Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Hey everyone! I'm really excited that I will be working with Trakkers this upcoming tri season; great concept for a great product! Carole Sharpless is the woman in charge, and she is great! We've corresponded quite a bit and I even got a Christmas card from the "Trakkers family" =)

Here's some info about it:

Are you looking to be a SPONSORED ATHLETE for your 2009 triathlon season? Trakkers is currently accepting applications from dynamic, character-driven, hard working individuals who train and race for fun, for competition, or - let's be honest - so we can eat that large pizza on occasion (or even often!).

Trakkers is a unique, real-time tracking device athletes are using during their training and racing events. A satellite signal allows friends and family to locate their athlete online, following actual movement and progress. Imagine how helpful it will be to family members no longer having to guess where their athlete is, no longer having to do vigil on the sidewalk for hours, no longer wondering where their athlete is amid their 4-hour bike ride on Sunday afternoon. Using Trakkers with the internet, family members can navigate accurate location in real-time in order to see their athlete, or follow their progress.

Athletes slated for 2009 Team Trakkers include: Michael Lovato, Heather Gollnick, Amanda Lovato, Chris Legh, Carole Sharpless, Bree Wee, Linsey Corbin, Brooke Davison, Tim Hola, Rachel Ross. At Trakkers, we are looking for individuals to sponsor who will help bring awareness to the product in their multi-sport community through racing, but also by participating in community events. Results are important, but aren't the first thing Trakkers is looking for. We want individuals to represent Trakkers who display passion, emote a positive energy, and will take initiative to spread the word about this already-popular product.

If this sounds like you, using the link below, please consider applying for 2009 Trakkers Sponsorship to be on Team Trakkers. Once you've completed the application, please attach in an email to: All applications must be received by January 27, 2009. Thank you for your interest in Trakkers. We look forward to reading about you in your application. (If link doesn't automatically bring you to sponsorship application, try manually typing URL address.)

Good luck! =)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Laura Vedeen, M.S.

So today I officially earned my Master of Science degree in Exercise Physiology!

I started in January 2007, and finished the program December 2008. I earned a 4.0 GPA, and successfully defended a thesis. I earned the "Graduate Assistant Teaching Award" and presented my thesis at a state conference.

In other words, I rock! Yes, I'm bragging a little bit here...but I think I deserve it =)

I am so lucky to have people in my life that have helped me make it this far:
  • My wonderful fiancee Dan, who has put up with all my crap, yet is my number one supporter; he has so much faith in me, which allows me to have faith in myself!
  • My parents! If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be who I am and where I am today
  • My instructors: I had the best advisor/thesis chair anyone could ask for; she guided me the whole way and helped me stay positive! My other instructors were also extremely helpful, especially with feedback
  • Other friends and family who have supported me throughout the way.
I do plan on earning a doctoral degree, but not just yet. I am going to take a break from the learning process and actually be a grown-up for a little while. Next semester I'll be teaching KNR 113 Personal Fitness as a lecture instructor (I'll have my own G.A. =) working as a consultant for my instructor's, ahem; colleague's research, and another job at ISU which is not finalized yet, more info to come soon =) But I am happy! It would be nice to stick around until Dan is done with his Master's degree (May '10 or Dec '10) then we can move so I can do more school =)

As for now, it's shower time! Tri Shark formal tonight!! =)

Monday, December 8, 2008

AZ...the puppy!

LAST post regarding my trip to Arizona!

Rewind to Saturday 11/22, when Dan, my mom and I were heading toward Tempe Town Lake to go to the volunteer meeting/swim...

My mom walked ahead and crossed the street while I waited for Dan. All the sudden I hear her yell "LAURA! LAURA! PUUUUPPYYYYY!!!!!!"

How obnoxious, I thought, but whatever she's excited. She doesn't even really like dogs, weird!

So we catch up with her, and yes, she was playing with a VERY CUTE little puppy!!! Her owners, Carl and Tabitha, were very sweet and super friendly. They also had another dog with them, a friendly lab/rottweiler mix.

