Ironman Boulder-Part One

On the road to Boulder in the middle of Wyoming with my training partner-in-crime

On the road to Boulder in the middle of Wyoming with my training partner-in-crime

Beautiful Boulder.

For years I have wanted to visit this triathlon mecca tucked away in the Flatiron Mountains at the base of the mighty Rockies.  Imagine my surprise when Ironman triathlon decided to chose this little gem of a city to host a full Ironman triathlon.  I had told my husband years ago….”If there is ever an IM in Boulder, WE’RE THERE!”  (I have a few cities that I think this about)  So when WTC announced a new IM race in Boulder, it took me all of three-seconds to decide my race venue.  The day it opened, I woke up with the excitement of a kid on Christmas morning and the second I could register, I was on to secure my spot.

A night at the fabulous Avery Brewing Tap House (click pic for info)

A night at the fabulous Avery Brewing Tap House

After months of training for my third Ironman, we took the trip to Boulder.  Deciding to go early (2 weeks) because I had never raced at altitude before and was unsure how it would effect me.  We got there and training continued into my taper; the altitude never having any effect, thankfully.  We immediately loved the area.  My hubs LOVED the area.  Lot’s of sun, lot’s of great food options (what a foodie city) LOT’s of fit, health conscious people who were so friendly and eager to talk to out-of-towners, great outdoor activities and bikes EVERYWHERE!!  All things we adore!  We enjoyed every day of the 2 weeks leading up to race day.

WHAT THE KALE!!! During this whole trip I craved Kale!!  This made my night.  Roasted Kale and Brussels Sprouts with Sweet Soy at Foolish Craigs.  OH yes please!!

WHAT THE KALE!!!
During this whole trip I craved Kale!! This made my night. Roasted Kale and Brussels Sprouts with Sweet Soy at Foolish Craigs. OH yes please!! We tried this place because it had been on the TV show Diners, Drive-In and Dives (click pic for info)

When Ironman village opened we enjoyed hanging out there, being at the Athlete Welcome Party, listening to the Ironband (these guys ROCK!)and the great Mike Reilly pumping us up for race day!

The Saturday before race day is bike and gear bag check in.  I made sure my bike was all clean and ready to rock (Thanks to my bike handler hubs) packed my run and bike gear bags (your T1-T2 bags)

T1 Bike gear bag: Helmet, Rudy sunglasses, cycling gloves, cycling shoes (I do not wear socks)

Saturday getting ready to pack my bags

Saturday getting ready to pack my bags

T2 Run bag: EFS Liquid Shot flask; filled, visor, Garmin, socks (Nike dry fit) and my kicks (Hoka One One Bondi 3) Running in socks is all new to me, but with these shoes I feel like I need them.  Hoka I beg you for a seamless, sock-less friendly shoe.

After a quick little workout that morning; 10 min swim, 10 min bike, 10 min run, we headed down to Boulder Reservoir for the bike/bag drop.  It was a swirling beehive of activity as athletes and family members walked their bikes down for their security photos (I told them that my bike looooooves having her photo taken) and to rack them up for their overnight stay at the reservoir.  It was so fun for me having friends from CdA there at checkin that came down to volunteer.  To see a familiar face when nerves are starting to brim up inside is such a huge comfort.  I left the hubs and walked in with my bike giving JB a quick, nervous, hug that immediately brought the sting of tears that just wanted to fall from my eyes.  I went into bike transition and found my number on the rack and hung my bike.  I walked back to the start of transition and walked back to my bike ensuring I knew exactly where she was (this will be a funny story later). Then with a sigh and a little lip-quiver of knowing the next time I saw her I’d be past a 2.4 mile swim and ready to head out on a 112 miles, I walked out.  I saw JB again and grabbed a quick, reassuring hug, thanked her for being there to volunteer and went to meet the hubster to drop my gear bag.  I dropped that bag and came around to check out the swim buoys that were already placed.  The reservoir is beautiful. 186214154 1600 Looking at a one-loop swim course always seems to appear SO huge! (I mean it is…almost 2 1/2 miles)  Some of those buoys were almost out of eyeshot.  I giggled at thinking how nervous I was for my first IM swim and how far I’ve come.  I have learned to love that swim so much (it was actually the first workout I did post IM this week)  I also noticed that the transitions seemed long from water exit, to wetsuit peelers, through bag pick up, into the changing tents, but that ended up not being the case and didn’t effect my transition times at all.

