Monday, June 9, 2008
The Run - Ironman Brazil
This is a picture of last year's Ironman Brazil winner struggling with the hills this year. If you look carefully, you can see how the road just drops off into space. Yes - that hill really was that steep. By the way, the former IM Brazil winner did eventually drop out during the run.
Ironman races are tough.
Anyway, the run at IM Brazil was much hillier than we expected. Luckily, the really hilly part had beautiful views of the coast of Brazil. I tried to distract myself by gazing off at the ocean, but I was a little afraid that I might trip and fall if I didn't pay attention to the road. Remind me to tell you about the time I wiped out on Monument Avenue just as an ambulance drove by. Yes - the ambulance guys did come back to check on spazzy me. I was a little bruised - but fine.
Anyway, this run had large stretches that were just....desolate. Because it's the start of winter in Brazil, Florianopolis (where the race took place) was basically deserted except for the Ironweirdos. FYI: Florianopolis is a major vacation destination, but not in winter. It was quite a contrast to the Boston marathon, which is lined with people from start to finish.
Right around mile 10, I noticed a woman staggering to the water station. The (very nice) volunteers asked her if she was okay - and she burst into tears and started sobbing. That would be a definitive "no." A few moments later, I heard the ambulance coming to get her.
I decided at that moment to sloooowww down and drink a ton (and eat, too) at every aid station. I really didn't want to have to deal with any kind of medical attention in a foreign country. (Although I will admit that if I had been close to some kind of a PR, I probably would not have slowed down).
I saw almost everyone on the run course (except super speedy Jeff and Karen). Rick even ran with me for about a quarter mile. He was in a great mood as he was having a strong run. He looked like he was flying (even though when he's "just" running a marathon, he runs much, much faster). He waited for me at the finish - directed me to the Gatorade and pizza. This time, I ate the pizza. Rick has been known to steal his ailing friends' pizza at the end of an Ironman race (Blake's at Coeur d'Alene and mine at Florida).
I think I needed more pizza as I woke up at 3:00 a.m. after the race with a growling stomach. Luckily, I had a huge bag of peanut m&ms handy. Yum - peanut m&ms...the recovery food of Ironman finishers!
Whew - Ironman #2 is over!
And now we turn our attention to training for Timberman....and hopefully signing up for Ironman USA (Lake Placid) for 2009.