Ironman 70.3 Race Report- Annick Desrosiers

We had a few of our members taking part in the Ironman 70.3 Victoria race a couple of weekends ago and this report is from Annick Desrosier.


Early season races, especially when you live in Canada are always tough to prepare for, but Annick did a great job preparing and racing. Here is what she had to say about her race. 


The Short Report:
I had a personal best swim in a 70.3 Ironman. The bike was a lot harder than expected, the run was beautiful but I had a hard time. In the end...I had a blast! Finished in 6 hours 40 min and 28 sec.

The Long Report:

SUNDAY FUNDAY! Race day was here, and I felt excited. I ate my usual bowl of oats, some toast and a glass of OJ. We leave to go to the venue, arriving with an hour before the start of the race. I misunderstood the closing time for warm up swim. They closed the swim warm up area, but knowing that I would have about 30min before I actually hit the water, I walked around to a spot where I could sneak in a quick dip, I did 5-6 strokes, and felt I was good. I seed myself into the crowd. When I got to the start line, I needed to wet my goggles, so I walked into the water ( it was a very shallow start) , dipped my goggles in, then placed them on my head. By that time the water was deep enough for me to start swimming. I dive in, and settle nicely with no anxiety. I had no problems this time sighting ( sighting every 4-6 strokes) and passing many people. The water was cool 16 Celsius, and pretty calm. I was feeling great. I get out of the water at 40min 7sec. I could not believe my watch, I just PB'd on the swim! (Previous best was 41min exactly) I am so happy! What a way to start a race!   

Transition was going decently. The transition was on an incline and grassy, so not great in my opinion. I got my gear on, and started running with my bike, but I had a tumble. Shook it off, had some nice people ask if I was OK. I was, and so was my bike, phew! Leave transition with a slow time for me of 05 min 24sec

The bike course was smooth roads, but completely open to traffic. Not great, and had some times where I had to pass cars following cyclists. I much prefer a closed circuit. I start the first half of the race with rollers, and some flats. I play tag with a few cyclists as they pass me on the uphills, and I would zoom by them on the down hills and say you are it!. Legs are spinning the whole time. Moving average at the halfway point was about 30-31km per hour. Yea, gonna maybe come in under 3hours… this is great! Well the second half of the course was more uphill rollers, and a nice big climb toward the end. First time in a bike event, I felt my legs feel tired. I started feeling that the bike course elevation was more than what was advertised online. Oh well, just keep going! I knew at KM 75, I was no longer going to make it under 3 hours, so I kept a pace that felt like zone 2, and smiled to the dismount line. Later I found out that the course was 1,128m elevation vs the 900ish m that was in the guide…No wonder that bike ride was tough! Finished the bike in 3 hours 13 min and 44sec.

Second transition went smoother. Rack the bike, put on a hat, and shoes and use the potty and off I went. Time of 4 min and 15 sec.

The run was simply stunning. I was told it was a packed gravel run course with 85m of elevation… That was a lie. It was a trail run with 170m of elevation. I think that I have run 1 trail run in my life for a total of 15min. This was my first real trail run, and was a half marathon! I managed to run the first half, but then I developed burning pain in the ball of my foot. Great, I now have to manage a trail run and pain in my foot. Lucky for me, the pain would subside if I walked. So I changed my run to 9 min run, and 1 min walk. That was OK for a bit, then I had to decrease the run to 4 min and 1 min walk. At this point it was all about finishing with a smile, and upright. My energy was great till the 15th km. I decided to take in a little coke to help boost my energy, and get some caffeine. It helped! The crowds get thicker, and I get the crowd to cheer for me. I see the red carpet, I start to smile big and jump for joy! She is done! I happily gave up my timing chip, and took my medal and finisher hat. I move along to the food tent. I grabbed some chips, oranges, and they had a Gluten free non alcoholic beer!  

Overall there were a few obstacles, but this was half ironman number 8. It was tough, I got her done, and I would do it again! Next time, I’ll get the right footwear, and learn how to run trails, instead of trial under fire lol! Finish time of 6 hours 40 min and 27sec.  

Another shout out to my coach Julia Aimers, coach Kevin and Team Triumph Triathlon Club for the great training plan and swim coaching!

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