We come to find that they were looking for a home for the little puppy- Carl found her when he was driving to meet his friends for a run three weeks ago; She and her brother were in the middle of the street picking at a McDonald's bag and cars were swerving around the skin-and-bone little dogs! Carl picked them up, kept them in his truck while he ran, then when he returned home with the puppies he checked around his neighborhood to see if they belonged to anybody- no luck. Carl and Tabitha kept the puppies, fed them, took them to the vet to get their first shots, and even trained them a bit! They are a very busy couple- going to school, working, training, and keeping up with their own dog, so keeping the puppies wasn't a good option. They found a home for the boy (Carl's friend), but the girl (whose name was Gorgo-princess from The 300) still needed a home!

We come to found that they are avid dog lovers- their lab could do cool tricks like "Stick 'em up" where we puts both of his paws up when you"point a gun" at him! And the little girl would follow you on a leash, was house-trained, and was generally a good puppy! They thought she was a Rhodesian Ridgeback/maybe a little pit bull mix, as that was what a vet had told them. She didn't really have the "ridge" on her back though, but who cares, she was a good puppy!

My mom fell in love with her, and seriously considered bringing this dog back home to Illinois! She weighed a lot of options- since Beau (our lab) Ty (our awesome golden retriever, I miss him!) both died a year ago (Beau-old age, Ty-seizures) my mom and dad did enjoy the freedom of not having a dog, but then again, they missed the company, especially when Don and I are at school. With the economy having an effect on their business, my mom thought a puppy might be a good way to take their minds (especially my dad's) off the bad stuff and focus on something fun!

So, after meeting with Carl and Tabitha again that evening (so they could interview US as well- there were lots of people who wanted her!), my mom decided she was going to do it! Except, it was going to be a total SURPRISE for my dad- she let my grandparents, my brother, his girlfriend, and various other people in on the little secret (and to get their opinion), but total surprise for my dad. =)

Sunday after the race, Carl and Tabitha were around spectating and volunteering, so they brought Gorgo, and my mom and I got to play with her a little bit. On Monday, my mom made arrangements with the airlines, and her and Dan went to a pet store to buy a carrier for her (we had to take her ON the airplane and keep her under the seat!).

On Tuesday, we had to leave the hotel at 6:30 to get to the airport- Carl actually got up with her at 4AM, exercised her like crazy, and dropped the exhausted puppy off at our hotel at 6AM! He had made a little "puppy packet" for us, with some sample meds, reading, poopy bags, etc. How cool is that? They are so nice!

She was so good at the airport and on the plane- she loves cuddling, and sleeping. And that 's what she did. No howling or anything! What a good girl!

We brought her home, and my brother picked Dan, my mom, and the puppy up at the airport. My dad was still at work for a couple hours. When we arrived home, we debated her grand entrance...the result was pretty darn cute. We put her upstairs in our playroom, under a blanket, and let her sleep. When my dad got home, he said hi to me and my mom, then we told him that Don needed him for something upstairs- he went up (and we subtly followed), looked in the room, and saw this cute little thing sleeping.

"What is this?! this Blitz (referring to the little boxer Dan and I are in love with)?!"
"No....this is your dog Len"
(with a little smile, he couldn't help it)"Please don't tell me this is my dog..."
"Nope, it is."

He loved her! It went well!

Next was the debate about the name...Gorgo will be her middle name, but it took 1.5 weeks to determine a name! We thought about JUDY (haha), Tempe, Miley, Brandy, Annie, Nala, and a million others, but my dad decided on AZ (like Daisy without the D). Cute!
(I look mad but I'm not!)

So she's really cute, and she really is house-trained at 10 weeks old. And she loves her crate, she just goes in there when she wants to sleep. Perfect for my parents who were worried about the puppy messes. She can sit, stay, come, and RUNS on a leash! I took her running up to 2 miles when I was at home, and my mom runs with her as well. My mom also says she learning Stick em up! My mom took her to the vet, and he thought she was mostly "Staffordshire terrier" haha. My mom gets defensive about that. =) I'll post more over Christmas break! =) Welcome AZ!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Pantagraph article about Dan and I

A couple weeks ago, the Pantagraph called Dan and asked if they could interview us and publish an article in the we agreed (how exciting!) and met with Randy Sharer a couple days beore we left for IMAZ. He kept track of us on race day and took enough time to include our results in the article =) I love it- it's so well written and reminds me of how lucky I am to have such a wonderful fiancee! =)

