Jeremy Hopwood

Jeremy Hopwood

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Ironman Coeur D'Alene - Embracing the Moment

The last few days have been absolutely amazing. Firstly I must say i feel truly lucky to have so many friends who have sent notes of congratulations over the last few days and are truly humbled by the kind words.

One of my key things in my race plan for IM CDA was to have fun and I definitely achieved that and I think that was a key to having a good day. On of the great things about the day in the end was that it was not a perfect day and I raced on the conservative side. This is awesome that it gives me hope and motivation that I can go faster in Kona.

Pre Race

I headed down to Coeur D'Alene the week before with Rachel Kiers and had a fun drive down which set the tone for the week which was relaxed, fun but focused on the task at hand. Upon arriving at the beautiful home of Kevin and Vonnie who were magnificent hosts went for a run which was a little bit of a rude awakening to the summer that Vancouver has missed out on. Having said that considering a full day in the car and a hilly run felt good and ready for the week ahead.

The rest of the week was filled with executing race week work outs, driving and riding the key parts of the course and getting to meet some of the local triathlon community. Race week can be stressful but staying out of town with great people and fun attitude made a huge difference. The highlight of the week was potentially the trip to Spokane were we embraced the hoop-fest spirit on our run

As race day approached Les and Mike came into town as did Colin and Clint and we had a house full of 5 people about to toe the line come Race Day along with three very supportive spouses.

The Result

9:34:23 (PR by 56 minutes)
23/2263 Overall (Including Pro Field)
9th Age Group Athlete
5/216 M30-34

3.86km Swim 1:11:07
75/216 - M30-34
529/2263 Overall

This was not the swim that I had planned on or hoped for and was a little disappointing. Was a calm swim until the first turn then all hell broke loose with people struggling to sight and for some reason stopping dead. I have the ability to swim faster and motivation is high to get more work in and make this swim quicker. Kona is a non wetsuit swim but I will go faster and do what it takes to make that happen.

In the end though I felt like I did not burn too many matches in the swim and just pushed the 5 minutes I lost aside as I exited the water and focused on the long day ahead.

T1 - 3:08

Nothing special, wet suit strip took some time and was methodical but not quick in the tent. Got some calories down on the way to the bike as planned and was soon on my way on the bike course.

Bike 180km - 5:07:28
5/216 - M30-34
38/2263 Overall

I rode very conservatively and just kept on thinking "respect the run". Executed my nutrition well, spun the hills, rested were it made sense and kept well hydrated. Definitely played the bike safe and may have left some minutes to the bank but better to have done that than borrowed as the interest rates on that transaction tend to be severe come the run.

This was my longest ride of the year and 3 more months of training should allow me to push a little harder on the bike in the confidence that the run will still be there. In the end though are stoked with my ride as was patient and executed the plan well.

T2 - 47 Seconds
Well I somehow had the fastest T2 out of everyone. Was trying to keep it slow and controlled and did everything I needed to do but still flow through there and was out on the run course.

Run 42.2km - 3:11:54
4/216 - M30-34
15/2263 Overall

Hit the run course and felt good, tried to make sure I ran no faster than 7 minute miles out of T2 and hit a rhythm. Focused on getting the calories in at each station and running relaxed with good form. When running out on lakeside not seeing any Age Groupers coming back for a while let me know I was in the race. Think I was about 15th after 10km and was picking guys off one by one.

Aside from fighting of a potential cramp felt good and as entered lap two just focused on keeping the rhythm. Hit a dark place at about 28km but just kept working. The miles were counting down and with 8km to go was on the way home and started drinking the coke. Hitting town again was fantastic and after making one last pass with a mile to go turned onto Sherman for the run home.

The run was fantastic, had the guy I had passed about 20 seconds behind so had to keep working but having the main street to myself was unreal. Once I realised I had executed a good day was pumped. Coming down the chute I was looking for Leslie and saw her beyond the finish line and was stoked to see here there.

Then it was done - New PR, Spot to Kona without needing to go to roll down and a fantastic way to spend my 30th Birthday.

