Thursday, September 30, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
I haven't had the time to get back into it. During Ironman training I kept saying "when this is over, I am doing hot yoga, lots and lots of hot yoga....like 30 days of hot yoga". I thought about it all the time, during training rides and swims, during the Ironman itself and certainly during the days leading up to the Ironman when I was freaking out!
There is a new studio that opened up here in Vancouver. Trevor and I started going on Tuesday. My plan is to go for 3o days straight, get all the junk out of my system (mental and physical) and then cut it back to three days a week.
I had forgotten how challenging the Bikram yoga is. First of all, the room is heated to over 100 degrees, so you sweat your ass off just by sitting in the room. There are 26 postures and 2 breathing exercises and you would think "how easy". Not so. Your heartrate goes through the roof, you experience dizziness and nausea. Sounds great, right? But you feel SO good when you are done. I feel so cleansed. Like someone wrung me out like a wet towel. Ahh...
During our first class, I looked over at Trevor and was worried he was going to pass out. He was wearing a red shirt and his face was the color of the shirt. Mine was too. He enjoyed it and is excited to see progress in his flexibility.
Today was day 4 of my 30 days of Hot Yoga. I ran for 40 minutes this morning and then did yoga. I was worried that it would be much more difficult, it wasn't. It actually felt better.
I am hoping that this yoga will help me open up my elbow. I am still unable to straighten it out. There is one posture we do that is specifically to help with arm/elbow/wrist injuries. I look forward to the healing power of yoga making me whole again!
In the meantime, it is nice to go somewhere that everyone is sweating! Usually, its just me.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Monday, September 13, 2010
Saturday, September 4, 2010
Thursday, September 2, 2010
We were hungry and tired. Doug's family waited on us hand and foot! Brought us whatever we wanted. I had pasta and chicken, got up , brushed my teeth and went to bed. I didn't even shower and I went right to sleep.
I was relieved and for the first time in days, at peace. I believe the clock said 2 am.
The next morning we got up at 5 am and headed down to the village to get in line to purchase finisher's gear! Such a cruel trick from Ironman. The tent opens at 7 am. When we got there at 6:30, there was already a long line.
We were all tired and sore but really didn't feel so bad. Doug and I went to Starbucks and got some coffee. The line there was about as long as the merchandise tent line! There were also lines of people waiting to register for next year's Ironman. Lines everywhere!
We finally got into the merchandise tent after about 90 minutes of waiting. There was a lot of fun stuff. We spent some time shopping and surely got too much! We had decided that we would buy what we want and not worry about the cost. I didn't want to look back and wish I had gotten something.
We ended up with some good stuff. We each got two jackets, two running shirts, bike jerseys adn I got a visor. I love the visor. When we checked out, the girl gasped when she saw the total. I told her to not say the total out loud! Just give me the paper to sign!
We left there, had some food and then went to get our massages. We had signed up for massages on Saturday and were so glad we did. We laid in the grass and waited. That was one of my favorite times. Just laying in the sun. Here are my two guys.
We sat in the grass and listened the water. It was like an ocean again! We got so lucky on race day that the water was calm. It certainly could have gone the other day.
We had our massages, went to have breakfast and then headed back to the house. It was a great day, very relaxing. We sat on the couch and watched movies. We all slept for a bit. Then we had dinner and went to bed.
It was hard to believe that it was over. We were all sore and had a hard time going up and down the stairs, but overall, we were in pretty good shape. We spent the day sharing our experiences. Doug's family told us about their day. I think their long day as spectators was harder than our day as participants!! They were so amazing.
After a good nights sleep, we got up, had breakfast and hit the road for home. It was tough to sit in the car for 11 hours. By the time we made the turn into our neighborhood, I was so ready to be home. We pulled into driveway and this is what we saw.
What a way to end our journey.
Trevor checking his timing chip on registration day
Here is the registration table. So many volunteers. For an event with 2800 people, they had 4500 volunteers.
Something about these shoes....KEENS!
