I was at the Rev3 event this past weekend and had another awesome opportunity to race with a few of my coached athletes/teammates. Kelly competed in the Olympic distance race getting ready for her Full Iron later in the summer. Her effort was hard for this race, this means she would produce snot, spit and tears along with managing piercing pain throughout the race.
Kelly did just that, and had a true test with an outstanding experience! She was not alone, Tom and Aaron had a great celebration of their fitness during their Half Ironman race and had to dig deep within themselves to fine more strength. I started the race with Aaron's wave and tread water for 4min until Tom's wave went off.
I swam with Tom, more for support and direction than for pace. He is a much fitter swimmer which help with his bike and run smack down he puts in once on land. Tom had another podium finish with 2nd in his division.
I biked at IM pace for my own test of the day and then hooked up with Aaron for the run. His goal was to PR his run time and overall Half Ironman time. Having the only half to compare to (Panama City, FLAT) and because of the conditions of the day, the climbing on the bike and run this would be a true test of his training over the past five months.
We locked in on an 8:40 per mile pace and held this for 9 miles of the run. The hills were taking there toll on both of us, but he was determined to PR. With a little encouragement he ran himself into a PR of 5 hours 45 minutes for the half (15min PR) and a run split of 1 hour 58 minutes (16min PR).
I believe the greatest results of anything you put yourself through is measured in personal experience. Many athletes including professionals chase the timed or placed result and over look the value in the experience of the test/race. Racing/Coaching along side of an athlete during their event not only is an honor, but it makes me a better coach.
Thank you HPR Athletes!