Kevin Hosea

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Updating Since It has Been Awhile

Posted by kevinhosea on July 12, 2010 at 9:35 PM Comments comments (3)

  It has been quite a while since I last had much to write about so I wanted to update everyone about what has been going on with me and sports.  This past year has definitely been more about me coaching than focusing on my own sports but that hopefully will change back to be more balanced.  I still will be coaching a lot but I plan to renew my focus on my own sports.

  This past winter, the majority of my time was spent coaching the Windy City Warriors junior wheelchair basketball team.  It was a lot of fun and we had a successful season.  When I had the time, I was working out at the gym lifting weights and swimming.  I was also rostered with and practicing weekly with the Chicago Wheelchair Bulls basketball team.  I unfortunately only got to play in 1 game with them though this past season due to them and the Warriors having tournaments on the same weekends most of the time.

  Back in December, I told myself that I was going to start training harder in January so I could focus on my triathlons this summer with the goal of doing a 70.3 triathlon (aka half Ironman) by late summer.  I ordered a bike trainer so I could start increasing my bike miles in my apartment since I couldnt get out on the roads that time of year up here in Chicago.  It took a few weeks to get the trainer and I had bad luck during that time.  One day (ended up actually being the day before the trainer got delivered) for work I was trying to get in a work vehicle so I had stood up.  I didn't notice I was standing on ice and when I went to take a step, I slipped and fell.  I ended up with a badly strained MCL and a broken bone in my foot.  To say the least, this sidetracked my training plans.  I went to the doctor and when they told me that nothing was torn in my knee and the normal healing time for the bone, I was still optimistic about possibly doing a 70.3 in the fall.  This however ended up not working out either due to my feet having poor circulation.  The bone took about 3 times longer to fully heal than the doctor had said and it kept me from doing almost all cardio because I couldnt even do swimming because I couldnt use that foot to push off the wall and my bike and racing chair both require you to be in a kneeling position that puts pressure on the knees and feet.  This made me have to move my plans of a 70.3 to next season and kind of play this season by ear with when I was finally healthy again.

  I hadn't really done much cardio training until I did a 5K race on June 6th.  It was a very last minute decision to do the race.  I learned about it about 10 days before the race and registered about 8 days before the race.  The main reason I ended up doing it was because the race directors were wanting to add in a wheelchair division and they wanted to see how it would go so they could hopefully be prepared for a bigger wheelchair division for next year.  Me and one other wheelchair did it this year.  I had not done any cardio training but was not worried since it was only a 5K.  All things considered, I'm happy with how it went.  I didn't have my best time by a long shot but it was a good time for no training and I beat all the runners.  Since that race I have slowly been increasing my training.  

  I had been on the fence about doing the Chicago Triathlon international distance triathlon until the events of today/tonight.  This afternoon I had a new post on my guestbook on this website.  When I went to check it, it was someone saying that they were interested in sponsoring me.  I decided to email them to find out more details about who they were and how they had found my website.  It turns out that they had searched for "Abilities expo" on twitter and I had been there and tweeted about it this past Friday.  They then saw my website link in my twitter profile and went to it.  This person is one of the owners of Joseph Ryan Clothing, www.josephryanclothing.com.  This clothing company was originally started to help raise money for the MDA (Muscular Dystrophy Association) and they donate 20% of their proceeds to the MDA.  The are now trying to branch out to help other groups and individuals with other disabilities.  They have agreed to send me some shirts for free (polos and crew neck t-shirts and a few sleeveless shirts for working out) and help me some with competition expenses.  Since I now have a sponsor, I will be ramping up my training a lot and taking things much more serious because I don't want to half ass things if I have a sponsor.  I like the sound of that....I have a company sponsoring me!

Columbus Marathon Weekend

Posted by kevinhosea on October 18, 2009 at 9:09 PM Comments comments (1)

  On friday I was allowed to only work a half day so I was able to get on the road to Columbus at a decent time.  I was making great time until I hit a few areas of construction that added like 30-45 minutes to my trip.  All in all the drive was pretty uneventful though which was good.  I don't think I will ever learn to enjoy driving across indiana though....its soooo boring.  I got to Matt's place around 9:30 and we hung out and watched tv/played some video games.  It was fun staying with Matt cause we got some time to catch up since we hadn't seen each other since May or June. 

