Ironman Arizona was this Sunday. Yours truly and buddy John hung in from sunrise to well past sunset to hear Mike Rielly announce and anoint us by saying as we crossed the finish line: "You are an Ironman!" The quick version is that we survived the human chum that is the start of the swim leg with 2800 other swimmers. The bike leg was interesting in that we tried to maintain our planned average speed amid a strong headwind on the mostly uphill outbound portion of the 3 loop course and a killer tail wind on the mostly downhill portion of the 35 mile loops. Tricky math indeed. The marathon was a bit of a survival juggle for me with my stomach totally shutting down the ability to take in even plain water. Thank God for warm chicken broth and amazing volunteers. Our swim times were better than budgeted; the bikes times a little over-budget. John beat his run time estimates to come in at 13:18. I came in one minute and an hour later at 14:19.
The experience was a blast, a joy and a trial all rolled into one, ending with the epiphany of the finish. I have many thoughts and feelings about this that I will go into in a much longer posting after I return home from a much deserved Arizona vacation. I was simply amazed at the number of you that tracked us online. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I am thankful that I was able to complete this year long mission. I'm thankful for all of your interest and support of John and my efforts in this journey. I'm thankful for John's joint efforts in planning and executing this task. Finally, I'm thankful for my family's love and support. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.