July 2008 Upper Bridal Veil Falls, Estes Park CO

How cool is this? Dan proposed at the lower BV falls in March...we wanted to hike back out there to see what it's like in the summer, and discovered an upper BV falls! And someone had recently gotten married there- flowers and all! Props to Dan for Macgyver'ing a way to autoshoot with my camera! (aka hanging it off a tree branch!)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Ironman Arizona 2008 RACE!! part 3

However, I was very comfortable with pace I was running (about a 9:30-9:50), and chugged right along...remembering that even if I didn't break 12 hours, I was still going to PR by a LOT - at CDA I finished with a 12:37. for some reason I remember being set on a time of 12:02, I have no idea why. Well I'm near mile 20 now, almost done with the first part of the final loop, and I realized that I had about 1 hour left of this race...this day that I've trained so hard for, made so many sacrifices for, put so much effort into...and it was all going to be done in an hour. I was so thankful that I was feeling great, I was happy and healthy...and I made it a point to ENJOY what remained of this adventure.

At mile 20 there was a race clock...and holy cow, race time was around 10:50!!! WAIT A MINUTE!!! I had six miles to go...and I had 1:10 to finish it!! WHAAT??! Then it hit me that every time I looked at a race clock, it was set at the PRO time...I was just given an extra 10 minutes!!! I COULD DO THIS!!! Oh man did I rock the 2nd part of the last loop. It was dark, everyone around me was walking/shuffling/suffering...and I was still trotting along with the biggest smile on my face. I saw my mom, who was relieved that I looked a lot happier, and I double-checked the real time with her to confirm my discovery! YES! She said she was going to skip waiting for me on the last turnaround and go right to the finish. See you in 4 miles Mom!

On the back half of the 2nd loop, there was a guy out for a jog who caught up with me and started chatting. He picked up the pace and I followed...What a cool guy, he confirmed the time for me (again- I was paranoid, this was too good to be true!) and led me through a mile before he turned off. The last couple miles (this sounds corny but it's true) I thought about the day and the awesome spectator and volunteer support- here are my favorite stations:

-Mile 1 of the run: You entered a gated parking lot, and they had a volunteer designated for each runner - as you entered the parking lot, a volunteer jogged with you, asked what you needed, and they got the good for you and brought it to you so you didn't have to stop or pull off to the side- THANK YOU!!!!

-Mile 4 of the run: The Superheroes!! They had a sign that said something along the lines of "Great Job Ironmen, YOU are our SUPERHEROES!" All the volunteers were dressed like superheroes. Awesome, thanks for the entertainment.

-Mile 6 or 7 of the run; The Phoenix tri club and their Wild West Theme - they had made their own BUILDINGS!! and the girls were wearing skanky cowgirl costumes, and spanking the "naughty" athletes who admitted to penalties on the bike. Again, THANKS for laugh!!!

Mile 24 and beyond...I couldn't believe it was coming to an end, and that I felt this great. I even managed to "sprint" (aka like a 7:30 during an Ironman haha) it out the last 800m to pass a girl (not in my AG, but that's ok =) I saw Dan's parents...I heard Mike Reilly...I saw my mom...and I DID IT!!!!! 11:52!!!!! ANOTHER PR!!!! Unbelievable. I rock.
Run Time: 4:12 (not a PR, but not too bad either) 7th in AG...again!!

silly...but who cares =)

Overall: 11:52!! 7th in AG...big surprise. consistency is key?

IMOO 05 - 15:43
IM FL 06 - 14:50
IMUSA 07 - 13:33
IMLOU 07 -15:19 (got sick on the run)
IMCDA 08 - 12:37
IMAZ 08 - 11:52
...I like breaking hour barriers...=) I also PRed in every aspect this year - I PRed overall at CDA with a 12:37, and on the run with a 4:08, then I Pred overall AGAIN at AZ with an 11:52, and on the swim with a 1:24, and on the bike at 6:00:02! Can't wait to see how Canada is going to go next year with some hard work put into it! =) Especially if this trend continues...

My mom and Dan's parents were hooked up with VIP passes (THANKS!!!), so I got some delicious FOOOOD after I finished...real food, very exciting after a day of cookies, liquid, and gel substances. Oh so good. I played with our NEW FRIEND (again, post to come later!!) chilled on the VIP couch and called my entire family. Visited with my mom, who had quite a day herself, then went off to change into some comfy, warm clothes.

