Ironman Florida. There is no other Ironman, or race, that I have done more than this one. Over the last ten years, I have taken part in seven of them. In 2003 and 2005 I raced as an age grouper; then I raced there professionally in PCB in 2006,07,09,11,13.
My results from the years have included:
2003: 9:20 (first in M18-24)
2005: 8:57 (first in M18-24) and 8th overall
2006: Can't quite remember; 9:05 maybe? and just inside top 20.
2007: 8:40; 10th Overall
2009: 8:48?; again can't quite remember; inside top 15; blew up hard in the middle of the run. I remember that.
2011: 8:18:02; 3rd Overall
2013: 8:13:35; 9th Overall
The last two races I've done have incorporated the new bike course; it still includes much of the original course; though it has some differences. The overall road conditions have also improved over the years.
The run course has remained largely the same with minor differences in turnarounds over the years.
The swim has always remained the same and the only variance has been the calmness (or lack thereof) of the ocean.
This year's race wasn't part of my overall plan for the season. I ended up toeing the line as a result of my DNF in Tahoe six weeks beforehand. This year's race had a combination of fast conditions and deep field producing the fastest Ironman in North American history. All three podium finishers broke 8 hours and the fastest bike split was 4:02:xx and the fastest marathon was 2:37:xx.
That's really fast. Even in really fast conditions, that is really fast.
8:13:35 is a new personal best IM finish for me, but I didn't feel as though it was a personal best performance primarily because I faded pretty heavily in the last ~8 miles of the run. I came off the bike in 12th, spent most of the run in 8th (short stint in 7th), and ultimately finished in 9th. I did my best to try and move up on the run, but couldn't close it out like I had hoped.
At any rate, I always tell people to never be disappointed in improvement, and so I'll happily walk away with a new PR and get ready to race again another day.