So, Friday morning, my car wouldn't start. It has a mind of it's own. I think i'll just start calling it "Kit"...but basically, sometimes it tells me a door is ajar when i'm simply driving down the road. All the interior lights turn on and it "dings". Then, things settle down and all is quiet. Well, it's only a problem when they decide to NEVER turn off. It kills the battery. Luckily, Tom and I had discussed riding together, so he just picked me up.
We made the drive and went to join in on the fun at the Practice swim in the Ohio. The river really isn't as bad as everyone seems to think. It wasn't as bad as I expected. Ran into some friends, chatted, picked up packets, got weighed (good, Lord...why? I mean, I know why...but, seriously, we've been tapering for two weeks!) and headed back to N Ky. Did a quick 30/15 bike/run. Felt great. Dad came over and we took out the bulbs in the lights and jumped my car. No big drama. Ate some sushi. To bed very, very early.
Wait!!! One last HUGE detail. Coach sent me a text "I have a disc if you want to use it." hahahaha. IF?!?
I'm a pretty emotional girl. I got up after about 10 hours of sleep and lying around. Got in my 15/10 bike/run. Felt a little sluggish. Realized I hadn't eaten in over 12 hours. um. duh. I made one last grocery run, packed my gear bags and my over night bag and then....I totally freaked. Sweaty palms. Racing heart. And it wasn't about how well I'd do. I was about doing it at all.
See, my goal for this race went from qualifying for Kona to simply participating. After I got so sick in the spring, I'd written off IM for this year. For me to even be competing in this thing was just overwhelming. I remember four short months ago, my dad told me that somehow, he just knew I'd come out stronger from that whole ordeal. Those are the very thoughts that overcame me out there on the bike...and the run, and brought on the tears. But that's for later...
I got about ten minutes of quiet time to clear my head a bit and dad was at the door to pick up my little Clubby for the weekend. Then, Tom was at the door and we were loading up and on our way to Louisville.
Bike & Gear Check In
The volunteers were great! We went straight to bike check-in and were handed a "guide" to show us where to rack and how transitions would flow, etc. I was #601, which just so placed my gear bags at the very end of an aisle. No problem finding those dudes. The girl was very kind and I totally understood everything. Def helped with visualization stuff. Other than that, uneventful.
Checked into the hotel, watched some MJ videos, "Thriller" in particular. Nice. And then back down to check-in to get that wheel from Coach. EEKK!
A little chatting and I was ordered off my feet. Back at the hotel. Ate food and to bed. But not to sleep. That was intermitent.
Morning Transition & Swim Line
the plan was to meet at transition at 5:15. We were there before then. Coach pumped the disc up and then was all in a hurry to get down to the swim start, which was about a mile away...but also almost two hours away. What's the big deal?? I hung around and talked with some friends, kept running into people. Turned in my bike special foods (which was really just a pbj...but, hey, I didn't want to regret NOT having it available) and left for the swim start a few mins before 6am.
We walked and walked and walked. We stopped and peed. We found the swim start. We got body marked. And then we started down the line to find the end. And we walked. And walked. and walked. and walked. Until we were out on the bike course. Over a mile from the swim start!!!!
Pretty soon, dad calls, he's looking for us. I hear Tom say "Hey Marvin!" and then I saw her. My little girl! Ha! She has to take like 4 steps to dad's every one, so she was pretty much pooped by 6:15am. And ya know, it's great having my dad there. He's got a very calming affect on me. most of the time.
Then, mom calls and she comes walking up! Mom and dad and Clubby! That made the wait for the swim more interesting. Ryan made a comment about my dog looking like a penguin that just fell over. Dad added "yeah, and fell flat on her face!" Freakin' comedians.
We heard a gun shot. Pro start at 6:50 (though i think the sound reached us around 6:52 we were so far away). Then another...amateur start! And the line started moving!!!!