Sunday, November 2, 2008

Ironman Florida...

About 10 days ago I called coach and asked if he would let me race IM FL. It was a matter of "I have to". It had nothing to do with capturing a Kona slot, nothing to do with wanting to end the season on a better note, but everything to do with learning to pick myself up after some "stuff" on the home front. It was a celebration-that I was going to stand on my own two feet. That I was going to race because I love sport and there would be nobody to take that from me...

Since August I had not been training too serisously. My lead up to the race included moving and swimming with dolphins. There were a few rides sprinkled in. A bit of running. Of course some time in the ocean too!

My family made the trip from Sarasota to watch me race... Thank you family!

Pablo, my Kona/Argentina buddy. He just finished IM Hawaii and still raced to a 9:02 at IM FL!

The pre-race pasta party... As always, such a blast to meet up with triathletes/friends that you have been racing with all season long. (Congrats Kate on your FIRST IM!!)

Tila (my bike) made the trip to Florida only to ONCE AGAIN get caught up with another bike, at least this time it was a Scott...

5:00 am wake-up call. (yeah, only 1:45 min. pre start... I like it like that, and there was still time to meet up with the gals in transition).

Coach was there every step of the way. When he agreed I could race IM FL. the deal was to NOT be upset with the outcome. My lack luster training, the whirl wind in my personal life, a LONG season with 4 IM's, this race was to have fun. But I needed him there so he made the trip. The only promise was that I would not cry at the end due to a sour performance. Instead I cried at mile 25 of the marathon because I was so happy that this girl who got knocked down hard could pick herself up and get back on her own 2 feet. That was what this race was about... getting up again, because like the IM saying goes, "Anything is possible".

The swim was a 2 looper and semi-choppy (just the way I like). The entire time I told myself to be in the moment... to enjoy racing, swimming, and being in the ocean. 53 minutes later I was in the mens change tent. The group of men I was drafting I just kept on following all the way to the change tent... the hairy naked butts never phased me, it was a volunteer that came in after me and escorted me to the womans tent....ooop's! My day was starting out full of humor!

The bike was FLORIDA. Need I say more? Flat. It took just over 2 hours till I could feel my toes and fingers, I was SO cold, I had to ride in clothes! For sure the Splish was missed but whats a Hawaii gal to do when it is FREEZING?! This was my favorite aid station... reminded me of home with everyone dressed in hula skirts.

Looks like a face filled with pain, and I was hurting, but it was "are you serious!" Travis, my sport-organizer was out on the course telling me I was running in position for a Kona 09 slot. That was never the focus of the day so when I heard that news I about fell over...

The swimming with dolphins and the handful of rides down Queen K helped me through the swim & bike... but there was no saving me on the run. You need to run to run. My lack luster run training hit hard but it did not matter, the day was for fun. All day was about having fun & enjoying each and every moment... so I had as much painful fun on the run as possible... truth be told- it hurt.

I then found Hoon Park! I met him at Ironman Japan (we did our first IM & last IM of the season together). He finished a spectacular 7th in the pro mens race!

Coach, Travis, and I... Thanks guys for taking such great care of me all week!

My incredible family from Florida!

Finish line massage- Too much fun!

The 4 guys in medical that put me back in one piece. Thanks guys, you were awesome!

Coach Paul needing an IV or 5, after chasing me around all day! He definetly put all his coaching experience to good use!

And the day was a blast. In fact the entire week (Ricky Martin concert and all) by far exceeded my Florida experience! It was a week I will never forget. An Ironman PR (9:26), some incredible friends to share the week with, my family, and coach. Tonight I have just one more sunset to watch... then back on plane for home-sweet-home... I am looking forward to hugging my Kainoa and getting back into the ocean (I was informed IM Florida was not the ocean but the gulf...)

Enjoy the moment...


Blogger Greyt Times said...

Was shocked when I saw your name come up on the IM Live updates! Congrats on a great race!

November 2, 2008 at 3:10 AM

Blogger Miranda said...

What an amazing end to a great season :) Way to pull it all back together like the rockstar that you are!!!

Have a great off-season


November 2, 2008 at 3:29 AM

Blogger Trigirlpink said...

Great report from sunny Florida!! Good for you! Now you can close 2008 on a very high note, candy free and 09 Kona spot stress free!!!

PS I bet Ricky Martin couldn't s/b/or r for 5 minutes with you. ha ha!

November 2, 2008 at 3:30 AM

Blogger CoachLiz said...

