Short report about my (Jan-Niclas Hofmann) 4th Ironman (2nd sub10) and the return to racing after 783 days.
🏊3, 2, 1 Go!
Open water and long rolling waves made it hard for me to navigate, so I made a first decision. I decided to not swim aggressively/ hard and was just looking for some athletes to follow. With this I was not able to show my new swim strength but came out of the water after 01h:08m:25s. Totally relaxed and ready for the day!
🚴Oh yeah my favorite part of every race. I had a very conservative plan. I targeted 180-200 Watts to have enough power for a solid run. Most important I managed to consume 110g carbs/ h and a lot of sodium! The course itself is quite flat and closed highway is the main part. I had a fair ride, was keeping away from groups, or was leading small packs. At the end I averaged 186Watts, 195WattNP, 35,55 km/h 05h:03m:49s. Everything on track.
🏃I really had issues to slow down to race pace and I needed the first 5k to settle myself. The rest worked very well. At the first aid station only taking water, adding a gel every 7k, starting at the 20k mark to add Coke and Iso. Coming to the 25k/30k milestone is always the hardest part of the day for me. Here the struggle normally starts and so it did on Saturday. So I actively slowed down and started to walk in the aid stations, but not on the course and it worked out. Adding Red Bull after 30k 🔥 Managed to finish the run without bigger issues(beside the normal pain an Ironman always provides 😅).03h:29m:39s Pace: 04:59 257 Watt/Avg Finish line: Tears, a sprint, a scream! YES! I‘m back! 09h:50m:57s Rank 103/1501 overall! 26th place in my age group (out of 149).
Summary – Did I hope for more? Yes! Am I happy? Absolutely! The major target was to deliver a solid, well-balanced race. And that happened out there.
A massive THANK YOU to everyone supporting me in this.