Saturday, June 28, 2008
Iron Girl Eve
Here we are, Iron Girl Eve. There was a mandatory check in today which included checking in the bike at Lake Lanier. Luckily for me the lake isn't *too* far but I can't imagine going to Lake Lanier two days in a row if you lived on the other side of Atlanta. At first glance, this ain't "my first tri". They were extremely organized and helpful.
My first stop was to get my race number and show my ID in case I wanted to swap numbers and have someone score a great time (for what benfit I don't know but it must happen...). Next stop was my race packet which includes a variety of numbers to be attached to your bike helmet, bike and then yourself for the run. They didn't do the body marking today but did attach a pink wristband that has to be worn from now through the race tomorrow. After that I followed the maze to get my timing chip, swag from AFLAC (including the talking duck) and race t-shirt. I also picked up several samples of sport drinks, nutrition bars, etc. along the way. I was also given a pink swim cap which identifies your age group.
The swim for this event is done in 5 minute waves based on age groups. My age group is first and is indicated by the pink cap. Of note, the "oldest" age group is 45+ so I guess after 45 they corral you all together. I guess I only have 6 more years left! The swim course seems to be essentially the same course as my other race but the opposite direction. It looks as though they are starting from the finish line of the other race and swimming towards what was the start.
After picking up the race packet and goodies and registering for a trip to Hawaii (pick me!, pick me!), I drove over to drop off my bike. This is really where you could tell a big difference in race management. In the other race I did you just had to find somewhere to put the bike. In this one, all the rows are numbered and you are assigned a spot based on your race number. It makes is easier to find your bike out of 700 other ones and if you showed up late for drop off you still have a spot. My only concern with leaving the bike tonight was that it is supposed to rain and I didn't feel good about leaving the bike out in a downpour. I decided to bring some trash bags and packing tape and wrapped up the seat, handlebars and brakes (I don't know why it seemed like a good idea). My neighbor in the bike corral brought a vinyl tablecloth with no means to attach it to her bike so I donated some of my tape to the cause. There seemed to be some beginners this time around too so I won't be completely on my own. My swim wave starts at 7:00 ... in 14 hours I will be leaving the house to do this thing! I think my photographer is coming with me, not sure. I did get an attitude yesterday when it was suggested that I should go ride around the neighborhood on my bike to test it out before the race. Yeah, I might be a little edgy.
Of other interest ....
I have noticed that I have my first black toenail or I think I do. The part I can see around the nail polish appears to be black and it did hurt quite a bit a couple of weeks ago. I have heard it described as a badge of honor. I wanted to be one of the lucky ones who can train for a marathon without losing a nail. I guess it is not to be. Basically the nail turns black because there is a blister underneath the nail bed from the constant pounding on your toe(s).
On Jeff Galloway's site, it recommends that you just leave it alone and let it grow on out and fall off which is my intention. He does mention a couple of methods for removing the blister which sound a bit barbaric and I am thinking you must be in a lot of pain to consider it. One involves heating a paperclip until it turns red and then applying the hot paperclip to the center of your nail which will basically melt a hole in the nail and allow you to open up the blister to relieve the pressure causing the pain. YIKES! Lets just say mine hurt for a day or two but is feeling fine now, thanks. I think I will invest in some dark nail polish, however.