With the weekend off from coaching I was actually able to turn my attention to my own big race by heading to Madison to train with the WIBA crew. Overall it was a great weekend and I met a lot of nice people. There are more details to share, but this weekend told me how much work I have yet to do before September 9th. Not a lot of time, but I know have a better idea of what it is really going to take to finish an Ironaman.
Ironwil, Simply Stu, and everyone else who helped to put WIBA on did an amazing job. I can’t thank them enough for all the opportunities that they provided in a jammed-packed weekend.
Friday - SafetyBob picked me up early in the morning and we were on the road to Madison by 7:00 am. About 4.5 hours later we arrived in Madison and checked in to our hotel. After a trip to the bike shop and some food it was time for the activities to start. First up was a 2 hour session on the Cycle Ops bikes working on max power. I don’t think I was quite ready for an all out 2 hour session. The Cycle Ops bikes are pretty sweet, but I was drained afterwards. Lucky for us it was just the beginning as the bike was followed up by a 30 minute swim and a 20 run. So nothing like being in a car all morning and then doing a triple workout. Bob and I were beat afterwards, but rebounded a bit in time for dinner at a nice Italian restaurant. We talked with others from the group including MN’s own TaconiteBoy. The food was great and everyone seemed to have a good time.
Saturday – After the long day on Friday we skipped the swim to get a bit of extra sleep before the big ride. It was the right choice considering the ride we were about to have. Basically the 75 miles on the course was the hardest ride I’ve ever done. The 100+ heat index didn’t help while riding the very hilly and challenging course. I’ve never had to change my gears so many times in one ride. The only bit of joy was arriving at the three stops to refill our water bottles before heading out again. I think I went through 7 or 8 water bottles in the 4.5 hours that we were out. I rode ¾ of the ride with TaconiteBoy which was fun. We had a small group that suffered together. Getting lost once and adding an extra hill didn’t make the day go by any faster.
Sunday – We were schedule to do half the marathon course with the group. Saturday’s bike had some lingering effects and I woke up with a nasty headache. Bob’s legs were suffering as well so we decided to play it smart and skip the run. It would have been nice to run the course, but the body just wasn’t ready for that. After a good breakfast we packed up the Jeep and headed home.
Overall it was a great weekend and I’m really glad we went. Again a big thank you to everyone who played a part in making WIBA happen. The weekend provided me with the list of things I need to work on before the race. Some parts need a lot of work, but I’d rather know now then be surprised on Sept. 9th.
Hopefully after this weekend I’ll be back full steam in my training and blogging. Until then it’s back to coaching and to all those last minute things before the team races on Saturday.