Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Here We Go!

I have spent the day packing for our trip to Coeur D'Alene.  At this point I have thought of every conceivable scenario on race day and hopefully have prepared myself properly.  I have visualized the transitions in my mind, calculated my nutrition plan, and thought of all weather possibilities.  I packed back-up everything just in case something unforeseen were to happen.  I have taken too many last-minute trips to various stores to count.  But now, as it stands, there are two packed bags and a wetsuit on my bed, waiting to start our journey north.

After an early morning bike and run tomorrow, Dave and I will start off in the Subaru for the 17 hour drive from Denver to Coeur D'Alene.  We did a similar drive to the half-Ironman in Lawrence, Kansas last summer. There is something special about driving to an out-of-town race for me.  You are able to enjoy the countryside and each other's company more completely.  You embark full of anxiety and excitement and leave full of stories and satisfaction.  With a few books on tape, podcasts, and lots of music, the time should pass quickly.

Friday and Saturday will be spent in Coeur D'Alene doing all we can to prepare for the race.  We will pick up our race materials from the athlete check-in and begin to assemble our transition and special needs bags.  Driving the course, swimming in the chilly water, and attending course talks will also be on our agenda.  Both sets of our parents will be meeting us up there, so we will have the opportunity to have a nice meal together on Saturday night.

I'm sure those few days in Coeur D'Alene before the race will be intimidating and nerve-wracking.  When you check-in on Friday at an Ironman, they give you a wrist band that you need to wear the entire weekend to have access to parts of the course and the transition areas.  The weekend of the race, you see these wrist bands on almost everyone.  When this happened during my first (and only) half Ironman, I started to feel like I didn't belong there, like I was an impostor.  I felt like the other people with the wrist bands were real athletes and I was just a tourist.  I think we all feel this way the first time we do anything, but we need to move forward despite this feeling.  Through a confidence in ourselves and a faith in our training, we stand on that starting line as equals to everyone else, excited to begin the fun and challenging day ahead.

I hope to blog one more time before Sunday.  If not, I want to thank you for all of your support.  In the past few weeks, I have received numerous cards, emails, comments, and Facebook messages wishing us well.  All of you will be with me throughout the race, helping me put one stroke/pedal/foot in front of the other.  Your immense encouragement has made such a difference in my life.  Also, a BIG thank you to Karen and her family for housesitting for us.  They will be visiting from Arizona, staying at our house while we are away this weekend and also for a week after our return.  I can't wait to spend time with you, Greg, and beautiful Eli when we get back!

Athlete Tracker

You will have the ability to follow us online the day of the race.  I'm sorry that the directions I'm about to give you are very vague, but I don't really know too much about it.  If you are reading this and have followed an Ironman athlete on race day before, please post any details that you know of in the comments area of this post.

On Sunday June 26th, go to either ironman.com or ironmanlive.com (I'm not sure which one will work best).  There should be an athlete tracker link for the Coeur D'Alene Ironman.  You can start tracking us as early as 7:00 am (Pacific Time) and the race closes at midnight.  You will be able to look us up by last name (Nickoloff), but if not, my bib number is 244 and 1177 is Dave's number.

To donate to the Burn Center, do online to www.uch.edu.donate.  In the designation field, choose "Other" and type "Burn Fund (Team Emilie)."

Or you could mail your check to "UCHF- Burn Fund (Team Emilie) to UCHF 12401 East 17th Ave. Mail Stop F485 Aurora, CO 80045.

1 comment:

  1. Emilie,

    Wishing you all the best in your ironman journey.

    Love <3

    Catalina's family