2023 Ironman – Texas

Reasonably last minute, 11 weeks before the event, I decided to sign up for Ironman Texas … a full distance Triathlon has been on my bucket list for a while now. Overall the race did not go according to plan, but most importantly I finished and it was very rewarding experience. Doing something this long for the first time is hard 🙂 Here are a few photos from the event, my favorite was the fun area of “Hippie Hollow”.

Race Report


  • Felt maybe a little long, the weather played a role in this.


  • Put AirTag in bike bag for piece of mind. 
  • Put something on top of the seat tube to protect it
  • Didn’t need as much nutrition/hydration stuff, only used about half
  • Didnt need as many tools, take simpler tools maybe? (Torque wrench was nice though!)
  • Shipping stuff to hotel worked well (Co2)
  • Packing the bike took about an hour


  • Felt good, was easy, nice to get moving after travelling

Day Before:

  • Was my diet the best?
  • Should I have done the warm up swim?
    • I liked that I got in the water, knew the temp, water color, etc. so it was worth it, maybe burned myself out a little (even though it was a easy 10 min swim?)
  • Watching a movie was nice
  • Need to get to sleep earlier, got to sleep around 10pm, woke up around 2:30/3 and lay awake until 4.
  • Should have simulated T1 & T2 layouts before the race, didnt know where to go out of water

Race Morning:

  • Forgot Gel for swim start
  • Perfect timing to arrive, prep, drop off bags, etc.
  • Using the backpack for carrying water was good, would have been really heavy if not.
  • There was water in T2 in the morning!!!! So could have just carried empty bottles


  • Planned time: 1:05 – 1:10 – actual: 1:08
  • Wetsuit  made me tired?
  • I was tired after the first third
  • Bumped a few people, and got bumped a few times, but overall OK.
  • Had cramping calf in the first third
  • Rear hamstring had a small cramp at about 20 mins
  • Goggles were letting in water, had to empty, adjust them twice
  • Goggles were not tinted enough (bad sun on 2nd half of swim)
  • Could not sight properly due to the chop/small goggles/glare
  • Technique was total garbage, was sighting a lot more than normal, dint get into any sort of comfort zone because I didnt know where I was going
  • Swam off course
  • Didnt know where to turn into channel
  • Didnt have any good landmarks, should have “picked” some during the warm up swim!


  • Planned time: 5:30 – actual: 4:46
  • Didnt know how the route to the bag grab was, so was a little confused for sec
  • Mount was good using elastics for shoes and not needing to run in my bike shoes made me happy


  • Planned time: 5:25 – 5:35 – actual: 5:34
  • Drastically lower power from the start compared to my plan, I am not sure why, but just could not put out the watts, it was a great ride out to the toll road, weather was perfect, and just kept telling myself the power will come and dont be inpatient. I did that well, it was a fun ride with multiple people, multiple groups, and had a good pace going. Sometimes a little lonely, but other times working with a few guys. (Always being very conscious of illegal drafting but not getting upset when a draft group came by).  Stopped at the special needs and did a quick bottle refill, had a good chat with a volunteer which was nice to catch my breath for a minute. Took off and shortly after got the puncture. I thought it would be a easy fix, and after stopping the sealant filled the hole, I took off again and it reopened and spewed sealant everywhere. Stopped, used the tire levers and removed the tire, emptied the sealant and installed a tube. Reinstalling the tire took a while with the small tire levers and I was nervous to pinch the tube, so just took my time. Then I had issues with the CO2’s. Luckily I had two, eventually got it inflated and got going again. Was very nervous after that I was going to have another flat and not have Co2’s or another tube. During the stop, I wasnt upset, but also just thought, OK, well there goes my goal of 10:10, so just do what you can now. I got going again and tried to push some extra power to make up some of the time, but my HR just went up too much, so re-evaluated and it sort of took the pressure off and just rode to RPE. Passed lots of people which was fun and rode a steady pace all the way back to T2 since I knew I was still on track to hit my target of around 5:30 ish for the bike. Overall, I think cycling was my weakest discipline of the day, the tire is plain bad luck, but even without the puncture, feel like my bike pace, power was not where it should have been. Over tapered, under tapered, too much on the swim, too much in the warm up day, not enough on the warm up day, lots of questions, I dont have the answer for, but sometimes, there is no answer🙂 It could be multiple factors.
  • Was going to start around 170W and build to 195W, but started at 150W and built to around 175W
  • Immediatly took a gel at the start of the bike to make up for the one I missed before the swim
  • HR was getting a little over my planned 150BPM, so backed off. Was this the right move? I could have probably hit my power targets at around 158BPM.
  • Legally drafted well until the flat tire, then was well behind my pace of riders
  • Fixing the flat could have been quicker? Was very messy with the sealant to then install a tube. Should have carried two tubes. First CO2 didnt work.
  • Had to lay frame on ground when changing tire😞 put heli tape under front forks
  • Need new hydration/nutrition plan.
  • Stopping at special needs was ~ 2 mins.
  • Ate all extra gels and chews
  • Could not use the toilet for some reason, so pretty uncomfortable for a while
  • Front load of carbs worked well
  • Should have put out higher effort from the start of the bike, versus “warming up”?
  • Avoiding the road gaps was key
  • Aero socks worked OK, and gear felt great throughout ride, a tiny amount of chafing


  • Planned time: 4:30 – actual: 4:41
  • Dismount was good, removing feet and then lots of time before dismount line
  • Knew the route to bag, and was an easy pickup, fairly quick change, didnt feel stressed, hat on run belt on


  • Planned time: 3:30 – actual: 3:44:44
  • Ran the first half at a decent pace, I decided not to look at my overall time on my watch until 13.1 and sort of decide what to do from there. If I was on pace that was manageable to get closer to 10 hours, I would have pushed (and probably blown up), run at the same pace, or back it off a bit. When I check the overall time at 13 I felt OK, but with my legs already fatigued, decided to back off a little and not coast, but be conservative. Looking back this was the right approach, I dont think I would have been able to sustain 8:05 min miles for the remainder of the run. Although it was tough, I actually enjoyed mile 13 to around 17?, then I just got really tired and started to struggle 🙂 I still feel like I clawed a bunch of positions back after the flat tire, and although I didnt run my goal time of 3:30, it was successful.
  • Run belt was not tight enough for 4 gels, so it started to slip
  • Ate sodium tablets at around 1 per hour, but didnt feel like it was enough
  • Ice water over my head at the aid stations and Ice in my tri-suit kept me at a reasonable temp, didnt feel like I was overheating during the run
  • Didnt hydrate or have enough gels during first half and muscles felt very fatigued for the 2nd half, body/lungs felt fine, but felt like I could totally lock up at any time, so held back to make sure that was not the case
  • Started to struggle at around mile 17, but just reminded myself that the further and more I ran, the less I would need to walk 🙂  I did the entire run without walking, with the exception of going through a few aid stations
  • Ate Maurten caffine gels, normal gels, and started to drink red bull at the end which was nice, kept up with SIS sodium gels every hour or so
  • Not sure if my quad/calf cramps were from low sodium or muscle fatigue, or dehydration, probably all 3.


  • Felt great crossing the line, but felt miserable for about 1 hour afterwards, a coke at the finish line to sip slowly would have been nice. Got one from the food tent, sipped it, relaxed and slowly started to feel better.

Day after:

  • Glutes were not even stiff or sore at all, not enough usage/activation/recruitment?
  • Quads, calfs tight, but could still easily walk and move.