Here is the bike area on drop off day. 2800 bikes all racked in their own spots, waiting for their owners to get out of the water!
Here is Trevor, dropping off his swim to bike bag. These bags were packed with all the things we needed after we got out of the water - bike shoes, helmet, gloves, sunglasses, coats, etc.
Trevor and his bike.
Event day! Swim start. All these people started at the same time...
If you look at this picture, you can see me, Trevor and Doug. We are right in the middle of the picture. Doug and Trevor are in yellow caps, then I am in a red cap. We let the masses go before we took off.
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
I felt good. My legs weren’t bothering me, my stomach felt good. I got to see Doug’s family again and was SO happy they were there. They took my pictures and cheered.
I was wearing my arm warmers still and had grabbed my rain coat. I figured I might want it once it got dark. I tied it around my waist and it was driving my nuts. At mile 3, I saw a chain link fence and tied my coat to it. I figured I could get it on the way back in.
Aid stations were every mile. Usually, I like to run from station to station and walk from one end of the aid station to the other. I didn’t want to stop every mile, so I planned to stop every three stations or when I needed to refill.
I was moving at a 12 – 13 min mile pace, which is my normal running speed. I didn’t think of the full marathon distance, that would have been overwhelming. Instead, I focused on mile to mile. Everyone around me was walking. Everyone was hurting. I felt good.
As I made my way towards the turnaround, it was a battle to not start walking. It just sounded good. I was tired of running, tired of the effort. My heartrate stayed low – right around 150, so I wasn’t burned out. I was just mentally tired. I had spent three weeks talking myself into the idea that my arm would be good enough to race today, I had spent the last two day talking myself into actually getting in the water this morning. I had about 4 hours of total sleep in the last 48 because I was so stressed out about the swim. I was tired of talking myself into doing things I didn’t want to do.
I knew I would run until the halfway point. I knew that any time I made up there would give me time to do anything I wanted on the way back. This was a low point. I didn’t want to be out here anymore and there was still a long way to go. But I kept going.
Eventually, I saw Doug coming the other way. I was walking up a hill after an aid station. He was having leg pain and actually had been walking the entire way. We hugged, checked in and went on our way. A few minutes later I saw Trevor. He was walking too. We hugged, checked in and went on our way.
I made it to the turn around. It took me about 2 hours and 50 minutes to get there. Not so bad. My last mile was 12 minute pace. As I picked up my special need bag, I thought about continuing to run. I was just about 13 hours and I figured I could finish around 15:30 – 16 if I kept running. I had beat the cutoff and now just had to make it back to the finish line by 17 hours. That gave me 4 hours to cover 13.1 miles.
The turn around was at the bottom of a hill. I believe it had been at the top of a hill or level, I would have kept running. Instead, we started steep uphill and that killed my momenteum. My arm was swelling now and my hand looked like a sausage. I had put an ice pack in my special needs bag, so I popped that and put it on my arm for about 10 minutes as I walked.
What followed was the lowest point of my day and it lasted for hours. There were glimmers during those hours, but it was mostly low point. Physically, I was okay and probably could have ran from aid station to aid station. But mentally, I just didn’t care anymore. Everyone was walking. So I walked too.
Doug had give me and Trevor an M dot (Ironman Logo) temporary tattoo to put on our hand so everytime we looked at our watch, we’d remember what we were doing. Under that I had written these words “whatever it takes”. My friend Diane had texted that to me in the days before Ironman. I looked at that a lot.
I had gotten advice from others too. These things ran through my mind. The advice was: Keep moving forward, don’t ever sit down, when they offer your warm chicken soup broth at the aid stations – take it. As I made my way back, I remembered these things. I started to get cold and worried that I could get too cold. I didn’t want to get disoriented, dizzy or sick. I slowed or sped up my pace as necessary to keep from feeling too badly.
It was still pretty windy and the sun was setting. I wished I still had my coat with me! I started to take soup at aid stations, pretty sure I wouldn’t be running anymore. My pace was 16-17 minute miles. I was offered space blanket at an aid station, the volunteer tied it around me. At the next aid station, I got a second one. I didn’t want to get cold, I didn’t care how I looked. Another racer told me that Lady Gaga would be jealous of my outfit!
