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Training for Ironman Canada was much different this year simply because it wasnt my first Ironman.

When something is seemingly impossible, you do all the training possible, focus 110%, and still worry if youll be able to finish. But once the impossible becomes possible, it became much harder to get through all the training. Factor in the general life getting in the way of training, and I headed into the race much less trained than the previous year. But I also felt better prepared mentally since I knew what to expect, knew I could finish, and didnt have any doubts. Had no idea what to expect from a results perspective woulda been nice to beat last years time, but finishing the race is still a major accomplishment. Race Prep Alarm at 3:40 am and felt pretty good. Plenty of time to wake up, apply sunscreen, quick breakfast (protein shake and flax-muffin), and a bottle of G2 on the walk to transition; left the hotel at 5am. Simple prep drop special needs, bodymarking, pump the bike tires, load the bike with gels and bottles. Now an hour to relax with fellow TN peeps ate a banana at 6:30 and a gel at 6:50. Never felt nervous or apprehensive at all. Put the wetsuit on and headed to the water. Great perspective to stand at the start line with 2500 others and at least that many spectators; an amazing sense of adrenaline for the day ahead. Swim The swim was mostly uneventful for such a mass start. The athletes seemed to bunch up at each of the orange buoys heading out (even though they werent turn buoys). A bit of crowding and battling here and there, out to the first turn, then on to the second turn. Managed to catch an elbow in the eye and knock my goggles off (fun!), so readjusted and kept moving. About halfway back down the straightaway to shore, I took a strong kick right to the throat not pleasant, but could have been much worse. Kept on swimming and made it to the finish, which seemed incredibly crowded. Seemed to take minutes to make it out of the water and over the timing mat. Goal Time: 01:20:00 (its what Ive swam every 2.4mi race in) Actual Time: 01:21:14. Satisfied. Bike Glad to be on the bike and done with the swim, it was energizing to cruise through town and see the TN Peeps on Main Street. Also energizing to see Rebecca and Aimee cruising past me right at Skaha Lake. Hung together in the TN Pace Line for a short bit, until we turned up the hill in McLean. Didnt see Rebecca or Aimee for the remainder of the day on the bike (translation they had a great bike leg!). Cruised down to Richter and felt really good. Battled back and forth with slowing down and saving my legs vs. cruisingended up cruising more than not and hit mile 41 at the 2 hour mark. Time to start the hard 50 miles of the ride. Richter wasnt too bad; just shifted to an easy gear and tried to spin as much as possible. Same with the rollers, down to Cawton and to the turn at the out and back. Rode a bit with Jawn Angus (just like last year) to Special Needs. Started feeling tightness and the beginnings of cramps in the quads, so was looking forward to a banana at Special Needs. Was getting tired of being on the bike at about mile 80, and knew Yellow Lake was waiting. GREAT to see Paul & Vicki on the lower portion of Yellow Lake; just the energizer I needed. And I knew Amanda, Randy & Kim were waiting at the top of the hill. Great to see familiar faces, fantastic to have Randy pour a bottle of water over me, and elated that the hard part of the ride was done! I consider the bike done at mile 92, primarily because its mostly downhill from there and I love this portion of the ride. I knew my ride was slower than last year, so my new goal dont let anyone pass me from the top of Yellow Lake to the finish. Mission complete fly down the hills and down 97, passing people like crazy. Great to see the TN tent on Main Street and start thinking about spinning out the legs for the run. Goal Time: 06:22:00 (last years timeand ultimately wanted a 6 hour bike, but new it wouldnt happen with my training) Actual Time: 06:25:29. Happy! 3 minutes slower and a significant lack of trainingIll take it! Run

I knew the run would be tough with my legs feeling tight, so I tried to start out slow. After mile 1, I felt the quads and hamstrings cramp, so was forced to walk about and consume massive amounts of gels. The run was a bit of a blur of walk, run, stretch, pain and aid stations (perform, coke, water, ice, banana). Yes, I started Coke at mile 1. I also ate pieces of banana everywhere they offered it. And I took gel after gel after gel. Hoping to get the cramps to subside. Highlights on the run the spirit and energy from the TN tent; the smiles and energy from the other TN athletes. Great to see the Ironman vets (Strayer, Podell, others) cruising along and focused. And fantastic to see some of the first-timers so energetic and happy (Josh, Aimee). Wild Bill so good to see you have a great day! Rebecca looked strong on the run and then I saw the scrapes on your arm/shoulder and thought WTF? Lubert great day out there fighting through the knee pain; thanks for letting me spend a couple miles with you. Crump really wish I could have gotten back to you sooner! Youll be back out stronger than ever and kicking ass at the next race! Despite the highlights, this was the toughest marathon Ive ever run; hurt a lot more than any other. By the time I hit Main Street, I was feeling tightness and cramps everywhere shins, calves, feet, quads, hamstrings..but also found energy from the crowd and knowing I was close to finish. The left turn at Westminster was a relief, and great to see Mark and Mac as the beginning of the welcoming committee. BY now, the pain was gone, the legs felt great and I was running 8min pace. Right turn on Winnipeg, lots of cheers, finish line commentary, and the awesome TN spectators. So great to cruise by the crowd, only to make the left turn.its a long 0.5mile to the turnaround, but great to turn back. Cruised back in to the finish and felt satisfied. Goal Time: 0:4:37:00 (time of the first standalone marathon I ran) Actual Time: 05:22:27 Transitions I typically have pretty slow transitions, especially on a long course where Ill hit the bathrooms, etc. After last years combined 15 min (T1 + T2) transitions, my goal was to cut down to a combined 10 minutes. Goal Time: 0:10:00 Actual Time: 0:09:17 (T1 0:05:20; T2 0:03:57) Overall While I didnt hit all of my goals (bike time, run time, overall time), I did learn a few things along the way: No 2 Ironmans are the same. Doesnt matter if its the same course. Conditions are different, training is different, and your body/reactions are different. It takes a village. While race day makes an Ironman an individual event, its actually very much a team sport. Race day is the celebration of the months of preparation, discipline, sacrifice and support that we all get from our team. It wouldnt be possible (or as fun) to do completely solo. Thanks to everyone that took part in my journey, preparation and race! For the record I think I had 31 gels, coke at every mile, ~3 whole bananas, and countless gallons of Perform. Ironman #2 hurt a lot more than Ironman #1. But that pain and perseverance made it much more satisfying despite a slower time. Cant wait for Ironman #3!

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