Friday, November 2, 2007


Usually I write my blogs at night - it gives me a chance to contemplate the day, go over stuff that's been simmering in the back of my mind, and I get a chance to clear my mind. Sometimes stuff bothers me, and after writing about it I'll feel better (Junior Mr. Speedo - to my horror he and his wife live in our apartment building! They're the new neighbors!! Cue scary horror music!) Other times, I'll just write about off the wall stuff, observations, and go on with things.

Today is a little different.

The next 36 hours will be some of the most exciting/busiest/hectic/intense/wonderful of my life (okay, maybe a slight over exaggeration). So take a deep breath, sit down, calm your nerves, and here we go!

Of course when I've got a lot going on, it's always helpful to miss your first workout. If I wasn't still training for Clearwater, it wouldn't be a big deal. There's just something about getting up at 6 every morning that's beginning to get a little old. Well, that and the fact that the sun doesn't rise until 7 at this point. I figure that with daylight savings, or whatever (think: spring forward, fall back!) my body feels like the 6 am wake-up call is really 5 am. Before I knew it, the External Motivator was shaking me awake saying, "You can still get to the pool! It's only 6:45! Let's go!"

"Oh shit!"

And that's how I started my day.

In my haste to get a few extra zzzzz's - you know, just lounging in bed for an extra 5 or 10 minutes - I inadvertently fell back asleep. Unfortunately, it still felt like 5 minutes, but in reality, it was 45. Great. And now that the pool closed at 8 - there would be no way I could get up, get ready, drive to the pool, and get my 65 min workout in within a 75 minute time crunch. For Pete's sake - it takes me 5 bloody minutes of schlepping around the pool deck and hanging out at the edge before I actually get into the cold water. Sigh.

Not a good way to start a 36 hour whirlwind.

I contemplated briefly of setting up the trainer and switching my bike and my swim around. That stopped after about 10 seconds, when my coach's voice echoed in my head: I'd really like you to do the workouts in the order that I give them. Great. Now I couldn't be super efficient and get the bike in before the swim. Wonderful.

And all because I slept in.

Well - I guess it's my body telling me that I'm tired, and that I need my sleep. What's the hurry anyway? No worries (as Ludi would say).

So now, I'm swimming at 11, biking at 12:15, and hopefully (fingers crossed), will be on the road to Panama City by 2. And that's just the start.

This afternoon I'll hang out with Ludi and Katy, meet up with Memo, absorb the environment, try not to drool over the professionals who are out there, and just be inspired by all of these amazing athletes who will be participating in the most grueling single day event in the world: Ironman. Wow.

And I'll try not to stress out too much about Clearwater... gulp. I told myself that this weekend was devoted to IM Florida, and supporting my friends and partners who are racing. I'm all set to do that - but in the back of my mind, back in the corners where I don't go all that often, is the tiny voice, the teeniest whisper of reminders that I'll be racing my tail end off in a week. At the biggest race that I've ever done. But I'm not there, not just yet.

Tonight I'll be able to relax, catch up, and enjoy the pre-race environment without having to stress out about racing.

And then tomorrow....

*Cue the Cannon Fire!* BOOM!

Race starts at 7. I can't wait. I've never seen an IM start, and I want to be a part of it. To feel the energy, to marvel at these amazing athletes, to see what it's like. After the swim, I'll cheer people on into T1, marveling at the wetsuit strippers, and the awesome bikes, incredible athletes, and then head back to the hotel for my own workout.

Did I mention that I'm racing in week?? wink wink!

So as much as I want to be out there supporting everyone, I've still got to do an intense brick. I can get the first part in on the trainer, but plan on running outside along part of the course, or else through the streets of Panama City Beach along the Gulf. Either way, it's only a total of 90 minutes, but it's part of what Coach wants me to do... so it'll get done.

And then afterwards, I get to (sort 0f) relax, watch people on the bike, enter T2, and do lots of cheering. I'll hang out with Katy, cheering Ludi on, and we'll probably discuss this weekend's football lineups. She's great with the football talk and has been paramount in keeping me informed about team stats and games. Yea Katy! I'm also really looking forward to meeting Jen Harrison, and thanking her for her support after Timberman. There were a lot of people that made a big difference and really helped me out - but she was especially great. I had never met or chatted with her before, but after leaving a comment on her blog site, she contacted me and gave me a lot of support. So I'm looking forward to finally meeting her and telling her "Thanks!" in person. And I just want to enjoy as much of the day as possible.


The clock strikes 4 pm, and I'll have to dash to the car. No - it won't turn into a pumpkin. But, I've got the annual USMC Ball tomorrow night. This is a REALLY big deal, the kind of thing that you DON'T miss out on. Nathaniel is great about being supportive of my being out at IM Florida, but I know he wants me to be at the ball with him. And I want to be with him too. The Marine Corps is a big part of our lives, and the annual birthday ball is a way of paying tribute to the past, present, and future Marines. So I'm happy to be supportive, and enjoy a lovely evening of a formal ball.

Which brings me to the frantic part. Because it takes about 2 hours or so to get from PC to Pensacola, I'll be dashing into the house, showering really quickly, throwing up my hair, slipping on the dress (reminder - I need to get some double sided tape!), and meeting Nathaniel either at the restaurant or the actual Naval Aviation Museum (ball site - depending on how quickly I can convert from triathlete mode to elegant Marine wife mode. Not as easy as you think).

The cocktail hour starts at 7, and the ceremony doesn't start until 9, so I'm trying to give myself as much flexibility as possible, but it will still be a bit frantic.

So in summary - that's the next 36 hours. I'm really looking forward to all the adventures, but honestly, I can't wait to watch Sunday football (Patriots v Colts!). Hopefully I won't fall asleep from the chaos - but I know it'll be a lot of fun.

A quick reminder to myself - I'm going to be very disciplined about not spending a lot of money at the IM expo. There's just so many cool things - stuff that I wouldn't normally need, but once you've got it, well, you can't imagine going without. Sigh. I'll wait until next weekend to go bonkers at the expo.

Oh yeah, I'm racing next weekend. Hopefully with all the stuff going on, I can forget about that, keep the anxiety level down, and just have a great time. It'll be a whirlwind 36 hour adventure, and I'll have my trusty camera to document as much as possible. And truth be told. I can't wait!

A special thanks to my Mom. She knitted and made the MOST BEAUTIFUL wrap I have ever seen. to go with my ball dress I'm going to put up pictures when I write my blog about the ball and stuff, but I was taken aback by the detail, quality of work, and love that she put into this amazing garment. It's beautiful. The kind of thing that if Nathaniel and I ever have kids will be passed down to my daughter one day. Thanks Mom - it's perfect. I love you.

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