I knew that around mile 22 we would be back into town. Until then, it would dark, lonely road. There were still people coming the other way towards the turnaround. Volunteers kept telling them to hurry so they would make the 9 pm cutoff. I was so glad I was where I was and not where they were.
They came by with glow necklaces. All I could see ahead of me was a string of glowing circles moving through the night on our final march. There is a lot of self talk that goes on here and it wasn’t pretty. I thought of things to keep me going. My friend Krista had told me to think of her at the lowest points. I thought of her now. I thought of her walking next to me and it made it better for a while. Then I thought of my friend Diane, the one who said “whatever it takes” and wished she was there to walk with me so we could laugh about how ridiculous this was.
I thought about how I couldn’t wait to be finished. The idea of 3 more hours, two more hours, one more hour to go…was not comforting. 3 hours of walking is a long damn time. Especially after 14 hours of moving. I focused on getting to each mile marker, to each aid station. One step in front of the other.
We finally made it to mile 22, back into town. Houses started to appear. People were in their yards, in lawn chairs, cheering us on. They would strain to see our names on our bibs in the dark. They had been there all day too. At this point, I thought of my friend Sarah. She did Ironman a few months ago and didn’t make the cut off at mile 22. I was going to go the last 4 miles for her.
I wanted to stop, I wanted to quit. It wasn’t really a possibility, but I wanted to. I couldn’t figure out how to quit and still finish. So I kept going. I had written this on a piece of paper and carried it all day: commit. Own it. Finish it.
There was another super low point. At that point I recited the names of all the people who had supported me, who was thinking of me today. I said their names out loud, over and over. I felt their strength and it kept me moving forward.
We hit mile 23 and I started to think I was actually going to make it. For the first time, I believed I would finish. We had been in the merchandise tent on Saturday and I saw all the Ironman Canada gear and I was sad because I worried I wouldn’t finish. I worried I wouldn’t get to buy a jacket that said Ironman. I don’t know that I ever really believed I would do it….until now.
At this point, I thought of all the things I would buy. I thought of the Ironman tattoo I would get. I thought about how I would wear something Ironman everyday for as long into the future as I could imagine.
I made it to mile 25 and saw the finish line. You actually pass the finish line, head out a ways and then back. The out portion went on forever. I heard the announcer say there was 40 minutes left until 17 hours…I was at 16 hours and 20 minutes. I actually worried that I wouldn’t make the cutoff. I could hear the crowd and see the lights.
I made the final turn, it wasn’t long now. At one point, a volunteer said “you have 9 minutes to make it in under 16 hours and 30 minutes, if you run.” Then, some other random guy said to me “want me to run you in”. I said, “not yet”. So he walked with me until we got closer and then we ran. He said “they won’t let me cross the line with you” and I thought “I don’t know you, why would I want you to cross the line with me?” He peeled off and I kept going.
I had thought about how tough this day would be, thought I understood what it was about, thought I knew what people were talking about in their notes, advice and race reports. I can tell you, unless you’ve done this, traveled this journey, you can’t understand. In the next few moments…I understood.
I entered the chute. The spotlight was on me. Thousands of people were cheering, stamping their feet, banging their hands on the barriers that lined the chute. It was exhilarating. I got the chills and the hair on my arms stood on end. They were all there for me. I ran, I smiled, I raised my arms in the air as they put the finishers banner across the line and I ran through it. Done. 16 hours and 30 minutes after I started.
I got my medal, they took my timing chip. I saw Doug and Trevor. Our theme as a team is “We live for Crazy”. I said to them “This is the craziest F*cking thing we’ve ever done”. And it was.
Run Time: 6:31:18
OVERALL TIME: 16:26:48
The weather started out nice. It was sunny with a bit of cloud cover. I had a general idea of how the route would go. Pretty flat for the first 30 miles or so, one small climb during that period. Then one big hill – Richter Pass. Then some rollers. An out and back to special needs. A final climb to Yellow Lake and a fast descent.
