By Kate Bevilaqua
I have been in Kona now 10 days and I think the timing is perfect! With 2 more days until the race I feel all settled in, have had plenty of time to adjust to the heat and humidity. Get some training in out on the Queen K, running in the Energy Lab and swimming the course.
For me it has been 3 years since my last visit to the big island and I must admit I did think over that time that I might not make it back again!
With the new rule changes for the Pro’s, coming back from injury, and having made the decision to make 2010 a building year every racing opportunity was a bonus and to find myself on the start line in Kona this year, I am so excited!!
By Monday the surreal feeling of being on the Big Island had quickly changed as Alii Drive became a traffic jam of cars, bikes and triathletes (many of whom were definitely displaying fineable fashion offences!)
That is then the time for me to chill and avoid all the chaos. I have been able to get down early to the pier to get an open water swim in most days with Alice or Luke. Any later than 7.30 am and you are virtually swimming with your head up the entire time to avoid any head on collisions.
Tuesday was low key after an early morning session I joined Perth friends Luke and Renee for some Island sightseeing and snorkeling. Wherever I am racing I still like to get out and about and see some of what the location has to often. It also takes my mind of racing and gets me into a nice and relaxed state. The water was crystal clear and there was so much spectacular fish life to see.
Wednesday was a busy day with sponsors commitments but so much fun! A Pro panel with K-Swiss was the highlight of the day as I found myself sandwiched in between Australian legends in the sport such as Belinda Granger and Miranda Carfrae.
Two days before an Ironman for me is a day off! I always plan on sleeping in but it never happens that way. I still woke up at 6am and although I forced myself to try and sleep some more it wasn’t happening. The body clock is set for early mornings so no point in changing the routine now!
I have just returned from the Pro race briefing. Nothing new, just a reminder of the 10m drafting rule and the 6.30am, 30min head start for the Pro’s this year. I think this is a great idea. Especially for the women’s race.
It is now time for legs up, some moving watching, stretching and not much else for the rest of the day.
Tomorrow, first thing in the morning I will do short 15min swim, followed by a 30min cycle then a 15 min run. A little bit of everything! Get the body moving, check all my gear and equipment is good to go before checking it in later in the afternoon.
Then comes race day!
I am feeling relaxed and ready for Saturday. Yes, absolutely like everyone I am going into the race with goals and aspirations, a plan in my head of how I would like the race to go. The biggest thing will be to stick to my race and my plan! It is so easy to be caught up with what is going on around you but there is no doubt Ironman is a race of patience! Especially on this course!
My plan of attack, to swim strong (not the best discipline for me so it is all about limiting the damage as much as possible!)
Begin the cycle steady! Get into the groove, settle in to my pacing and start the nutrition routine. Try and push the pace up Hawi. I love to climb, so I need to take advantage of that!
Hang on for dear life coming down Hawi! If my ride out there last weekend was anything to go by, I was pedaling harder coming down hill than cycling up hill, plus holding on to avoid ending up on the side of the road!
After the turn off back onto the Queen K and the return trip to Kona it is a long hard slog, normally into a head wind and where the mental demons can take over. This is where I want to be tough and try and finish the cycle strong!
Run?? Every Ironman this year I have tried to improve my marathon run time. One minute or 5 minutes, it doesn’t matter, that has been my goal. I am going to try and do that again here in Hawaii by aiming for a more steady paced marathon rather my usual fast first half, hang on or die second half! I think there is a smarter way for me to be running the 42km but like anything else I need to practice it.
Hopefully all of this will lead to my number one goal, me crossing that finish line in Hawaii and completing the Hawaii Ironman 2010!! Everything else that comes with it will be a bonus!
Competition??? If you are on the same page as everyone else in the world, the race on Saturday will all be about 2nd place! Every now and then there is an exceptional athlete who comes along, a natural, a Michael Jordan, a Lance Armstrong! At the moment, we have a Chrissie Wellington!!
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