After awhile I started to walk backwards on the course to go find Dan and cheer him on. I was able to go on a computer and track him and knew that at race time 13:00 he had 6 miles to go...I figured he would come in right in a little after 14:00, so at 13:50 I leisurely started walking backwards on the course...shame on me. I stopped in a porta=potty for a minute...a minute later I got a call saying Dan had come through!!! Perfect timing, NOT.

my man looking sexy

BUT HE ROCKED the last 6 miles!!!!! I'm so proud of him!!!! Not only had he gotten his IM swim PR, be he also got his OVERALL marathon PR...AND his IM PR (13:57!)!!! GREAT day for both of us!
So I took a shortcut back to the finish line and found Dan. We hung out for a bit while his dad went to go get his hanging out I mean passing out on the lawn...big difference with Dan and I post-races: I am WIRED, could party all night...Dan just wants to PASS OUT. Haha. So he left with his fam, and I stayed with my mom. She volunteered to work as a finish line catcher from 8PM-12AM. She's an animal- dancing at the finish line, helping the oldest finisher...I'm so happy she loves this stuff as much as I do!

for the rest of the evening, I walked around a lot - spectated on the course a bit, walked around the lawn and talked to other athletes, picked up my bags and bike and took them to the car, etc...Then I parked myself on the couch at the VIP tent and feasted a bit more. I also had fun tracking athletes on the computer and watching the finish line both in person and on the TV in the tent. Talked to Koren a little bit, etc...

Then I realized that the massage tent was free for athletes, and at 11PM there wasn't much of a line, so I went for it. Ani is my new favorite person! She worked on me for like 1/2 hr, was an awesome person to talk to, and did a great job! She was also impressed at how "loose" my muscles were- we concluded that it must have been due to the 3 miles of walking I did after I finished the race! She said that she gets a lot of people who hop on the table right after they finish...and then the scream in pain as soon as a fingertip comes in contact with their IT band! Haha.

Midnight finish was fun...what a day.

big THANKS to a lot of people:

Dan: for loving me, supporting me, joining me in these Ironman adventures, and putting up with all my crap.

My mom: For being the best IM spectator ever - I can't wait for your big races to come so I can return the favor!!

My family: Thanks for the support!

Dan's family: Thanks for the support!

Tri-Sharks: motivation, workouts, and training partners! and a bike case for travel! (I still need to return that!)

Tamara and Heather: BEST training partners ever!!!!!!!!!!! When stuff started getting tough, I remembered some of the tough workouts (wind, hills, dogs, etc.) that we've gone through =)

Chris Sweet: Thanks for letting me borrow your bike case as well- I should return that too...=)

AND EVERYONE ELSE for the support!!!!! =) =)


Ironman Arizona 2008 RACE!! part 2

As I was leaving T1, I finally saw a clock, and it said that race time was 1:45 (I had no idea how to check what the "real time" was on the Garmin, I just put it on race time/hr/pace and only touched buttons to get splits). I was a little sad...I figured that my swim must have have over 1:35, since I estimated about 7-10 minutes in transition. (NOTE: this clock was set at the PRO start time, I didn't realize that).

I'm glad that my mom and I drove the bike course the day before- I had it all broken down in my head. Section 1: Get out of town (lots of turns) Section 2: Beeline to Gilbert (where my mom was), and Section 3: Gilbert to the Turnaround. This was about 17.5 miles, then we turn around and do it again. Then the whole thing 2 more times. Piece of cake. I also though that there was going to be no wind...HA!!!

As soon as I started biking (and for the rest of the ride) I felt a nagging little strain in my quads that I haven't felt before. I think that there were 2 factors that may have caused this:
1) I cut my training off too soon- I hit my big weeks, then did way too little for the taper (not completely intentional, I honestly had a lot of schoolwork to do! but I could have made time...)
2) Something wasn't put together right after assembling my bike. I did have trouble getting my seat height correct, and I just put it together the day before the race! duh....

