There was a time when I would interview runners regularly for this blog (click HERE to read past interviews). Recently, I decided to start doing them again. We all can learn a thing or two from the experience of other runners and draw inspiration from their achievements.
This week, I interviewed 15-time Ironman and 8th place Ultraman World Champ Dan Brown. Read on…
I had a good week leading upto the race with training and massages etc… I got to Canberra on Friday and drove over the bike course. Saturday was hot, about 25 degrees. I had a 40 minute ride in the morning and then went to registration and briefing in the arvo.
Race day was interesting…it started hammering down with rain as I was about 300m into the swim leg and I had 212 people in my age group wave too which made it a bit interesting. Lake Burley griffin is extremely muddy and visibility was very poor, though the water temp was 19.4 degrees which was alright. I was a little slower than usual in the swim with a time of 37:42 for the leg.
There was about a 300m run then from the water back to transition. I jumped onto the bike and it was still raining for the entire first lap (30km) The course was challenging with some good hills and rough roads on Coppins Crossing Drive. I really focused on nutrition through the bike legs having carbs every 20 mins and getting through 75gm of carbs per hour with gels and bars.
My bike leg split was 2:57hr which I was happy with. I’ve never held an average above 30km/hr in a race of this length. The 2nd and 3rd laps of the bike were hot and steamy and the road dried up which was much safer to ride obviously.
The best part for me though was the run leg. Previously, I have never got through a 21.1km run in a triathlon without having to stop and walk several times. I headed out from transition and took the first 2km rather steady, sitting on about 6:30min kms. I found my running legs and started to get into stride. I managed to run the entire way and my run split was 1:57hr. I was stoked with this because previously my fastest run leg has been 2:10hr and that was at Huskisson which is only a 20km run. I felt strong the whole run and the final 3km of the run it started bucketing down rain again which wasn’t a bad thing!
So overall time was 5:39:17 with my previous half ironman time being 6:12hr in Port Macquarie last year, so a 33 min improvement.
It was good to see that all the brick training you have had me doing has really paid off.
If you want to check out all my splits and positions etc…. jump onto www.multisportaustralia.com.au and search for ‘Eastwood’ or number ‘257’.
The next race for me now is Huskisson in February which is a long course 2/83/20.
Anda, Bohol is located at the Eastern tip of Bohol and 99 kilometers from Tagbilaran City. Coming from Tagbilaran City we hired a van and on our way to Anda we already passed the 50% of the bike course and 100% of the run course. The road from Tagbilaran to Anda is 98% concrete and mostly in good shape with some rough parts specially from Guindulman to the Town of Anda. We stayed in a newly built lodging house near the venue. Thanks to my best friend Peter who is from Bohol who arranged for our place to stay. Its absolutely fantastic because it is like 300 meters from the venue. The lodging house that we stayed in had their own mini groceries where you can find everything that you need from cooked food, canned goods, frozen foods, to medicine and garter. Yes garter, the rubber thing. Good thing that they have because if not my speedfill might fly away during the race…
December 2 our second day in Anda at exactly 6:45 am, Ric and Glenn who were my teammates were already on their way to the swim venue which is in front of the town plaza. The beach is a beauty with white sand and crystal clear water. But one thing we noticed is that tide is really low and that you have to walk like 80-100 meters before you can reach the swim course. This worried us because some of the parts where you will walk has some coral that can hurt you if you will accidentally step on the sharp ones. One loop is like 1200+ they said. The swim course is divided into deep part which is around 8-10 feet, this is the outer part and the inner part which is around 5-8 feet. Both of my teammates are good swimmers so when they say that we will swim one loop I hesitated first. I ask them that we will just swim slow and they agreed. So we started slow. The water is really clear and the corals are awesome with lots of tiny beautiful fish you can see. I really have a problem with my sighting technique so I concentrated on following the bubbles of one of my teammates who is ahead of me and the other one is on my side. I can see them clearly and this is awesome. But because of the scenic view under the water I begin to lose them, I can’t find the bubbles already. So that’s why Nemo lost his way!!! My teammates are already 50 meters away from me. But my feeling of nervousness is already gone and I even tried to up my tempo. I’ve notice that there are area where current is really strong. It helps in the deep part because it pushes forward but upon turn around it holds you back. So I already made a plan where to use my breastroke and rest… I was able to finish the loop in 28 mins which already made me happy. This is my target time actually…
They made some changes during the race. Instead of us getting out of the water and run to a loop, we will continuously swim for 3 loops then we will run-walk for about 80-100 meters until we reach transition 1. During the swim same thing as what I did in Camsur I stayed in the outer area because I don’t want to be a part of the washing machine and although were just around 65 crazy athletes out there I don’t want to mess up my plan and my confidence. Everything as I planned I found a group of swimmers to tail and follow their bubbles. I have no problem from the first 600 meters but upon reaching the shallow part where the current is on reverse, I felt a sting or like a lot pricked in both my arms and face. Its definitely not a jellyfish sting but this happens so many times to me. I just really don’t know why this unknown sea creatures love to sting me… So I began to slow a bit and try to look to my arms if there is something sticking but nothing. So I continue with my swim but beginning to worry a little. My second loop was the same thing. Got stung this time in my face and torso… Yes torso even I’m wearing a speedsuit I have still have marks in my body now. This really made me slow because I’ve notice that I always felt the sting when I am near or pass this kind corals. So my last loop is like cris crossing just not to pass this corals. Finish my swim 1hr 41mins including the run to the transition 1.