I was rolling along, feeling good. My arm was holding up, my nutrition was right on track. I spent a lot of time in the aero position, just relaxing and enjoying the scenery. It was beautiful wine country and orchards. There were tons of people out at the street cheering. People would sit in their yards and cheer, people parked their cars on the side of the road and they cheered. They didn’t just cheer for who they knew, they cheered for everyone.
We got to Richter Pass and it was over before I knew it. We trained hard on hills, so it didn’t feel so tough. Before I knew it, we were at mile 50. I was making good time. I was hoping the bike would take me 7 hours, 7 hours and 30 minutes at the most. I was right on track.
I knew special needs was at 75 miles, so I focused on that. It made it easier than thinking of 112. There were 10 rolling hills, I powered the uphills, coasted downhill. This is when the wind started. The sky turned dark and the wind started to whip. We turned on the road to do our out and back to special needs and the wind was relentless. I wasn’t sure how the weather was going to turn, but I wasn’t to happy about it.
I turned right and saw the bikers on their way back from the out and back. Then, unexpectedly, I saw Trevor. We had a moment to realize we were seeing each other before we passed. I said “hey” and he said “hey” back. That was it. I was happy to see him so that he knew I made it out of the swim.
I headed out to special needs. The road was super bumpy and that really bothered my arm. Too much jarring. I was playing leap frog with the same people all day long. We all had our names on our race numbers, so we could call each other by name. It made the day very personal. You could tell some people were struggling, but for the most part, everyone was in good spirits. When I saw someone with a flat tire or bike trouble, I would always yell and ask if they had what they needed and I thanked my bike for staying in one piece.
We made the turn to Yellow Lake and the wind was still really blowing. I kept expecting to get to a climb that was steep uphill to Yellow Lake. After a while, I realized that I was in my smallest gear and I had been climbing for miles. This was around mile 80. I believed that the downhill started around mile 90.
People were really struggling here. Everyone was very quiet, grinding up the hill. I had stuck to my nutrition plan, my stomach felt good, my legs felt good. I was feeling strong on the bike and really looking forward to that fast downhill to make up some time. Now, it started to rain. Wind AND rain?
The road to Yellow Lake was lined with cars, people were cheering on both sides like it was the Tour de France. They kept saying “you are almost there”, but they were never right. We finally reached the top, there was an aid station. I stopped, moved around my bottles of fuel and got back on for the final ride back into town.
I had until 10 hours and 30 minutes into the race to get off the bike. At the top of the hill, I was at 8 hours and 45 minutes. There was about 22 miles left. With a fast downhill, I figured that would take less than an hour. 45 minutes, 30 if it was really fast.
I started the descent and the wind was blowing harder that I have ever felt wind blow. I was scared on the downhill that I would get blown over. Plus it was raining. I did not get to coast the way I had planned, it was a slow descent. Once we got on the flat road into town, the wind was even stronger and I had to pedal hard just to keep moving. It felt like those last few miles went on FOREVER. I could see the lake and it looked like the ocean because of the wind. Insane.
I made the final turn into town and figured I would be out of the wind. Instead it seemed to be a stronger headwind. I just laughed. I looked at my watch and started to worry. It was now 9 hours and 45 minutes. Not as much time as I had expected to have before the cutoff.
I saw runners headed out on the course and I saw runners headed in toward the finish. People were going to finish the whole thing before I even started the run. Do you believe that?
I made the last turn, dismounted my bike, handed it over to a volunteer and thanked it for the ride of my life. I made my way to the tent to get ready for the run. Time was right around 10 hours. I had hoped to be here an hour before. Our friend Randy had sent us a note a few weeks ago about Ironman and one of the things it said was that planning your Ironman is like trying to land a man on the moon, by remote, blindfolded. And that how well you can adapt to changes on race day will make all the difference. I remembered that and just kept moving.
