Monday, October 19, 2015

Gurye 70.3

4 October- 

After Incheon 70.3, I had a short 2 weeks to recover and prep for Gurye 70.3 on 4 October.  I headed down to my good buddy Aaron's house in Pyeongtaek (Camp Humphreys Area) for the 2 weeks in between.  It was a great place to base myself out of as there was a 25 m pool on the base that was only 3 miles from his house.  I was also familiar with the local roads for riding since I was stationed only 30 mins up the road at Osan Air Base for 4 years from 2007-2009 and 2010-2012.  This worked out really well and I was able to get into a good routine between the races.

I came off of just missing the podium at Incheon HUNGRY!  I wanted to show up to Gurye with 2 more weeks of training behind me and ready to race again.  This was still pretty early into this "new season", coming off of the 4 week "off season" after IMUK.  I was really hoping that the 2 weeks between the races would give me another boost in fitness and I would show up to Gurye even stronger.

The original start list that was released had 22 guys on it, but only 12 showed up to the start line on race day.  I had done a bit of research on the unfamiliar names and I knew there was going to be a small group of swimmers that would more than likely be together out of the water.  With the course being rolling and having some steady false flats along the way, I was really hoping things wouldn't be to "packy" on the bike.  I was able to ride my way into the race at Incheon and that was the same plan at Gurye.


I had a decent start but after about 600m a gap opened up and I was swimming solo and on my own.  It pretty much remained that way until the end of the swim.  I was having a bit of a hard time swimming a straight line and probably lost some time due to my poor swimming line.


I came into T1 and my buddy Aaron was there and told me I was 3 minutes down on the next pack up the road.  I wasn't too surprised by this and was hoping to make quick work and bring that deficit down early on in the ride.  At Incheon, I had caught some of the same guys in this race at 20 km and 60 km, so when I got out to 30 km and they still had 3 minutes I was a bit surprised.  I was a bit more upset to see some shady riding going on and the group containing 6 guys, with a few riding legally and a few really enjoying the draft of the others.  I only saw a moto with them on the 2nd lap, and it wasn't even a referee, it was just a WTC employee, that had no officiating influence.

I stayed focused and just kept riding hard, hoping that a referee would eventually show up and break the pack up.  To no avail all 6 riders pulled into T2 together and I trailed behind 2:30.  The frustrating part is that I had ridden 4 minutes faster and 7 minutes faster then 2 of the guys just 2 weeks earlier.  And I actually rode stronger at this race in terms of power and feel.

Run- 1:20:34

I came into T2 with Aaron telling me that 2nd-8th were all 2:30 up the road.  I just told myself I needed to pass 2 guys, that was it, 2 guys to make a paycheck.  I put my head down and just focused on running consistently and getting in hydration and nutrition.  I felt really good and just held consistent 3:00-3:05 half mile splits (that is what I have my Garmin set to auto lap at), and was slowly making up ground.  The course was a 2 loop, direct out and back course.  It made it easy to get splits and the roads were pretty long and straight so being able to stay focused on who was ahead and slowly make up ground was a bit easier.

I made a pass into 7th around 10 km and then just focused on getting into 6th.  With 5 km to go he was still around 1 minute up the road.  I still hadn't given up, but I knew it was going to be tough.  I just kept pushing on and when we got to around 2 km to go it was down to 20 seconds.  With 800 meters to go, I made the pass, just before one of the only short inclines on the course.  I passed him just before that, and made sure to pass with a strong effort, then when I hit the hill I ran hard up it hoping to open up the gap just a little bit more.  Worst case scenario I was going to have to run as hard as I could for ~3mins to make $750, so I figured why not go for it early and see what happened.  Well the pass stuck and I ended up coming into the stadium in 6th place, one minute down from 5th.

Bike- 2:13:51 / Strava: TrainingPeaks:
Total- 4:05:31 / 6th Pro

Overall I am really happy with how things played out.  I came back from what I thought wasn't possible and I found a bit of confidence in my run and did something I don't usually do, ran my way into the race.  I look forward to continuing to work at the little things and hopefully they will continue to add up to something big over time.  One thing is for sure, it isn't going to happen overnight, it is about consistent work day in and day out, so onwards and upwards from here!

Thanks to my wife, family, friends and sponsors for the continued support.  If you would like to support the companies that support my triathlon career, check out this page for some great discounts:

Proud of this guy, Mr. Yu, for winning his Age Group and Qualifying for 70.3 Worlds.  He has helped me a LOT throughout the years while I was stationed in Korea.  Anything from giving me rides to and from races to making sure I knew what I was eating at races when all there was, was Korean food.


Unknown said...

why half mile splits? that is one of the weirder splits I have ever seen for a watch.

Calendula said...

I can't even pronounce some of those place names.