Om meg

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Husband to Sissel, Father of 2, Programmer@Atmel, Triathlete, Bowyer, Maker, Live Action Roleplayer; In short: Me

fredag 10. mai 2013

Trollveggen Triathlon 2012

Åndalsnes 14.july 2012. Low hanging clouds hide the mountains that I know to be there. Same story as last year, and the year before really. The memory of the mountain from 2009 lingers, and motivates though. Richard and his crew (mostly family really) have never failed to deliver a great event regardless of the conditions, but there was magic in those mountains in 2009. Will they be as magical today? During the race briefing Richard had explained that they had marked the run part well enough to guarantee that we'd be allowed up this time. Unless the weather made the bike leg impossible as it had last year. We were in for 6 brutal kilometers with 750 meters climb. I delivered the T2 box, and checked the bike one last time. Regretting for the last time that I only had an 12-26 cassette behind. Oh well. I'd get there in the end. The night before I had changed from the 11-25 that I had on there. Night before race bike mechanics is btw not recommended (I know that). The bike should be tested with the competition setup on a similar course as the event. Now something was not quite right. one of the cogs wiggled, when I turned the wheel. And the shifting was not true. In near panic I called out to my friend an bike guru Matz. He tried to tune it, and I made a couple of passes inside T1. No taking the bike out after bringing it into T1... We chose to have it shifting as clean as possible near the 26 cog. The flat part of the bike leg was after all only 20k. the final 14k would have between 8% and 10% incline. I settled with that and thought that I had done this before and that I was not here to compete. Only to enjoy the trip and the scenery. Another team mate was fixing his shoe horizontally with a rubber band. "So that was how you did it". As a bonus to my self I decided to try mounting the bike in a run, without training for it first. Not recommendable at all I know, but I mean this trip was all about the fun. As I was doing the last minute preparations I saw a guy with his family wearing T-shirts that spelled BØRGE when they stood side by side. Great to see such support! I became envious, and decided to cheer him too if I saw him during the event. This year I have focused on the running, ignoring the swimming and being a bit lax on the bike training has been the price. A recent change in my work responsibilities has also taken some time. My trip to the northern part of Norway had also prevented me from swimming with my team in Kyvannet. This would actually be my first swim in a wet suit this year. Not at all recommendable. The swim is where I previously have had some problems withe near panic situations. To counter this I got into the water early. About 10 minutes before the start. I got int the water. The swim had been shortened to 800m from 1200 due to the water temperature. It was pretty cold I involuntarily held my breath when I entered the water. That is a sign that it's cold and tha tit's very important to get accustomed to the water temperature. Good work Ole! The wetsuit socks that I bought the evening before (Yeah I know I should not do that...) was keeping my feet nice and warm. I warmed up swimming and threading the water for 10 minutes. Inspecting the stair that would get me out of the water again I realized that it was the same crappy construction as the two last years. If there is one point where I feel Trollveggen Triathlon has serious room for improvement is is that contraption. The water exit is onto a flotilla. The ladder does not have a hand rail, and the lowest step of the ladder is 10 cm below the water line. In effect you'll have to lift your foot as high as your chest to mount the ladder. Try doing that with a wet suit on. I'm seriously considering If I should sponsor them three professionally made ladders to go side by side. However 3000 NOK is a lot to spend on something I find annoying once a year..

 3...2...1... Go And we're off. I had positioned myself far to the rear to have not get swum over when the "washing machine" starts. Bad move. lots of chest swimmers to navigate in the start. come the first buoy, I saw a peculiar sight. 5 guys using their hands to traverse sideways hanging onto the buoy. Since I was in a queue to get past the buoy I said "Guys you float in those suits, there's no sense in doing that. try swimming in stead" Some chest swimmers kept boxing me in for the rest of the swim. I'd navigate to the front of one and he'd switch to freestyle to not let me pass him. Then he had to switch back to chest swimming again because he was winded. since I had a veritable school of them all around me I could not get past them. without swimming over them. I did not swim a lot faster than them anyway, so I hung back and tried to enjoy the experience. I got my fair share of kicks and elbows on that swim, but no anxiety or anything. Probably because of the low intensity. Towards the end I managed to pass a few and got a good start at the ladder. This year Richard had placed three burly guys at the ladder, to haul us up. This made the exit kind of alright (although a bit humiliating).