It wasn't excruciating or anything, just annoying. But, maybe I would have LOST 2 SECONDS if it wasn't there! (more on that in a minute)

Back to the bike ride. Once we hit the beeline, I realized that my weather forecast from was completely wrong- SUPER strong headwind up in our faces! Feeling strong, I muscled through it the first lap...I caught up to Dan right before the turnaround, and found out that he had swam a PR- 1:14! Great job Babe!

Turnaround..holy cow, I was going 27-30 mi/hr!! I was scared sh*tless because I never go that fast (remember, no hills or downhills in central illinois!) There was no way in hell I was going to drop in aero position because I am NOT confident in my bike handling skills. I like to have access to my brakes thankyouverymuch. Canada should be fun next year... Halfway down the Beeline I was going 25 mph, which is more "manageable" for me. First loop went well.

Back in town I saw Dan's cheer squad - His mom, dad, aunt, and grandma made the trip out! Thanks for the support!

Second loop, the wind definitely picked up. I tried to keep my HR between 155-160, but with that darn wind, I felt like I wasted my muscles pushing big gears, but I couldn't keep my cadence high enough when I was in small gears...I opted for the former option. I was going 13 mph at some points (HR 155!) and I really wanted to break 6hrs (high18s mph)! Being in aero and pushing through this wind was wearing on me quite a bit- my lower back REALLY started to hurt from tensing up. Man I was happy to see my mom on the course!!! She definitely kept my spirits up!

Second loop was rough. On the way back into town I was going about 23-25 mph, legs were tired, back hurt. I was still focused and determined though.

On the third lap, I was definitely in pain and my back was in dire need of a good I stopped at the aid station before the beeline, got off my bike, and gave it a good stretch while the volunteered refilled my water bottles. Good to go. Headed out onto the Beeline and was REAALLY HAPPY that the wind had died down!! I was actually doing 15-18 mph! YAY! 3rd loop felt much better than the 2nd. On the way back, I had run out of nutrition supplies, so I stopped at the special needs station to get my stuff. I decided to sit and order the volunteers around (with a big smile and thank you of course) worked great, legs felt fresher when I got back on the bike. The SN station was at Gilbert, so my mom came over to take pictures =) Ay yay yay I wish I would have been TWO SECONDS FASTER!

Felt good heading home, I spun it out a little more (rpm >93, usually I'm between 85-90) and was going about 20-22 mph. However, I realized I had to MOVE if I wanted to break 6...and get this, I knew I had it in the bag by about 5 seconds but I made a wrong assumption that the bike-t2 timing mat was right after the bike dismount...wrong! NOOO! It was probably like 20-30 feet away or something, I remember trying to hobble as fast I could over to it in my bike shoes and with tight hip flexors...but NOOOOOO! 6:00:02! DAMN!!!!!! (7th in AG...again!)

I can't be too disappointed though, I did beat my previous best bike time by 35 minutes! Next time!

T2 went well...not fast or anything, but I don't think I was another contender for slowest transition! New shoes and socks. Forgot to put Vaseline on my feet before the socks - my "trick" to no blisters! Put on skirt and shoes, stuff nutrition in various places of sports bra, rub biofreeze on hip flexors...I look like a freak sticking my hands down my pants, but its necessary =)

So I start the run off at a quick little clip...about 1/2 a mile into it I had to use the porta-potty. Took care of that and now the real race started!

It was pretty warm and sunny, and the first part of the figure 8 run course (3.5 mi ish) felt good- Mom's Garmin told me I was running well under 9 min/mi's. Sweet! However, I was pretty excited to start the run, and my heart rate when up really fast. My plan was to keep it near 160 bpm, 155 if I felt like crap (at IM CDA, my HR was between 148-152 the whole race, and it was an easy, super consistent 9:30 pace the WHOLE TIME- 4:08) but, during this race it was averaging over 160 and I was hitting 170 at some points (170 bpm is my half marathon intensity!); I knew I should have slowed down and kept that intensity under control, but I really wanted to continue the pace I was running at...

Second part of the first loop (5ish miles) I started slowing down a bit...9-9:30 min/miles maybe? My abductors were tight (I've been telling myself I needed to strengthen those up all year!) and was feeling just "okay"; the high 70's temp was perfect, but for a snowbird like me, even that was a little much- I started feeling the heat...

