Monday, August 29, 2011

Man of Steel turned Iron

C has secretly been obsessing about doing an Ironman for sometime. His triathlon races were just stepping stones, but he has been increasing his bike mileage, swimming longer, and training harder for a while. He's watched Ironman videos on YouTube and finding ways to increase his speed and endurance. And then he has a wife who has been secretly hoping that he would not start on an Ironman training schedule as she stands on the precipice of becoming a mother of not one, but two little baby girls. As one who is his biggest cheerleader, I rarely try to stand in the way of a goal or a dream, but in this case, I was holding my tongue.

I don't remember how it happened, but somehow he stumbled upon a website that listed a half-ironman race only days prior to the race. He tried to get in, but the race was full, so he joined the waiting list, and only a day or two before the race, he was in! It shifted my plans a bit, but I was delighted at the timing. He got to taste a bit of Ironman, and I got the relief of knowing that would tide him over for a while.

He had originally planned on being gone on a motorcycle trip on the day of the race, but was all-too-happy to come back early. I had planned on taking my little brother for the weekend. This was his biggest event yet, and I was determined to support him, so I took a day off prior to the race to spend the day with my brother and mom at the zoo. It was delightful.

The race day came. C loaded up his gear and headed out early, and I slept as long as possible and managed to get out of the door at my pregnancy pace. I realized I was going to miss his first transition, so I said a prayer that he'd know I was there before returning from his 2 1/2 hour long bike ride. As I turned down the road to the race and saw the bikes coming my way, I had a feeling that he wasn't far from where I was. I pulled off of the road, got out with my golden cowbell, and waited. In the distance I could see a patch of bright green. I was so happy, I almost cried. I'm sure it had nothing to do with being prego. :) I cheered loudly as he passed. He knew I was there, supporting him. As usual, I recruited a few additional fans, one of whom screamed his name followed by, "I LOVE YOU!" The video I captured of the "Huh?" look on C's face was priceless.

The biggest surprise of the day was that C took first in his division in his first half-ironman. We were pretty pleased with that outcome. Way to go, my Ironman (well, almost). I did some homework with the other spectators and found a race where in the next year or two, my girls and I can ALL cheer him on during an Ironman event in comfort. Hang in there babe, we'll get you to the full finish line soon, and you'll have some extra fans by your side!

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