The pool was SO pretty!Dani's Fantasy Land: Finish ride across Florida. Recover for two weeks. Start swimming way more. Go from around 8 miles of running and week and turn into a gazelle overnight. Toe the start line of the Double Iron in the most amazing shape of your life.
Reality: Finish ride across Florida. Develop an overuse injury in your ARM of all places. Pinch a hoffa pad in your knee from bad tracking on the bike. Hurts to ride. Hurts to swim. Guess that means you will run. A lot. Go to Hawaii for 12 days and slack off. Get back in town and freak out. Use the insane fitness that you have to run WAY more than you should. 10% rule turns into 110% rule. Develop tendinitis in both achilles 5 weeks out from the double Iron. Develop a bacterial sinus infection a week before the race. Toe the start line in not-the-most amazing shape.
Life has a way of throwing curve balls at you every now and then. I had 12 weeks from my ride across Florida to the Florida Double Iron. I had great intentions of lowering my biking way down, ramping up my swim and my run training, and everything being just fine. Of course, I never imagined that I would be injured going into this race, but I also never really thought about doing something this long either.
5 weeks out my achilles decided to stage a massive revolt on me. I was very nice to them and stopped running completely (honestly, I had no choice). I had to curtail the biking quite a bit too.
2 weeks out from the double, I went to my Orthopedist in a last ditch effort to find a miracle cure. I also wanted to make sure that I wasn't going to rupture my achilles by participating in the race. The doctor gave me topical anti-inflammatories, pills, inserts for my shoes, told me to ice my achilles everyday, find a hyperbaric chamber, and be prepared to be in some really intense pain.
My coach didn't freak out at all about my injury. His exact response was something like "you're tough, you'll be fine." I did a 45 minute run the week before the race. After Jason saw me limping around he said "babe, I just want you to know. This is going to be rough. You are going to be HURTING."
I made one last trip to the doctor the week before the race. I had a bacterial sinus infection that left me insanely dizzy. Plus I had to make sure that my innards weren't going to come spilling out of my hernia. I got the green light from my regular doc to do the race. Bases covered. I was about 99.9% sure that I wasn't going to die.
Interestingly, despite FREAKING out leading up to the race, the week of it, I was totally and completely fine. Not nervous at all. I did a social media purge, which I found to be quite pleasant. I unplugged and told myself every single day that I was healed.
We rolled into town Wednesday, our height-challenged crew came Thursday, and the race started Friday morning.
We are still really happy, which must mean the race hasn't started yet!
The swim was in a pool and we were seeded by our expected swim time finish. I had ZERO expectations for this race. Goal #1: Don't die. Goal #2: Don't come in last. I only "had" a swim time estimate because I had no choice. Other than that, I had no time goals at all.
Please don't show Maria this horrible form!
I ended up in lane 2 with four other guys. Jason was in lane 1 with the fast peeps. Kacie was in lane 3. I LOVED the fact that I could see them swimming next to me. It didn't feel like a race at all since we were in a pool. I really felt like we were just in masters swim practice. The swim started off rather fast, and despite the guys telling me that I could lead the lane, they all got past me within the first 200 meters. I swam my "I can hold this pace forever" pace and felt fine.
I stopped at the 2k,4k, and 6k mark to eat!
I counted the laps and stopped every 20 for nutrition. I felt great until the last 600, which was the first time that my arms got fatigued. The longest I ever swam in training was 6000 meters without stopping, so I was surprised I didn't feel worse earlier! My lap counter said that my 100's were all almost the exact same split! Even pacing for you! I exited the water in 2:23 for 4.8 miles. Pleased with my swim time because I am not really a swimmer. Very shocked that I had the 6th fastest swim of the day! And now...onto the bike!