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!!!!! =) =)



Heather and Andy said...


Thanks for the shout out, but you are the true inspiration! You totally kicked it at IMAZ and I can't wait to see what you can do in Canada next year!!!

Thank YOU for all the awesome training rides this year. I am so gald we were able to hook up and ride so much. See you at the formal.


AJ said...

Laura -

Awesome race report! Way to go on the PR and consistent improvements! Congrats on the thesis defense as well!

Alisa said...

Holy cow just reading through some of your old went from a 15:XX to under 10:4X...WOW! Wow! Wow! I can't even imagine.

I talk with Justin on Sunday but I'm pretty sure we will be a GO!