T1 was a 50m run from the flotilla. Or in my case a 50 m slog. I had made the mistake of having the socks outside the wet suit. The water inside my suit poured out of my wet suit and into my new socks. I felt like I ran with giant balloons filled with water on my feet. So much for doing anything new on race day! T1 was quick excepting the time I had to spend emptying my wet suit socks... Underneath I had a pair of socks for the bike ride. For 34km I'm not changing into dry socks. Running the 50m out of T2 without bike shoes on was a dream. The dream lasted until I mounted the bike. without the rubber band one shoe was on top end the other was up side down on the road. getting this situation cleared was somewhat of an ordeal. and took me about 1k before I was fully dressed for the ride. I still feel that it was faster than I would other vice have been.

The bike leg starts with a flatish 20k time trial that take you up to Trollveggen. Normally a spectacular wiew with it's 1000+ meeters of vertical cliff wall. Today the upper half was obscured by low hanging clouds. The route then turns around and goes down Romsdalen until the end of it. Then you turn left up the neighbour valley on the back side of Trollveggen. The final 10k climb is spectacular any day with serpentine turns and between 8% and 10% climbs. Mid way up the 700 meter climb you are cooled off by spray from a waterfall, as you pass the waterfall on a bridge. On this day the cool off was strictly speaking unnecessary, as 9 degrees and what was now considered fog and not low hanging clouds was chilly enough. I was wearing a tri suit and a woolen buff under the helmet. This proved adequate. As soon as I started biking I knew I was in for "a long day at the office". I had no power. The last training ride some three days earlier had involved powering up a 10% hill, and that had left me lactic to some degree. Then driving 1300km back down from Skjervøy and spending another day in the car getting to Åndalsnes had left me without bike legs. At least that is what I prefer to think. I could think that I had not been logging the hill workouts I should have this year, and that would have been equally true ;) The lack of power was however not my biggest concern. The sound of my gears was. I could see (and hear!) the two smallest cogs rotating freely on the hub axle. Crap! I had tools for a lot of cases, but tfor fixing this? nope. The shifting required delicate attention the rest of the ride. The chain got jammed twice between cogs and my bike sounded like I imagine a Harley Davidson sounds like in it's dying hour. At the second last turn after a particularly pesisten chain-jam My team mate and current arch-nemesis Dan caught up with me. We rode side by side up to T2. Endomondo-log

 T2 was fairly quick ordeal. Volunteers got my bike and the one shoe I managed to get of before entering T2. (you should evidently practice taking the shoes off while on the bike too before race day ;) ) When we got into T2 Richard saw me and asked for some disco moves, knowing fully well that I can never deny him this. I acoomodated him to loud cheers (or were they sniggers?) from the bystanders and volunteers. I got rid of the socks, and got into my minimus trails. grabbed my empty drinking bottle and rucksack containing clothes and nutrition, I beat Dan out of T2 by maybe 20sec.

You arrive at the top of the plateau some 750m above sea level. There is a platform on the plateau built straight out past the edge of the waterfall I mentioned previously. When we started the run I could barely see it. The fog allowed us maybe 50m of sight. More than enough to follow the well marked trail. Dan and I ran together until the first steep hill. It's brutal! I had a vivid memory of cramps in this hill from 2009. Because of that I went easy. Dan and two more people took advantage of this and pulled ahead. The line of sight decreased to maybe 5 meters, but the trail was easy to follow. If you had got away from the trail, however you may have been in a potentially dangerous situation, as no one would have stood a chance of finding you until the fog lifted. The fog cleared a bit towards the top, and I was able to scare Dan into running after the boulder fields by making contact agin. Lots of friendly faces cheering us on while going down. On the glacier flatish part I encountered a veritable crowd. Young ladies Cheering everyone on. I tried to repay them with disko-moves and by trowing kisses. Much cheering (or could that be sniggering? Naaah :-) ) Come the last hill I gave it everything I had, but Dan still managed to come a few meters before me. Endomondo log from most if it 

