Friday, September 14, 2007

Ironman Wisconsin 2007 - Part 1

There is a lot to say about the all that happen over Ironman weekend. At times I think I blinked and then it was over. Other times it seem like I was in Madison for a month. So here’s my best attempt to tell my Ironman tale.

Pre-Race
Details, details details. It seems like all I was doing was running through the details of getting ready for the race. There were the lines to stand in and the tons of prep work to do. I think the nature of the Ironam really having to be completely ready on Saturday really started to get to me. This is the only race where you have to get your gear to the race the day before. I’m use to having everything with me in my transition bag that I need for a race. I’m use to setting up my transition area the morning of the race and this whole routine was not an option. This really threw me out of sync as the race drew closer.

On Saturday Bob and I went through our last checks before it was time to take everything down to the race site. Once again we checked our gear and took our bikes out for a little spin. On our ride we stopped at the final blogger meet-up. It was great to finally meet a lot of people that I’ve read about for months. I only with I could have spent more time with the blogger crew. To soon the nervous itch to make sure everything was ready was pulling me away from Bolder, AJ, TaconiteBoy, Stu, and many others. Finally with our bags and bikes in tow we headed down to the race site to drop off the huge weight that had been growing for the past few days. (sigh) The weight was off. Now all I could do was enjoy a nice dinner with everyone who had gathered to support Bob and I during the race.

Race Morning
The alarm and cell phone went off way to early. I had managed a couple of hours of sleep, but I wasn’t going to get any more. I’d be lying if I didn’t ask Ms. R if we could just stay in bed all day. The answer was no and it was time to get up. Soon after spreading some peanut butter on a bagel I got a call from Bob making sure that I was up. He too had the thought of staying in bed as well. hehe Soon I was grabbing my special needs bags and heading out the door. With in ipod in my ears I walked down the dark blocks to the bright lights of the race site. With my bags dropped off I headed to my bike to set up my bottles and get marked. I stopped to talk to Bob at his bike and we both seemed to be in a pretty calm state. After a last check of everything I headed to meet Ms. R.

I was doing fine until I saw her face and I almost lost it. The emotions swelled and the fear of the unknown clutched us both. We both held the tears back, but the emotions rolled through us both. I decided I need to walk and headed toward the restrooms to catch my breath. After the trip and hearing DMB pumping over the speakers my mood flipped flopped and I walked back to Ms. R with a smile on my face. After applying the body glide and sunscreen the others showed up. (Kimmi, Jaime, Bridget, and Waima) They wished me well and it was finally time to part with my friends. Again for a fleeting few seconds the emotions and fears swelled and I kissed Ms. R goodbye. We both knew it would be ok, but the fears were still there.

Finally it was time as I made my way towards the helix. I stopped at the top to pull my wetsuit half on. I slowly continued down and stopped half way down to take in the site of water I would be swimming in within minutes. The water was clam and the red of the sunrise was on the horizon. I finally made it to the bottom of the helix to drop off my last bag. At the bottom was a fellow TNTer and good friend Steve who was volunteering. His voice was booming as he shook my hand wising me luck. The luck I would need as I settled into the moving mass towards the water. I chatted with a lady who was as nervous as me from New York. We were five minutes from the start when we finally reached the water. I headed to left to take my spot in the back. I wanted nothing to do with the mess at the front of the swim pack. Within seconds I heard Bob scream as he knew where I would head once I was in the water. It was a nervous smile, but he was smiling big and yelling to get pumped up. He told me to turn around and he wife was behind us taking a picture, though I never saw where she was. After that I quickly started swimming to get my muscles moving a bit before the cannon sounded. The warm-up was minimal to say the least and I moved back towards Bob for the start of the race. Soon they called for the kayaks to move and within seconds the cannon sounded and Ironman Wisconsin 2007 had started.

(I will post the next parts as soon as possible. I will be south of the border next week so it will depend on how available the Internet is. If I can't post I will drink many margaritas in your honor of being so patient. Well I was going to drink them anyway, but this will make them more meaningful. hehe )

Till next time...

2 Comments:

Blogger tri-mama said...

Way to go Walchka! You are an Ironman!

7:09 AM  
Blogger Kimmi said...

Having a part one usually indicates a part two to follow...maybe someday soon? After the new place is unpacked and before IMMOO 08?

8:20 AM  

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