This is it!

Posted by on May 24, 2008 in Training

There is no turning back now. I’m less than 11 hours away from the starting gun and feeling generally at peace with things… but admittedly as anxious as can be. I feel generally prepared and ready to embark on what will be an epic day that I will remember for the rest of my life but it is this period, the last 24 hours before the event, which I hate. I was advised by a great friend to embrace these moments and make them mine (I’m paraphrasing), so much so that they will be conquered. I am doing the best that I can to heed that advice but it’s hard.

I picture so many beautiful things that are ahead of me. I can almost touch that feeling of exhiliration as I start my final loop of the run, the last 6.55 miles knowing that it will be my victory lap. It will be dark (it’s fall in the southern hemisphere) yet the lights in the distance will be the gold at the end of the rainbow. As I walked past the finishing chute tonight, I couldn’t help but smile at how cool this whole thing is and how much better it is to be participating rather than spectating. I have been trying to come up with some choreographed plan for how I’ll break the finishing tape but ultimately, I’m guessing that raw emotion will take over. I will be wearing my running cap with the US flag, so at the very least, I’ll feel proud representing the country I love and where so many of the people I love live. Wish I had been creative enough to get a sign to carry saying how much I love my mom, but she’ll know just by reading this.

Just a brief recap on today: we took a very cool boat trip across the bay to another part of the island to have lunch, then stopped by another tiny island to look at some ruins (we stayed on the ship and played cards; I wasn’t interested in walking more than I had to), stopped once again in the middle of the bay to jump off the ship and swim (I did a couple of ridiculous dives for attention – go figure!), then headed back with a school of dolphins escorting us. This one guy was literally just below the bow and seemed to roll to his side to look at us. I kept thinking about how badly I wanted to swim that effortlessly tomorrow!

The bike check-in went smoothly and it is obvious that these race organizers take this stuff very seriously. It has been a magnificent experience from that perspective and I can only imagine that race day will be equally perfect.

So this is it. I’m off to bed now with hopes of a restful sleep. Haven’t decided which tunes to select for my last moments awake, but whatever it is will likely be on my mind on the bike, so I’ll choose carefully. Tomorrow, I’ll be up at 4 or 4:30, at transition by 5:30, and ready to roll by 6:30. Race start is at 7:00 a.m. and with any luck, I’ll be crossing the finish line before 8:00 p.m. Oh man, I can’t believe the moment is practically here!

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