Ironman Arizona Race Report Part 5: Finish Line, Post Race

Today brings me to the conclusion of my week long race review. This is the most I've ever blogged in a week! I know it's long. I want to record everything so I don't forget.  
I have so many great photos from my race that I want to share. This is one of my favorites that Brandie took as I am crossing the finish line. I am saving my money and not purchasing the overpriced Ironman race photos. 

As I was crossing the finish line I made a conscious effort to take in the moment. Hearing Mike Reilly announce, "Mary Williams you are an Ironman" was a moment that I'll never forget. I had visualized this moment in my mind many times. Watching the video even now three weeks later, makes me cry.
As soon as I crossed the finish line a wonderful volunteer, named Jill placed my medal around my neck and gave me my finisher t-shirt and hat. She was so kind and attentive making sure that I was okay. She reminded me of my friend Alycia. I had my picture taken and was asked if …

Ironman Arizona Race Report Part 4: Run

Let's just say that I had an amazing run! Running is my favorite part of triathlon, I knew that once I was on the run, I would be an Ironman. The run course was two 13 mile loops, along Tempe Town Lake. 

In my research I knew that my first six miles were going to be my fastest. I knew that I could easily do 8:20-8:40 pace those first 5-6 miles but I had never ran a marathon before so I knew that I had to slow my pace down. My plan was to run my first six miles at 10:00 pace then miles 6-26 try to say at a 11:20 pace.  If anything I have learned since my very first triathlon three years ago is how much of this sport is mental. I had paced the Newport Marathon in June. I paced the second half of the marathon~11:20 group. It was slow and easy for me.  Going into this part of the race I knew that after swimming and biking a 11:20 pace was going to be about perfect and totally doable for me. If I was slower, so be it. Remember, under 17 hours, happy and not end up in the medical tent.…

Ironman Arizona Race Report: Part 3

Bike, Transition 2 

The bike portion of the race had me the most nervous and worried. Nutrition and mechanical were the  two things that concerned me the most. I knew if I didn't take in enough calories on the bike that my run would be awful or I could potentially DNF. I had experience that in September, doing Best of the West half Ironman distance race in Sweet Home, Oregon. I had the most awful and longest half marathon of my life. I did not take in enough calories nor did I have enough electrolytes on the bike. I did not want to repeat that experience. Going into the final ten weeks of training I was mindful of my calorie intake during my long training rides. My nutrition on the bike was a combination of liquid nutrition, Spiz and snacks in my bento box. I had used Spiz on both of my overnight relays in August: Elkhorn and Hood to Coast and had good results. The chocolate was too sweet for me so I switched to the vanilla which I preferred. On my long training rides I craved sa…

Ironman Arizona Race Report: Part 2

Race Morning, Swim, Transition 1

Race morning came after a surprisingly good night of sleep. I was wide awake by 4am. Usually I can eat breakfast without much of an issue but race morning was difficult. My oatmeal was as appetizing  as a bowl of soggy sawdust. I knew that I needed as many calories as possible before the swim so I forced it down best as I could. I've struggled with having an appetite most of my training so this was nothing new but worse today.  I was so nervous, I was nauseated. Miranda, Amy, Mr. W and Aunt Robin were up with me. The plan was that Mr. W, Miranda, Amy and I all headed to Ironman Village while the rest of the cheering squad slept as it was going to be a L-O-N-G day for everyone. 

Miranda helped me put on my Tri Tats. I wish I would have saved the $20 and skipped them all together. I ordered my race number and age as soon as my race number was listed. I only received my race number. I sent an email and never received a reply. I went ahead ordered ano…

Ironman Arizona Race Report: Part 1~Pre-Race

I had ambitious plans to write throughout the past year as I trained for my first Ironman. Obviously that did not happen. In the upcoming week I am excited to share with you my race experience on completing my first Ironman race in Tempe, Arizona which happened on November 19th. 
As soon as I paid for my race I begin the search for a training plan. I ordered, Be Iron Fit: Time Efficient Training Secrets for Ultimate Fitness by Don & Melanie Fink. The book has three different training plans: Just Finish, Intermediate, and Competitive. I used the competitive plan, a 30 week plan broke up into three phases: base, build and  peak. The money I saved in not having a coach I used for chiropractic, acupuncture and naturopathic care which I added into my weekly and monthly training plan. My thought with going with the competitive plan was if I can hit most of my training then I would be prepared enough to cross the finish line. I went into Ironman training with a good base from the previous…

Happy Girls Run: Bend, May 27th.

I have to say Happy Girls Half Marathon was a great race experience from the first click of signing up to finishing my post race 10 Barrel beer.  I was signed up for the half trail run in November but unfortunately a nagging foot injury kept me from racing. Gail from Lay Out Events was awesome and let me apply my race fee to another one of their upcoming races for 2017. Fast forward to May. I needed a break from life at The Edge of the World, I inquired about applying my race entry and double checked with Mr. W's work schedule, with a little help from Angela, Gail's assistant I was registered and ready to run!  We loaded the traveling circus and off we went through the valley and over the mountain to Central Oregon for some much needed family time, sunshine and my first running race my first all women's race and first race in Bend.

I didn't realize until after I registered that Sarah Bowen Shea, one of the authors of Run Like a Mother was going to be at the pre-race e…

Santa Rosa 70.3 Relay Race Report: Two Cocks and a Hen

Life has been crazy busy since I returned from Santa Rosa. I am just now sitting down do a re-cap of my fun whirlwind of a trip. Some mom's get ugly Pandora jewelry, flowers that die and candy. I got a weekend away in wine country, a sweet medal and a day at the spa. 
My brother-in-law Jake called me in October with an idea to do Santa Rosa. I jumped at the opportunity. As with all great adventures I had never met Jim, our cyclist for our team until the ride down to Santa Rosa. I know Jim's wife, Ingrid through my sister-in-law Paige. By the time we picked Ingrid up from the airport in Santa Rosa we were fast friends and then realized that we had a pretty fast team! Our race logistics team was missing a member. My sister-in-law Paige was sick and was not able to make it, which was a huge bummer. The show must go on....

This is my third time doing an Ironman race. It's comforting knowing exactly how packet pick up will go. Different location same pre-race logistics. It hel…