What an awesome race report and an incredible journey from start to finish. I know how much I appreciated having family and friends out on the course when I did IMAZ and I hope that I can wrangle them all into going to Cozumel with me next year.

Congratulations on picking yourself back up, dusting your self off, putting a smile on your face, and capturing a PR!!!

November 2, 2008 at 3:34 AM

Blogger ShirleyPerly said...

I had a feeling you'd be doing this race after hearing you were back in FL. I'm glad it went well. Congrats on your IM PR. Way to wrap up your 2009 tri season!!

November 2, 2008 at 4:14 AM

Blogger Kathleen @ ForgingAhead said...

Awesome! Congrats on a great race - and way to smile on the run...and wave too!

November 2, 2008 at 4:19 AM

Blogger TATI said...

that's freakin' awesome! way to go bree!!
enjoy some rest and fun back in hawaii ;)

November 2, 2008 at 4:37 AM

Blogger Bruce said...

You had me fooled. I did not check when IM Florida was and thought it was later. You had a great race, although as yet I am not sure if you got the slot or not. I realize I could have watched the race live, but maybe it was better for me just to get on with my already busy life. Anyway, I am pleased you did not travel all that way just to be mesmerized by someone of dubious character.
I hope you are feeling better. Life isn't just training and racing as you say. When you get to be my age you don't want too many ups and downs, as on one of the downs one might not get up again.
On another note, big pool swimming has certainly slowed my swim times, but it is more like the real thing and there are several people who are faster than me, which means I am going to be trying pretty hard from now on. Take care. Glad to see you with your pop.

November 2, 2008 at 5:09 AM

Blogger Liam O'Connell said...

nice job.

congrats on the pr.

November 2, 2008 at 5:50 AM

Blogger D said...

YaY! I thought it was a PR... you rock lady!!! Glad I knew you were doing it cuz it gave me a reason to call in sick to work yesterday (yes, seriously teeheehee).

November 2, 2008 at 5:51 AM

Blogger Beth said...

Yay Bree!!! Huge congrats again. So happy to have see you ended the season on such a high note and a Kona slot! Yippeee!! Hope you have safe travels home and a great "off season" for some good R&R!

November 2, 2008 at 5:56 AM

Blogger ojs said...

Congrats on a great race and now you've got your Kona slot. Enjoy the time with Kainoa back in Hawaii.

November 2, 2008 at 6:06 AM

Blogger Mer! said...

WOW!! Bree! Way to rock it out there!! Sometimes having no pressure gets us moving the fastest!! So excited for you, and even better your family was able to come and watch!!


November 2, 2008 at 6:11 AM

Blogger Dolphin Boy said...

I can't believe u didn't "roll down" your pink running shorts! you looked all "dressed up" during this race. What gives?

Just get your nerdy JLo self back to Kona. I want Jamba!!!!! LOL!!

going to chase your sister up and down Ali'i this morning....

November 2, 2008 at 6:40 AM

Blogger GoBigGreen said...

Congrats..on using the disc! woohoo!
I hope your off season and fall in Hawaii are calm and you are able to reflect on all things that make you a great person, mom, friend, blogger, and of course athlete.

November 2, 2008 at 7:18 AM

Blogger rr said...

Yea Wee!! Now, what's the word on the slot? :) You did great, so glad you had a good day out there!

November 2, 2008 at 7:19 AM

Blogger Go Gammie said...

Bree, way to go in Florida!!! Great race coverage, way to leave us hanging. The Team Wee shirts are great!!! It must have been nice to have your family there. So now is it going to be the real off season and dolphin swims??

November 2, 2008 at 7:28 AM

Blogger Shawn and Tracy said...


I am so impressed with you toughness. When life threw you for a loop you attacked back. You deserved this PR and I am so happy you went after it. Congrat's and loved the running shorts way to keep it real and old school ;-)

November 2, 2008 at 7:36 AM

Blogger Kellye Mills said...

I am so glad that you had an incredible day and toughed it out for a PR and #4 slot! I hope things are better for you at home with whatever personal stuff you've got going on. :)

November 2, 2008 at 7:48 AM

Blogger Lisa G said...

Congratulations on a fantastic race! That was the best way to do it - have fun and enjoy it with no pressure. All races should be like that!

November 2, 2008 at 7:55 AM

Blogger Jennifer Cunnane said...

Way to rock it out there. Very few people could kick ass like you after lackluster training - whoa! Great job!

