Saturday, August 17, 2013

An Iron-Size Decision

As I was scrolling through my Twitter feed on Thursday morning, I came across a very exciting announcement.

SEPTEMBER 28, 2014
2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run

"IRONMAN Chattanooga will begin with a point to point swim in the Tennessee River with ample spectator vantage points alongside the city's famous Riverwalk. Athletes can look forward to a fast, down-current swim. The bike will be a two-loop course with scenic farmland and mountain views. The two-and-a-half loop run course will showcase beautiful downtown Chattanooga, the South Side, Riverview and the North Shore. 

Registration opens September 4th, which leaves me with seventeen days to assess the pros vs cons, risks vs benefits, insanity vs exciting challenge, and overall proposition of racing for 140.6 miles.  My thoughts, in no particular order are:

1. Forth year of residency is likely to be the most conducive to dedicating every second of spare time to training.  

2. I need a coach and a structured training plan again.  If I'm really going to take on this challenge, then I'm in it 110%.  While finishing alone is a remarkable achievement, I want more than that.  I've always been a competitor, and there's no doubt I'm going to let that change now.  

3. 112 miles on the bike is far longer than my butt has any interest in spending on a bicycle.  

4. I'm already drooling thinking about all of the extra food I can indulge in to fuel 15+ hours of training each week.  Yes, I'm food obsessed!

5.  This is going to be a major hit on my wallet - $650 race registration, race wheels, aero helmet, massages, food, equipment maintenance, travel, etc.  

6.  I've never run a marathon.  Last week I moaned and groaned through every mile of my eight mile run.  

7.  Lazy weekend mornings will be replaced by a six hour bike followed by an hour run.  Who needs sleeping in, drinking coffee, and pancake breakfasts while watching the news?

8.  A point-to-point swim downstream in the Tennessee River = best possible swim scenario.

9.  If not now, then when?  

10.  "Crystal Perkins, you are an Ironman."  As a triathlete, I can't help but feel the absolute need to hear that at least once in my life.

And so with all of that being said, I'm 95% sure that I'll be signing on the dotted line when registration opens on September 4th.  My heart jumps into my throat just contemplating the commitment.  Hopefully between now and then I can begin to wrap my head around the idea a bit more.  

Any words of wisdom?  Anyone else want to jump in and join me on this crazy adventure?

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