chasing the light.

I had so much fun at Ironman Wisconsin, I just had to sign up for round two. Though I did contemplate (for about 10 seconds) not doing an IM next year. Because life. But, then I realized all this swimbikerun is a huge part of my life – it’s what I love to do – and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Plus, about 17 of my friends are racing, and there’s no way I could miss out on all the fun :) 

Chase the light, whatever and wherever it may be for you. Chase it. -Tyler Knott Gregson

Here’s to chasing the light and really big dreams…!

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thank yous // ironman wisconsin

Where to start! Training for and racing an ironman is no easy task, and I’m lucky to have some wonderful people in my corner who help make it happen. I wouldn’t get to the start or finish lines without them. 

Huge thank yous to (there really are no words to convey just how grateful I am)… 

NICK
He puts up with a lot, (often) not saying a word. He didn’t even protest when I beat him on the swim at IMWI (except he slapped my arse, hard, when he caught me at bike mile three!)! Having an in-house bike mechanic is pretty awesome, but the best: Having someone believe in you through every trainer workout when you didn’t think your legs could pedal one more revolution, every OMG-I-can’t-breathe swim set, every 5a alarm to go run… through everything. My partner in (triathlon) crime; life is better with him in it.

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MY FAMILY
They’re there through everything, supporting and believing me every single step of the way. I’m a lucky girl to call them family. Thank you, Mom, Dad, Ami, Cory and Finley! If I could pick my family, I’d pick you :)

FINLEY

IMWI FAMILY

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lululemon run: twin k 15k in photos.

Two weeks out from Ironman Wisconsin, recovery mode is still in full force. Though there’s been some easy swimming and biking as well as a welcomed return to my yoga mat, there’s been zero running – and, won’t be for at least another two weeks. So, I was a little bummed to not pace the 8:30 group at last Saturday’s lululemon run: twin k 15k, but instead did the next best thing: volunteered at the finish line, one of the best places at a race.

It was a perfect September morning along Summit Avenue in Saint Paul… crisp and sunny with a hint of color change in the trees. Nick and I met up with some friends who were running (thanks for pacing, Sonia and Nick! And, hi, Julia, Jess and Amanda!), and I finally met a few twitter friends (hi, Anne, Megan and Nick!). Ami and Finley joined the fun, too, for Finley’s first official race. #futureironwoman :) 

In true lululemon fashion, the music was pumping and luon covered the course (the next SeaWheeze?). Race highlights: a drone, bacon station, dunk tank, mannequin high-fives and pint glass finishers “medals.” 

Check out the pics Nick took while biking along the course!

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race report // ironman wisconsin

And, after nearly 10 months of training, there we were: at Ironman Wisconsin! 

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PRE-RACE 
Up and at ‘em at 4a, race morning started as usual… toast, double shot espresso, Osmo preload, temporary tats and last minute gear check, and Nick and I were out the door at 5a; thank you, Daniela, for the shuttle! Our homestay was only two miles from the terrace, but by the time we arrived, it was swarming with triathletes. After a quick tire check and stocking my bike with nutrition and Osmo active, we snaked through the sea of racers to body marking (note: purchase number tats for the next IM). We met coach Andy and friends Nick + Danielle inside the terrace at a quiet spot away from all the chaos. After some words of encouragement and two stops in the bathroom (no lines in the ladies!), we hiked up our wetsuits and went outside. It was nearly impossible to get to the water (it almost felt like a race to get there), but after elbowing our way through hundreds of wetsuit-clad athletes (get in the water, people!), we made it to Monona.

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SWIM // 1:10:41, 1:49/100m, 20th AG. 
Nick and I swam out to the inside buoy together and positioned about a quarter-way back from the start. The water was calm, and the temp was perfect. After treading water for maybe a minute, the cannon fired, and arms started flying. Nick and I swam stroke for stroke through the second turn where we were separated (the first couple turns were clusters); it was so reassuring to see him to my left on every breath! I swam inside the buoys the entire 2.4 miles and, like IM Canada last year, had no issues with anyone dunking, kicking or ripping off my goggles. The back stretch was a bit long, as I could see the red swim out arch for much of it… so deceiving! When I finally got there, my time registered, and after a brief moment of dang-it-I-was-hoping-to-swim-faster disappointment, I refocused and ran to a wetsuit stripper, pumped to be done swimming. That said, I definitely didn’t swim as hard as I could have. I kept my pace far too comfortable and know to push harder and find some bubbles next time. 

Gear: Coeur Sports Chinese New Year kit, lululemon flow Y braTYR nest pro mirrored goggles and ROKA Maverick Elite wetsuit

Nutrition: banana around 6a and one salted caramel Gu around 6:45a. 

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never give up.

Never give up.

These words, said by a friend a few weeks before the race, carried me through Ironman Wisconsin… through a longer swim than anticipated, 5,700 feet of #bikelove and climbing and shifting and hammering downhill, and 26.2 miles of pounding the pavement when it would have been nice to sit down on State Street. 

Never give up, even when it hurts (because everyone else is hurting, too).

I had really big goals at Ironman Wisconsin. Kona was thisclose, and I won’t lie, it stung a bit at roll down Monday morning when the top three in W35-39 took their spots. 

But, my first podium. 

That feels pretty damn amazing. 

Up here on cloud nine, I’m already scheming what’s next. Fourth fueled the fire. I’m dreaming even bigger, bolder, believing in the possibilities…

Never give up. 

IMWI race report to follow… 

IMWI FINISH