  Saturday was a pretty laid back day.  We watched tv and played some more video games saturday morning before going to get my race packet at the expo.  Matt went with me when I went down to the expo so he got his first experience of the chaos that is a marathon expo.  It was fairly easy to get downtown from his place and to get to the convention center.  I got my number and then we decided to get some lunch before going back to his place.  We went to Olive Garden so I could do some carbo loading and of course it was yummy like Olive Garden always is.  After that we went back to Matt's and hung out and I tried to work on my bike a little bit to make sure it was ready for the race.  My pump was not charged enough to fully pump the tires so I ended up having to do most of it this morning anyway after I charged the pump some. 
  Today started out early with both Matt and I waking up around 5:00 so we could leave his apartment by 5:45.  We left right on schedule so we got down to the parking area right when I was hoping we would.  I put my bike together and then we both sat in the heated car for a little while longer while I drank some water and ate a powerbar.  It was very chilly (around 30 degrees) so it was nice to have that extra time in the heat.  We then headed over to the start line and I warmed up a little bit.  After about 10 minutes or so, the rest of the wheelchairs and handbikes showed up.  They had all parked at a different place that was a little farther away so they had gotten a group police escort to the start instead of going on the sidewalks like I did.  I was a bit unpleasantly surprised to see a group of handcyclers that I did not know and who raced often (aka they were really good). 

  The race started and I did my best to keep up with the fast guys but it only lasted about 1 mile.  Last year I started off the race at a fairly fast pace around 19 mph for the first mile or two.  This year when I took off with these guys, we were going about 25 mph, it was NUTS.  I then settled back into my own pace so I didn't make myself tired to quickly.  A couple of the other fast guys caught and passed me but I resisted the temptation of speeding back up and stayed at my pace.  Finally  a couple guys caught up to me that were going at a comfortable pace that was a tad slower than I really should have been going but I hung with them for a while anyway.  It was nice having someone to draft off of for a while so I could save up a little energy.  A few miles later, a guy that I know from previous years in Columbus came up next to me and was like "You are Kevin right?" (he had said "Hi Kevin" to me at the start line).  I of course replied "yes" and he was then like "ok just making sure.  you are usually way up there..."  Hearing that pissed me off a bit so instead of staying back in the group to take my turn pulling, I just took off and dropped them.  That was about mile 5 and they never got near me for the rest of the race. 

  Overall I am very happy with how the race ended up.  Sure I did not get prize money but I also hadn't planned on the fast guys (they all race on the US national handcycle race circuit) showing up.  When I was planning on winning I was basing that off of the people who were there last year and everyone that was there this year who was also there last year, finished behind me so I was actually successful with my goal.  My time was only a few minutes slower than time from last year which is good considering I trained much more last year than I did this year for this race.  Last year, my time was roughly 1:37 and this year I finished in 1:44.  When I got home tonight, I finally got to look at the breakdown of my time throughout the course and I was very happy with what I saw.  My last 6.2 miles was only 2 minutes slower than the first 6.2 miles which shows that I was able to stay pretty consistent throughout the race.  The guy who won the handcycle division finished in a CRAZY fast time of 1:12.  You read that right folks....1 hour 12 minutes for 26.2 miles....to do that time, you have to average just slightly under 22 mph.  With proper training, I'm pretty sure I could have at least been close to the group that finished 2nd, 3rd, 4th around 1:24 but I think I've got a long way to go before I'll be able to challenge the 1:12.  So now I have a new goal for next year.

Finally another race coming

Posted by kevinhosea on October 16, 2009 at 1:12 AM Comments comments (3)

  It has been a very long time since I have had anything to write about on here.  I am glad to say that has changed.  I will be doing the Columbus Marathon on Sunday morning.  Tomorrow I am going to work in the morning but hopefully will be leaving there no later than 1:00 in the afternoon to start my drive to Columbus.  I will be staying with a friend of mine who lives just north of the city which is cool cause I haven't seen him in a while and it also will save me a lot of money since I won't have to pay for a hotel.  By going up tomorrow, it will give me much more free time on Saturday.  I will have the entire day to pick up my stuff at registration and make sure my bike is good to go for the race.

  I am not in the best of shape for the race because I got a late start to my training but I am still feeling pretty good.  Assuming the other racers are similar to last years group, I also have a little bit of wiggle room for not being in the best of shape.  I was able to win last years marathon by about 10 minutes.  It would be awesome if I could manage to get 1st place again this year but I would be happy as long as I was in the top 3 because I would get some prize money.  If I am able to get first place, it would be my 4th year in a row being 1st overall to cross the finish line.  The first 2 years were in my racing chair and last year was in my handbike. 

