Thursday, June 28, 2007

IRONMAN Coeur d'Alene Race Report

IRONMAN Coeur d’Alene
June 24, 2007

I got an ok night of sleep, got up about 4 am to eat and load up the car while the kids slept. Jacob woke up and got dressed and I carried Alex out to the car in his pajamas and we were off about 4:35 or so.

I dropped off my special needs bags, put my nutrition mix and gels on my bike and found someone to pump up my tires, and then finally got body marked. I met up with Debbie and the kids and we went to check out the swim start area and walked towards the Coeur d’Alene Resort. After many hugs, kisses and good wishes I went back towards transition and sat down to relax a bit.

About 6:20 or so I started to get my wetsuit on and dropped my dry clothes bag off and was on the beach with about 15 – 20 minutes to go. I moved to the far right got my cap and goggles on and then heard the national anthem and was ready to go.

SWIM 2.4 Miles – 1:29:12 – 2:21 per 100 meters
Before I knew it I heard the cannon and I slowly walked down behind the runners. It took me about 15 seconds before I was in and deep enough to start swimming.

The oncoming whitecaps and rollers from the wind were tough to get a good stroke going, the waves had no regularity so you could not get a rhythm as to know when to breathe and when to sight. I was pretty much following the swimmers in front of me.

The real mess was at the first turn buoy. I planned to swim a bit wide but didn’t go wide enough and was caught in the mess. The swim section parallel to the beach was extra tough as the whitecaps kept pushing everyone in and that made the second turn buoy tougher than the first as not many were able to swim wide. I made it around and the waves kind of pushed us towards the shore but it didn’t help too much as I found it harder to know when to breathe and when to sight.

I was amazed when I saw the timing clock at 41 minutes as I got out of the water. The wind and associated whitecaps were just as bad on the second lap and I did not have nearly as many people in front to block and use for sighting. Not nearly as many people at the turn, but was still a tight turn with lots of people.

My calf cramped up tight once around the buoy, so I had to stop swimming and rolled over onto my back for almost half a minute while I tried to stretch and not get hit or swam over. I worked through it and got back into the beach with a total of 1:29:12 and boy was I happy. Under my goal of 1:30!

T1 - 6:47
I walked up the beach past over a 1000 people lining the barriers, awesome! I picked an open pair of wetsuit peelers and they pulled and tugged and within a couple seconds my wetsuit was off.

I found an empty chair in the changing tent. Once dry and bike gear on, I was out the door to the next set of volunteers and had two nice lades slather my arms and neck with sunscreen before I jogged off to grab my bike. I saw Debbie and the kids at the fence near my bicycle and they cheered for me and it felt great to be sent off like that.

BIKE 112 Miles – 6:38:58 – 16.8 mph
I exited the bike transition and the town streets were packed full of people cheering you on. I tried to settle into a nice and easy rhythm to keep my heart rate down. Coming back through town after first out and back in about 45 minutes I Debbie and the kids and got a little misty eyed as I made my way up and onto the middle 40 mile loop that had most all the hills.

I hardly noticed the first hill and before I knew it I was up and over the steepest hill section and ready for the rolling hills and again before I knew it was out at the furthest north turn around, about 35 miles into the course in under two hours, man I thought I was going too fast.

Back into town over the few more rollers and the final 10 miles or so is generally downhill and then you do get to ride through the barriers and tons of people cheering for you, it was awesome!

First loop done in 3:08 and change and I was off for the second loop, repeating the exact same route out and along the lake. I stopped at one of the vault toilets along the lake and at the bike special needs drop bags to reload my nutrition mix. I walked a bit to stretch my legs and toes.

The section through town was once again awesome and then up into the hill loop. Even the outer sections of the hilly area had lots of people, each aid station was like a party zone, people had parties in their driveways, some major intersections, and at the furthest turnaround was a large group all dressed in red cheering everyone on, I saw someone dressed up as Elmo way out here too, man it was great.

I got off the bike at the start of the aid station at mile 96 and walked through as if it was a run course aid station to stretch, get off the bike and use the facilities.

The short two mile out and back was great as I knew I was so close to being done and hammered out and back to make the second loop in about 3:30.

T2 - 4:53
I went straight to one of the porta potties then got my bag from the volunteer and back into the changing tent. This was quicker as I just had to take the bike shoes off and put the running shoes on.

