Thank you, Jarda, for taking the time to write up your experience with everything going on in your life/family.
If the only thing you could remember in the stress of it all was pacing, nutrition and hydration, you got it right. That’s what IM is all about. 🙂
Excellent pre race tips and race morning preparation. Sounds like you also learned a couple good lessons too 🙂
For the swim rolling start, you are correct, many people do not position themselves correctly for a variety of reasons. First off, many are worried about time cutoffs. So even if they are a terrible, slow swimmer, they go out right away to gain as much ‘extra’ time as possible. You then have to pass them. Good feedback here. Be honest with your swim times and then maybe give yourself a few minutes (if you feel comfortable doing so) to avoid the mass passing like Jarda did.
Just because athletes can buy an expensive bike doesn’t mean the motor is any better! Thankfully you were able to fix your chain and keep your motoring moving. Nice work making the most of something that ‘wasn’t planned.’ (Another gentle nudge for completing a race plan!). And yes, spinning as a high cadence will help get your legs ready to run. There is a lot of research that suggests you shouldn’t stand if you don’t have to as it takes too much energy. But if it helps prepare you to run, I am sure a quick stand won’t hurt. Remember to think about engaging your gluts in those final miles on the bike!
Top Jarda Tip: Good to know that biking 1-2 mph slower than you would normally do, really makes a big difference in the run. 🙂 🙂
I got goosebumps hearing about your midnight finish line experience. This was still my most memorable part of my Ironman race! And yes, the spectators should win the ‘endurance’ award. It’s a long day out there so thank a volunteer, emergency personnel and high five the crowd as you head down the finish shoot. They deserve it as much as we (athletes) do!
Final thoughts: Please read Jarda’s final thoughts. Spot on! And very constructive feedback here. That said, I don’t think there is an amateur athlete on the course that doesn’t do some walking during the marathon. So don’t be too hard on yourself.
Congratulations Jarda! You are an Ironman! Safe travels back to Europe!