It is always easier to write report about a good race, so it is very hard for me to say that my race in Kona – Ironman World Championship finished with DNF
I came to the race well prepared and ready to give it go. After very good season and couple of weeks of good focused training, I believed I have good chance for Top Ten or even better.
I arrived to Kona about 10 days before the race, early enough to get acclimatised to hot and humid weather and 12h time difference. First couple of days I felt very tired and struggled to sleep but pretty soon I got back into my rhythm.
Race day arrived very quickly and after days when it was overcast and not as hot (for Kona), we woke up to really hot and humid day. But it was same for everyone, so I just focused on my own race. Morning breakfast as always was Future Life and then it was time to get ready.
Swimming start was one of the worst I have had in Ironman so far. There was so much fighting and boxing and I really struggled to find my space in the water. I got few hits and kicks but after few hundred meters I was able to catch leading group. I didn’t feel great but i could see that I am in the front and right next to me there were two other girls. I tried to stay right in front of them but after turn around, there was a small gap and I wasn’t able to catch it back. I still had very solid swim and came out of the water just little bit behind first pack of the guys and as a 3rd female behind Julie Dibens and Amanda Stevens.
Quick transition and jumped on to my P3 and got ready for 180km bike. I felt good and passed Amanda Stevens in very beginning. After while Leanda Cave and Rachel Joyce caught me and I continued with them almost up till half way – to 90km. I still felt very strong and felt like it can be my day. Unfortunately this feeling disappear on the way to Havi and even more after turnaround and rest of the ride was just struggling.
At mile 13 I did quick calculation and I could see that I am on the pace to finish around 9:40-45. But after another kilometer my body suddenly decided that it was enough and I started running from side to side. I felt dizzy and disorientated but still determined to keep running. There was one of the guys racing Age Group passing me at the same time and I could see that he is calling for help. All I was thinking was: what is he doing, I am running fine and I am not stopping, I don’t need help. But after few more meters my brain and body suddenly shout down and I found myself collapsing. I don’t remember much, just waking up in ambulance and having people around me asking if I want to continue. I was gesticulating that yes! They kept me there for some time more and when my blood pressure didn’t go higher then 95/60, they just took me straight into medical tent without further questioning. I spent another two hours in medical tent and got two drips.
I felt bad about not finishing the race but I also knew, I gave all I had at the moment.
Another shock for me was next morning when I woke up and looked to the mirror. I looked like an elephant, my body was so swollen, from toes to head. I couldn’t fit into any clothes I had and I carried about 5kgs more. My body retained water for next 2,5 days before slowly deflated.
So my second experience of Ironman Kona didnt go as I wanted. But I am still glad I decided to go.