Tuesday, May 17, 2011

St. George 2.0

I've been thinking a great deal about the event that was Ironman St George. The thoughts that I wrote the day after are still clear. I made some mistakes on race day that could have made things easier had I done them right. The coach had me well prepared physically but maybe I could have done more or less based on my experience. This brings me to the post today. My meltdown on the run started at about mile 4. At first it was just a nagging pain in my heel. I knew I was rubbing my heel raw but I also knew that this was Ironman and things like this happen. By mile 9 it was becoming so painful I tried over and over to relieve the pain by adjusting my sock, to going super duper tight with the lacing. By Mile 12 my head switched from racing to keeping my foot comfortable. By Mile 14, walking was the most comfortable. I ran when I could but stopped often to relieve the pain in my heel. This more than anything limited my intake of fuel on the run. I was more concerned with moving forward pain free than drinking and eating.  When I finished the race all I wanted to do was take my shoes off. The heel was ugly for sure. Marco and Mary were a bit blown away by all the blood and hanging skin. To be honest I didn't want to use this as a reason for my meltdown. I think I set it aside as being weak. On Monday of this week I opened the bag and pulled out the shoes. It all came rushing back to me.  Here's the thing. I knew in November which shoes I was going to race in. I ran in this model over and over and over again. The only thing I did differently was order a fresh pair of production. As a product guy who is sample size, I don't normally run in production. In fact it's been years since I ran in a production shoe. For this race I really wanted to run in production because quite frankly that's what everyone else runs in. I ran in the shoes twice before the race which is not abnormal for me. I can usually tell right away if a shoe is going to be good or bad. But not this time I guess. On the positive side, this little incident is going to help us build even better shoes. We're already working on a fix. The morale of the story I think is you are better off racing in a shoe you've got some miles in. I think 20-30 miles in this shoe would have either broken in the heel collar or would have told me to find a different shoe. I surely don't blame the shoe. I made the decision so it's purely my fault. 

It's a good life.....
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