My mom was positioned at really good spot; my least favorite part of the run course! There's a section of the course where you have run over a bunch of gravelly sand...not fun for stability or speed. But, there was my #1 Fan - my mom!!!

I started the 2nd lap at the perfect time; Dan was just getting out on the run course the exact same time! I saw his mom right before the end of the first loop, and his dad scored a picture of us together =) Don't have those pics yet, but they will come. We ran together for about the first mile, then he started executed his plan of walking through aid stations, while I continued my multi-tasking trot.

Around mile 10.5 or so I saw April Gellatly, a pro triathlete whose blog I follow on occassion. It looked like she was having a rough time, since she was walking. From what I've read, she is a really tough athlete and a strong person that has been through some hard personal times. And just like it could happen to anyone else, she was having a bad day on the IMAZ course. However, her choosing to walk, choosing to overcome the same adversity as us age-groupers and taking pride in an Ironman FINISH, really says something about her! April, you ROCK. One thing I've learned (as have many of you I'm sure) is that you get to take something home from bad workouts, races, life experiences, etc...they make you really appreciate it when things go your way. The good workouts become even better, the great races become the best. We look forward to seeing you destroy future IM courses April!
(note: really random...Dan and I were hanging out with some graduate assistants last night, and met one of April's friends, Lauren, another grad student at ISU in the KNR dept.! We were all talking Ironman, and Lauren mentioned her friend...small world.)

Back to the run course...I made it through the first part of the second loop okay, but by the 2nd part I was fading out big time, the "heat" was really taking a toll on me; I was getting lightheaded and tired. It was time to start juicing up on the crack cocaine of triathlon...COLA?!?! That right! Perfect blend of sugar and carbs...I was also sucking in gels every 20-30 minutes, as much as my stomach would let me. I was carrying pedialyte in a little waterbottle, which worked out well by the way- no major crampage issues throughout the whole race. that 2nd part of the loop was very slow for me...I was reduced from a trot to a shuffle and I was walking aid stations and the steep little inclines on the course (no major hills, just little inclines). It was a good strategy for me though. I started feeling better by the end of the 2nd loop, and I got another boost when I saw my mom and later Dan's parents as well. I also saw a fellow Tri-Shark Dennis Killian spectating as well! Awesome!!

I gradually started getting my groove back and trotting /vs. shuffling). I received a glow necklace when I started the 3rd loop, and was relieved because that mean that the sun would be going down...which means cooler temperatures(yeah, definitely not ready for Kona yet)! Yay! Sure enough, cooler temperatures + cola buzz = happy Laura. I was feeling great, but it was time to crunch some numbers. Due to my weak 2nd loop, I wasn't going to break my IM marathon pr of 4:08, nor was I going to break 4 hours. I needed to look at the bigger picture- breaking 12 hours. I was doing the math when I was saw the big race clock at the beginning of the 3rd loop. With about 8 miles to go, I calculated that I would need to be running 9:30s or faster to break 12... I was barely running that pace at this point (actually I was running slower), and started getting a little sad, because I knew it would be very, very close...

sweet pic Mom!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Ironman Arizona 2008 RACE!! part 1

Let's see where did we leave off?

Oh yeah, Dan heading for the mosh pit...and me having a good feeling about the day ahead =)

BAM! gun goes off, it's time to swim! This is it...Hopefully less than 12 hours til I can stop moving!

I was pleasantly surprise with home much room I had- I wasn't getting clobbered, I was doing just fine. No choking to death for me today. Swim felt fine. I relaxed, and didn't really think too much for the first 15-20 minutes. I just went with the flow and kind of tuned out. Once we got in the shade of the next bridge I realized that YES, this water is COLD. But hey, all I have to do is swim to the bridge, under the bridge, swim a little more, turn around, and head home. got it. For the rest of the swim I was cold. On the way back I got roughed up a bit since the buoys were all zig-zagged so the path wasn't exactly predictable, but whatever. My hands started going a little bit numb, but nothing like IM CDA where I swear I lost function in my wrists. I was very happy to be confident in finishing the swim (I'm always nervous about that since I don't swim too much!)