On the top of Stabbeskaret it was time to get into more clothes. up to this point I had only the tri-suit on. While we were enjoying the accomplishment, buns Coke and Coffee :-) ! The president of the Norwegian Road Runner society (Kondis) came in. Tim did not have much in the way of spare clothing, so I gave him an aluminum foil blanket. This guy is a legend in the Triathlon society in Norway, and have contributed greatly to the sport. Good to be able to give him something back :) All on all the 2012 Trollveggen Triathlon was an enjoyable event. Good to finally get to go to the top of Stabbeskaret again. I had however forgotten what a devastatingly hard triathlon this is. Especially the run is very taxing with 750m of boulder field to ascend!

This year's results:
 T1: 2:03
Total: 3:20 (22 min improvement from 2009 despite bike trouble)
Number 69 in my class (not that it matters of course ;-) )

When we were heading down we saw the guy with the "Børge" support team. I could not help but cheering heim on with a quote from one of the support posters I saw earlier: "Heia Børge". Hope it helped him as much as the cheering I got on the way up helped me ;-)

Next year will mark my and Trollveggen Triathlons anniversary for this event. Can't wait to se what kind of rock we get for the 5 year medal ;)

Bikeriding in Nord Troms 2012

Since I was doing the Lofoten Insomnia race I happened to have the road bike with me. I got to do a few rides I had been dreaming about doing since taking up Triathlon. Riding to Nordreisa over Reisafjellet was magic. the climb on the return was also very good, and one that was handled without problems :)
The ride can be found here in my endomondo training log
 Also I got to ride om Skjervøy, my home Island :)
  Here is the endomondo-log
 I had such a thrill of flooring it up and down "Langbakken" (72km/h on the descent) :-) Sadly this was the day before getting in the car and drivining south. The problem with that was the less than ideal recovery situation for Trollveggen Triathlon 2013. Oh well you can not get everything right I guess. As will be more than evident from my Trollveggen 2013 race report soon.

Lofoten Insomnia 2012

lofoten insomnia race report
The race runs from Å at the tip of the lofoten massiv all the way to Lødingen at the northern side. All
together it’s 235km of Lofoten. The race is fairly flat, although there are a couple of hills sto note. The
last one is by far the tougher and comes at 225km so you’ll know to appreciate it  To get to the start
you have the option of using a buss that is set up for the race. bikes are also brought for you if you
travel by bus. The buss ride is 4 hours long, but the scenery is so spectacular that you hardly notice. At
Å there is a restaurant/bar that give shelter to riders while waiting for the race to start. The race
starts at 2:00AM with the touring class starting some hours before at 0:00AM.

My journey:
Entering the buss I found a vacant seat beside a guy from Kvaløya who had done the race 4 times, and even
the 600k variant that was part of the race the first years. His cmments about the places and histories
provided ample entertaining for the buss ride. Thanks!
Since I was traveling in my Trondheim triathlon club clothes I got a lot of comments about triathlon at the
bus stops. I met a couple who was also triathletes. Turns out that Magne and Ingvild had participated
together with me in Trollveggen Triathlon last year. Turns out they are signed on for this years
Trollveggen Triathlon as well. When I asked what else they were planning this year they informed me that
they’d be running Ultra birken with me as well. Ingvild is signed on for Norseman (her 3.rd or as
well. Ingvild has been running in vivos and 5-fingers, so we had a lot to talk about. When we were dressing
up I saw her roll her jacket into a bundle and tuck it in her back pocket. I briefly concidered doing the
same rather than have the rainjacket in the small bag that came with it. I also considered offering tape to
secure it, but did not. unfortunately.

