Four days. In four days I will toe the line at Ironman Wisconsin. I will tread out to the swim start, the cannon will sound, and my 140.6 mile journey will start. I will swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 technical, hilly miles, and run 26.2 miles before midnight.
Current mood? Scattered mess. Don’t get me wrong; I’m fully prepared, packed, all appointments completed, out of office reply is humming, and I’m ready to load the car and drive to Madison tomorrow. But I’m a flibbertigibbet. One minute I’m crying for no reason–and lots of reasons–the next I think I desperately need to purchase and hang long overdue bathroom curtains tonight. It is time to sit, collect my thoughts, center, and calm down. And BREATHE.
Knowing I’m saying goodbye to my kids tonight and won’t see them until Saturday night for pre-race dinner has hit me with a big fat dose of reality. I’m hugging them like there’s no tomorrow and thanking them profusely for their support and love this past year. Teen/pre-teen girls could have been horrible about all this, but they are not horrible girls. They are great, and they have been beyond accommodating with our training schedule and the odd meals that sometimes end up being served. I can’t imagine doing this without them.
While we are on the subject of family, can we just talk about how incredible it has been to go on this journey with my husband? While our training plan and pace is not identical, so we don’t exactly train “together” all the time, at least we can discuss every exquisite/intricate detail of our pace, watts, and SWOLF (What the heck is “SWOLF”, you say? Read more here.) after workouts and have the other on the edge of our seats hungry for more details. We understand each other, and we cut each other slack when we know it’s needed…because we have been there or are there currently as well. Aside from the occasional couch night because one of us is too sore to sleep (ahem, usually me), this has brought us closer as we have seen each other in the heights and depths that training brings. That said, I am really looking forward to reconnecting in other ways post-Ironman (wait, what is POST-Ironman???) and remembering what other things interest us.
Am I ready? That is the question on repeat. I don’t know; I’ve never done this before. Here are the facts. Since November 1, 2015, my data shows me the following:
I swam 100 miles.
I biked 2103 miles.
I ran 562 miles.
I have torched 156,018 active calories.
Honestly, I was surprised at these numbers. It felt like more. Add in prep time, drive time, recovery time, and cooking/eating for refueling, and you’ve at least tripled the hours involved. I simply took one day of training at a time, and somehow I’m told it will all come together.
My Coach, Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Massage Therapist (“The Miracle Worker”), Chiropractor, Acupuncturist, and M.D. have all signed off that I am physically ready for the final 140.6 miles of the journey. Yes, that’s a lot of people, and it’s just the tip of the iceberg for the village it takes to make this happen.
So, looking at the facts, my answer has to be YES, I am ready. My body feels good. Taper has done its job of repair and recovery. I am filled with emotion and am eager to arrive in Madison and feel the buzzing energy of a city filled with athletes, volunteers, and support crews.
I am excited, anxious, nervous, confident, pensive, terrified, grateful, tearful. On Sunday, I’m leaving it all on the course, and will cross this glorious, beautiful finish line: