A couple of days later, as I lay on the couch at 2AM wide awake, pillows propping my legs up and drunk on disbelief, I see a sign that says…
I realize it has happened – Ironman Hawaii, in the books. My body is saying “I’m sore”, my heart is beaming and my lil legs are screaming “gimme a rest, please!”. I also realize that I didn’t bless this race, the night before, as I like to do. Truthfully, it has been a super emotional experience – from heaps of nerves a few days out to utter disbelief and a certain special calm the day before. (The fine print: I didn’t have an internet connection, so I thought it was a note from the Universe to lay low.) I had some rather lofty goals – ambitious enough that they scared me, as if 3 Ironman’s in 4months wasn’t enough….and maybe the Universe wanted to keep our secrets quiet…
So from the bottom of my beaming heart, throbbing legs and sunburnt skin…..here is grace after the race…
Dear Sweet Life…
Thank you for familiar faces and the power of being a girl! Thank you to my homegirl Richele Frank who started the race on cold meds and chose to tough it out. Knowing we were out there together made for a proud VancouverGirl experience. I rode scared of her blazing by me all ride long and when I got off the bike and hadn’t seen her yet, I proceeded to run scared of her trampling me down! However, this fear on the bike definitely ignited a need for speed and I had the privilege of riding back and forth with some other girls – there was pride in being a chic out there in a sea of men. #mahaloladies! Richele had a rough day and ended up passing me with 4miles to go where we played cat and mouse. And while I knew her day was tough, as she’d be coughing thru the aid stations, she’d find the room to say something awesome to me. You made my first Kona race one to remember RF and I’m so proud to call you my friend!
Thank you to Newton Running. Simply put, they had absolutely no reason to take me on this year yet they did…and made for one epic journey. Thank you for giving me a race kit that consistently rec’d compliments, shoes that make me smile and outfitting my crew in brightness. Andrew Maxwell, I adore you.
Thank you to lululemon athletica who gives me purpose to my days, friendships that I cherish and challenges I appreciate. Thank you to the remarkable people who surround the luon castle and are a constant reminder to GO LIVE YOUR GOALS! Very specifically, I’m grateful for Margo Wheeler, (SVP, People – she holds this role for a very special reason!) who has been a shining light of possibility and enthusiasm thru long training and racing days. #shealwaysbelieves!
Thank you Thank you Thank you for my IronCrew. For a beautiful home in Kona, for friends from across the country, for family dinners and early morning drop offs. Thank you for showing up all day long (i know it was a loong one!) in exactly the places my heart needed to see a smile (and custom signs to boot!). And most of all, thank you for believing in my dream just to make it to the start line. Thank you to the beautiful crew who wasn’t in person, yet I know was following along from home. Every time I stepped over a timing chip, I thought of every single one of you. It is more than friendships – it is lovers of life, healers of bodies, coaches, gurus, bike shops, generous souls who donated their points! My list is deep and for that I feel overwhelmed with gratitude. I wish everyone in the world could have an IronTribe – what a sweet sweet treat to have a goal and share a dream with people who believe! This post would not be complete without a special call out to Matt Corker who I affectionately, proudly, humbly refer to as Bro. This guy BELIEVES like no one else I’ve ever met in my life. xo
Thank you for the power of potential that keeps me hungry and totally foolish. As I walked around trying to find my crew at the end, I bumped into the infamous Mark Shorter from North Vancouver. He so kindly let me use his phone or I’m not sure I would have ever found them in the maze of humans! And as a flopped on the grass beside him, I said “what a year – I need to learn to run!” to which he replied, “at least now you can recognize that you are full of potential”. It meant more than he knows.
Thank you for heart beats that never stopped beatin’ + never stopped believin’, all day long. I declared I was coming to Kona to break 11hrs. I was told that it is not uncommon to take your best time and add upwards of an hour. And I now get why. This course is a beast. It is unlike anything else. Yet what i know for sure is that Ironman indeed teaches you that every single step is a choice and quitting is always an option. Thank you for reminding me with every start line that never ever giving up is always the best choice.
My poem on the bike went a lil somethin’ like this…
When the going gets tough and it might,
dig really deep and fight fight fight!
Because it will turn around,
you don’t need to know when,
just keep on going until the very end.
And with that diddy, I will sign off for today. Back to nursing my blisters and soaking in the Maui sunshine… up next will be The Race. Stay tuned tomorrow for the Tale of the Day. MAHALO!