  It would be really nice to win some prize money because it would give me a little extra spending money and also it would give me the money to buy an indoor bike trainer.  I really want to get one this year so I can use my bike to train over the winter.  For those of you who want to follow how I do during the race, you can follow me on facebook and twitter.  The other day I found a thing on the columbus marathon website that allowed me to sign up for a service that uses the timing chip to automatically update my twitter status with how I am doing.  I have my twitter account linked to my facebook account which means when the chip updates twitter, my facebook account will also get updated.  I also fixed my website so you can see my twitter updates on the Contact Me page incase you are not friends with me on twitter or facebook.

My first experience with a bike criterium

Posted by kevinhosea on July 13, 2009 at 11:11 PM Comments comments (1)

  So as I said in my last blog, I have not had much of a chance to workout or race lately due to moving.  A couple weeks ago, I was told about a biking criterium (crit for short) that was today.  This was the first year they were including a handcycle division and they needed decent numbers so next year the division can become official with prize money and everything.  I agreed to do it because even though I was out of shape, it was only going to be 30 minutes long which is not bad at all.  For those of you who do not know what a crit is, it is a type of bicycle race that is done on a loop course.  The loop is usually 1.5 miles or less and this particular course was .6 miles.  The races are done either with a set time limit or a set number of miles. 

  Today I left work early to make sure I had plenty of time to get there with Chicago traffic.  I did run into a minor problem getting there when the ramp I needed to get to I-57 South was closed because a semi trailer had rolled over right at the top of the ramp.  I had to take I-57 N for 1 exit, get off and right back on to go south.  I was still there plenty early with lots of time to get my bike together, find the rest of the handcyclers and warm up a little.  This was a pretty cool race because it was actually part of a international competition series with 7 consecutive days of races in the Milwaukee and Chicago areas with bikers from across the world.  They were running behind a bit with the categories that had gone before us so they ended up having to cut our race down to make sure there was plenty of sunlight for the pro men that were racing after us.

  Our race ended up to be only 5 laps of the course which should have been really easy.  I started out the race great and was EASILY in the lead for the first 3 laps. Then the fun started....during the 4th lap my asthma started to bug me and it went downhill fast.  By the end of that lap, my "big breaths" were about 1/2 of what they should have been and I had been caught by 2 guys since I had to slow down so much.  I was able to stick with them for all of lap for and the start of lap 5.  I was able to get in their draft which helped a little because I didnt have to work quite as hard.  About halfway through the 5th and final lap, they both decided it was time to sprint to the finish.  I did my best to stick with them but my lungs at this were basically screaming "SCREW YOU" to me.  They felt like they were on fire and I could barely get much of a breath at all.  I ended up finishing 3rd by about 60m which I guess is pretty good considering.  When I finished, I basically was getting about an 1/8th of a breath.  The people that were there helping the handcycles asked me what was wrong and I told them I couldn't breath well at all.  One of the took off for my car (which was about a 1/2 mile away) to get my inhaler while the other had one of the race staff call for the paramedics.  The paramedics obviously got their quicker than the person that had gone to my car so they were able to give me an inhaler (same kind that I had in my car) and they also gave me oxygen. 

  I took 2 puffs on the inhaler and the sat with the oxygen mask on for like 10 minutes and it still did not help all that much.  Was still only back to about 60% of what I should have been.  As I am writing this, roughly 5.5 hrs after the race finished, I am still weezing when I take a deep breath or cough.  I am still not really sure exactly what caused this asthma attack because it is BY FAR the worst Ive ever experienced.  I have not had to use my inhaler in over a year.  When I do need it, it is usually very hot and humid or very cold.  Today was neither with it being around mid 70s with low humidity at race time.  It also was not caused by allergies because I have not had allergy problems since I moved up to the Chicago area.  I also do not think it was caused by me being out of shape because even though I was, I was not even tired and I hadn't broken a sweat when I finished.  Needless to say, it was a very frustrating race but it was still a fun experience doing a race like that and I look forward to doing it next year.

  There may or may not be pictures posted in the next couple days from the race.  It will depend on if I get any emailed to me. 

Current plans for races

Posted by kevinhosea on July 5, 2009 at 12:58 AM Comments comments (0)

  As some of you might know, in the past I have always done the peachtree 10K on the 4th of July down in Atlanta.  I have had that race on my race calender on here since I made the website.  Unfortunately, I was not able to make it down there for the race this year.

