This is a major takeaway for your outing-you got a feel for what your first reef cannot handle comfortably. In similar conditions next time, go straight to the 2nd reef, and make it easy on yourself by reefing before you go out(as mentioned upthread). Many bypass the first reef as a matter of routine and go straight to the second...depending of course on sailplan/hull design/current and expected conditions.I did have the one reef in the main from the outset, but it’s a damn small reef and I only have one of them. I should have had the jib furled much more when I saw how fast I was boogeying on the run, before moving to the beam, but given the second broach happened with it barely out at all I’m not sure how much it would have helped - the failure point was my poor decision making in the moment after all.
Damn was heeled over consistently 5* just motoring back in to the ball with everything tied down.
Another data point for your outing...if things seem like they are building when you’re going down wind, they are usually building more than is apparent. Always factor that into your reefing, trimming and course setting strategy if you’re going to be coming back up wind in same or rising conditions.