At the start we were told to take it easy, as there had been a couple of acidents in the touring group
close to the start. A car drove in front of us to make sure we took it easy the first 10k or so. There were
a lot of road work with potholes and gravel for that section.
shortly after the car drove of the tempo picked up. I decided to try to stick with Magne and Ingvild,
although they were probably way to fit for me to stick to. I was positioned a few meteres behind them when
the acident struck. Ingvilds rain jacket came loose and went into her rear wheel. we shouted to her, but
too late. I stoped to take stock since I had decided to stick wit them. The field moved rapidly past. A lot
happenes these first kilometeres where groups form. I was about to loose a valuable position. If there was
one thing I did not want for this trip it was to not be left behind as the last guy, to have to make it on
my own. If I was in front and had to drop a group I could take another train so to speak. If I was in the
last group… It quickly became apparent that Ingvilds rear deraliur had been torn of. Incertain about what
Magne would choose to do; stay or go. I decided to move on. I justified this decision with the knowledge
that Magne was probably fit enough to catch up with us if he chose to try. I got into a group of riders
from Lødingen and a couple of others. After waiting for some team mates to catch up we got on our way. The weather was not bad. Cloudy and windy but not cold (approx 12 degrees celcius). I had a bike bib, long
sleeves for the legs, A technical longsleeved upper + bike shirt, loose sleeves and wind west. Also I had a
buff,racing ski gloves and shoe covers. Perfect really. The tempo was decent, but a bit high for me in up
hills. The field moved in one line, no chain. after a couple of puctures and bike problems we broke apart
a bit, but got together again. Suddenly Ingvild pulled up on the side and passed me, shouting encouragement
as she went. Magne had made a big screfice and swaped his bike with her broken! Ingvild was last years
winner out of all the women. This made the swap make perfect sence. Suddenly I got hit by a feeling of
guilt for not having waited for her, and an urge to help her out. Shortly after the group was assembled
again, and we went on. We picked up Ingvild and went with her and another woman we picked up on the way for the remainder of the ride. Ingvild bullied the men in my group into doing double row chain, exchanging the two front riders in one go, and doing front service for about two minutes. Around 100k I got cramps. I
managed to push trough by taking salt capsules and doubling my fluid intake. The cramps got back later and
I had to take it easy or the cramps would bite hard. The ride was against headwind for more than half the
ride. Also there was some light rain towards the end. There are two hills worth mentioning, and two under
sea tunnels that are very worth noting. Particularly the last of the tunnels under sløverfjorden is fairly
is steep (8%) and long (3.2k). Excepting the tunnels and the two hills, the route is practically flat. All
the time the view is world class. The group I was in went to hard in the hills for my taste, but I had to
stick with them to not be left behind to fend for my self. This was probably not optimal for my Insomnia
experience, but very valuable biking experence. At the last aid station I needed water and salt. In
addition to filling up the bottles with sportsdrink. As I went out from the aid station I heard a sound
behind me. The box of salt capsules was on the ground, but the group was going. I had to choose. This was
actually quite hard. I had been having a down period and had been at the tail of the chain for a long time.
staying at the tail is stressfull and does not save much energy really. It’s just that the cramps would hit
me as soon as I was at the front.
I risked not being able to hang on to the group for very long anyway. Also I needed to take a leak, but did
not see any way I could catch up with the other guys if I did. I ended up sitting with the group and
actually doing service at the front too until the last 30k. Remaining about 30k there’s a long tunnel
slanting upwards where the tempo was very high. After that I thought I was done, but knew I could manage to get to the finish alone. I tried to hang on to the tail, and managed! I found a techniqe using my heels to
push down and hip extenders to pull up that alowed me to hang in there. At the last hill the group went
much faster than me. I was totally cooked. sweat was running off me in rivers, and I urgently needed to
take a leak. Magne had been driving in a car along side us all the way. As he passed me he drove very close
in front of me and helped me push some air out of the way. At 15km/h it doesn’t really matter, but still
the gesture was noted, and apprecieated. Thanks Magne! I made it up the hill by promising myself to take a
leak at the top. As I went past the top I did! I strugled to stay on my feet as I did, and it took for
ever. This probably resulted in two things: The group that had actually stoped at the top to wait for me
left, and I managed to stay focused at the last downhill, which ends in a 90 degree turn at the bottom. The
last 10k is perfectly flat and by now some people are out cheering in Lødingen. I passed Sissel and the
kids cheering me along. The finish is slight uphill at the local sporting arena. I duly thanked all the
riders in my group that waited at the finnish. Thanks guys. Could not have made it withouth you.
In the sporting arena they server free fish soup (delishious!) and you get your certificated and finnisher
shirt. You can also buy coffe, soda or waffles. I can vouch for all of them  .
I must say that the Lofoten Insomnia was a hugely enjoyable experinece, and the arranging comitee get 5 out of 6 from me. the only thing I missed in the aid stations was salt capsules, but I brought those myself , So I managed. The number of aid stations could also have been higher. particularly the last stretch is a bit too long to go without drink. Still the cramps was my own doing. Too hard in the hills and not enough salt and fluid intake + too little bike training this year