  As most of you probably know, I just recently got a new job in the suburbs of Chicago.  This required me to go up there on a couple occasions to interview while still working my job in cincinnati.  Then I had to quit my job in Cincinnati when I was offered the job in Chicago and move up there and once I was up there I had to find an apartment and get used to the job.  I was able to move up there before having found an apartment thanks to my sister living nearby and allowing me to live with them for a bit.  I had originally planned on living with them for at least a few weeks while finding a place to live and saving up a little money.

  I ended up finding a place rather quickly and was only living with them for a week but then I had to go through the process of moving in the the apartment.  During all this, I was also having to do the last class of my online program that I was part of.  Since I had so much going on, I was not able to focus on my training much at all.  I had to make the tough decision to cancel my trip down to Atlanta for the race.  I am just not getting back into working out again after a few weeks off and because of that, my plans for the rest of this competition season have changed as well.

  I had been hoping to compete in a Half-Iron triathlon by the end of this racing season.  I know at this point because I had to take so much time off, that this is no longer a reasonable goal.  I will have to put plans for that distance triathlon off until next year.  I do however still plan to do some races in the fall.  The one I definitely plan to do at this point is the Columbus Marathon because I want to try to defend my title there (and also hopefully win some $$).  Since I will not be racing as often as I had planned, I obviously will not have as much to write about but I will write whenever I do something.

Recap of the long weekend

Posted by kevinhosea on May 18, 2009 at 5:54 PM Comments comments (1)

  So the competitions of the weekend have ended.  As I said in my last post, Friday and Saturday were the Ohio Wheelchair Games and Sunday was the Tri for Joe duathlon at Coney Island in Cincinnati.  Long story short,  It was a long and tiring weekend.  I'll appologize in advance because this is probably going to be a bit long...

  Now for more detail...I woke up Friday morning, packed a bag and left our house around 10 in the morning to head up to Columbus.  I got to the hotel a little after noon to register and find out the locations of the different events.  They had a list of addresses for the different venues so I just used that and put them in my Garmin.  I arrived at the field events location around 12:20 and put together my field chair (a tall step ladder that we had slightly modified) before carrying it to where they were doing the field events.  The field events were schedules to be from 12-4pm and when I got over there around 12:40ish, they were just starting to call peoples names for the pit I was assigned.  The claimed that they did not have enough implements (shotputs, javelins, and discuses) for everyone which I thought was a pretty lame excuse because you can buy used implements for fairly cheap.  Since there was a shortage of implements, we started with the javelin instead of starting with the shotput like normal.  This didn't really bug me though since I do not take field seriously and hadn't done it in 5 years.  The pit I was in was for the adult males which made it one of the biggest pits with around 10 people in it.  This made things go very slow because it took time for each person to set up their field chairs how they needed them, transfer into them, throw 1 practice and 6 competition throws, transfer back into their wheelchairs, and to have their throws measured.  Some people had to throw the club after the javelin so they did that before moving to the discus and shotput for everyone else.  At this point they realized how late it was so they let some people go to other pits if they were the only people their in their classification.  Luckily I was one of those people.  I had been the first person to throw the javelin at around 12:45.  The next time a threw anything was my discus at 3:45 but since I got moved to another pit, I was able to do my discus and shotput very fast and was headed back to my car shortly after 4.  All my throws were not my personal bests but I was happy with them because they were still pretty good considering I hadn't practiced or anything in 5 years. 