Out from T1 to like 8 km to artery of the loop is really rough and its a slow climb. Worries came to my mind again because I don’t know if I can maintain a 30 km per hour speed with this kind of course. Upon reaching the main road, its all or nothing so I begin to speed up. I was able to maintain around 33-35 km per hour most of the time and tried to push more when I find the road straight and rolling. It made me suffer upon reaching my 110km mark. Oh my God I am beginnning to cramp I thought… Ok, I tried to check my nutrition and I am doing everything right. I guess I am pushing too hard. So I relax a little bit anyways I can see in my cyclometer than that I am a few minutes ahead on my target time. The entire bike course is mix of flat, rolling, a bit of steep climb and a very nice sea view portion. I was able to finish the 180km in 6hrs 2mins. I am still on target but I am already suffering from cramps on my left tie. Upon reaching T2. I tried to manage it with some menthol spray…
I told to myself that I will be strong during the run but I don’t know now with my current situation. Plus its noontime and the sun is on top of us. Run course is somewhat rolling but you can feel the difficulty in your legs because it is really slowly going up until you reach the turning point and this time you are going fast. I was able to finish 1 hour on my first loop which is exactly 10.5km. But I slowed down for 5 mins on my next loop. One reason is pieces of sand were stuck on my foot which is already hurting me ( no water or shower when we get off from the swim to wash ourselves that why). Local crowds on both sides of the road is cheering idol idol!!! I ask a favor to a group sitting beside the road if I can have a sit and remove my socks. So I remove my socks and left it on them. Well I left actually on a table and told them I will get it back on my next loop. My 3rd loop is already dark so upon reaching the transition I got the flashlight the organizers provided. I even change my shoes put on a new socks. Also I got a piece of power bar to manage my crumbling stomach. Few people still there along the way and most of them is asking the runners if this is there last loop or how many loops to go. I really slowed down because I can feel blisters on different part of my foot already. Cramps on both my thigh. Suprisingly my calves is still holding on… Thanks to the water stations who provided ice that most of the runners place under their cycling shorts to lessen the pain of cramps… I tried to push hard on my 4th loop for the first half which I did in 30mins but the last half made me suffer. Its a mistake… So I walk and run for 3.5km and run continuously to the last kilometer to the finish line…
Thank you Lord for giving the strength… Guiding me through the entire course of the race… And protecting from any danger… To my coach Dan Brown, I don’t know how thank you but I think you made the right program that really suits me and really appreciate it. Since I started my program last May for the Camsur race I thought that I won’t progress at all because you can’t check of what I am doing or checking my progress if there is any. I told to myself that I have to follow whatever is stated in the program or else no one will suffer but me. Just to let you know I cheated sometimes but I made sure that during the crunch time of training I stuck to the program… And that’s why I was able to finish the Camsur 70.3 in 6 hours 4mins and the TIMEX 226 in 12 hours 49 mins…
- Sa swim naiwan na ako agad ng 27mins. Pag ahon sa swimming di muna ako nag madali na nag habol para mag stick lang sa goal na 5hr.20mins, para makatakbo ako sa last 42k. Pag dating sa last 80k nag habol na ako sa bike. Nag moderate muna ako sa 22k run at last 20k lumapit na ako kay Arland kaya pinilit kong mag habol sa kanya at sabi ko sa sarili ko, kailangan kong manalo, di bale ng mamatay, huwag lang mapahiya yon kasi ang moto ko coach tnx!
- AUGUST PLACED 2ND OVERALL IN HIS FIRST EVER ATTEMPT IN THE IRONMAN DISTANCE. HIS TIME WAS 10:27MIN