The Aftermath

One of the best things about the day is that not everything went right. This means two things;
  1. I troubleshooted and raced well which is key at this distance
  2. I can definitely go faster and strongly believe my best Ironman for 2010 is still in me
In 100 days I will be toeing the line at the big show in Kona and are looking forward to getting ready to go fast. I don't want to just attend the show, instead I want to lay it down there and race strong and put down a good result. This past Sunday i got to race vs just chase and come Kona I want to take that to the next level against a strong field.

Key Sponsors & Supporters


The photo below says it all. Aside from the fact you think I am crazy you are super supportive and was awesome to get to share the finish line experience with you - looks like at the next race we at least get to swim with turtles and dolphins. Last time we swam in the tropics you had to teach me how to survive so we could go snorkeling, hopefully are a little better in the water now!!!

Thanks to the whole crew @ Forerunners. Lucky to be associated with such a great group of people and look forward to being involved in the Summer/Fall Marathon clinic. I did my first ever interval workouts with forerunners and look forward to giving back 2 and a half years later.

Through forerunners are lucky to be associated with Newton. Wore the new model neutral trainers on the weekend and they felt awesome throughout the whole run. In the last 12 months I have put over 2300km of running in a except for track spikes for a couple of sessions this has all been in Newton shoes and my feet ad legs feel better than they have ever done.

Thanks for all the support. Having a bike that you know is in good condition is always a awesome feeling. I have basically grown into the sport of Triathlon with Speed Theory with their support and guidance. Was cool to get the photo of me finishing on the big screen at the store as well

Coach Clint

Thanks mate - followed the plan and executed on race day and had a good result. Huge thanks for Sara and yourself travelling down and supporting come race day. Think the pre race chat as simple as it was solidified the plan perfectly and prevented me form doing anything stupid especially on the bike.

Huge Thanks

In the past year I have trained around 750 hours averaging over 15h a week in 2010. This is not possible without the support and understanding of others. In no particular order here are a few people - sorry for those I missed and thanks for sharing the journey.

Family and Friends - Heck I even missed my own birthday party last year!!! Anyway thanks all.

To Mum and Dad thanks for all the support, still bounce my head when i run but will work on that. We were never a family flush with cash but you always allowed me to follow my sporting desires and that ethos is something that I have taken into life.

To my Vancouver non tri friends - next years sun run time is 45:28!!! Seriously thanks, had a awesome Olympics and will deifnetley be catching up over the summer. Thanks for all the text messages of support

Kevin and Vonnie - Thank you for opening up you house. Kevin awesome job on breaking 13 hours -awesome to see you achieve your goals
James, Laura, Olivia, Sophia, Barb, Al, Adrienne - Thanks for making the trip down to support. Was cool to see some familiar faces on the course.
Mike - Super Supporter, was awesome to see you at random spots on the course cheering on. Will make sure I repay the favor!!!
Rachel - Learned a heap about how to prep and execute from you and this is the stuff that done right day in day out makes a huge difference come race day
Clint and Colin - To have 5 people racing a IM in the one house could have been risky, but it was a super chilled and relaxed environment to be in pre race which was awesome
Jerry - Getting the opportunity to run with a sub 30 min 10km runner is awesome and your input and advice in terms of form and approach has been fantastic.
Training Buddies - From the last couple years have had the opportunity to meet with and train with a number of cool people. Whenever I am on the bike I just think to try and bike like a Kiwi (Tony and Paul) as not sure what it is in the pristine waters down there but you guys train hard!!!
Carla - Getting hit by a SUV 6 weeks out form your A race is not ideal but you are a legend and got me up and going very quickly. Add to that regular sessions and are learning a lot about how to maintain, strengthen and recover my body.
Coeur D'Alene - Lovely City and these races are never possible without the support of a city and the volunteers. Running down Sherman street with people lining the last 800m was an awesome feeling
Everyone - Have been truly overwhelmed in the past few days with messages of support pre race and congrats post race. This is so appreciated and I am truly humbled by the messages. Hope to do everyone proud in 100 Days time.

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