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I_AM_AN_IRONMAN

It is finished. I accomplished my goal. It was wonderful and miserable and amazing and everything I hoped and dreamed it would be.

My parents arrived on Thursday and we headed to Louisville on Friday so I could check-in and attend the first-timers briefing. As I stepped into the athlete check-in tent I had the same feeling I did for my first 70.3 in 2014 (except I expected it this time), the "I'm really doing this" feeling. With my athlete wristband on I attended the first-timer briefing and then headed to the Become One tent to get my "I will become one" wristband.


On Saturday we went to the swim practice. The air temp was 43 degrees, but the water was 68. I had a decent little swim and learned what it was like to swim in the downstream current. I was pleased with how calm I was getting in. Later in the day we went to an athlete briefing and checked my bike and bags. In the evening we went to mass at the Roman Catholic Cathedral and then dinner before I headed to bed.

I headed out to the swim start at about 6:30 AM, dropped my water and nutrition bottles on my bike, and headed to the swim start. I didn't quite know we dropped morning clothes bags pretty much in the chute so I could have kept my shoes on, but I didn't. It was 50 degrees and raining (all day). Right as the pros were supposed to start we learned the swim was shortened to 0.9 miles because overnight the current had more than doubled and it was impossible to swim upstream. We would enter from the swim start and go downstream to the swim exit. There was also a delay and then they kept delaying to keep people from being bunched up too much in T1 and on the bike course...it was after 9:30 AM when I got in the water. The swim was ridiculously fast. Twice as fast as my normal Olympic distance swim. T1 took a little longer than planned with the sheer amount of dirt/sand to deal with and space in the tent and the long run with the bike out to the mount line.


The bike was incredibly difficult. Harder than either time I rode it in training. The cold rain was miserable. When I stopped at the high school on the loop before LaGrange I had an Austin Powers movie level pee, but I was more comfortable after that...but it was a slow ride. I had to stop to take nutrition because with wet full finger gloves and the cold I couldn't manage it while riding. On the second loop the steep hill on Ballard School got me in the wrong gear and I had to walk it...you have to approach that one correctly and I just missed it. Many of the climbs were challenging because you couldn't take advantage of downhill momentum going into them because it was too wet/unsafe to ride the downhills fast. Several times I thought I would be fine with not making a cutoff. I tried to channel Erika (I was wearing my jacket with the #Erikasmiles patch), but even she would admit the conditions were terrible. After I made it to US42 the second time I was a little more optimistic...just into town, then to River Road, then in...

"My legs felt empty on the bike...I said I have an opportunity to run a marathon...that run was a life fulfilling athletic accomplishment for me. Mentally I pulled myself out of this deep dark dungeon and said I can still do it" - Dave Scott

I went through T2 still not sure if I was going to be pulled. I had seen David and Brian/Kay on the way in, but was still in a bad place. I changed with the help of a crew and was grateful to be out on the run. I had forgot to grab lip balm off the bike and this was going to be a thing throughout the run, but I wasn't on the bike anymore.


I saw friends and family on the way out again and that was awesome. I headed out for the first quarter just so thankful to not be on the bike. The way back into special needs is where I first saw coach. I was ahead of pace and felt good. I was thankful that I had seen familiar faces at the beginning of the run and then coach. After special needs I got to see people again and took a bit of a walk "vacation" since I had run the first half so strong. I saw coach a few more times headed to the final time at the far end and I told him I was going to switch my run/walk intervals after 20. Once I knew I was safely through the far cutoff and then mile 20 I walked more, but my walk pace was strong. I still felt good other than the allergy cough and wheezing I've had most of the week. After Churchill Downs and UofL you know it is going to happen and you are close. Then after the final right turn you can see, hear, and feel the finish at 4th Street. I felt amazing (better than I looked) and I was so happy crossing the finish. I did hear them call "Rose Scovel from Indianapolis, Indiana YOU are an Ironman."



So good to see coach Matt, David, Mom and Dad, and Brian and Kay at the finish chute exit. Such an amazing experience. Dream fulfilled.





Comments

  1. I'm so incredibly proud of you! The amount of focus, sacrifice, perseverance, determination, heartache and achievements are beyond measure. You ARE an Ironman!

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