6hrs 56 min 08 sec Well chuffed
In to T2 walked with bike not really sure what to do with it! Then a kind marshal took it off me went in to changing tent ,changed in to Tri Talk top and Tri Talk run shorts fresh socks .filled back pockets of my tt top with 6 gels couple of Nunn tablets and strip of ibuprofen tablets just in case .Put cycling stuff in bag and was off .I didnít want my legs getting to used to sitting down. It was a weird feeling running up transition ,it was a long way and fairly quiet just the clip clip of cycling shoes as people coming off there bikes .There was lots of room and the odd marshal taken bikes off the competitors .Yet up ahead you could here loads of noise and cheering, loud music and a DJ that was where I was heading.
T2 8min 06 sec
I ran through the start finish still feeling fantastic my legs felt really good and I felt so so positive ,even though my bike time was really good (for me) it didnít really register and I blanked it ,I was just thinking of the moment in time NOW .As I started running out for my first lap of four lap course the noise was really great ,I put my hands up to my ears and gestured to the crowd I cant hear you ,they loved this and started screaming even louder ,I had a big chuckle inside then settled down once again this was going to be a long run I have only ever run 20 miles before and in my other two half IM races I struggled on the run .But this time I new I felt loads better ,
I ran up the slight incline to be greeted by Mr. and Mrs. SLACKO they were great big cheer and lots of support, then I forced myself to settle in to a pace I felt comfortable with .I started looking out for my wife, who said she would be just pass all the crowds .I spotted her said hi and gave her a big smile ,to see the relief on her face and her whole body relax just boosted me even more .I was feeling great and she could see that ,the crowds got a little spread out and time to knuckle down in to a nice rhythm . This was a four lap course with three aid stations once again loads of volunteers given out cups off energy / cola /water and some orange segments gels or banana, I wanted to stick with my go gels to start with this is what I mainly been training with but was finding gels when bouncing around to much in my back pockets and annoying me took four out and just carried them in my hands.


I could see a bloke a little way ahead running at a similar pace to me increased pace a little and ran beside him, he was hoping to make the turnaround point in 30 min this would be ideal for me ,I felt ok and 30 min was easy to work out !Plus surprisingly I felt fine running at this pace .I think we made turn around point in 31 min spot on ,I liked this four lap course, you always had lots of runners to look at , you could quite clearly see what lap they were on by the coloured band they handed out .Red 2nd lap blue 3rd then yellow final lap yippee .The run back to the start finish seemed easier ,whether it was slightly down hill or the wind was behind us or just mentally not really sure .From about a mile out from the finish, the crowds started building again .There was a Hawaiian pub full of brits making loads of noise and cheering everyone ,then up a slight hill where the crowds really started building pass the slackos then down to the finish line for another lap .
I came down for my first lap held out my arm on went a red band ,yes 1 down 3 laps but only 2bands to go ,got sent round to start next lap when the marshal gave me a blue band, I laughed that would be good going 13 miles in just over an hr !I handed it back with a smile ,look after it I will be back real soon .I stayed with the bloke I caught early on for just under two laps, till he started falling away a little. I was still feeling good and carried on at my own pace I could hear the crowds at the Hawaiian bar lap two nearly done passed slakos ,they were looking a little wobbly now but in fine form think it must have been the heat and the sunshine!!! Def not all the alcohol they had consumed through out the day .

Picked up my blue band two down one more band to go, my legs were still feeling great and I was still staying so positive but my tum was starting to reject the gels decided to change to plan two. I would slow down at aid stations and take some orange segments these were great tasted really good but a little hard to suck breath and run/walk with. Got to turn around point on lap three ,first time started to feel a little tired and pins and needles in my back ,come on Dunk you can do this now stay positive got to next aid station plan three drink flat Coke ,decided to walk through this one, had the flat coke and felt loads better great pick me up .
I had broken my run down mentally to 10 min segments now stopped 2 walk through next two feed stations drinking coke and back to finish that was a tough lap ,picked up the yellow band and round for last lap .Six miles to go six little segments the crowd seemed to get louder now I had that YELLOW band up past the slakos /Hawaiian bar past the wife shouting at me last lap nearly there still looking great ,
I could see a bloke about 200 meters in front just focus on him blank out the pain nearly there walked through the next two food stations drinking that lovely coke ,It was about a mile to turn around point ,when I caught up with the bloke in front he was a German guy and think he was beginning to suffer he wanted to talk (in English) this was fine with me ,then just before the turn around point ,as I stepped off a very small kerb my whole back went in to big spasm and my right knee collapsed ,I stumbled but kept my balance not a good sign .My back was locking up and hurting ,not sure what was going on with my knee no warning but I new my body was really starting to struggling now it had had enough and was telling me to stop .I still felt so positive mentally .No way was I stopping or even walking ,I had three miles left I had to stay focused blank out the pain , went through next aid station ,I had a little more coke but the hit I needed wasnít there .
Around a mile and a half left, my back was really aching now and then my knee collapsed again ,I was really worried about this my body was giving up .I could either walk or just give it all I had ,come on Dunk dig really really deep now ,my mind was still so strong ,I started pushing I could do this ,the German guy couldnít keep up. I thanked him for the chat and just looked straight ahead .I was on my own now .I could see the Hawaiian bar they seemed to be going crazy, shouting LAST LAP COME ON kept pushing up the little hill for the last time .The crowds were getting deeper now and the noise was getting louder and louder .
I didnít feel any pain or anything from my body now ,It was if I was looking down at me running along .I was just running as hard and as fast as I could now . I knew I could finish this, the endorphins had kicked in big time .Reached the top of the little hill , less than half a mile kept saying COME ON ,COME ON in my head , saw the slakos gave them both big high fives and let out a big COME ON ,the crowd seemed to go wild the cheering was so loud ,hooters blowing it seemed the faster I was running the louder the crowd got and it was all for me. I felt so so overcome it was like I was winning this whole race ,They were all there just for me .I could see the finish line PUSH PUSH PUSH ,I was flat out my hands out stretched both sides slapping the crowds they were loving it banging the railings and hoardings claxons going screaming and shouting ,I have never felt anything like this before I was ON TOP OF THE WORLD I crossed the finish line with the biggest ever smile on my face and let out a massive roar YEAAAAAAAAAAAA