  After I loaded my field chair I headed back to the hotel because the track warm-up did not start until 6:30pm.  I noticed when I got back to the hotel that a different place was listed for the track than what the original paperwork said so I stopped by the registration table to double check the correct location.  It was the new definitely at the new location which annoyed me because I knew where the other place was but had no clue where this place was.  I asked them how long it would take to get there and they said around 30 mins normally but it would be around rush hour so to leave more time.  I left the hotel in what I thought was plenty of time to get there.  I put the address in my Garmin and was on my way.  The traffic as soon as I turned out of the hotel parking lot was RIDICULOUS.  The hotel was less than a mile from the highway and it took me about 20 mins to get to the on ramp.  Then the fun started....I knew I would be pushing it to make it by 6:30 since it had taken so long to get to the highway.  I followed my Garmin and when I got close to where it said the school was I thought I had a few extra minutes so I stopped at a UDF to get a gatorade.  I got back in my car and continued on and then I heard arriving at destination.  I looked around and there was no school in sight so I continued up a little bit until I saw another road sign.  When I had entered in the address I had specified South Hamilton Ave.  I did not notice that my Garmin had apparently switched it to North Hamilton Ave so I stopped at a gas station to ask how far away I actually was from the school.  The people that worked there had no clue where the school was but luckily one of the guys in line did.  He was like, "wow you aren't even close.  its like 10-15 miles down the road" and he told me what he thought was the fastest way to get there.  He had told me to go East on the next highway I came to but when I passed the signs for it, my choices were north or south.  I decided I would just continue down the road I was on since I would eventually get to the school.  Luckily I did not hit a whole lot of traffic and it only took like 20 mins to get there.  I pulled into the parking lot of the school at 6:45 and was freaking out cause I still had to put my wheels on my racing chair so I thought I wouldn't get a warm up.  I got over to the track as fast as I could and saw that there was barely anyone warming up yet.  I did a warm-up and then found out that they were running behind schedule.  I was happy about this because since I had been worried about being late I was not focused at all on racing because I was still trying to relax.  When they finally got going on the track events things really did not speed up because they were taking lots of time between each heat.  I finally left the track at 11:45pm.  I had not been very opptimistic about the track meet because my training has been very sporadic and was basically there to have fun and use the meet as a gauge of how in/out of shape I was for the rest of my season.  My times were not the best but I did much better than I thought I would do which was a nice surprise.  I got back to the hotel and was not tired so I watched stuff on tv and didn't fall asleep until around 3 AM. 

  Saturday was the swimming and they scheduled the start of the events much later than they had in previous years.  This was nice since I didn't get to sleep until very late but annoying because it meant I would be up in Columbus that much longer.  The warm-ups started at 11:30 and the first race started at noon.  Swimming was very organized and moved very fast.  The wasted very little time between heats and combined some heats that were back to back if they could.  When I got there I had thought I remembered signing up for the 100 breaststroke, 50 fly, 50 free, 100 free, and 500 free.  I got the heat sheet and saw that I had actually signed up for the 200 free and not the 50 free.  I was a bit nervous about having to swim all those since they were close toghether but things went very well.  The last race of the day was the 500 free which I had never done in competition before but I decided to register for since I am doing triathlons now that have longer swimming legs.  I finished the 500 free in a time of 8:22 which is a pretty respectable time considering it was in a 25 yard pool so I had to do lots of turns.  I think I might have been able to go quicker but I had been worried about going out to fast and wearing myself out so I went out a little slower than I should have.  Overall just like with my events on friday, my times were not PRs but they were still pretty good so I was happy. 

  As soon as I finished swimming, I changed and got on the road back to Loveland.  I had hoped to get back in town early enough to pick up my registration for the duathlon but because the swimming started so late I was not able to do that.  I spent the rest of the day relaxing and recovering in preparation for the duathlon.  Before I went to sleep, I loaded my bike into my car so I would have to do less in the morning. 

  The morning came way to fast and I got up and was out the door by 6:05.  I got to Coney Island by 6:30 so I had plenty of time to pick up my race number/timing chip, put my bike and racing chair together, and get them over to the transition area.  I had a little time to check out how the transition area would work during the race and to look at the start of the run leg.  The race was a 3.1 mile run, 18.6 mile bike, and 5K run.  The race started at 8 and they started me 1 min before the runners so I would not have to weave my way around the runners since I start out slower than them.  The run course was on the paths through Coney Island.  They were all paved but some were very curvy and a bit narrow which at times made it difficult passing the runners after the turn around (it was an out and back course).  I entered the T1 (the first transition) first overall for the duathlon and was out of the transition area before any of the runners had entered.  The bike course was very fast since it was fairly flat with a few small gradual climbs and decents.  I knew this would be my weakest leg compared to the other people but since the course was pretty flat, I was able to hold my own fairly well.  I was passed by people but not as many people as I had expected.  I am not sure what place I was when I entered T2 but I made the switch back to my racing chair pretty fast and was on my way again.  I push quicker than the runners so I was constantly passing people (I couldn't tell who was in the triathlon and who was in the duathlon).  I felt strong on the last leg and actually think my time for it was a little faster than I had done the first leg.  My final official time was 1hr 39 mins 30 sec which put me 22nd overall and first place for my age group by 27 minutes.  The final results do not have the break down of my time for each leg for some reason.  It has my time for the first leg but that is all until the overall time.  Estimating about how long I took for the transitions and my last leg, I finished the bike leg in around 1 hour or possibly a little less.  This means I averaged between 18.5-19+ mph for the bike which is awesome for me because  I usually average closer to 16 mph when I am on my bike.  For those of you who always ask for them (aka Erika), I might be getting a few new pictures posted to my picture album from the duathlon as long as they are emailed to me but I am not sure exactly when that will happen. 

