Sunrise, bike, run and coincidences | San Juan Ironman 70.3 2013

Tomorrow, I will race my first Ironman 70.3 event in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The race plan is not that complicated. Swim at an easy pace, bike at an easy pace, run at an easy pace. Drink plenty of fluids and take in plenty of calories. Don’t bonk. The timing plan comes out to total somewhere between 6:00 and 6:15 hours. The breakdown is:

  • Swim 1.2 miles in about 36:00 minutes
  • Run from swim end to T1 in about 2:30 minutes
  • T1 in about 6:00 minutes
  • Bike 56 miles in about 3:15:00 hours
  • T2 in about 6:00 minutes
  • Run 13.1 miles in about 2:00 hours
If I can execute all of the above, I will be somewhere between 6:05 and 6:10 hours. If I bonk, all times are out the door. If I manage my heartrate, speed and nutrition perfectly, I can shave off 5 to 10 minutes. My coach (Bill Wilson of Camelback Coaching) tells me that all long distance races are a math problem. I better remember that!
Sunrise from our Hotel Room – Hilton Caribe, San Juan, PR
I was up early today. I saw the sun rise from my room. It was picture perfect. At around 8AM, I went out for a quick 20 minute bike ride. The bike rides smooth. My legs feel good. I feel rested.
With Leanda Cave (current Ironman & 70.3 world champ)
At around 10AM, I met Leanda Cave (current world champ in Ironman and Ironman 70.3 distances). She was at the Cubi Bikes booth signing autographs and taking pictures with fans. I spoke a few words with her and she wished me good luck. She seems pretty mellow, totally friendly and pretty cool. I love that all triathletes even at the world-class level are so accessible. I hope that never changes.
Right after this, I went for a quick 400 yard swim in the Condado Lagoon. This is where the swim will take place tomorrow. We are not sure if the race will be wet-suit legal yet, but the water felt good. I was surprised to see how shallow the lagoon is. I could stand at virtually any point during my swim!
At around 1:00PM, Binita and I walked to Sixto Escobar stadium to check in my bike. Number 258 is ready! This is where T1 and T2 will happen. 
My bike is across from Linsey Corbin, Leanda Cave and Mirinda Carfrae
As luck would have it, my bike is positioned right across from the fastest women pros. Leanda Cave (52), defending women’s champion Linsey Corbin (51) and Mirinda Carfrae (53) are right next to each other and just across from my bike. I expect them to finish 1-2-3 tomorrow in the Pro Women’s group. Andrea Hutchins (64), who I met yesterday is also close by. Is this a coincidence or is are the race gods on my side? I’d like to believe the latter, but I don’t believe in coincidences (yet)! 
I’m sure I’ll see them tomorrow and draw inspiration from their morning routines! Maybe I’ll even borrow a pump for my bike. Hmmm….air from Leanda’s pump powering my bike would do wonders to my confidence! Then again, Leanda may be world champ but she is no Chrissie Wellington. There’s only one Chrissie!
We just had dinner downstairs. I had the spaghetti bolognese followed by the amazing coconut flan. I am well prepared for the race. I’ll wear the Sugoi outfit that was given to me by Cannondale and DuVine Adventures back when I was in Kona. At this point, it doesn’t really matter if it is a wetsuit-legal swim!

Binita has helped me count calories and given me some confidence in my nutrition. I’m ready. Tomorrow, I will be an Ironman 70.3. Under 6 hours or more than 6 hours doesn’t matter. Hello world!

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