It felt great to get the bike shoes off and the running shoes on. I stopped at the sun screeners again and got slathered, they got my ears and face this time in addition to my arms and shoulders, it was like a great mid race massage.

RUN 26.2 Miles - 4:56:22 – 11:19 per mile
I was now on my strongest portion of the triathlon and I was off and running towards the first short out and back section along the river. After the turn around, I checked my watch at the 1 mile marker and saw 8:30, not a bad pace at all maybe a bit fast but I was feeling ok and shortly after, just before getting back near the transition area, I saw Debbie and kids and they saw me and started to cheer and boy oh boy was it great. What a lift, each time I saw them my pace quickened a bit and I’m sure my smile got bigger.

The tunnel of people on each side of the barriers as you run past the transition area was like what you see when you watch the Tour de France, it was packed full of people on each side and lots and lots of them are calling out your name and man it was awesome. Just past this, you run through downtown Coeur d’Alene and the streets are closed and each side of the street is packed. You get this feeling for about 5 or 6 blocks before the turn towards the residential section before you get to the lake area.

I was able to run pretty much the first 10 miles, but after that I settled into a run/walk and made it back into town and the crowd helped me run, how could you walk when thousands of people are cheering for you and calling your name. I made it past the transition area in about 2:08 for the first half marathon.

Once past the river dike section and downtown and the residential section and back along the lake I was starting to turn into a walk/run. I had plenty of energy to run, but was too sore all over my legs and feet so wanted to walk so I did. I did run the hill up the turnaround because I knew I would walk back down so I ran up, felt great!

The way back was more walk than run and back through the residential section I tried to run and was starting to turn back into a run/walker and once past the last aid station about mile 25 I ran the final mile plus all the way home.

Coming down the final 5 blocks is all downhill and packed with 2000-3000 people all cheering for me and lots would read my name and call out “Go Glenn!” or “Way to go Glenn”, man it was awesome. About two blocks from the finish chute I started to slow as I was looking for Debbie and the kids as I wanted to finish with Jacob and Alex. Some people said don’t slow down now, you can do it, but I finally found the kids, or Jacob found me and ran out of the kids corral area and I asked if Alex was coming. Debbie got him out of the stroller and we all ran down the finish chute and I even heard Mike Reilly call my name (correctly too) and where I was from and most importantly that “YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!!!!”

SWIM: 2.4 Miles – 1:29:12
T1: 6:47
BIKE: 112 Miles – 6:38:58
T2: 4:53
RUN: 26.2 Miles – 4:56:12
FINAL: 13:16:11
PLACE: 217/344
AGPLACE: 1108/2085 OA

Sunday, June 24, 2007

It's Offical, I am an IRONMAN!

Man I'm tired, no long post tonight, it was long, it was hard, but it was FUN!

I uploaded pics to my Picasa web album, so check that out for now. Full report coming soon once we get home and I can gather all my thoughts.

Thanks to all to helped support me through all of this, Thanks to all you kept me in their thoughts and prayers today, I know it helped (especially out on the run)

Today is the day!!!!!!

Up early to get some calories and then we will leave soon.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

The calm before the storm

Time to relax and take it easy for the rest of today.

After enjoying breakfast at the hotel, the whole family went down and found a new place to park (on the Idaho college campus) and it should be a good place for race day too. I went for a short bike ride followed by an even shorter run while Debbie and the kids went to the park.

We met after and all went to the expo and the kids got some IRONMAN souvenirs and left messages for me at the Ford display. These inspirational messages are triggered by the timing chip and show up on large reader board during the Ford Motivational Mile (yeah everything is sponsored).

We walked around and looked at bike entry/exit area and the run exit and then over to the finish line (almost all setup) before meeting Aunt Pam and Uncle Pat for lunch. We had a nice visit and then took our time back to the hotel by driving up past Silverwood and then drove part of the furthest northern part of the bike course.

Back at the hotel we are now relaxing and hope to get to bed early.

Live video and athlete tracking is up on

Friday, June 22, 2007

Friday Fun Day

The only 'events' I planned on doing today was the morning swim and the evening banquet and athlete meeting, so once done swimming (another day of wind and whitecaps) I drove back to the hotel and went to the continental breakfast with everyone.

