I drove up to Madison yesterday. I was originally hoping to be up much earlier, but it was Rosh Hashonah and I had to practice my endurance by sitting through a 2.75 hr service. I ended up getting to Madison just before the Endurance Nation team dinner at the Hilton.
The excitement here is awesome. All day things were popping up on Facebook or GroupMe. Of course, some just got me nervous. A few people were reporting mechanicals- broke chains, derailers, etc. Now my biggest fear has become a mechanical. As someone told me at dinner, I can't worry about that because there is nothing I can do to control it. I know, but then again, should I have had my bike checked out one more time? Should I have replaced my PowerTap batteries? I never rode the hills with the 11-30 cassette- what if that goes wrong? I never put on the chain catcher. What about that squeeking I'd heard in my chain? What if my pedal falls off? The list goes on.
Of course, the most common problem I could face would be flat tires. The other day while putting on my "race" tires (Conti 4000s) I got some practice changing flats and it went the best it ever has, nothing speedy, but not absolutely horrendous. I do have to use a tire lever to get the tire back on, which I know makes damaging the tube a possiblity, but I have no choice with my weak hands but to risk it. I have packed enough for 6 flats. I'm not kidding. I do have to find some CO2 cartridges today, as I'd bought some at home but they are too fat to fit in my dispenser.
Obviously, the list of everything that could go wrong is monumental, and does me no good. I will try to handle whatever comes my way, and accept that if something happens that can't be solved, I will survive.
Today's agenda is a practice swim (about 30 min) at 8am, then registering, 4 Keys Talk (EN staple), course talk at 2pm, and banquet at 5:30. Mom gets in around 2:30pm.
The support of everyone has been awesome. I got an awesome "How to Race An Ironman" book from Jen, with pictures of animals swimming/biking/running with cute captions. My aunt left an approximately 5 minute message. I think I got the most "likes" I ever had on Facebook when I posted the other day "My training plan says "Week 20 of 20"- Ironman week is here!". Team Challenge sent me a box of goodies for raising money. I don't think people quite understand what it takes to do this, but having them behind me means the world.
The Runner's World "Quote of the Day" could not have been any more appropriate the other day-
“Erase from your mind that your preparation must be perfect. Hard work + dedication = a shot at your dreams. Keep believing.” - Kara Goucher