RUN 4hrs 9min 16sec
TOTAL TIME 12hrs 34min 09sec
I AM AN IRONMAN




I was absolutely ecstatic words cannot really describe how I felt .I had done it I was an
IRONMAN
I loved every single min of the race everything went spot on, I could not believe it. I truly just wanting to finish and was secretly hoping for around 14 hrs if every thing went well on the day .I had blown it all out the window the time was just an unbelievable bonus .

I came 575 place out of 1211 starters
And in age group 134 out of 244

I am totally totally blown away with the whole day, it didnít really hit me what I have just done until I went to get the photos on the Monday .As the bloke laid them out on the table and I saw little old me with that massive smile crossing the finishing line it became oh so real,I had really done it there on that table photos of me an IRONMAN
I hugged my wife and burst out crying.

WOODY 32
IRON DUNK
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Mrs Mash




Joined: 01 Sep 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fantastic race report! Almost felt like I was doing it with you whilst reading it (minus the wind/heat/pain of course!) as it was so descriptive.

A HUGE well done to you and no wonder you are so proud of yourself. You are an Ironman! What a superb effort Very Happy Very Happy

Michelle
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lindak




Joined: 18 Oct 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fantastic, Woody - great report, great time and a MASSIVE achievement - totally inspirational - no one can ever take that away from you now- bet you are still floating on air Airborne
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g-rex




Joined: 29 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations! Very well done and a great report too!
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TimB.




Joined: 23 Jun 2003
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 5:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brilliant - well done! Very Happy
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timf




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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great report woody - really lived it with you.
(Well, from the comfort of my living room! Very Happy )
Very inspirational - thanks!
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adrian73




Joined: 02 Nov 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Man, that was an awesome time by any standard, let alone doing your first IM in Lanza!
Well done!!!!
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Old Bob




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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Git. Mad 13:28... b*gg*r Rolling Eyes
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J-P




Joined: 17 Sep 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 6:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cracking job Very Happy

Felt like i had done it myself reading that, great report inspires me to do it myself oneday Twisted Evil

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sailbird




Joined: 21 Apr 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your report is brilliant. Well done. You are an IRONMAN!! I do like the idea of going for a 'nice bike ride around Lanza'!! Keep smiling.
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Bainsy




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PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Top effort, top report...........that's why we all do it, that digging deep inside and finding that you do have it in there to do something that 99.99% of the population has no comprehension of.

WELL DONE

What's next ???
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fatirishman




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PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Live off that high for months! Quality, and an amazing time, made more impressive by the fact it was in Lanza.

Ah the season for race reports is about to start!
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road to amarillo




Joined: 23 Feb 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

EXCELLENT report mate and top job!

Made me look at 2010 and I see they have entries...... Only done 1 sprint so far another next week then 2 OLYs by August. Shall I or no mmmm. would need to stop drinking the beer and start running now.

TOP JOB mate,
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fruit thief




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PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 8:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Inspirational. Makes me want to sign up for Lanza 2010. Cracking time for first IM on tough course.
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JesseD




Joined: 05 Jan 2007
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Location: This week I'll be mainly riding my bike!!!

PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brilliant report, I had a tear in my eye readiong the last bit and I am in bloody work in an open plan office!

Congrats on teh race, your time is fantastic, you must be chuffed to bits with how you performed.

I am waiting to enter IMA next year and the more race reports I read the more inspired I get, I just hope I can put in a stella performance like you and dig deep when it matters.

Once again congrats and well done, next year I will join you as an Ironman! Cool
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