Ironman Chattanooga Race Report - Linda Pyle
Report on IM Chattanooga 2019 by Linda Pyle
It's probably about time I give a race report for IM Chattanooga. Sorry for the length hard to make it shorter for such a long day. As most of you know it was super hot High 90s. Water temps 80' so wetsuit optional - I ended up buying a Roka Viper swim skin. Once in the water it was really fast downstream the only confusing part was we were supposed to sight left on the buoys which is to my advantage but then they pushed us right of the buoys most of the way. I even got to draft a little bit which was fun. 1:06:39 - doubt I'll ever have a time like that again.
T1 7:26 - volunteers were great
Next the bike. I was told not go too hard on the first loop because of the heat. I obeyed. Nice rolling hills. Doing well on fueling and hydration. Had to stop at ~45 for WC break which in thought was a good sign. Stopped at special needs but still had so much in my pockets I just downed my espresso and
moved on. Second loop the heat became intense and was definitely harder. My feet started to burn (hot feet is a thing) and it felt like everyone was stopping at every aid station I would pour cold water on my feet and put ice down my back. It became hard to fuel solids so I stuck with SiS.
Made it through but was wondering how I'd ever make it through a marathon. 7:00:32
T2 - 9:01 so thankful for the volunteer that help me as my mind was foggy from the heat and the process of changing was a verbal check list because my brain was sluggish. She told me not many women had come thru the tent yet.
Somehow I pulled myself together and got out on the run. First 4 miles were really difficult as I was dizzy and getting calf cramps so I focused on hydration, salt and getting my temperature down. I had chosen to wear a light reflector vest to hold my SiS gels but also it had a place for a hydration pack in back that I would have filled with ice (which was a life saver). Started to feel better. Strategy was run 3 min walk 1 min. Walk up hills and aid stations and then fall back into 3/1 between. It was hard to maintain this in the heat especially when I felt rotten but it gave me a goal.
At 5-6 mile the insert in my left shoe started to curl up because my shoe was wet. Tried to stop and fix it a few times but finally took it out at 8 miles. Pushed on. Stopped at the toilets a few too many times when it turned out I didn't need it (wasted minutes). At 16 miles my stomach started to feel really sloshy and even the gels became hard to swallow. So it was Cola and sucking on oranges even tried some broth. At mile 22 I decided to try a banana- MISTAKE- dry heaves. Even after the sunset it was still 90' out so you stop thinking about your body temp. Medical started icing my neck to get my temp down and once I started walking told me he'd check up on me up the road. I felt better and knew the finish was within my grasp. I was able to run/walk again. Push forward most running point to point walking between over the final bridge, around the corner, into the dark, and finally the finish line. 6:03:08
Total 14:26:44 4th in my AG
I was hoping for just under 14 but under these conditions I'm content especially since so many didn't finish. 23-24% DNF rate.