10 hours into the day and all that was left was a marathon.
Bike Time: 7:59:09
Transition Time: 7:02
The swim course is a long, thin triangle. The route is marked every couple hundred feet by large orange numbered buoys. The turn arounds are actual boats, house boats. I was going to focus on getting from buoy to buoy and not get too worked up about how far was left.
On my best day, I figured my swim would take an hour and 40 minutes. Today, I would have been happy with a two hour swim. I put my head down and swam. It didn’t take long to get into a rhythm. I counted my strokes and stayed calm. The water was quiet, I was around a few people, but I didn’t feel crowded.
The buoys passed and before I knew it, I was at the first house boat turnaround. Just a bit further and then I hit the second turn. This turn put me towards home. Half way there. At this point, I thought about my friend Amy, who was doing a three mile swim in New Jersey that started around 8 am PST. I figured that was the time I would be making this turn, so I thought of swimming with her. I was having a great swim. A really great swim. The beach was getting closer and closer. I could see the bottom and finally decided to stand.
This part of the beach was super rocky and I actually slipped and fell back in the water. It was hard to keep balance. I looked down at my watch. 1 hour and 39 minutes. I couldn’t believe it. I had been so worried about the swim and it had turned out to be great. My arm bothered me a bit during the swim, just enough to let me know it was there and not 100%. I was wearing a compression sleeve, the dr said my arm would swell and that would help control it.
I walked into the transition area and saw the wetsuit strippers. Since my one arm wasn’t working, I couldn’t get my suit off my upper body. I looked around to find the ones who I thought would be most gentle. There were some guys that were way too aggressive and I knew I didn’t want them. I found a few women who started to help and they couldn’t get my suit off my arm. Someone had to come help, then I laid down on the ground and they pulled my suit off me.
I got up, someone handed me my transition bag and headed into the changing tent. I found a chair and dumped out my bag. A volunteer came over to help me. I had read so many race reports about Ironman and it was so cool to see it all for myself.
I put on my socks, bike shoes, helmet, gloves, sunscreen, sunglasses and arm warmers. My volunteer packed up my wetsuit and swim stuff, took my bag and said “have a great race”. I walked out of the tent, where more volunteers put sunscreen on me. Then I made my way to
my bike and walked it out of transition.
I was so happy to be out of that damn water, so proud of myself for doing it and ready to get on with the rest of my day.
Swim time: 1:42:06
Transition time: 7:16
The alarm went off at 3:45. We got up and started to get our stuff together. I told Trevor that I couldn’t wait to get in the water so that I could stop worrying and just start doing. As I mixed up my drinks for the bike, I thought “it will be a waste to mix these up and not get to use them. I have to get through the swim”.
Trevor started loading our stuff into the car. He came back in and said “be sure to put in your blog that the car was frosted over”. It was SO cold out! The three of us piled into the car and headed to town. Transition opened at 5, the race started at 7. We planned to get down there around 5:30.
We found a parking spot and unloaded our stuff, made our way to transition. We all went our separate ways to get ourselves ready to go. Trevor came over to pump up my tires. The time was getting away from us. They announced that it was 30 minutes to start time. We needed to use the restrooms and get on our wetsuits.
I looked at the water and it was calm, much better than the days before. I felt a little better about that. But I didn’t have time to worry. By the time we got on our wetsuits and made our way down to the beach, there was about 5 minutes to start time! No time to wait around and fret, just time to say our goodbyes, set ourselves at our spots on the beach and focus on the job ahead.
Trevor and I kissed, Doug hugged both Trevor and I. The cannon shot and off we went…
I thought I had plenty of time. I got out of the shower at 10:30 and Trevor told me that check in closes from 11:30 to 2. Shit. We got our stuff together, threw it in the car and hauled ass down the hill to town. We parked in the first place we saw, unloaded the bikes and ran down to the bike check in. We got there around 11:25. Whew.
We racked our bikes, left our bags in the appropriate place. I looked at the water, rough again, and still felt like I needed to vomit.