Let the long weekend begin...

Posted by kevinhosea on May 15, 2009 at 2:45 AM Comments comments (1)

  So tomorrow (really later today since its basically early morning) is the start of a long weekend for me in terms of competing.  This weekend will more or less be for fun and to judge my conditioning at this point in the season.  I have not been able to practice as much as I would have liked so I do not have super high hopes of setting many records. 

  Tomorrow afternoon thru Saturday morning, I will be competing in the Ohio Wheelchair Games in Columbus, Ohio.  I used to compete at the Ohio Games every year, but when I went to college it was much harder to make it in town and  I only made it after my freshman year.  I got the registration form in the mail a few months ago and decided it would be fun to do again.  I started looking at the events I would want to do.  I decided on doing field events (shotput, discus, javelin) that I havent done in 5 years, track events (100, 200, 400, 800, 1500, 5000m), and swimming events (will be doing the 500yd freestyle for the first time in competition along with some other races).  I have not swam competitively in a pool in 5 years either so I have been recently practicing things such as flip turns but I might end up just doing a regular touch turn because Ive been less than stellar on some of my flip attempts.

  There is an award ceremony on saturday night starting around 8 pm but I will not be attending that.  I instead will be heading back home right after the swimming ends.  When I get back to cincinnati, I will be heading straight over to Coney Island to pick up my race registration because I am crazy enough that I am doing a duathlon on Sunday morning.  For those of you who do not know, a duathlon is a triathlon without the swimming.  Instead of doing swim, bike, and run, it will be run, bike, and run.  This race is just a sprint distance so I will be doing a 5K run (aka 3.1 mile push), 30K bike (18.6 miles), and another 5K run.  I had originally planned on doing the sprint triathlon because it is a pool swim and I had never done a pool swim for a triathlon before.  I found out a few weeks ago, from a nurse while at the hospital, that they do not fill the pool until like the week before the race so the water is usually between 55 and 60 degrees on race day.  This is incredibly cold water and pretty much requires the use of a wetsuit.  I have never used a wetsuit before and did not have time to rent one and try it out so I did not want the first time using one to be on race day.  For the run and bike legs of the race I do not know a whole lot about the course.  I know the bike leg is mostly along kellogg Ave. which is fairly flat so it should be a fun ride.  I have been told that the run legs are all on pavement but I do not know if that means it will be on roads or on narrow sidewalks with lots of turns.  I guess we will see on sunday. 

  I will try to post again after I do everything but there could be a bit of a delay.  I found out earlier today that I have a job interview up in chicago on tuesday afternoon, so I will be busy sunday getting ready to leave on monday to head up there.  I will be staying at my sister's place on monday night so that I do not have to get up crazy early and drive from Cincinnati to Chicago on tuesday morning.

Indy Mini-Marathon Recap

Posted by kevinhosea on May 12, 2009 at 9:56 PM Comments comments (1)

  Sorry for the delay in writing about the race.  Ive been busy and kept forgetting about it when I had time available.  Now where to begin about the race....

  So when I went to bed the night before the race, I looked at the weather forecast one more time.  The forecast said there was a 60% chance of rain for the 7-9 am so I thought it was definitely going to rain.  I had put plenty of sticky stuff on my gloves and push rims which was pretty much all I could do to prepare for it.  I did not get as much sleep before the race as I was hoping but thats my own fault and it actually really did not affect my energy level.  My hotel wakeup call came at 5:15 AM (a time of day that really should not exist).  I woke up got ready to go and checked the weather forecast one last time.  It said there was only a 10% chance of rain so I did what I could to remove a little of the tac from my gloves.  I drove down to the start line even though it was only a few blocks from the hotel so I could have all my tools and things with me.

  Once I got parked, I took the time to check over my chair making sure everything was working properly, put my number on, and pumped up my tires.  Then I got in and did some warm up along the road that the race started on.  I wasnt feeling great but I felt pretty good so I was pretty confident for the race.  There was a pretty good group of racers that showed up so I knew I had some good competition.  From doing this race a few years ago, I knew that everyone always liked to start off at a dead sprint and I wasnt going to let myself do that.  I was just going to run my own race at the pace I knew I needed to do.

