Outlaw was my first, but easy isn't the word I'd use - as people have said, there's no such thing as an easy Ironman. It does contain less bike climbing than most, although I definitely used my small ring to get up Oxton Bank. Atmosphere was amazing though, both times I have done it - can only recommend it.
Out to the run, and the plan was to run between the feedstations and walk while actually drinking. It was still hot, and despite going through 7 full bottles on the bike I was still having to drink at every station - which was about every mile and a half. I'd got very bored with gels by then and was trying to work with Jaffa cakes and crisps, by my dry throat wasn't enjoying it. In the end, I went back to gels and water, with High5 zero to try and keep the salt levels up.
The plan was working well for most of the run - I hit the halfway point in 2:15, which was fine for speed, and although it was hurting to start running each time I was moving along well enough. I got back to the lake with 7km to go, and was looking for a good run time, when something went wrong, and my left knee decided it had had enough and it didn't want to take any weight any more. I'm still not sure why - it's not a problem that I have had before - but my back had been giving me a bit of gyp after the bike and it's possible I wasn't running as freely as I normally do (and anyone who's got an idea on that, please let me know!). I tried to walk off the pain and then get running again, but I got another 200m and it died again. Walking seemed to work, but running wasn't going to happen. I walked to where Andy and Sam were waiting, and told them that the last lap was going to be a bit longer. Glancing at the event clock on the way past, I had 45 minutes to walk 5km if I was going to break 14 hours. I tried to get my arms swinging and kicked on a bit, and hit the 1km mark with 12 minutes to go. Sam was waiting and we finished together, even managing a run for the last 200m down the deafening finishing tunnel. The support at this event is like nothing I've seen anywhere else. We finished in 13:56:47. Very happy, very dehydrated (despite all the water stops!).