Length: 225km (GPS, no tunnels)
Elevation Gain: 1600m (GPS, no tunnels!)
Highest point: 170m
Deepest point: -130m
Place: Last of the male finishers in the racing class (42 started, 11 DNF’ed).
Total time: 8h20m
here is the Endomondo log

Motbakkebirken 2011

Har gjort den, kanskje får jeg funnet forum postinga mi med race rapporten også en dag? Vi får se

onsdag 4. juli 2012

Trollveggen Triathlon 2011

Trollveggen Triathlon 2011 Race Report.
It took close to a year, but here it is:
Åndalsnes, Electric mood, Music, Wetsuit, Wet! The rain was pouring, I was wet and I had not even entered the water yet. The fog heavy in the mountains. No running up to The top of Trollveggen. That was almost given. Assuming that we'd end up with the 10k road run on the top of trollstigen I had packed my racing flats in the T2 bag. A bit of a gamble, but not a big one. Then the message came loud and clear over the speaker: Rocks had begun to fall down on the road in trollstigen. The road engineers were on their way to block the road. The route would be changed. In stead of biking up trollstigen we would be biking to trollveggen and back. A fairly flat 20k time trial. Damn, I would have brought the time trial bike if I had known. The run would be up the neaksla mountain just beside Åndalsnes. Not exactly what I signed on for, but you have to hand it to Richard and the others behind the triathlon. They vere able to change venue in the last minute.
The swim was a 1200m two lap affair in Åndalsnes Harbor. This year a massive cruise ship lay at anchor while we swam along side it. Kind of cool, would probably have been swarmed with tourists if the weather had been better. As usual I had a spell of un comfy swimming and had to slow down to not panic. Also as usual I strugled to get back up on onto the pier. oh well entrertainment for the spectators at least.
T1 was pretty un eventfull.
the bike was alright. I hammered on, but it did not go very fast :(. I had been sick a few days before and suspect that had something to do with it. Also a racing bike with 11-28 was sub optimal for this. wet to the bone all the way. had to focus on finding the dryest lane on the road. passed some got passed by some too. HRM died the aquatic death :( but on the positive side I now need a new one ;)
T2 went pretty fast. Did not see any point in changing into dry socks ;)
We got to run the steepest up hill run in Norway for the run part (34%). burning pain in the calves way too soon after starting. Then lower back pains. had to cut back no more calf pain but the back pain lingered, but continued none the less. then I hear Frk Lien calling that she was coming to get me. That was motivating, so I gave it just about everything. 688 height meters, the reckord is 21 mins. Satisfied with about 2 times that ;) . Green silence was ok on wet stone and gras, Zero friction on mud and moss :( One of the contenstants that passed me used vivo barefoot. she claimed to have good traction all the way. Hm have to give those a try after birken.

