Brian Skehan-IM Oceanside 70.3 2017
I returned for the 4th year in a row to race in beautiful oceanside California. I couldn’t ask for more fantastic weather and awesome volunteers to make this a special place to race.
Swim– Past years ironman corralled every athlete by age group for start times. This year they changed things up a bit and experimented “ the roll out” by expected swim finish. I seeded my self with the 30-35 min group, but i didn’t expect to finish with that time frame at all. This strategy payed off for me in a few ways, one, i did swim faster knowing I’m with faster swimmers and, secondly i pretty much swam freely without to many athletes swimming over me and knocking me off my groove. My sighting was dead on, for the first time ever. My swim went as planned and even better as expected. I did PR on the swim for this race.
Swim time 43min.
Went as planned, nothing really to report other than its a long transition to the bikes. Took a tad longer than i wanted but i was happy with it.
Bike– The bike course hasn’t changed from when I first started racing here four years ago. Its fast and slightly down hill for the first 15-20 miles until you enter camp Pedleton. once you enter the base the bike becomes more challenging with rolling hills and eventually climbing a couple decent hills that can be challenging, if you don’t train for them. I felt really good on the bike, but not as strong as i raced a few years ago. The second decent climb, a female racer was in distress with a mechanical issue. I asked if she needed some help and she said yes, I pulled over to help. It took me a few minutes to resolve her issue and I went on my merry way. I quickly sped off, pedaling as fast as I could to make up some time lost, but I was careful not to blow out the legs. Mile 45 on the bike course can be a bit tricky depending on the year. Last 10-15 miles can be very windy with winds coming off the ocean. This area acts likes a funnel right into the base. Luckily, this year the winds did not surface and it was easy riding into T2. I missed my target of riding in the 2hr 40 range, which I’m plenty capable of doing. Not my strongest bike performance but ill take it.
Bike time 2hrs:57
Went as planned, but it’s a long one back into T-2 where the run gear is placed. Once I found my location on the rack, I needed to pay attention to a blister I had from a previous race, two weeks ago, slapped a pre cut piece of mole skin on, and off I went.
Run-This year i spent a lot of time working on my run. My run has suffered the last two years with the lack of mental toughness and overall run fitness. I felt pretty confidant that no issues would arise that would slow me down. The first 8 miles I ran strong without any issues, however at mile 9 I needed to make a pit stop for hunger pains that a few oranges helped resolve this. I felt strong on the run this year, compared to last races. I was happy with my outcome, however I did fall short of my run goal, of 1hr 51 min. Run time 1:56
In conclusion- I set a pretty ambitious goal to finish around 5hr 30min this year. I fell short by 20 min. I now know where the weak points are, ill defiantly be focusing on those before the next race in may. Oceanside is defiantly a great place to race, volunteers are awesome and you get to see some pretty cool military equipment while passing through the base. I want to thank Folsom bike for allowing me to wear the logo once again.
Over all time 5:51