We walked out of the bike area and headed to the village to look at the merchandise. I have a hard rule that you don’t buy or wear event gear until you have finished the race. It was hard to get excited about stuff when I wasn’t going to buy any and really was feeling sick about the whole event itself.
Then I realized that I needed to be a little more committed to finishing this race. I needed to get all in. This scared shit wasn’t going to cut it. I was going to do Ironman on Sunday and I was going to finish it on Sunday. Monday I would be an Ironman and I could buy all the cool gear I wanted. I would make it out of the swim, onto the bike and off the bike onto the run. That’s all there is to it.
We stopped at Starbucks, got some coffee, hit the grocery store and headed home – up the hill. We had lunch and parked our butts on the couch.
Here I sit now, 14 hours until start time and for the first time in two days, I am not sick to my stomach. I am tired because I didn’t sleep last night. Once I finish typing this, I am going to take a little nap. Then we’ll eat, do some last minute stuff and go to bed.
I am started to get excited about tomorrow. It is going to be fun. My arm has healed well enough that I am going to be okay. It is stiff and sore and still hurts sometimes. I don’t have full range of motion. But I am going to do Ironman tomorrow. I am going to remember that I cried when I thought my season was over, the day I crashed on bike. And yet here I am. Ready to go.
After dinner, I will sit in my bedroom and write out how my event will go. My plan is to be safe, have fun, keep my heart rate under 155 and finish with a smile. The road to Ironman has one last hill. One last long hill. Its been a long journey, a long road.
I am not going to let the person I used to be hold back the person I have become. Tomorrow, I become Ironman. And I can’t wait.
Today was the day we would go down to the village and register, then at night would be the mandatory athlete meeting. We also planned to do a practice swim to test out my wetsuit that had been glued.
We headed downtown, the dark, winding road looked a little better in the light. Still steep and winding! I kept thinking how fun it would be to drive this road on Sunday night after Ironman…
We got down to the village around 11. We decided to go register. I saw the water – it was pretty choppy and I decided I didn’t want to swim in it. So typical. We went and got registered. We signed our paperwork, got our packets and our wristbands. It was seeming a little more real. I was freaking out.
I was looking at the water and it was nothing like Klineline pond, where we train. It was rough waters and I wanted to cry. Upon further thought, we decided we would go for a swim. They had buoys set up along the shoreline. It was a nice place to practice.
I needed a little help getting on my wetsuit. Trevor stood behind me to pull my sleeve up. His hand slipped and he totally punched me in the face. Hard. Now I am prepared for the swim. We laughed SO hard about that. Otherwise I would have cried.
We got in the water and it was cool. Not too bad, but cool. We started to swim. We figured we would swim about half way down the shoreline and then out and then back. Holy shit, the water was rough. I had a long conversation with myself “this suck. I don’t need this practice. This isn’t helping me. What am I going to do on Sunday if its like this. Oh God, what have I gotten myself into”. I stopped a few times and breast stroked. Then I realized that I need a plan – because it was probably going to be rough like this on Sunday. I wanted to cry. I wanted to quit. I wanted to get out and go home. I didn’t want to do Ironman. I didn’t want to do any of it.
We got to the turn around, swam out a bit and headed back. I breast stroked a lot more than I wanted.
Then I realized that it was a great thing that we had done this practice swim. Now I don’t have to have these conversations with myself on Sunday. I can just adapt, breast stroke for a bit to get my bearing and keep going. If I need to. Otherwise, I can just put my head down and swim. Like I always do.
We got out of the water and went to have lunch. I couldn’t eat, I didn’t want to talk. I wanted to cry. I was so upset and nervous. These feelings followed me through the next 24 hours or so.
We headed back to the house – up the hill. Cleaned up, packed up our bags for race day, had dinner and headed back to town – down the hill - for the athlete’s meeting. This is where they go over the course and the rules. They asked how many people were racing their first Ironman. About 75% of the room stood up. I asked Doug if he thought other people were feeling like I was feeling. He said “most of them are feeling worse”. That helped. But I still felt totally sick to my stomach. The meeting ended and we headed back to the house – up the hill.
