The day before:
These are all of my bags and gear layed out in my room. My mom and sister came in while I was getting everything organized and went "Oh my God! It really is a huge process isn't it?" They really had NO IDEA what was involved in getting ready for my IM. I don't think anyone truly understands the extent of preparation until you've either gone through it yourself or spectated at an IM. I know I sure didn't!!!
|My awesome bike ready and waiting!|
We headed down to the race site and I was surprised that I didn't have to wait in line at all! I guess we picked a good time to go! I racked my bike, said a little goodbye to it, then headed to gear drop off.
This is a picture of the bike gear bags. I put a strip of bright blue tape on all of my bags so it would be easier to find on race day. Lots of people had the same idea, and those bags definitely stood out!
I have to say that the people that put on these IM races really have it down to a science! It's a good thing too because basically, you don't have to think. You just go where they tell you and do what they say. Everything was just so organized and because I tend to be an organizational freak, it really helped keep my stress level down!
Before we left, I took one last look around knowing that Sunday morning things would look a whole lot different!
|Run Gear Bags lined up so neatly|
My husband and I stayed at a hotel close to the race site the night before to alleviate some of the stress of race morning. It was awesome. We got up at 4:15A, I ate my pre-race breakfast of overnight oats (recipe coming soon!), checked my gear bags one last time, and headed out. As we went through the lobby, we saw a group of athletes waiting for the shuttle to take them to the start. We all wished each other good luck, then we got in our car and headed out.
I was kind of nervous at this point, but it hadn't hit me yet that I was doing my IM today! I was just going through the motions and trying to stay calm and relaxed. We got to the transition area and I had to enter the "athlete" only gated area while my husband waited outside. I put my last minute stuff in my gear bags, checked in my special needs bags, and headed towards my bike.
The line to use the pump was sooo long and I was grateful that I brought my own pump with me. The only problem though was that my husband had it and I didn't know where he was. I ended up borrowing someone's phone to call him and eventually we found each other!! I pumped up my tires, shared it with some other athletes around me, then went back to find my husband. I was soo happy that he was there with me. I was a little scatter brained and he was my "rock" that morning, keeping me calm and on top of things. I don't know what I would have done without him there! I left him briefly to visit the port-a-potties, which took FOREVER! You would think that with 2800 nervous athletes they would have tons and tons of port-a-potties, but I guess there are only so many you can fit in a certain area.