Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Ironman Texas Race Report- Pre Race

So, in case you had better things to do on Saturday than track an Ironman online- the short and sweet version is that I broke the 10 hour barrier for the first time, crossing the finish line in 9 hours 53 minutes. Along the way, I was able to win my age group and the amateur race overall by about 9 minutes. Oh happy day! Best of all, I shared it with my husband who went 9:11 in his IM debut, a and a great group of friends & competitors.

We returned home from Texas on Sunday night and I was back at my desk Monday morning. I had also overcommitted myself to an hour long presentation on overtraining syndrome for a bunch of sports medicine doctors (um, i thought you guys were the experts? just kidding) on Tuesday. 
So, race reporting hit the back burner, and now that it is Wednesday, I'm sad to say that some of the brutal suffering is already fading from memory...
Anyway, back to the program.

Pre Race!
James and I arrived in The Woodlands, TX on Wednesday night. The Woodlands is about 30 minutes north of Houston, and in true Texas fashion- everything is bigger! Big shops, big restaurants, big canals, big houses. Thursday was check-in and we got our bearings, scoping out the tasty spots in town. Hubble & Hudson market gets two thumbs up and we ate more than a couple of meals there before the race. I think I  covered my love affair with H&H in the last post. So, moving on.

Thursday night we decided to hit the Ironman Pre-Race dinner. This was a leap of faith for James since he really banks on his tried and true foods and this random hotel buffet was a gamble. But,  I have to say, the food was pretty good! Thank you, Woodlands Marriott!  We were able to have some lean-looking meat and veggies and salad and James was happy (phew!). While stuffing our faces, Mike Reilly began his talk. Mike is THE voice of Ironman (meaning the guy who says over the loud speaker as you cross the finish line, "Joe Whoever, YOU are an Ironman!" Mike called up the two youngest competitors and interviewed them. Then, he called up "a husband and wife team, who just won their age groups at California 70.3...JIM and Beth Walsh". We walked up and I told him it was James, not Jim. Anyhow, an interview and some laughs at my expense ensued. Lots of stuff like this:

Mike: "So, Who takes care of all the packing, and schlepping, etc"
James: "I do everything while Beth sits on facebook and drinks coffee."
Beth: "True."

or

Mike: "Do you ever leave her on a bike ride?"
James: "Only when she tells me to."
Mike: "What do you mean?"
James: "Well, after 5 hours when she is totally blowing up, I know that its better off to leave her because she's angry and  just wants to be alone"
Beth: "True".

So, that was awesome! Nothing like looking like a lazy bike psycho in front of your 2000 closest friends! It was neat, however, that for the rest of the weekend, everywhere we went, people said "Hey! The husband & wife couple!"

Friday night, my best friend from college, Martha, trekked up from Houston to have pre-race dinner with us. The trip to TX to race Ironman was wonderful in itself, but to get to spend three days of quality time with Martha made my year! Every time I see her I remember immediately why I love her so much and its really as if no time has passed. I cannot believe its been 10 years since we graduated from Vanderbilt. I also love Martha because she keeps it real. She said sometimes she reads my blog and is like, "Really? I crack up when people write a comment like you are an inspiration or something...I know the real you.." (I'm going to leave out the part about who she says the "real me" is because this is not a private blog ;).  Then James agrees and they both have a good laugh at my expense. Then they trade stories about what a crappy housekeeper I am. good times!

Anyhow, after a great dinner at Pure on Friday night, James and I hit the hay (we had A LOT in our barns) and got a good night's sleep before the 3:30 am wake-up call.. It was about to be....RACE TIME!

19 comments:

Teresa said...

more, more...can't wait to read more!! :)

Jennifer Yake Neuschwander said...

Awe, super cute story about team Walsh. Congrats. 9:53! Wow, that's something special!

MissFancyPants said...

Nice job! Can't wait for the next chapter of the blog!

Wassdoc said...

Followed you and James vicariously on Saturday. Great job! Can't wait to hear what it feels like to race so well! Perhaps you'll share some of your secrets:). Congratulations to both of you! You continue to inspire us!

Kim said...

so exciting for you and JAMES! way to go sub 10!

GoBigGreen said...

HAHA I once was told by a girl i didnt really know that she "wasnt sure if she liked ME or GOBIGGREEN better." Um, ok....
Super exciting, cant wait to hear more about the race!

Libby said...

I second teresa- I want to read more!! love the mike reilly interview bet it was hilarious

Jill Costantino said...

ditto to TN - can't wait to hear the rest and the man's too! SUPER congrats to both of you WOW, WOW, WOW!

Yasi said...

Even your non-pictured posts are funny.

Kim said...

Very exciting! Huge Congrats!

X-Country2 said...

I was a total IM stalker last weekend! A million congrats to you both. Just amazing.

Running and living said...

I tracked both of you and at one point you were both nr.2. Congrats on such amazing performances!

And I maintain you are inspirational in your athletics but also in how you lead your life. None of the snottiness on this blog. And I may add, you are also one smart wife, I relate to this one:)

Matt said...

X3 we want race day fun. ;)

cheryl said...

congrats - fantastic race - and fun report so far, looking forward to the rest.

Benson said...

Absolutely fantastic!
I'm so thrilled for you two.

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