We went over our bags one more time. There is so much stuff for triathlon. For Ironman, it is even worse. You don’t set your stuff up at your bike like you do in smaller events. You put your stuff in bags and you have to drop those bags off before race day. You have to plan ahead. Lots of planning. Too much thinking!
We had some dessert and went to bed. I didn’t sleep well at all. I felt really sick to my stomach and so uneasy. I hate this part of triathlon. I get SO worked up. I hate it. That is my least favorite part of the sport and I don’t know how to train it out of me, but I need to figure it out.
The drive wasn’t so bad, except for the wind. The second half of the trip was SUPER windy. I expected it to take about 10 hours, putting us at our destination around 8ish. Doug and his family had arrived the night before. We were following the directions and were getting worried that we had a made a wrong turn. I knew we were staying at a resort, a ski resort, but I didn’t realize how steep the road to get there would be.
We were staying about 30 minutes outside of Penticton. We went up the darkest, most winding
road ever. I couldn’t believe it. We finally got to where we were staying around 10:30. We got out of the car and I couldn’t believe how cold and windy it was. Ugh. We were so tired! Doug’s family helped us unpack, we settled in and went to bed. Lots of excitement in the days to come…
It’s a good thing we gave ourselves that extra day, we barely got things done in time to even get on the road Thursday! The amount of stuff needed for a triathlon is seriously unbelievable. It takes a lot of planning and packing to make sure you have all the things you need. We actually brought a full length folding table into the front room. Trevor laid out his things there and I used the pool table.
I had been doing some running and spin class, but hadn’t tested my arm on the swim. Tuesday night I did that. It didn’t feel great, but it felt good enough. I had a hell of a time getting my wetsuit on with one good arm (and that good arm has a thumb that doesn’t work!). While putting on my suit, I tore a hole in it, that needed to be patched. Ugh.
We were having our outfits for the day logo’d with Max Muscle and We live for Crazy. The printer was having some issues and finally got them delivered to us on Tuesday night. I saw them and just about started to cry. They looked like shit. The print was all gloppy, my shirt was all stretched out and couldn’t be worn, Trevor’s white top was all yellowed from going through their heater. I could not believe it.
I had gone through so much to get my shirt ready to go. I had been wearing the same purple shirt for every triathlon in the last two years. I decided I wanted a new one for Ironman. I searched high and low online and in stores to find the right one. I finally found one that I liked and ordered it online in a medium. I got it and realized I needed a small. I ordered that and got it just in time for one test bike ride. That was the day I crashed my bike..my shirt tore down the front. The printer was supposed to pick it up the next day. I called the place I ordered it from and they said they would overnight me a new one. Then they called back to say that they didn’t have it in stock so they would have the manufacturer send it to me. I gave the printer my torn shirt to do their measurements on. They did a test printing on that shirt and when they put it into the dryer, it “melted like plastic”. They tried a different print technique on the new shirt, but stretched the shirt.
I finally realized that the purple shirt was to blame….it was pissed that it wasn’t getting to do Ironman. It had done all the work, all the shorter races, training swims and rides and now it wasn’t going to get the glory. I decided to wear the purple shirt on race day. I pulled it out of the practice swim gear pile and put it in the race day pile. All was right with the world now.
We did our last spin class on Wednesday morning and when it was over Trevor said “that’s it. Ready?”. A tough question. How can that be it? How can it be time? The training seemed to go on forever, yet it was over in the blink of an eye. As tough as it has been, in so many ways, it has been one of the most fun times in my life. I have thoroughly enjoyed all this time on the swim, bike and run with Trevor and with Doug. And now it was coming to an end, that made me a little sad.
Thursday morning I had one last appt with Dr. Jake. He commented that arm looked even better than it had two days earlier. He worked on it and taped it up. I asked him for any last words of advice and he said “have fun”.
I headed home, where Trevor was finishing up the packing and the cleaning. I said good bye to the pets and hit the road….