Jonathan’s Calgary 70.3 Ironman Race Report

In the past, I have only taken short notes in my training journal, and never written a full race report… so here goes!
Had a really rough sleep the night before, as this was my first triathlon of the season. I spent time in bed reminding myself about the “order of things” in transitions, and during the day.
Woke up at 4:30, and got ready. Angela was kind enough to whip up my traditional pre-race meal of 2 scrambled eggs and a couple of Eggo waffles. 
We drove down to Lake Mckenzie, arrived around 5:45, hopped into the transition and got everything set up.
The neatest part of this year’s race was that Dave, Raf, and I were all within 5 feet of each other in transition, on the same bike rack. This, for me, was a very special moment in time, as the three of us have known each other for 25 years.
Dave and I then shuffled over to the lake to warm up and got ready for the horn.
The water was incredibly warm compared to last year’s swim in Ghost Lake. I was so much more comfortable in the water this year knowing that I could swim the distance. The course did get crowded at times with other athletes bumping into me, grabbing my feet, or swimming over me…. Since I’m a slower swimmer, the female swimmers caught up to me by the 600m mark. The constant flow of people around me was very motivating. It kept me swimming my hardest while controlling any anxiety issues.
T1 went as smooth as it could have; the wet suit strippers were awesome and the hop onto the bike was flawless… I was out of the water and onto the bike in 3 minutes (including an extra spray of sunscreen). I opted to only wear a singlet on the ride, as the weather felt quite warm at the time.
The bike route was familiar territory and was great… except it got colder than I thought it would! Boy, I wish I had worn that vest. 
Up each hill, I reminded myself to race my plan and to stay within my target power zones. This led to some extra work however, as other cyclists seemed to really enjoy powering up the hills then COMPLETELY letting go of the gas when they reached the top… I played leap frog with the same 10 people for the entire 90 km. The ride out to Bragg Creek was smooth and steady, staying in the 165w range.
The moment I turned onto Hwy 22, everything picked up, a light tailwind, slightly downhill… it felt GREAT. All the way around to the 2nd aid station, I was cruising! Took a quick pit stop at aid station 2… took in a fair bit of fluid for such a cold morning. The volunteer was amazing and offered to hold my bike for me. After that stop, it was clear sailing all the way until the slowdown where the bike crash occurred. I heard later it was due to a pack of riders drafting and losing control.
Throughout this ride, I remembered Raf’s little tip to me, the day before the race… take advantage of the downhills and the tailwinds… keep my power in the planned range. I consciously worked on this during my ride and it paid off! 2:45!
Nothing to report here… off the bike and on the run in 90s.

Jonathan on the run
21.1 k worth of a training run. Just a nice light pace, took gels every half hour and kept the HR at a high zone 1, low zone 2. My goal for this run was to come out of the race uninjured and able to train again within a day or two. Paced myself to a 1:59, exactly where I wanted to be… and no injuries!

Jonathan Raf and Dave

At the end of the day, I couldn’t have been happier with how the race turned out. The swim ended up being exactly where I thought I was going to be and I was able to keep myself composed through the swim even with other athletes swimming on top of me. The bike was nearly perfect to what I wanted to do and I came out in good health in the run! Fantastic race, knocking off 1hr 10min from my previous year’s time… albeit the bike course was a few km shorter. 
Next stop, Ironman Mont-Tremblant!


One response to “Jonathan’s Calgary 70.3 Ironman Race Report

  1. Congrats Jonathan!!! Good luck and HAVE FUN at IMMT!!!!! (Wish I could be there to cheer you guys on)

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