November 13, 2018 - This is a breakdown of the days leading up to and during the race.
The race was set for this past Sunday, November 11th. The distance is a half-ironman. I have done the race in 2016 and 2017 with great results, and have done other half-ironman or longer distances. I arrived Thursday morning to get accostomed to the weather since it is like 40 degrees in Columbus, and 85 down in Miami. Went for a quick, sweaty run and then relaxed for the rest of the day. Friday rolled around and this is normally my day off, so I sat out by the pool and did homework and studied for my classes. Decided to put the bike together just to make sure everything worked. That was probably the best decision I could have made, becuase once I got the bike together and started shifting the gears to check everything my derailleur hanger completely snapped and broke. I took the bike to the closest shop and luckily they could get a replacement hanger for it, but the bike would not be ready until Saturday evening. The problem with that was that there was a mandatory bike check in from 10am-4pm Saturday. Saturday came around and I go to race site to get my race information and get in the water and swim around a bit. I talked to a few officials and they alloowed me to check my bike in the next morning. So I went home, ate dinner, and laid down and watched football until I went to bed around 6-7 becuase I had to be up at 3am the next morning.
So now we are talking about the race. I wake up eat and get in the car for the race. It is pouring rain the entire time leading up to the race, so everything was soaked. Race started at 6:30am, non-wetsuit legal. I had a decent swim, 29:47, I came out of the water with the eventual winner of the race, and another kid from my age group. I hopped out onto the bike and for the first 15ish miles I was averaging about 26mph, but the kid in my age group was going way faster and put a minute and a half into me. I stuck with it and was averaging about 25mph until about mile 41. I hit the wall and eased up a little bit, but I caught that kid at the same time, which was a huge morale boost. I finished the bike with a 4 minute lead to the next kid in the age group, with a time of 2:21:27 which was a pr for me. The run was a bit rough. The sun came out and made it 86 degrees and no shade in the blink of an eye. I started to fall apart, at about mile 3 I saw the kid in my age group and he was at least 2 minutes behind me. I started to think that I was going to lose and that this kid was going to catch me. At that point in the race I could not see straight. or even walk straight. I came by my dad at the half way point and I really wanted to pull out of the race, but he didn't let me. I stuck on and just kept to running hard for two minutes then walking 30 seconds. It hurt mentally knowing I had to walk, but that was basically my only option if I wanted to finish. I saw the kid again and he was a good mile and a half back from me. That gave me a huge boost, I knew I could do it. I came acorss the finish line running a 1:46 half, and a total time of 4:40:18. I finished in 14th overall, and 14 minutes ahead of the second place kid. I won my third U-19 USAT Long Course National Championship.