  The race started and just as expected, everyone took off like crazy.  I kept up with them for a little because the start is a slight downhill.  As soon as it leveled out, the top 3 guys gapped me but I wasnt worried and I just stayed at my own pace.  I was a little tight at the start but I loosened up fast and felt better and better as the race went on.  Around the 4th mile, I was feeling really good and was keeping a good speed.  I had been passed by 1 other person before that point so I was currently in 5th place.  I could see the 4th place guy and I was gradually gaining on him.  Over the next couple miles, I continued to gain on him and by the 6 mile point, I was about 200 yards behind him.  I picked up the pace because I wanted to try to catch him by the time we got inside the indy race track.  Shortly after I picked up my speed, is when everything went wrong.  I was going about 17 mph and then all the sudden, PSSSSSSSSSSS, my back right tire went flat.  I had realized before the race that I did not have a spare tire with me.  I usually always carry one with me during a race with a CO2 cartridge but apparently it had fallen out of my bag in the garage at home.  This meant I either had to stop the race or continue pushing but going slower because it is risk to push on a flat tire with carbon fiber wheels because they can get damaged.  I told myself at the very least I would push another 2 miles because I wanted to do the lap around the race track since that is the coolest thing about that race.

  While going around the track, I was trying to decide what to do after I got out of the track.  Wasn't sure if I wanted to stop the race or keep going.  I decided I would keep going until the runners caught up with me.  I made it out of the track before any runner caught me and when they did, it was just the african runners.  I decided I would keep going since they are crazy fast runners compared to most.  Around mile 9 the first american runners caught me.  I was still feeling ok but was getting annoyed with having to push at such a slow speed.  I saw some people with a cart and a radio around the 9.5ish mile point and decided I would stop.  I got to them and asked them if there was any bus, truck, or van that could pick me up to take me back to the finish line because of my flat tire.  After about 5 minutes of the guy talking to someone on the radio, that person finally said that there was a bus but it would not get to my part of the race until after every single runner/walker had passed.  If this had been a smaller race, that would not have been a big deal.  Unfortunately, this race is the 5th largest road race in the U.S. with 35,000 participants and at that time, only about 10 had passed me.  I heard this and was like, nevermind I'll just keep pushing because I knew it would be a few hours before the bus would get to me.  I pushed as fast as I could without risking my disk wheel and kept my speeds between 10 and 13 mph.  I finally finished the race in 1 hour 19 minutes and 3 seconds and I was 7th place.  The prize money only was paid out to 6th place so I missed out on the money.  If I had been able to stay on my goal pace, I would have been no worse than 4th place and possibly even 3rd place.  So to say the least, it was a frustrating race but its over, time to move on. 

Indianapolis Mini-Marathon is tomorrow

Posted by kevinhosea on May 1, 2009 at 5:24 PM Comments comments (2)

     So tomorrow is the Indianapolis Mini-Marathon.  Im not exactly sure why it is called a mini-marathon since it is a half-marathon but oh well.  I got a later start on my day than I really wanted to today.  I had been hoping to leave my house no later than noon but instead it was closer to 12:30.  I then had to make a stop at Dick's Sporting Goods to look for some kind of tac that I could use on my gloves since it is supposed to rain.  I never really thought about how there arent really any Dick's near where I live.  The closest is like 15 minutes away but luckily I found what I needed pretty quickly.  I was headed out of town by 1:15. 

     The trip here went by fast and uneventful except for the one time I started to hydroplane/fishtail going about 72 miles per hour when there was a sudden downpour of rain and the person infront of me hit their brakes which made me have to hit mine.  I recovered easily though and the rain stopped about 3 minutes later.  I got to the hotel and realized just how good of a location it is for the race.  The convention center where the expo/packet pickup was, is literally across the street and there is a skywalk to get there from the hotel so I didn't even have to go outside.  The start of the race is about 2 blocks away from the hotel as well. 

     Since getting my room and my packet, I have gone through the expo bag (a bunch of junk for the most part), sprayed my gloves with the tac, and gotten some food.  Later on I will probably try to get the rest of my racing chair set up so there is less I have to do in the morning.  The race starts at 7:30 tomorrow morning and the weather is supposed to be questionable.  I looked at the hourly forecast and as of right now they are saying it will be 50 degrees with a 30% chance of rain. 

