Never had I felt so good in the lead up to an Ironman. I was lean and rested. Maxifuel recovery products and vitamins had meant I was strong and at a very lean race weight. It was to be my race.
When I got in to the water I felt light and strong. The Maxifuel gel topped up my reserves just before I hit the water. I was on for a good time until I took a full fist blow to the eye socket. Pulling out of the slim stream I re-adjusted my goggles and checked the fist hadn’t busted the skin on my face.
Feeling the rain drops on my back while swimming I made the decision to take the time in T1 and put on my arm warmers and rain cape. Three hours later on the side of the road changing a slow flat I was pleased with my decision. It hadn’t stopped pelting down and now I was struggling to get my sodden tire off covered in grit. It wasn’t to be the only slow flat I would get of the day, resulting in riding the last 15 kilometres on my rim hoping that my flat tire wouldn’t roll off taking me with it.
Race goal time was out the window. I needed to route deep to find mini goals within the goals. Headsweats visor on, I attacked the run. Having half a Maxifuel gel every 20 minutes not only broke the marathon into 20 minute treats but kept my nutrition even throughout. I spent the first lap of four running between the third and fourth professional woman. This is the reason why we do this sport, to be in the mix with our heros. This spurred me on to keep racing hard despite the disaster on the bike. I was super pleased with how smooth and loose I felt on the run. Crossing the finish line was a huge accomplishment. It wasn’t just about the distance but the mental games I had to play to trick myself to the finish.
I jumped straight in to the ice bucket baths with a Recovermax in hand. The following day I could walk with ease. I put the lessons of the day down in my diary and started to plan out my pursuit to the Berlin Marathon in September.