On youTube the following movie conveys the journey very nicely:

onsdag 24. august 2011

AXTRI Race report

Think I'll do this one in English. For the bennefit of people that might want to know how the AXTRI is.
For a number of years now I have been building myself up. Going from 109kg couch potato to 94kg triathlete. Naming myself triathlete feels kind of funny, but yes I am one such. Last weekend I finished an half iron man distance triathlon called Aurland Extreeme Triathlon (AXTRI). This is my race report from that Triathlon:

The Swim: Aurland is a fjord with massive freshwater outlet. This means that the water is mostly fresh water. I knew that, but was not entirely prepared for it. The swim starts in an artificially made lagoon, and then enters the fjord.
Fra misc
The weather was perfect. no wind, no waves, sun peeking over the edge of the very high very steep edges of the mountains making up the fjord. A proper "Kodak" moment. This picture from the day before conveys something of the fjord we swam in.
Fra misc
The water temperature was measured to 14 degrees, I had bought a neoprene hood to prepare for that, but had not tested swimming with it. A risk, but a small one. The horn of the support boat at the first buoy was the start signal, and we were off. out of old habit I had placed myself in the rear and on the edge. This turned out to be a mistake. I had to pass a great number of slower swimmers, several who used chest stroke, and thus kicks sideways :( . The lagoon opening was also a bottle neck. come the open water everything was just perfect. I held back a bit out of experience to avoid panic when I go harder than I have oxygen for. The hod started to bother me a bit and irrational thoughts about being suffocated by it appeared. I cut back and they disappeared. THUNK something hit my head. a piece of wood floating in the water, not a problem. I increased the effort again and became aware that the goggles were taking in water. Kind of a problem. It's surprisingly of hard to convince your self that you'r, not about to drown when your face is under the water 90% of the time and your goggles are half full of water, so I stopped and emptied the mask. This happened three times during the swim until I got the mask just right. One more negative point about the speedo mask/goggles I have: The glass is orange, meaning that yellow buoys appear white, and does not stand out. However since I'm not an elite swimmer following the other swimmers was easy. At the far turning buoy we started to follow the shore. The water temperature dropped noticeably, and all of a sudden I was very glad to have the socks on (regular cotton ones but that helps too) Suddenly I put my hand in a large knot of seaweed floating about. I shook it of swearing and increased the effort to the sustainable threshold this time. When I'm properly warmed up going hard does not bother me, but somehow I never have time for that before a reace. We arrived at the lagoon where a friendly crew member unzipped me. To my surprise there were more blue caps around me than white. 35 minutes was shouted when I exited the water. 1900m in 35mins? yey! Not bad for me that.
BTC has an image of me coming into T1 I'm the guy with the hood still on.

