Ironman Chattanooga 2017

Posted by David Bialkowski on

Hi Trysport fans

Many may still be waiting and wondering about my participation in Ironman Chattanooga this past September 24th.  Well for the first time in my 32 years of triathlon racing I voluntarily DNF'd, after completing one loop of the 2 loop run course.  It was a relatively easy decision at the time to make but still one that I could not believe I was doing.

There were many factors that lead up to this.  This was supposed to be a year of racing with my son Marek, and when he went down after his bike/car accident on July 12th, my motivation for training did as well.  I really had to fight to get out there, and out there I got but not as often as one should with an up and coming Ironman.  Secondly with this past summer we have had zero opportunities to do any heat training and of course on race day it was 100 degrees Fahrenheit.  On race day itself my main mistake was putting my bike computer in a place that I really couldn't see it with my helmet visor and the light conditions so I had to ride by feel.  And my feel was 30 watts to high and 5 heart beats too high and while I had a fantastic ride I cooked myself.   This left me broken and crippled on the run course.  The heat along with over extending myself I was vomiting on the run course.  I was in a bad and very unhappy place.  For me I realized at that very moment that while Ironman was very doable when I was in my twenties, it is not so when you are in your 50's especially when you are not all that willing to slow down.  It is also crucial that you are racing and training for your won reasons, and I was clearly not.  So I not only pulled myself out of this race, I also have in my mind officially retired from any and all future Ironman events.   This is good news for me as I know that I actually needed a situation like this to teach me this new reality..

Now never say never.  For me to enter a future Ironman event I would need to be extremely motivated for myself and be willing to put in the proper training for the better part of a year, with no guarantees of doing well and/or making it to Kona again, which admittedly is still a goal of mine.  I know that my willingness to sign up for that kind of suffering again, at I'm sure a heightened risk of heart health, is so small that I am very comfortable in saying that I am retired.  

So just short and fast stuff for me now.

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