That’s me! You can track me during the race on Sunday starting at 7am at www.ironman.com.
It’s day 2 in Madison for Ironman weekend. Day 1 was very eventful and tiring. We arrived at Monona Terrace around 11am on Friday and got checked in for the race. I have an athlete wristband that has to stay on all weekend:
We walked over to look at the swim course, and here you can see the buoys set up behind me:
After walking around for a while waiting for the hotel rooms to be ready, we were finally able to check in. I was slightly irritated because check-in time was supposed to be 3pm, and the rooms weren’t ready until 3:45. I finally got to my room and set about getting my gear organized. Here are all off the gear bags laid out on the bed:
The drawstring bag was the goodie bag, which is awesome, and the socks I bought at the expo 🙂 I referenced my handy spreadsheet to help me put all of the right gear in the right bags. I didn’t have much time to relax before it was time to leave for the athletes’ dinner and meeting.
We walked back to the Terrace (which is about a 15 min walk). There was a huge room set up for the dinner. It was a buffet of pasta with red sauce, mixed veggies, salad, and baked potatoes. As people finished eating, Mike Riley took the stage and did a talk about the day and how much he loves Madison. He also announced the youngest and oldest competitors, and also spotlighted people who lost incredible amounts of weight in training for the event. One guy lost 212 lbs in training, and Mike told him he could not wait to announce his name at the finish line. The whole thing was pretty cool. Then there was the athletes’ meeting, where different people went over the rules, and told everyone what to expect on race day. After the meeting it was back to the hotel, and I snapped this photo on the way out:
Today I woke up around 6:30 and couldn’t get back to sleep. I had some coffee and breakfast, and then it was time to head to Lake Monona for a practice swim. I put on my wetsuit and waded in. The water was slightly chilly at 75 degrees, but not too bad. I did one lap around the 2 loop course. I will admit, it was long. I kept thinking I can’t believe I have to go twice around tomorrow, but I know it will be completely different and less boring during the race. I felt like I got into a good rhythm out there, so I am feeling a little less nervous about tomorrow. Not much less though 🙂
After the swim, it was back to the hotel for a quick shower and some food. Then it was back to the Terrace for bike and gear bag drop off. The bike transition area was huge, it just kept going and going. This shows less than half of it:
Then it was off to bag drop offs in two separate rooms. I sure hope I don’t get lost during the race, because it is all pretty confusing. Here is the T1 swim to bike bag room:
You have to run in here, grab your bag, and run into the changing room next door. Here’s the T2 bike to run bags:
After everything was dropped off, it was time to head back to the hotel for a little rest. I got a delicious Hawaiian smoothie from a street vendor on the way back, which hit the spot. We are scheduled for an early dinner at 4:30, and then I will be lying low for the rest of the night, getting everything organized for tomorrow. I hope to be asleep by 9:00pm at the latest, as I will be waking up at 3:45am. The plan is to leave the hotel around 4:45, putting us in transition around 5am when it opens.
Last minute thoughts:
It is going to be hot tomorrow. The forecast says high of 82, but I won’t be surprised if it reaches the mid-80’s. I need to be diligent about hydration and my nutrition plan on the bike.
I can’t wait to see my hubby and mom out on the course cheering me on. My mom and her boyfriend are bringing their bikes and will ride out to parts of the bike course. Steve is driving out with another friend, so hopefully they can get to some good spots to watch.
I need to remember that it’s an extremely long day, and there will be times when I want to quit. I will not quit, and the feeling will pass. I will do this.
I will have fun out there, I will thank the volunteers, and I will try to soak in every moment. I cannot freaking believe this day has arrived.