I didn't see a clock when I got out of the water, and I wasn't wearing a watch yet since my mom's garmin was in my transition bag, so I didn't know what my time was, but I predicted it was under 1:33. I saw my mom cheering like crazy for me when I got out of the water so that made me happy =)

***Actual swim time: 1:24***PR by 6 minutes (I didn't know it until after the race though) 7th in AG

For this race, I was unusually scared about being frozen when getting out of the water and onto the bike (probably since it didn't have a HOT TUB in T1 like IM CDA!!!) So I opted for the full change-a-roo...I just wore a swimsuit for the swim, then changed into completely dry clothes for the bike. I did the best I could, even with help of an amazing volunteer, but it is QUITE DIFFICULT to put on spandex when you are wet! I anticipated this, and put some more of my handy vegetable oil in my T1 bag...Gosh I hope all the fat didn't penetrate through my pores, layers of skin, subcutaneous fat, and make it to my bloodstream! haha.

I wore the same outfit that I did for CDA...and the zebra arm warmers made a comeback, you know IT's ON when the zebra arm warmers make an appearance...I also decided to go with a pink/green theme for this race...I got a new pink helmet (Thanks Koren!) and lime green bar end tape. I think it's cute.

(not that I would win it, I think it would get some funny nominations though...a la Tuma at Evergreen...)

I'm pretty sure I had the slowest T1 time in my age group...9 minutes and change...whoooops....

Monday, December 1, 2008

Ironman Arizona 2008 Race Morning!

I'm living in the past a little here...I'll catch up eventually =)


Wake up was planned for 4:30AM since I didn't get to bed until about 10PM, but I woke up with a vengeance at 4AM. It's time. =)

My mom was just as excited about the day as I was- she had her spectating plan down to a tee, and she would be volunteering as a catcher at the finish line from 8PM-12AM.

First order of business was breakfast. A big ol' waffle with raisins, cinnamon, brown sugar, and syrup on it. Filling and delicious.

We took our time with showers, breakfasts, getting ready, and we were out the door a little before 5AM. The next order of business was quite exciting: caffeine!!! We stopped at the QT and I got a cappuccino/coffee mix. Dan and I severely limited our caffeine intake the last 6 weeks (decaf coffee only, caffeine-free pop, etc.) so it would have a greater effect for race day =)

I think we arrived on site a little before 5:30. The place was buzzing with excitement- love it! First things first, checked on my bike, put my nutrition (cookies!) in the bento, pedialyte in a water bottle, powerbar electrolyte water in the aero drink and other water bottle. Didn't actually bring water to mix the stuff with, so I had to find somebody that had extra. Next, put the rest of my stuff in my transition bags, doubled and tripled transition and special needs bags...Ran into the love of my life at the transition bag section, and we were both happy to have a big cup of real coffee in hand!

Next: potty time. It was pretty late at this point, like 6:10AM, and I still hadn't put on my wetsuit (quite the process) nor had I got my bike tires repumped up from last night (Dan and I couldn't find our "crackpipe" so we had to have someone from the race site pump them up). While I was standing in line for the potty, I gave the SN bags to my mom so she could drop them off. At 6:28, I was finally able to put my wetsuit on and got bodymarked. Didn't get to repump the tires...oh well. Hopefully they'll be fine. Hung out by my mom while I greased myself up with vegetable oil (gross!! I know!! But I ran out of my wetsuit slicker stuff-I underestimated how much of that I use to squeeze into the whale suit- and the QT didn't have any spray cooking oil! ha!). Hugged my mom goodbye and planned on seeing her either at T1 or at Gilbert Rd. on the bike.

Time to go! Met up with Dan and we headed off to the start. I got my wetsuit on pretty good, I gave my throat enough room so I was pretty sure I wasn't going to choke to death. I really should have done that wetsuit contest the day before and tried to win a new one! I was actually pretty calm before this race, usually I'm in tears of some sort. I was not looking forward to the cold water, but come on, I survived CDA, so I can do this!

The grand entrance into the lake involved a good old fashioned cannonball. I jumped in first, Dan was still stalling by adjusting his cap/goggles/ was getting down to it, and a little crowded...I almost lost him for a minute, but we found each other =) We did the warmup swim to the bridge together, kissed good luck, and he swam off into the poundage section while I stayed back.

It was a beautiful morning...I had a good feeling about this day.