Monday, August 30, 2010

After the Deluge: Miami Nice Race Report

As mentioned in a previous post, in preparing for the Miami Nice Sprint Triathlon, I was coming off a cold that came with a bout of laryngitis. I'd managed only a 13 mile bike ride on Thursday, a 5K run on Friday and a 20 minute swim Saturday morning. On each of these workouts, I felt like I was pushing the envelope and possibly coming back too soon. In addition, my mother-law-law, Kiki, kept harping in my ear that I wasn't resting enough and jumping back into exercise too soon. However, this was my wife Salome's only other schedule triathlon for this season and I wanted to support her. My plan was to start the event, take it easy, and if I felt overtaxed, to drop out.

Preparation Sunday morning went fine, until just before the race. There were some ominous dark clouds coming in from the east. As the announcer started the first couple of waves, it started lightly raining. As the rain was chilling, Salome, buddy Tony & I got into the water near the start as Tony had indicted the water was quite warm. It felt good to be submerged to our necks and in fact it was warmer in the water than being exposed to the rain. The rained picked up and soon visibility was about 3 feet. The winds picked up and waves started forming on the bay waters. It felt like I was getting a message from God to cease this foolish venture and go home.

I turned to Salome & Tony and said: "If this keep up, I'm not racing. This could be dangerous not only on the ride, but if anyone got into trouble on the swim, the guys in the rescue canoes may not see the troubled swimmer." That's about the time, lightening struck. OK, I'm outta here. The 30 or so of us warming ourselves in the water quickly exited the bay. The swimmers already swimming were called back. As we headed for the expo tent, I turned to Salome and said: "Let's get our bikes and go home." To give you an idea of the scene, here is a picture of a friend's daughters before it got too sever. Note the 3 inches of ground water and the swimmer trying to shield her eyes in the background.

The race officials let racers into the transition area to check on their gear, but held off in letting anyone take their bikes out of transition. The transition area looked like Minnesota, a land of a thousand lakes. Helmets was floating in giant puddles here and there, and everything was completely soaked. But like a lot of rains in South Florida, this storm passed in about 40 minutes.

While the ground was still covered with many large puddles, the race organizers decided to restart the race. The race contained both an Olympic and a Sprint division. In order to keep within allotted traffic closure times, the organizers shortened the swim and bike portions of the Olympic event to the sprint distances; only the run would be different. We decided to stay and do the event.

My race report is pretty simple. With each leg, I was fine for the first half of the swim, bike and run, but felt tried for the second half of each leg. I was clearly returning to the fold about a week too early, but never felt that I couldn't complete any of the legs of the event. If only they had a half sprint event, I would have felt great. As far as my times, they weren't too far off what I'd have done fully recovered. All in all, I felt good about participating.

After finishing, I circled back a few hundred yards from the finish to watch Salome come through the finish line. She looked in good form. After clearing our gear out of the transition area and getting some post race food, we headed toward the results postings. As we approached the results board, a couple of friends congratulated Salome on her first place age group finish. Salome thought they were pulling her leg, but sure enough, there her name was atop the listings for her age group. Needless to say, she was thrilled.

Another buddy, Andy Wiener placed in my age division (I came in 5th), so we had much to cheer about in the awards presentations. We sure are glad we stuck around for the race. As Salome said: "It's important to finish what you start." Here are our victors at the awards ceremony.

On the Ironman front, buddies Miranda and Michael did fantastic in Ironman Canada on Sunday. Miranda's race went as follows: Swim- 1:15:26; T1- 7:30; Bike-6:29:10; T2- 5:26; Run- 3:50:38, for an overall finish of 11:48:10. Micheal's results were as follows: Swim- 1:11:26; T1- 7:30; Bike-6:45:16; T2- 7:59; Run- 4:18:37, for an overall finish of 12:32:54. Just spectacular results in my book. Congratulations to both Miranda and Michael on great races.


  1. There is something about racing in the rain, during the event, it sucks and your right, dangerous, but afterwards you feel just a little bit more hardcore then racing on nice conditions.

  2. Oye, what a way to start a race! I think it may have been a blessing that they shortened the course. It's great you went back out there to race, even if you didn't feel you were in top form. I constantly remind myself that those are the character building races that give me the mental stamina I need for the BIG races. Nice job!