The Bike:
After about 100m of flat ground it starts up. And it continues up for the next 16.5 kilometers, average grade is 8% (its very even btw). I had company with a nice guy from Hamburg. He did not like the hills. Kept mumbling something about not being accustomed to hills and yet he was tucked into the aero bars most of the time. This is us passing the photographer in one of the many hairpin turns. At about 600m height there is this very nice lookout point, that I highly recommend stopping at. You probably won't do it on the way down anyway. My friend Dan kept me company for a couple of hundred height meters, before finding a faster back to chase. I had more to go on, but was very uncertain about the wisdom of going to fast... I found an Englishman named Stephen to keep me company. He had done the bike part before and advocated respect for the mountain. I took it and we kept company to the top. The top was surprisingly easy to pass over. Hilly but easy. When I passed a water doing 44km/h on flat ground, I guessed that we had rather heavy tailwind. one glance at the lake confirmed my guess. BANG! No no no no no not that. A very sudden frost heave had done something to my rear end and rear wheel. The rear weel seemed to make an ssssssss sound. I prepared mentaly to change hose. Hang on! I have a tubeless setup. after comming to a halt I could see no singns of low pressure, no signs of leakage (you actually see that on a tubeless tire with sealant leaking out). Rather releaved I started pedaling again, but there was a rythmic tugg in the rear wheel telling me that the break pad was touching the rim repeatedly. This seemed to be the source of the ssss sound as well. I had to loosen the breake a bit to get forward. Still pretty decent breaking power. After a while I arrived at the Food stop just before the descent to Erdal. Two bottles of Sports nutrition and a flapjack, had been about perfect for the climb to the foodstation. They had potato chips, buns and prefilled bottles with squeezy. I have used Squeezy previously and stocked up on that rather than water. Then for the decent:
Fra misc
Met lots of bicyclists going up, most of them looked in good shape, but not all. Some walked. One guy was sitting in the side of the road without his jersey on. I took it ridiculously easy due to the reduced brake power. I also started to smell a funny smell. That got me thinking about rumours about delaminating carbon rims on steep descents. Not Funny! Still I passed a few on the descent. Got to the turning point and started back up. The Erdal side is steeper than the Aurland side. A lot steeper. 10% mostly and a small section with 14%. but it lets up from time to time. Suddenly after a car passed me I smelled that smell that got me thinking about delaminating rims. And all of a sudden I know what it was. It was the smell of clutch. Cars going down have to use the gears to brake or the breaks will overheat. Doh. I could have gone so much faster down that hill. Oh well. I passed quite some people going up that hill, a couple of them had punctures. I lend one guy an inner tube and my CO2. One guy started off again from talking to a crew member when he saw me comming. He started walking again shortly after. Never saw him again. Stephen, me and two girls chased each other up the mountain in a sensible speed. We got to the food station again. My God that must be the best potato chips ever. It's actually worth all the height meters just to experience that. Re stocking and starting back across the plateau. Actually Plateau is a mis-nomer here. were talking jagged edges for 10k here with about 250 height meters to accumulate. Tailwind had now become headwind. And a powerfull one to. The girls seemed to have no scruples about drafting. A bit annoying that when the conditions favored them for this. Come to think on it; they claimed it was their first triathlon. Maybe thay did not know better? I have tremendous respect for anyone tackling a half Ironman as their first Triathlon. To do the AXTRI as your first is nothing short of astonishing. Plateu traversing became descent, and this time I was like a Kamikaze pilot. Stephen in front of me was a little faster/more reckles. No thinking about delaminating rims this time. Felt good all the way down. Passed cars in both directions. Comming to Aurland I realized that the head wind was almost as bad there. The 6km to T2 felt flat. There is actually about 100m ascend on those 6km. On the night before the crew had briefed us that the cut-off time for the bike portion would be at 16:00. That was later set to 17:00. I had originally been a bit incertain if I could make the cut-off for 16:00. Turned out I could :) I was out of T2 about 15:50, having spent 5:57:55 on the bike part. Fairly satisfied I set out on the run just behind someone I thought was Stephen and the girls.

