There is an excitement in the air at an Ironman event, it’s an interesting mix of excitement and complete terror! I was in the excited category, my only issue was a nagging pain by my right hip, it was sharp and persistent, but I did what I could to ignore it. We got there early enough that transition was pretty empty, I found my spot and got my transition stuff setup neatly under my bike.
I wondered around transition a little bit and must have been doing something right because a young man stopped and said “excuse me, but you clearly know what you’re doing, could you help me find my rack spot?” I wanted to reply with something like “dude, it’s a total illusion!!” But I helped him find his spot and wished him good luck.
I found MK and we wondered over to her transition area, I made a couple of suggestions, I was concerned about her stuff getting kicked around by people flying by on their way out of transition. I wondered around, taking in the sights and sounds. I was really shocked by how many people were just now checking in their bikes and going to body marking. I was really glad we did all of that yesterday. However I found one of the black markers they were using to put numbers on people and I quickly scribbled #8 on the inside of my left forearm, by brother and his words from last night would go with me!
I found the mom and KB and finally decided to take something for the pain in my side. I waited in line at the potta-potties with what seemed like all 2500 athletes. The hint of daybreak was finally creeping into the eastern sky and with it a couple thousand people scrambled into wetsuits and swim caps and headed for the water.
They had a nice little area in the middle of the swim course setup as a warm-up area. MK and I posed for a couple of pictures and then made our way out to the lake. The water seemed perfect, it was warm and calm. I didn’t spend much time in the water. I saw MK briefly before she headed over to the start area, she was in the first swim wave. I spent some time with the mom and KB and got an interesting piece of advice, “be selfish today, focus on yourself”. That’s a really weird concept for me. But it gave me something to think about while I was waiting.