     I am a bit nervous for the race because of how I have felt lately during a lot of my workouts.  I know I'm in shape but I just haven't been able to mentally get focused.  Hopefully I can do well so I can win some money.  First place gets $1000, second gets $600, third gets $400, fourth gets $300, fifth gets $200, and sixth gets $100.  If I can manage to get in the top 3 I would at least pay for my trip out here if nothing else.  If you are interested, you can follow me during the race or check the final results by going to http://www.500festival.com/marathon/ and clicking on "Results" along the left side.  Then you can either enter my name or my bib number which is 146.  I will try to write another entry tomorrow night talking about how the race went.

Heart Mini...um...Swimathon??

Posted by kevinhosea on March 30, 2009 at 6:44 PM Comments comments (3)

     So yesterday I raced in the Heart Mini-Marathon 15K in Cincinnati.  This race is almost entirely on Columbia Parkway just out of downtown.  For those of you who don't know Cincinnati that well, Columbia Parkway is a very hilly road.  Here is a picture of the elevation chart of the race course:

     I have done this race many times in the past and have always enjoyed the challenge.  It has been years since I have done the race because of going away for college and having other things to do during High School.  The last year I did it was in 1999 (when I was in 8th grade) and I set the course record for wheelchairs at 45:16. 

     Yesterday the weather was terrible.  At race time, it was around 38 degrees with some wind and light steady rain.  I do not enjoy racing in the rain and do not do it very often.  Usually when I race in the rain I use stuff called clister which is really sticky and you put it on your gloves and pushrims to help prevent slipping.  The last few times I have used it I still haven't had much luck with it so I never bought new clister when I used up what I had (but after this race I think I might try buying some again).  I knew it was supposed to rain so on Saturday I went to the hardware store and got some sandpaper that I glued onto my gloves.  I have done this before in the rain and it has worked fairly well so I was pretty confident that I would be ok.  When I started the race, everything was going fine.  I had very good traction with my gloves and the sandpaper seemed to be doing the trick.  I started to slip about halfway up the first hill but it was nothing to serious.  When I got to the top I looked over my shoulder and saw the lead runners catching me which worried me a bit because I had never had them that close to me that early in the race in the past.  I figured that I would pull ahead by a lot during the downhill so I figured it wasn't a big deal.  I hit about 32 mph and definitely did widen the space between us but there was also a downside to that....The windchill made my muscles tighten up some and also the rain/water spray off the road made my gloves and pushrims a lot more wet.  I started slipping a whole lot more on the next uphill and was caught by about the top 15 guys by the top of that hill.  I passed all but 2 of them on the next downhill.  This "leap frog" process kept happening on each hill but as more and more water got on my gloves I started to slip more which caused me to be passed by more people than I was able to pass back on the downhills. 

     The first major sign that it just wasn't my day was at the first turnaround which was between the 4 and 4 1/2 mile point.  The turn around was a total 180 degree turn where you had to go around a few cones.  It was on a downhill so I started slowing down early so I would be able to make the turn.  There were people on the outside of the turn watching the race.  As I got closer I new I still wasnt slow enough so I tried pumping the brake more, then I tried grabbing the wheels, then I tried just slamming on the brake.  None of it helped and I just kept slidding on the wet road.  I went right past the turn around, almost hit a person that was watching but luckily he got out of the way and he actually grabbed my arm as I passed to help slow me down or I probably would have hit a cop car that was parked not far past him.  Once I stopped I turned around, I got going again but the traction with my gloves was next to nothing by this point.  I had to start pushing using the palms of my gloves that have cloth on them but this is a risky way of pushing because it increases the chance of injury.  I basically had to push like this the rest of the way.  Needless to say, it was getting very frustrating by this point and to make matters worse, there was a headwind now. 

     Right before the next turn around the course turns onto a road called Torrence Parkway.  This is the steepest uphill on the course.  You are only on it for about half a mile or so but it was REALLY bad.  I almost got to the point of dropping out of the race during this hill.  I got passed by a whole bunch of people on this hill which made it really bad once I got to the turnaround point because I then was going downhill much faster than them and had to shout at them to warn them I was coming and dodge/weave my way around them.  The rest of the race was more of the same getting passed by a lot of people on uphills and not passing nearly as many people on the way down the hills.  My final time was 1:11:11.  26 minutes slower than the time I did 10 years ago.  The only positive about the race is that I still have never dropped out of a race that I started despite what has gone wrong.  I have always finished races despite problems with weather, injuries, or problems with my chair such as flat tires.


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