Race ready and Dropping of the goodies!

Race ready and Dropping of the goodies!

IronBand rocking us with some sweet tunes at the Athlete Welcome

IronBand rocking us with some sweet tunes at the Athlete Welcome

Next was run bag drop.  That was at Boulder High School.  This was something new to me, having split transition areas.  But again, during the race, was of no effect.  I dropped my bag on the track, looked to see which tent I’d be entering (left or right) and left for the day.  Lunch, rest and packing Special Needs bags was all that was left on my schedule for the day.

I was set!!

Hiking in Chautauqua Park…Gorgeous Day!

Hiking in Chautauqua Park…Gorgeous Day!

 

Running in our Undies-Ironman Boulder Underpants Run.  Love this tradition!

Running in our Undies-Ironman Boulder Underpants Run. Love this tradition!

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Loved the "bike" lights

Loved the “bike” lights

Mountain Goats

Mountain Goats at Chautauqua Park

A Little Scratching. A Little Cleaning. A Little Focus.

Travel is done for a bit now.  Coming off of our Honduras trip was like coming back from the moon.  It took time to re-acclimate to life in Idaho.  I was in a little bubble for about a week..NOW,  it’s time to get down to business again.  Running business.  Training business.

I decided late last week to officially scratch from Ironman Lake Stevens in July.  Tough decision, being I have never missed a race.  (I take that back…one sprint Tri several years ago, due to incredible sickness…the kind of sickness that we won’t speak of)  Here’s the deal…life sometimes throws a curve ball, in this case, it was ALOT of travel and fun…and not enough training time.  That’s fine.  I mean…I really can’t complain about the travel.  Could I have raced Lake Stevens??  Yes!  ***But, for me, at the risk of a possible injury.  I don’t know.  It would’ve been ugly, and I just felt that it was really in my best interest to let it go.  I have to be smart, and train smart.  So I withdrew and will race it another year.

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I took 4 days this week while my Wiley Coyote of a daughter was at Track and Field Camp at WSU to absolutely de-clutter every closet in my house!  That’s a lot of closets. (You have NO idea)  The purging of the closets, was so cleansing for me.  In a way that I didn’t expect.  I was sad and had my head hanging about Lake Stevens….and then as the un-needed stuff <read crap> came out of the closets, and I saw these fresh, clean, organized spaces, I thought….this is JUST what I needed.  De-cluttering of the mind.  Trip after trip to the trash, Goodwill, the dump….until it was all gone.  My closets are clean, my head-space is clear, and I have a fresh, new, outlook for a race plan.  I needed to kick that old race away.  I have.  And I feel good about it.  Refreshed!

So, back to training.  Running!  With occasional cross-training with my girls.  “Occasional” meaning, most swim and bike days.  But my focus has tilted and I am ready to start my new training plan for a Fall marathon.  If I pick up a few 5 or 10K’s along the way, so be it.  I am considering a couple different ones, Portland Marathon and Tri Cities Marathon.  Both in October, both look and sound like a great time!  Neither I have done before!  New races make me excited!

Monday, I am back at it.  I have been scouring over training plans.  I have done this before, but ya never know what kind of nugget you will pull out of various plans.  By Sunday night, the plan will be set, and Monday will be D-Day!

D-Day |ˈdi ˌdeɪ|noun the day• the day on which an important operation is to begin or a change to take effect: 

I’m looking forward to being back on a training plan.  I guess I don’t function well without one.  It’s such an internal fight for me…not wanting to be tied down to a “plan” but knowing that I need a focus.  That’s how I succeed.  That’s the type of person I am, and how I roll.   And I know if I “fail to plan, then I should plan to fail!”

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It was kind of ironic this afternoon when I went to pick up Wiley-Coyote from camp.  We had an “end of camp” pow-wow, and one of the coaches addressed the campers and parents.  Wow did he have some great stuff to say.  Sitting there, I got SO pumped that I wanted to jump out of my chair.  It was the final motivation for me.  He even talked about Olympic track and field athletes that were set up for greatness and things didn’t end up so great, and that sometimes in life, this happens.  It’s what you do about it after that makes a huge difference.  This is so true.  I could sit and beat myself up about missing this 70.3 or I could clean and sharpen the lens and Find the focus!

Monday….I Run!!

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FFL

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