After, we drove to CdA and drove out part of the bike/run course along the lake and then went for a hike in Tubbs Hill Park. Near the trail head is a memorial to Hydroplane drivers. (In the back of the local awesome hamburger joint -Hudsons - is a little Hydroplane museum that we stumbled upon at lunch on Thursday). What great views, the trail was a little bumpy, but we made it and went to play at the park toy structures for a while. We went for lunch at a San Francisco Sourdough sandwich shop and they were great and even better, next door was a Cold Stone Creamery.

A little rest at the hotel and I organized my transition bags and now we are headed out to swim in Hayden Lake!
I also uploaded more images to my Picasa web album, check the links on the side of the blog

Thursday, June 21, 2007


Jacob and Alex did the Iron Kids fun run tonight and it was great. I ran with Alex and he did the full 1K run without walking. They got medals and water bottles when they crossed the line.

The kids also made signs, went swimming, walked on the boardwalk and we had dinner before running the kids race, after the race we came back to the hotel and went on the bumper boats and played in the arcade. What a long, GREAT day!

Thursday Morning Swim

I may have to rethink my estimates... Swimming into whitecaps sure changes how long it takes to swim. 1 lap this morning took over 48 minutes and boy o boy was it tough headed out. Coming back in was just a little easier but not much. No fun hitting a wave when you're trying to breathe.

Looking down the middle of the course.

Time for lunch!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

We Made It!

We got up early loaded, robeks, starbucks and on road by 7 am. The kids did great, first stop was almost 3 hoursin up on top of Snoqualamie Pass, just a quick break and back on the road, next stop was not until Moses Lake for lunch. We found a great park right off the freeway.

Next stop was a great visit with Uncle Pat at RiversidePark in downtown Spokane, Aunt Pam came by after work and we got underway. Getting settled in. Dinner and soon will hit the wave pool and water slides that are part of the hotel.

Some fun at the park

Monday, June 18, 2007

Final countdown

Jacob, Alex and I set out on Friday for a boys only camp out, we didn't go far, about 7 miles south of Bellingham is Larabee State Park but even so Alex fell asleep in the car on the way. That turned out to be a good thing as Jacob and I were able to setup the tent and tarp over the picnic table. Alex woke up about the time we were finishing and I started to inflate our air mattresses.

We had nice fireside chats, hot dogs on a stick, s'mores, scary stories, hikes and a visit from mom on Saturday too. Lots of fun!

It was nice to relax with the kids and not spend half the weekend exercising. Not much planned this week, just a couple real short quick runs, swims and bikes just to keep loose and also to ease some stomach nerves as it gets closer.

We depart early Wednesday morning and please do keep checking the blog as I plan to update most every day.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


is my lucky number for June 24th at least! You can use it to track me online during the race, more details to follow including URLs for the live video feed so you can watch me too!

Less than 10 days left, I'm ready, just need to get some rest and travel in.

Jacob, Alex and I are going camping this weekend and then 2 days of work and we are off for Coeur d'Alene!

Monday, June 04, 2007

Time to TAPER!

I did my last long ride yesterday in the sun, what a great day!

I rode with Kevin out to meet Pat and we did a nice loop back into Bellingham and south to ride around Lake Samish before heading up and over Yew street back past Lake Whatcom, dropping Kevin off and refilling water, I continued with Pat to drop him off near his place and then I repeated the first loop.

I wanted to ride a two loop ride and it worked out great as Kevin was looking to get in about 3 hours and Pat 3-4 hours and I was hoping for 6. I think we all got real close to our goals for the ride.

I finished my last long ride at 5:50 and 94 miles followed by a short 30 minute run. It was sunny and hot. I expect some heat for the IRONMAN so this is good. I took my electrolyte tablets and had no issues on the bike or (more importantly) the run. The last hour and half of the bike I was ready to be done biking.

Now I taper, over the next 3 weeks I will reduce the lengths of my training sessions, but not the intensity, if anything I might pickup the intensity a bit.

Friday, June 01, 2007

May was my biggest month ever

This past month I swam almost 15 miles, ran another 115 and biked almost 600 miles all in about 65 hours of training.

Spending a few days in Couer d'Alene with others was awesome and the business trip made for a slight recovery week, but I feel ready. One last long ride this Sunday and then I will officially begin my taper.

Got an email from North America Sports (The people who run the IRONMAN in Couer d'Alene) that the bib numbers will be announced on June 8th!