Velocity: Total distance (d) and time (t) allow a calculation for your velocity (v). This may be different than your chip time (and definitely gun time), though since I encourage certified events only, this should be very close to your time. Elevation (and altitude) change, terrain, and weather can vary the validity up to 100%! What I mean is if you compete in a triathlon on a very wavy, stormy and mountainous course, your time may double.
Pacing: Splits / km allow the most consistant and objective measurement, but again can vary greatly based on the elements. However, as long as we compare a similar course with similar elements we have a relatively valid comparison. Of course we can standardize this in my basement on the bike trainer with power and/or running on a treadmill, which is valuable, but it is still not real. Competitors, and the elements make racing what it is. You can't directly qualify for the national team in my basement or on your treadmill!
Simplification: breaking down the race performance in easily digestible chunks allows a valid pacing comparison (if elements above are constant) and a clear display of your strengths and weaknesses:
- Start- 10k: (1st 10k): 4:04, 4:18, 4:17, 4:33, 4:23, 4:27, 4:32, 4:34, 4:37, 4:31 = 44:20
- 11k to 20k: (2nd 10k): 4:30, 4:30, 4:26, 4:26, 4:30, 4:37, 4:35, 4:24, 4:28, 4:38 = 45:04
- 21k to 30k: (3rd 10k): 4:34, 4:39, 4:36, 4:30, 4:33, 4:36, 4:25, 4:39, 4:41, 4:51 = 46:04
- 31k to 40k: (4th 10k): 4:39, 4:37, 4:38, 4:35, 4:41, 4:48, 4:47, 4:45, 4:54, 4:35 = 46:59
- 41k to 50k: (5th 10k): 4:33, 4:34 (marathon 3:10h), 4:42, 4:51, 4:59, 4:54, 4:59, 5:02, 5:13, 5:08 = 48:55
- 51k to 60k: (6th 10k): 5:41, 6:11 (begin struggle), 5:53, 6:00, 5:46, 5:40, 5:38, 5:42, 5:27, 5:36 = 57:34
- 61k to 70k: (7th 10k): 5:21, 5:55, 5:30, 5:36, 5:37, 5:58, 6:02, 6:02, 5:48, 5:44 = 57:33
- 71k to 80k: (8th 10k): 5:39, 5:32, 5:47, 5:47, 5:45, 5:47, 5:57, 5:58, 5:55, 3:11 = 55:59
The DPR 50-mile trail race was not easy. However, after a simulation effort (60k London river trail unaided) I knew it was possible. Your TTC fitness tests measure general fitness parameters in BASE 1 phase (now), and then in BASE 2 specific fitness parameters and then finally in racing season TTC tests will be race simulation efforts like this one. My London trail network was the closest simulation possible and knowing this it is very important to select races that reflect your training environment.
Outcome goal evaluation: My ideal goal was to run under 6.5h (ideally 6:18h). Instead of running 4:40/km, I ran 4:30/km running through the first marathon in 3:10h. Considering fitness set-backs prior to the race (injury and motivation management), extra weight (3-4 kgs of handheld nutrition) and the soft surface (lots of rain) I was really pushing my luck! Nevertheless, you never know your limits unless you try to reach them, and my goal was to be ranked #1 in Canada. Up to the 42k split, I was on pace, but this would soon crumble at 50k, so I re-evaluated my original goal to finish within 30 minutes of it, clearly the most appropriate challenge. Quitting should never be considered unless your situation is life-threatening, or injury sustained would limit mobility for 3+ months!
Analysis summary: A contingency plan is ALWAYS part of TTC race strategy! Finishing in 6:47:59 (chip time) was one second under the contingency goal! My GPS time was 6:42:28 (total of splits above), including all "moving time", with the time descrepany used for aid (nature calls, refueling, and squats!). During a half-ironman or Ironman, these obstables must be practised, simulated and looked at seriously as they may impact your qualifaction for the National Team or just achieving a PB!
Please contact Rob Tranter (519) 619-0764 for a consultation.