Friday, December 6, 2013

Things They Don't Tell You About Ironman

I thought about things I encountered during training and during the race. Things that no one mentioned, or that I just discovered.  I then shared with my virtual team BAZINGA and they contributed as well. Below is our compilationEnjoy!


  • You will have a training plan, you will follow it.  You will think you didn't train enough on race day.  Do yourself a favor, tell yourself every single day that if you follow your plan, you will be ready. Be HAPPY with your success getting to the start line, confidence on race morning will take you far.
  • You will miss workouts, and that is ok. Don't try to 'make them up.'  No one makes "every single planned workout." 
  • You will get LOTS AND LOTS of advise.  Don't just poo poo, listen nod your head and if applicable roll your eyes to yourself. BUT, at some point that info may actually become useful.
  • You will meet people who think THEIR way is the ONLY way, and THEIR coach is the ONLY coach - run from those folks!  There are always 'alternatives' and it's good to have the ideas  in your pocket.

Race Day:

  • You will think you didn't train enough (see my first bullet).
  • You will doubt yourself (see my first bullet).
  • You will cry / or have tears of excitement several times during the day, Crying is allowed as long as you finish.
  • You will smell, everyone does, If you don’t- you did something wrong.
  • You will have blisters- everyone does.
  • You will be caked with salt, so much that you think it is cement.
  • You will follow a farting guy – and will giggle.
  • You will get hit with some bodily fluid (pee, booger, spit, hopefully that’s it)- carry wetones.
  • There might be clowns at an aid station, if you are a Coulrophobic, better work that out.
  • You will forget something, just go with it.
  • You will get kicked, punched, dragged in the swim (ok they do tell you that one), learn to be a defensive swimmer.  (Note it is fun to grab and drag the foot of someone who just did it to you, they get all offended like they just didn't do the same thing).
  • You will giggle at the dumbest things.
  • You will forget A LOT! 
  • You will meet the most awesome people.
  • You will encounter aholes, don't get caught up in their 'cheating'. Just run your race and don't waste the energy on them.
  • You will get sand in your crotch and It will create havoc later!
  • The shower immediately following your race will feel like heaven. However be prepared for the sting when water finds its first bit of chafing.
  • Be careful where you put the public Vaseline.. it's been EVERYWHERE!
  • Port o potties are your friend. They will run out of toilet paper. Ask the volunteers for paper towels
  • You will see people puking during the run
  • If you can't change in a "public" space bumping up against other gross people, get over it.
  • That gatorade/gel/bar/whatever that tasted so good during training, no longer will during the race.
  • Fellow Ironletes that are suffering with you, will cheer you on, and make you feel better.
  • Put Vaseline (your own) on your feet , rather slather it on, before putting on your shoes or cycle shoes, will help prevent blisters later in the day. 
  • Put Vasoline in your special needs and reapply half way through the run.
  •  You will realize that chicken broth is the remedy of all stomach issues. Chicken Broth = Ironman Heaven.
  • It's OK if you vomit in the water ... all the cool kids do it
  • Singing to yourself or talking to yourself seems perfectly normal during both training and race day.
  • Make eye contact on the live video feed at the finish line. Give a thumbs up and mouth thank you to your friends and family that watched and prayed all day.
Post Race:
  • You won’t remember much of the finisher chute- enjoy your videos.
  • You will be hungrier than you ever imagined for the next week.
  • You will immediately want to sign up for another one- resist the urge!
  • You will swell up with at least 5 lbs of fluid. Don't worry, this is normal and it will go away.
  • Post Ironman depression is REAL.  Have a plan to stay active. 
  • Get a community of folks to  talk about Ironman with you, your non-triathlete friends will get tired of you fast.
  • If you are a girl, you will hear so many say "you are an IronWOMAN" and' you'll want to punch them.. just roll your eyes and know they just don't get it.
  • You will go broke. Or at least take out a second mortgage.
  • You will be bitten by the bug and start planning your "next" way sooner than you thought you ever would.
  • You will not feel like you can possibly verbalize the amount of appreciation and love you have for those close to you in tolerating this insane lifestyle!
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  1. Laura ...You inspire me more than you know. From reading your posts, I know all is possible. I just learned to swim this year and I am 43 yrs old. I did my first Tri in July and I cried. I could not believe that I was swimming. Your post remind me that ordinary people can do extraordinary things. Thank you so much. Keep sharing and inspiring.

    1. Girl, you are amazing. So inspiring! Planning my first sprint tri in the Spring. Can't believe I am swimming....ON PURPOSE! Thanks for the blog.
      شهرام صولتی



  2. "I like the one about wanting to sign up for another one, resist the urge!"

  3. What an outstanding accomplishment that showed true grit. Very Proud of you.

  4. Girl, you are amazing. So inspiring! Planning my first sprint tri in the Spring. Can't believe I am swimming....ON PURPOSE! Thanks for the blog.

  5. Congratulations on your efforts and the inspiration you spread to the people! I am on training for first sprint triathlon next month and being overweight as well I searched the net for other people's experiences of triathlon races and Ironman events.

    Keep up the good work!
    Have a nice day!


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