Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Rev3 Half Iron Race Report- Part 1- week leading up to race and expo

By now, you all know I was in Maine for the week for the race.  I've decided to break up the race report into 2 different reports due to how long (I know, sorry) it will be.  Since we were up there for an entire week, it can't just be a report on "hey, my race went great here are my splits".  There is a lot more detail on the entire race week than that.

So while I was up there, I ended up running a good amount on what I thought was the race course.  I ran 7 miles a few times on the course to see the elevation, how fast I can take it and how I would feel.  I thought this would give me a huge advantage on race day since I would know how I would feel during the run.  The problem is, I was running on somewhat fresh legs and know after a swim and bike so even though I tried to hold myself back, it was still pretty fast.  However, I did get the lay of the land.

The one part about race week that I don't enjoy is my complete shutdown of alcohol.  Normally, it's not so bad, but we were on a vacation and it was my birthday so I would have liked to drink a little bit up there.  Knowing how important this race was to me, I decided to do a complete cleanse of alcohol and not have any until after the race.  Sooo upsetting, but I was able to do it.

So as it got closer to the race itself, there were a few things to do.  First off was the athlete check in and registration.  Since the race venue was close to where we were staying, I had the wife, my father, and Leo all go to the expo for that so we can look around.  Once we checked in, it was time to go shopping, pick up race swag, and also coordinate where I would be picking up Riley towards the finish line.

My thoughts on the Rev3 Expo were disappointing.  Not because of how the expo was or how limited the vendors/sponsors there, but it was always built up that the Rev3 brand is the best in terms of expo and swag.  It's always a downer when you expect something to be amazing, and it's just alright.  It's like seeing a movie that everyone said was the best movie ever and it was good, but you expected more so in the end you thought it wasn't great.  Same thing here.  With the exception of about 3 different vendors, the area was pretty bare.  We went to pick up our number, got a swag bag, walked around the merchandise tent, saw the 3 vendors that were there, took some quick pictures, and that was it.  I honestly expected more.  I wanted there to be more.  Unfortunately, we were there for like 30 minutes and that was it.  Nothing to do so we took off.
Number look up.  yup, I'm on the list

Leo and I getting our timing chips

This is the area I would say I was the most disappointed with the race.  When signing up, there are articles on how great the swag bags are for Rev3 events.  They give out a Headsweats visor, shirt, goodies from sponsors, and in fact, a pair of really good goggles.  However, when I picked up my bag, all it had in it was a visor and some samples.  Not good at all.  No goggles (which when I signed up months ago they said would be there), no shirt (which I would get as a finisher), no nothing really.  So upsetting.  For such a great race, I really wanted more.  I would have even bought more, but the merchandise tent didn't really have anything great either.  Just one or 2 shirts specifically for this race.

Practice Swim:

One thing that I have to give so much credit to Rev3 is the practice swim they arranged the day earlier.  On Saturday before the race, they set up all the swim buoys, had lifeguards in the water, a swim clinic by the pros who were racing, and it gave us the ability to jump in the water and practice.  So Leo and I woke up early and got our butts down to the water to practice.  While we couldn't swim the entire course, we could swim over half of it.  This was all most of us needed.  It was great to get those open water swim scares out of the system the day before.  So I swam down to the last turn buoy and turned back and did over 50% of the swim course.  I couldn't have been happier.  Warmer, yes. happier no.  The water temperature was a nice 60 degrees so wetsuits were definitely legal that day.  The wake up call your body gets when it jumps into water temperatures that cold is pretty amazing.  But it was good to see the swim breaks and the tides to know how deep the water was (not very), and also be able to clock myself for the majority of the course.  I could also get my sighting views which is always a good thing.
Leo and I very happy to be out of the water instead of about to go in

After the practice swim, Rev3 does a worst wetsuit contest.  I have to say, this is hilarious.  It's like we're back in high school and it's a popularity contest and who brings the most people, but it's a site nonetheless.  Basically, people come out in their wetsuits from like 15 years ago and try to be the worst so they can win a brand new wetsuit to replace their horrible one.  Personally, I like the day glow orange Don Johnson one below.

Yeah, they are all that bad

 With all that being done the day before, the only thing left is to check in the bikes the night before the race.  We went to the athlete briefing then checked in our bikes and went home to grab some dinner and off to bed.

Rev3 does it great for the transition area. Each athlete gets their own personalized bike rack, not some bar where everyone just throws their bike on it and are fighting for whatever spot they can get. We also get our own name plate.  It makes it just a tad more special and you feel honored to have your bike with them.  Small touches like this are what will keep me coming back to Rev3 events.

Yup, thats me
All racked and ready to be picked up in the morning

So after all this, there is only one thing left to do...and that's race.  The actual race report will be up within the next 48 hours.  Just waiting on some last minute photos to come in

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