The agenda has been created. The packing list has been finalized. My IMLP Excel spreadsheet, complete with 6 tabs of information, is ready to be printed. Penelope is currently at the bike shop getting tuned up so she can lead me to victory. (Victory = crossing the finish line, to be clear.) My bedroom floor is covered with little piles of gear. A packet for my cheer squad has been put together.
What does that mean?
IT’S RACE WEEK!
I’m counting down the seconds until I get to pick my parents up from the airport and head upstate…
…but until then, I’m just trying to finalize all the last minute raceday details. I am so unbelievably excited that I’m finding it extremely hard to focus on work. (Don’t tell my boss.) I don’t go long without thinking about Ironman. Yesterday I was watching a movie (“Ted”, if you need a visual) and after about an hour into it, I realized I hadn’t thought about my race since the movie started. I almost felt guilty…like, if I don’t think about it every waking moment, I’ll forget all the things I’ve been trying to remember. Or I’ll forget how to ride a bike. That sounds miserable, right? But it’s not. Not at all. I LOVE THIS. It makes me so happy to have “my thing”…something that breaks up the monotony of a normal day…something that truly makes me feel alive, as corny as that sounds.
So, last week, we had a team meeting with the coaches to go over last minute details. Since you’ve stuck around with me this long, I may as well share all the helpful advice they gave me. Right? I’m such a good sport, I know. Here we go!
Last-minute race day tips:
- Eat a big, high-carb breakfast on Saturday. That’s the day to eat pancakes and bacon and eggs. This way, my body gets lots of carbs, but also has time to digest before Sunday morning. This is my favorite tip. Really, anything that involves pancakes is great.
- Hydrate with Gatorade this week (or whatever your sports drink of choice is). Water isn’t as good of an option because it’s more important to get those electrolytes flowing.
- Eat an early dinner full of easily digestible carbs on Saturday night. 5PM at the latest…again, to give my body time to digest. Plus, my goal is to be in bed around 8-8:30 (just in time to lay there for hours and hours thinking about raceday).
- Be careful about getting caught up in all the pre-race excitment. Don’t walk around the expo. Don’t run around buying last minute items. Come prepared, and make sure to rest. Besides gear/bike check-in and a few shake-out workouts, stay off my feet.
- Walk to the starting line on race morning – traffic will be terrible. (For the record, this will put me at 141.8 miles. Just FYI.)
- Apparently you can buy reflective dots to put on your clothing when running at night. Who knew!
- The weather in Lake Placid is crazy because it’s in the mountains. It could rain one second and be sunny the next. I need to stop freaking out that the 5-day forecast shows it as rainy with a high of 75 degrees. (75 is great – but please no rain!)
None of these are really related, but there you are. There’s definitely more info to remember, but I need to consult my agenda…and it’s not handy right now. Sorry folks. For now, I’ll leave you with something my Dad sent me over a year ago about one of my favorite baseball players – I just found it while cleaning out my inbox (which, might I add, is the best feeling ever and a great thing to do when you can’t focus on anything else):
401 players were selected prior to Albert Pujols in the baseball draft. The scouts were apprehensive about his weight, feeling he would quickly get fat. Baltimore picked seven times, passing on Albert every time. 401 times teams selected others. Kansas City, the city in which Pujols played high school and college ball, took 16 players in the first 13 rounds, none named Pujols.
Albert homered in his first St. Louis opener on April 9, 2001. He tied the NL rookie record for the most home runs in the month of April in 2001. He went on to set a new NL mark for RBIs in a rookie season; the record was previously held by Ted Williams in 1939. In 2003 he reached base in nine straight appearances. In 2005 he won his first NL MVP award. In 2010 he passed Stan Musial to be the all-time Cardinals’ leader in multi-HR games. On July 30, 2011 Pujols picks up his 2,000th career hit. In Game three of the World Series, Pujols joined Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson as the only players in baseball history to hit three home runs in a World Series Game.
Have you ever been told that you can’t do something? You’re not good enough? You might have been a 2nd choice. Albert wasn’t the first or second choice. He was the 402nd choice.
Listen to your heart. Never give up!