Yesterday, being Tuesday here involved a long ride and a short run.
Conditions were normal, light breeze in town, nothing different to any other day. The main thing was an earlier start to make sure that I was back for when Great Mate, Ian "Big Boy" Scott who gained a Legacy Lottery Spot.
Heading out the road, the first sign that something wasn't right came within 5min. A vomit, must have been the 2 coffees that I had just before I headed out, she'll be right!!
Matty did have a chuckle at me and then we discussed how often we have vomited in a race, for me, quite often. Matty, rarely.
Onto the Queen K, Matt's bike battery went flat and was stuck in the small chain ring...Interesting, 185+ k's and no Big Dog! True to his form and determination never to be beaten, we soldiered on.
A puncture soon followed for Matt which was quickly changed and off we went.
And then, yep here we go again, no intensity, something just wasn't right. I tried to use nutrition, hydration, gels, water however nothing would stay down. So from Kona all the way to Kawaihea (60k's) I constantly spewed, chunks, liquid until I thought that I had nothing left, and then....again.
The really strange part was that my legs actually felt good, I didn't feel ill whatsoever, just couldn't keep anything down.
When we stopped to refuel, I thought I would try the trusty old method of a coke. Down the hatch, a few burps later....good as gold....so I thought. Walking over to chat to Matty, I hovered over the bin and proceeded to put all the coke and whatever else that was remaining in my gut into the bin.
Quality work by me!! NOT!!
The next words that I heard were, "Think you better go home Mate."
"I'll be right, I don't feel bad, just can't keep anything down."
Now usually in these conditions you would expect to feel ordinary after 90min in the sun vomiting, but something told me just to keep going and things would come good.
So, climbing up to Hawi, the pace quickened, all my thoughts were to try, just try to have something and hanging onto him. Anything else that I consumed had a trampoline effect, in, down, bounced straight back up, nothing was pleasant about this, my top stunk of spew, but I just wanted to keep going. Not once did I feel terrible, or wanted to turn around.
I finally got something to stay down about 10k's from Hawi, so for the first 80k's, I was unable to keep any nutrition or fluid down. As we got into Hawi, my total intake was 1 gel and 1/2 a bottle of Shotz Electrolyte drink.
We went through Hawi for another 10k and then decided to turn and head back. Stopping at Hawi, I managed to consume a coke, an iced latte, some water, an electrolyte drink and then started to head back. A few burps and things felt like it was really going to settle.
By this stage, with Matt descending, on the small chain ring, we had a great old laugh about how the morning had started but also how we didn't let it stop us getting the job done. That is what it is about.....JUST GETTING THE JOB DONE!
Of course I was able to pull away from him and before we knew it, back on the Queen K heading home. We decided to stop at Waikoloa to refuel and being very conscience of having enough hydration, I actually had 6 bottles on me, looking more like a domestic at a cycling race than a triathlete trying to get ready for a Big Race. A few efforts followed and feeling like I was towing a caravan from all the extra weight didn't help my cause. The only advantage was having "water on call" to tip on my head as required. Another puncture for Matt, Pit stop in and off we went.
Getting within 10k's from town, a third time for him, nothing left to help, so off he went to call a taxi... Just our luck. I arrived back feeling great, which really surprised me knowing how the day unfolded and how little I consumed for the first 2.5hrs. I clicked over 187k and managed to get 180 done in 5hrs 15min (riding time) so was a great ride. Legs always felt good and motivation growing!
The great man arrived that night and out for dinner we went. Ah, paradise is tough!
Fast forward to this morning.
Waking early, feeling very respectable after yesterdays effort, I was really please with how I recovered. A 1hr ocean swim started the day, the water this morning reminded me of race conditions last year. Not choppy, just swell. And tomorrow is supposed to have a BIG BIG SWELL, some of the beaches have already been closed!
Back to today.
An hour run soon followed and true to form the sun was out. 4 bottles in the fuel belt didn't last long, but the legs still felt great. That was a bit of a surprise to me, was more thinking that I needed to save them for my 2nd run of the day.... I just found a good rhythm and ticked off the minutes as they were presented to me.
Getting back, sweating a lot, re-hydrating was the goal of the day.
Knowing that I had another run with a good amount of intensity excited me for this afternoon as gaining confidence from yesterday I was ready, willing and hoping to be able to have a good ol' fashioned crack.
The goal of the session was to run the majority above Ironman Pace, which I did...5min/k...GOLD!! ;-)
Seriously, got through the sessions grinning, averaging just over 4min/k for the main part and getting back in a negative split, 18.06k in 79min. Could not be happier. 30k's done running, solid swim all done better than expected after yesterday.
I can't wait to get back on the bike tomorrow for another solid day to see where the legs are at. What I have found about being here is that no 2 days are the same, the winds are always different and always keep you guessing. Something that I will never try to work out, just roll with it!
The main aim is to get to Monday's 3hr run is reasonable shape and with ticking the boxes along the way of what is required. Time will tell.
I will answer two questions on here that I have been getting asked a lot...
How do you think you will go?
What are you goals for this race?
The best way to answer both of these in the most honest fashion way is to say that I know that I am in better shape than last year.
To predict goals for this race is absolutely crazy. Anything can happen race day with conditions, so my main goal is to have a great race. Something that is similar to last year will be a pass, anything better will be a bonus, anything will be a fail.
For now...Time to put the feet up and get some good shut eye.