“Racing is the fun part; it’s the reward of all the hard work.”-Kara Goucher
All the hard work is in the books. Now it is time for the fun part. Race week is upon us and my thoughts are on weather, water temperature, am I forgetting anything as I pack, and will we get to the airport on time.
Aimee and I dropped our bikes for transport to Texas. The guy at the bike shop will also be doing the race, so that was nice to know another Oregon racer. We are both feeling ready and excited to finally get to race our first Ironman.
Our last few long swims took place at the local parks and recreation pool. It’s good practice for open water since part of the pool has no lane dividers and we get get sloshed around like in the lake. We have been advised by Meredith and Team Sirius coaches to not swim in the lake the day before the race for the sake of germs etc. I try to put that thought out of my mind and on race day will do my best to keep any water out of my mouth, yuck! We will find a pool and practice swim there instead.
The weather looks promising so far and perhaps not too hot. It will still be warm compared to here, but not in the 90’s or anything outrageous as far as I can see in the weather report, however we have been told from someone who lives there that it is quite unpredictable so Aimee and I will be ready for anything.
This is my plan for the week: Monday- swim/short bike, packing and making sure everything is set for Adam and my parents who will stay with him. Tuesday is a very early 5 am flight to Houston with Aimee and her dad, Charles, where we will then go to the house we rented, grocery shop, take a little run, relax and get ready for the rest of the week. Wednesday we check in, pick up our bikes, get them back to the house and take a short spin. We’ll also drive the bike course, relax, and Denis and I will go to Bible class at Woodlands Church of Christ in the evening. Thursday we’ll swim a bit, then be geeky Ironman fans and spend a little time at the Ironman Village for the pre-race briefing, the pro panel, plus meeting a few pros. Major goals: Meeting Meredith, Michelle Vesterby, and Angela Naeth. Denis will pick up Wendi from the airport while we are there then later in the evening we will all go to the pre-race banquet. Friday is a big day too. We’ll check out the swim start and the course, check in our bikes and our transition bags, try to relax and Charles will pick up Aimee’s husband, Kevin, and her personal trainer, Diane, from the airport that evening and we’ll get to bed early. Saturday, of course is race day. We’ll be up around 4 am to get ready and head to the transition area where we ready our bikes with our hydration and fuel, pump up the tires, and generally make sure all things are in place. Then we’ll walk over to the race start where it all begins. Race time is 6:40am CDT. It is a rolling start, so we’ll be in the water sometime before 7am, probably more like 6:50. I have a rough idea of how the day may go barring any unusual difficulties. Swim should take me about 90 minutes give or take 5 minutes. Bike will be 7-8 hours, and if I am feeling okay at the end of the bike, the run will be 5-6.5 hours. I expect to finish between 9pm-midnight CDT. If I finish before that, then I have had an extraordinary day. If I don’t finish by midnight then something went very wrong.
If you want to follow along, you can download the Ironman Tracker app and put my name or bib number (1491. Aimee 1465) and it will notify you as I pass timing mats. Or you can follow at Ironmanlive.com. There is usually a video feed of at least the finish line. Sometimes for these regional championships, there is live commentating of the pro race.
Thanks for following along on this year of training. I will update my Itriforyou Facebook page with photos during the week and on race day, Wendi will keep it updated.
I have appreciated the encouragement and support to get to this week. If God is willing I will be at the finish line on Saturday. Please remember that I am racing for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and if you have had in mind to donate, today is a good day for it. Thank you.