I started running at once. I passed the girls who was walking. The route is spectacular. Whenever I felt a bit down on the run. I lifted my eyes to focus to the surroundings. Not once did it fail to bring me back up. This is a powerful mind trick. I advice you to try it. But in Aurland it was boosted a lot by the scenery. After 5k flat on tarmac and gravel along a lake on one side with a 800m cliff wall on the other side I came to the point where the trail starts. There was a cafe at that point and 50-60 people sitting there cheered us on the way. The GPS was useless from that point on and the HR-monitor was reduced to being a timing device for the time spent pr km. The route was well marked. one poster every km and the trail was self evident at all but a couple of points. As soon as I started the assent I knew this would be hard. One knee was giving me some pain. The tired muscles after a very long and hard bike session kind of pain. tip-toes up all steep hills is the answers to that. This suited my foot wear well. Brooks Green Silence are lightweight and fairly flat. The grip is decent even on wet stone but they are not meant for trails at least not this kind of trails. The sole is thin and soft giving you good contact with the ground, but also demanding a high degree of attention to where you put your foot. After a while the trail got steeper. Lots of tourists coming down the trail and every one cheering me along. Hot and fantastic conditions. The trail got ever steeper to the point where I had to use my hands on my knees. The pace was steadily dropping towards 16 mins pr km! But hey! It was beautiful! I got to Sinjarheim an ancient farm at about 10k. Why anyone would build a farm up there is beyond me. But man he would have become pretty darn fit after a while! Half way and just out of water in the camelback. Perfectly planned! I drank some sqeezy at the service point at Sinjarheim, but declined on the sports bar. I can not stomach sports bars when I'm running I thought. I'll stick to gels. Throughout the race I had been using one 50g gel pr half hour by the clock. This is by the book, and since I did not have enough long trips I did not feel comfortable with going by feel only. Come the first stream to cross the trail I stocked up on water. This is probably where I lost two gels. After a cople of k's it was time for one more gel. but the pocket in the camelback was empty! oooops. I knew I had enough to last me four hours at least when I set out. That morning I boldly stated that "anyone could walk a half marathon in four hours", so I could not possibly need more. Now I know better. This was no ordinary half marathon. Trail from Sinjarheim was just as steep, but now it was alternating up and down. runnable? Welll yes and no, not for me at the time anyway, and some places: not for anybody! I ran where I could although the pace was not impressive. I started to get hungry. The time had passed the 9 hour mark. I had not eaten proper food since the top of the mountain. My stomach craved proper food, but all I could offer to it was water and gels. Although I had to ration gels too. I sorely regretted declining the squeezy bar. The trail was increasingly runable, but the pace would not get better than 10m pr km. My foot soles started to hurt from not being accustomed to the thin soles and the brutal trail. I had to really focus on where I put down my feet. Also I got really tired in the feet. Probably also from the somewhat new experience of less support. All this contributed to slow pace. People had been passing me all the way, although not many. Suddenly I got passed by Stephen who was obviously not the guy in front of me when I set out on the run. I kept up with him a while but got stomach issues and had to take a detour of the trail. Note to self: bring toilet paper on long trail runs. Grass is itchy. Finally I got to the 1km mark and passed the last of a series of ridiculous(for me at least) signs that warned to go slow!?! because of danger. Going up I felt actually got a dizzy spell, but not one that would have been dangerous. The last hour on just water was taking it's toll. A poor marking of the trail cost me the 99th place as a fellow triathlete came up behind me while I was searching for the trail. I had to open a gate and he did not. We jogged, then ran, then sprinted to the finish. He was the better triathlete that day, it's that simple. But hey, as finisher no 100 I was awarded a gift certificate on The support crew had the diploma ready with split times after just two minutes. 10:50:58 yey! Bergen Triathlo Club as a Finish Photo of me

Not sub 10 as I had secretly hoped to achieve, but I'm happy and proud to have finished at all, even though I never had any doubts about that during the race. My first half ironman distance triathlon and no field trip version of it either with 4200+ accumulated meters height. Some of the Norseman contestants from one week previous did AXTRI also, they claimed that in many ways AXTRI was harder. Been there, done that. Have got the Tee-shirt :)

Perfect Route, Perfect crew, Perfect or nearly so weather ;) All in all a fantastic race. Highly recommended!

tirsdag 23. august 2011

Bokanmeldelse: Born To Run

Born to run av Cristopher Mc Dougal kostet meg mye nattesøvn i sommer. Løp og kjøp, eller bestill fra amazon: Born To Run
Handler om en journalist som får en av de mange standard løpeskadene. Doktoren sien han må slutte å løpe... Så får han se et bilde av en mexikansk indianer som løper og det ser så rett ut at han starter å overtale Runners World til å få lage en artikkel om dem. Dette er starten på en reise både i seg selv, løpingens historie, løpeskadenes historie (som er ca like gammel som den moderne løpeskoen...) og en bortgjemt indianerstammes historie. i tilegg er det historien om et 160km ultra løp. Dette viser seg å bli ikke så mye en konkurranse mellom verdens ledende ultra løpere og indianerene, som en fantastisk men kanskje noe slitsom måte for dem å bli kjendt.
Her er et bilde fra blikjendt løpet deres:

Scott Jurek og en Indianer ved navn Arnulfo Quimare. Same,same, but different. Sjekk de smilene Disse gutta simpelthen elsker det.
Jeg fikk et ekstra lite kick, når jeg kom over "bare foot Ted" sin blogg her om dagen. Først da gikk det opp for meg at dette ikke er fiksjon og at folkene i boka er virkelige og artiklene som refereres også. her er en av artiklene som ikke er snill med produsentene av løpesko.
Fantastisk bok som for tiden er på utlån hos Dagfinn. lånes villlig ut til folk etter at den har kommet meg i hende igjen. Etter birken i år, så blir det minimalist fottøy på meg!