Thursday, November 5, 2009

TWO days to go!!!

Yesterday my countdown said 3 days. I remember when it was 300 days! I
think the major freakout is going to happen soon. I think so far it's
just been a few small minor ones. Like pre-quakes. We're down to 1 day
and 23 hours. Wow I could just say 47 hours. That's freakier.

This post is long. Yesterday was a busy day. But I aimed for topic
sentences this time, so it's easy to read bits and pieces...

I'm all checked-in for Ironman. My massage yesterday was great, now I
just need to keep stretching to stay loose. Dave met me at the massage
tent and waited in line with me to check-in. I had to show my ID and
USAT membership card to get into the check-in tent (Dave waited
outside but he took a few photos as he peered in). The first table I
was sent to gave me two sheets of paper that I had to fill out -
verifying medical info, emergency contact, etc, and liability waiver.
Then I got in the weigh-in line. (They don't state it anywhere but it
seems like if you end up needing medical attention and you've lost too
much weight, they probably make you withdraw.) My weight was marked
down and then I was sent to the next table where they put my race ID
bracelet on (a little snugly), they numbered my swim cap, gave me bags
for my transition gear, and I got stickers with "63" on them to place
on my bike, helmet, and race bags. I know I did a few other things in
the check-in tent but I can't even remember it all now.

Next I checked-in for the Janus Charity Challenge. I gave them my
total for fundraising so far, though I have until Friday at noon to
update that with more current information. I have to go back there
anyways, so it's not too late to contribute to the National Foundation
for Celiac Awareness -

Janus gave me a tri top and a hat for my efforts! My fundraising is
mentioned in the Sacramento Examiner today.

Janus also had big blank signs that were available (free) for families
and friends to decorate for their athletes. The big signs are placed
along the run course to motivate us triathletes. I made one for my
fellow Sac Tri Club members, and Dave made one for me. It was fun.
Lots of people were doing this. It's probably a great way to entertain
kids while a parent does the whole check-in thing too. Ford is another
sponsor, and they have an electronic sign on the run course that
people can use 25 characters for to inspire their athletes. The sign
scrolls during the race, so I'm not sure of the chances of actually
seeing a mesage for me. But it's a neat idea.

After leaving Ironman village, we walked back to the condo for lunch.
Then Dave drove me the 1/4 mile back to pick up my bike. I felt a bit
silly about that but I also felt like I'd been out in the sun too much
and this is a taper week afterall! I did my bike workout straight
from there. Bike pickup from Tri Bike Transport was easy. Just had to
have them put my pedals on, I pumped up the tires and away I went.

I rode the first and last stretch of the race course. It was a bit
windy. I was most surprised how much variability there was both in
wind and incline/decline. The road is flat, but with the wind factored
in, I felt like I was switching back and forth between two gears a lot
more than I expected to. I had a hard time taking it easy - there were
so many other people out there riding and the whole day was pretty
exciting. I just kept telling myself to ride as slowly as possible.

Finally last night we went to a blogger party! Bob hosted the party.
I met Bob and his octogenarian cheerleader parents; Melissa
and her training partner (both are also doing the Janus Charity
Challenge); Anne and her family. It was really fun to meet these people whose training blogs I've been following this year! And it's great to have some more faces to recognize on the course. In addition to the bloggers, I know two
others from Sac Tri, and my friend Bob who I met at the VI swims.

Melissa mentioned a recent post on her blog, which I'd forgotten that
I had saved to read later. Someone sent her a letter that describes
the day of Ironman
. I just read it and it is awesome. I can definitely relate to

this portion:

"While this taper is something your body desperately needs, your mind
cast off to the background for so very long, will start to speak to

"It won't be pretty.

"It will bring up thoughts of doubt, pain, hunger, thirst, failure,
and loss. It will give you reasons why you aren't ready. It will try
and make one last stand to stop you, because your brain doesn't know
what the body already does. Your body knows the truth:

"You are ready.

"Your brain won't believe it. It will use the taper to convince you
that this is foolish - that there is too much that can go wrong.

"You are ready."

My mind is my own worst enemy right now. It keeps thinking about
everything that could go wrong. I just keep reminding myself this is
just one long training day, with 2500 other people. I've done the
swim+bike together (Vineman Aquabike); I did a 20 mile run a few weeks
ago; this is okay. This is doable. It's nothing worse than what I've
done before, and as Dave pointed out, this time I'll have
cheerleaders. I'll have bananas and bathrooms and water. I'll have
people to talk to (or just listen to). Yes, it's going to be hard,
physically and mentally. But if it wasn't hard, then what would be the
big deal? If it was easy, it wouldn't be called Ironman, and everyone
would do it. Part of the triumph in finishing an Ironman is
persevering through a long tough day. I'm going to try to enjoy each
moment on Saturday. Hopefully I can even smile as I get beat up in the

1 comment:

  1. You are ready. You are amazing. You'll hear us cheering for you all the way across the country.