Lobster Roll or Lobster Macaroni and Cheese?
That was the lunch decision I had to make today, the day before the 70.3 Ironman in Maine.
It’s a 70.3, so not a full Ironman, but half the distance, where we cover 70.3 miles over a triathlon.
I arrived on Friday and met up with my coach and friend, Matt Lovell, who I convinced to do an Ironman over drinks in the Philippines.
The first thing we did was do a 45 min swim workout in wet suits to acclimatize to the water.
Let me tell you, it’s cold.
My thick Canadian skin does not help me in Maine — it was 58 degrees this morning.
Tomorrow during the swim, wet suits are mandatory. If they measure the water temperature tomorrow and it’s below 58 degrees, they’ll condense the swim length to 1000 meters (vs. the traditional 1920 meters).
Yay! Or not…
The thing I noticed about the weather in the two days I’ve been here, is we can expect temperatures to drop significantly overnight and by mid day it feels like a normal summer day.
Tomorrow morning is going to feel cold regardless of if we’re in the water or not.
“I run because I really love cookies”
That was my favorite T-shirt slogan here. It’s really true. One of the perks of training for an Ironman is you can eat whatever you want and still look great.
48 hours before a race, nutrition is key.
While carb loading is important, one thing I’m doing differently this time is increasing protein intake.
Protein is a sustainable fuel source that your body will burn once the quick energy is gone… Like all the sugary stuff you’re eating during the race.
I’m writing this pool side making a nutrition plan during the race tomorrow.
From my training, I know that I’ll need constant fuel or else I’ll hit a wall and won’t be able to complete the race.
So for me, here’s what I’m doing tomorrow…
2x protein bars
2x packets of the cliff chews (think gumdrops laced with glucose)
2x electrolyte solutions (in water)
Now, while the course will have water and fuel stations, I don’t want to rely on them.
On top of nutrition planning during a race, the other thing to consider is the cutoff times.
As swim start is at 6.20am, the athletes enter the water two at a time, every two seconds.
If you do not complete the swim in 1:10:00, you get a DNF (“did not finish”).
The swim is the weakest for me, except recently with training, I think I’ll be out of the water in less than 50 minutes.
I’m wearing a full wet suit this year, and when you’re running to the transition station to grab your bike and start the ride, they have wet suit strippers!
Literally, two people will grab you and help pull you out of your wet suit.
[Have you tried taking one off quickly by yourself? It is not fun ;)]
After you stagger the 600 meters to the bike we’ll ride 56 miles (which should take me ~ 4 hours).
Once the ride is done, you’ll go back into the transition station and finish the race off with a 13.1-mile run (half marathon).
Doesn’t it sound fun?
It is, and this year I consider the 70.3 as a training race as in just over two months I’ll be racing Ironman Florida.
Monday is “recovery” day and we’ve been scoping out all of the high-calorie foods Maine is known for…
Lobster rolls, funnel cake, ice cream.
PS. Race week isn’t only about eating all-the-things but also significantly reducing training to give your body a chance to heal pre-race.