Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Steelheads Perfect Equation

By the numbers this race was destine to be a good one for me....(I always like the number 4) and
Steelhead 70.3 this past weekend was my 4th 70.3 Race as a professional, with bib number 22 (2+2=4) at the age of 22.  So I would say the 4th place fit in the equation perfectly.

Before the race though, I was a bit nervous what the outcome would be. The mind and body has been yelling for a mid season break, but I still wanted to ask one more race out of it.  I am glad I did and now rewarding it with a week of very low training before getting back into a training grove.

When the gun went off I was hoping for a better entry into the water then my 70.3 Racine race (Watch the left side of the pack in the video below and feel free to guess and laugh at who you notice haha)

Swim 28:25- It was another "Rough Water" swim like Racine, but not quite as bad. I handled it a bit better though and hung onto the main swim group with few single swimmers ahead.  *Race Tip for a point to point swim, count the number of buoys in the water so you can tell how far you have gone and how much more there is to go.

Bike 2:09:00- After a long beech and transition run, I nearly missed crashing (into a fence haha) jumping onto my speedy Cervelo P5 from Endurance House Middleton.  *Race Tip, spend a few moments practicing transitions and jumping onto your bike at home instead of at races....
It usually takes my legs a bit longer then others to warm up and fire on all cylinders so I just tried to hang onto the back of the main group and not let the invisible band to the group stretch to far and snap.

Finally about half way through the ride my legs were ready to give it a go.  I took a calculated risk and put in a good effort to ether pass and gap the group putting some time into them or get the group as a whole to start pulling in the lone rider ahead of us.  I tried but legs did not have enough power to leave the group.  It did though, get everyone working harder to try and pull in the leader, but turns out we did not do much other then make a good fight for 2nd place.  Looking back I probably should have worked harder the last 25min to do some damage to the other fast runners but I was nervous knowing how my body was feeling going into the race.  After flying by my parents spectating, I rolled into transition in 2nd place with a group of 4 others.

Run 1:19:19-  I knew starting the run that one person from the group would be going home without a pay check and I sure did not want that to be me.  I also knew that out of the group I was probably the slowest runner.  So it was time for me to put my big boy pants on and charge ahead.  By the time I ran past my parents at about half mile I was already being past.  I did not let this bother me, wanted my feet to get feeling back before I really started running as well as not go out to hard like most racers do.  *Race Tip, in a half distance or longer, it is a whole lot smarter to run the first 2 miles slower then your target pace and then start ticking town the pace from there.  By mile 1, one person had dropped out so I was back to sitting in 3rd place. Following the drop out, 4th place ran up to me and we cruised for about 2 miles together until he started gaping me.  Hindsight knowing that 5th place was to far back to catch us I should have taken the calculated risk and tried harder to run with him for 3rd place.  Because by the time I started trying to real him back in, the gap was just to big to close and I would have to be happy with 4th.  (Which I most definitely am!!) The whole time I was trying to real in third place in my Newton Running shoes, I kept on thinking about what my good friend and store owner of Endurance House Middleton said to me at the expo the day before "Run faster Paul Eicher. haha" Taking that risk could have possibly rewarded me with an extra $550 in my pocket, from 4th to 3rd place, but I did not take it.  Every race is a growing day and a learning day, when to take the risky road and when to take the safe road.

Overal 4:00:15- After thanking the "big man upstairs", slapping hands and firing up the crowed I looked up and watched the clock tick past 4hrs.  I just had to laugh, missed the 4hr mark by 15seconds haha.  So happy and blessed for another safe and fun race in my first season as a professional.

My coach Will S summed it up real good in a facebook post....
"Great race Paul Eicher 4th ironman 70.3 steelhead..improving every race, time for a well deserved mid season break mate...well done Paulie."
Thanks for helping me get to where I am and take me to where I want to go coach.

Below is Ironman's article on the 2013 Steelhead 70.3 Race.
Ironman's Race Report Article

Thanks for reading and being so supportive as I work towards my dreams!

1 comment:

  1. Hey Paul, finally read through all of your post here. It was great talking to you when you placed second in Raliegh. Keep it up!!!