Sunday, October 2, 2011

Ironman Questions

I have been away so long that I don't even know where to begin. Wait, yes I do! IMAZ is seven weeks away. How is that possible?!?!  I remember waiting in line to sign up like it was yesterday. There are so many different thoughts and questions that go through my head that I thought I would share them with you all. Any thoughts, in site or advice is more then welcome.

  • What do I do when it gets dark and I have my prescription sunglasses on?  Do I carry clear lenses and change them out? I have inserts(actual lens that correctmy vision) that attach to my glasses.  I don't want to leave anything in the special needs bag that I might lose.
  • Just how long would I have to wait after the gun goes off to really avoid being mauled during the swim?
  • At what temps are booties  permitted and do they actually help? What about neoprene swim caps? ( I have the sense that any cap that has a strap would drive me nuts but if the water is really cold.....)
  • Fuel belt on no fuel belt?  I haven't found a liquid nutrition that is working for me and carrying extra weight during the run isn't going to help matters. Yet, having water available at all times seems like a good idea and I will have to carry some other items.  Wish I could dump the fuel belt if I wanted to (would it be really bad of me to hand it off to a friend even though I am not supposed to?)
  • Talk to me about sandwiches on the bike. Seems like a PP& J might be something that I would like. Do you carry it with you from T1 and if so where are you keeping it?
  • Currently, I have two places to hold fluid on the bike. I have an aero bottle and a bottle holder on my frame. I like the idea of not having to carry more fluid then necessary and just grabbing more water from the aid stations. Since I plan on using solid food for most of the bike does that seem reasonable?  Am I missing something?
  • Cut off times.  I know the cut off times for all three events but I also know that there are additional cut off times within the bike and run. Anybody care to share what they are?  Also, don't you have to be on the bike by a certain time?
  • Morning clothes... how does that work?
  • I know they sell all the finisher stuff early the next morning. What if you can't get out of bed (literally)?  Can I still get the items on line? ( If I finish this thing I want something saying I did so!)
  • Just how painful is it to walk a full marathon? ( very well could be my reality) ( I know you can't really answer that but it is something I think about)
  • Additional socks and  sneakers in my special needs bag?
  • How is the bike support on the course?  Will they eventually show up if I get a flat and can't change the darn thing or run out of CO2 cartridges? 
  • How many tubes/cartridges do you carry with you?
  • Long training rides.  I am finding that I either have to ride alone or do them on a trainer. I prefer not to ride alone for safety reasons but finding people to ride with who are doing what I need to do are few and far between and the outcome so far hasn't been very successful.  I can handle being on the trainer for hours (call me crazy). Thoughts?
I could go on and on and writing this all down is helpful.
Thanks for reading.


  1. I wish I could help you with those questions but I haven't been brave enough yet to do a full IM!

    I wish I could ride with you in the next couple of weeks but again I am falling short. I have to have surgery this week and won't be able to do anything for a couple of weeks. SORRY!!!

    I guess I didn't help much at all. So let me leave you with these thoughts. You will do great! You are doing the training and have the mental fortitude to persevere. Trust yourself!!! I will be cheering you from Colorado Springs!

  2. Great questions!! I'm looking forward to the responses!

  3. Well, I've never done an IM so have no clue, but these are excellent questions and I look forward to hearing the responses! 7's coming up! Very exciting!

  4. Stumbled on your blog after reading a thread on I have a friend doing IMAZ this year and since I wasn't able to get in, I've been tagging along with her training. I have some of the same questions so can't help much. I do have PB & J experience on long rides and in Half IM races. ; ) I place a frozen Uncrustable in a bento box on my bike frame. The box also gives me a spot for an emergency stash of TUMS, Immodium, Tylenol, and Endurolytes....just in case. Hope that helps a tiny bit!

    I'll look forward to reading your race report. I registered for IMCDA 2012 so I hope to follow in your footsteps! Have a great race!

  5. Ohhh, a test! Let's give it a try (pun intended).

    Glasses. I am planning on putting clear lenses in T2 and run special needs.

    I always get pummeled.

    Many rules say 65 or below are bootilicous but it is based race by race. You can wear a cap whenever but could over heat. IMAZ is cold water (low 60s at best).

    I run with a hand flask to have something to sip. Reload at stops.

    Bento box for the bike. I tape Gels to the bike's top tube.

    Will be back later with more.

  6. Times- Out of the water in 2h20m, off the bike by 5:30, is that what you mean?

    I learned this trick from another blogger, make your PB&j, then take a rolling pin and flatten it out and then roll it up and cut into small tubes, all the nutrition and with no mess or sticky hands

  7. Let's see what I can answer...

    The sun was setting when I started the run, so you might want to just put your glasses in your T2 bag.

    I started right at the gun and never got mauled in the swim. A benefit of begin slow I guess.

    I'm just going to double-cap.

    Whatever you are used to. I used a Fuel Belt last time and ended up handing it to my husband halfway through the run to get rid of it.

    The aid station folks are great - they will take yur bike and refill your bottles while you use the bathroom so you can come out and it's all ready. When I needed refilling that's what I did. I will definitely carry less liquids on the bike this time and count on that.

    When you get ready to put your wetsuit on and head to the water, you dump everything else that's not going in the swim with you (sweats, shoes, etc) in your morning clothes bag and drop it off.

    My husband went at 6am and bought finisher gear for me while I stayed in bed. They don't sell most of it online, no.

    The IM marathon is a million times more fun than a regular marathon. Nonstop cheering and support. Even walking it, it can be fun. It's all about pacing carefully on the bike so you don't' feel as much like ass as all the men that blew past me on the bike in peletons, then croaked on the run.

    Additional socks and sneakers in my special needs bag? Only if you are prone to blistering or think you'll need it. I just put a long-sleeve top in case I got cold. You don't necessarily get your special needs bags back so nothing too precious.

    How is the bike support on the course? Will they eventually show up if I get a flat and can't change the darn thing or run out of CO2 cartridges?
    How many tubes/cartridges do you carry with you?
    They will eventually show up but it helps to be able to change your own. 2 tubes + 2 CO2s is probably adequate. (Or whatever you carry on your long rides) You could also probably bum help off of someone else racing.

    Long trainer rides as long as you can focus and put out a good pace are fine! In some ways better since you can be uninterrupted instead of dealing with stops.

  8. More answers.

    Cutoff times. There are intermediate cutoffs too that one needs to be aware of. Each race is different

    Ive walked a few halfs. It sucks. Different muscles hurt.

    I am putting socks and sneakers in run special needs just in case they get wet.

    Bike support can take while. A friend couldn't change his flat at IMLP and waited for 45 minutes for help. He missed the cutoff by 6 minutes.

    I carry 2 tubes and 2 CO2. I put an additional 2 and 2 in bike special needs.

    Sometimes you can get someone to ride with you for part of the ride. I do a lot solo or get supported centuries with SAG, etc. Trainer works well too.

    Send me an email if anything else is interesting.