November 2, 2008 at 8:07 AM

Blogger Pedergraham said...

Great racing, Bree. I'm glad that you had such a great trip to Florida.

November 2, 2008 at 8:09 AM

Blogger Leah said...

Nice! Glad you're ending the season on such a high note. Great race!

November 2, 2008 at 8:14 AM

Blogger beth said...

You have no clue who I am - but I get such inspiration from your blog! I am in my second year of triathlons and competing as an athena (hopefully not as an athena next season), but if it is, it is. I have a great coach who actually pointed me to your blog post about having confidence when you don't really have it for sure :). I finished last in 2 races this year. But dangit, I love this sport for some reason and part of the reason is athletes like you and my coach who have the best attitudes about the sport and life in general. Thanks for blogging. Beth

November 2, 2008 at 8:31 AM

Blogger Jen said...

Wow Bree! Congrats on a great race! Enjoy your off season :)

November 2, 2008 at 8:47 AM

Blogger Monica Kvas said...

Wow Bree! You are always full of surprises! Congratulations! What a great race after a spontaneous decision to do it! That's a smokin fast time! Can't wait to see what you'll pull off next season!

November 2, 2008 at 9:59 AM

Blogger Mama Simmons said...

Wow! Congrats! It's awesome to see how you can perform when the pressure is off. Good lessons learned! Triathlon is FUN... ;)

November 2, 2008 at 10:49 AM

Blogger Amy Beth Kloner said...

I can't believe you just decided to do this 10 days ago. What a rock star performance... and speaking of--- Ricky Martin!! I may be the only other person here who is a crazy fan. Sounds like a fab trip... so glad your family was there to support you. Isn't that the best feeling ever? Rest up... amy

November 2, 2008 at 11:56 AM

Blogger Maggs said...

Yeah Bree! It was fun watching you kick butt yesterday. Glad you had such a great race.

November 2, 2008 at 12:50 PM

Blogger TriGirl Kate O said...

It was so great to finally meet you. Thank you for the support and kind words, they really meant alot. Congrats too on the PR. Now let's go PARTY!!!

November 2, 2008 at 1:16 PM

Blogger kakes773 said...

Congratulations, Bree! What a great way to end the season! I look forward to following your progress next season as well.

November 2, 2008 at 1:43 PM

Blogger Danielle said...

I was SO super excited when I learned that you were racing IM FL!!!! I was cheering for you!!! I took some pics (check out my blog for them) I met your sister who told me that you got your Kona spot, that's awesome! Keith said that I yelled too loud for you, whatever, it was an IM and I figured everybody likes a cheerleader! Way to end the season on a strong note!

November 2, 2008 at 1:47 PM

Blogger Mel said...

awesome....I am very HAPPY for you...glad to see that SMILE:)

November 2, 2008 at 2:15 PM

Blogger Kate Weaver said...

Well done beautiful!! It's great to see you smile and HAPPY!

November 2, 2008 at 3:02 PM

Blogger Maijaleena said...

Great job! I was also not expecting your name to be up on the IM live updates, but it was cool to see you in there and doing so great. Congrats on the new PR, especially with the swimming with dolphin training plan!

November 2, 2008 at 3:10 PM

Blogger Steve Stenzel said...

YEAH!!! Nice job Bree!!!

November 2, 2008 at 4:11 PM

Blogger TriSaraTops said...

Awesome job! Way to just have fun out there...and snag a PR, too! What could be more fun?

November 2, 2008 at 4:56 PM

Blogger Missy said...

What a great story! It's almost like a movie where the main character gets kicked around, knocked down and then comes right back at the end for a fantastic finish!
Way to race!

November 2, 2008 at 5:24 PM

Blogger DeweesClan said...

Great job Bree! Saw you were going to a Ricky Martin concert and thought there has to be a race involved! Way to go! Courtney

November 2, 2008 at 5:24 PM

Blogger Stephanie Corker Irwin said...

We need more women like YOU in this world - to fight for what they know is right, to get back up and show the world what really tough women are made of! As per always, an inspiration Bree. Congrats.

November 2, 2008 at 5:49 PM

Blogger Bob Almighty said...

Congrats on the PR one of my friends was doing IM FLA as well, I'm tempted tosign up one year, but I know it sells out on sight. Thank you for the comments on my blog also if you need a guide to the Hills in CT next June I'll be happy to oblige.

November 2, 2008 at 6:40 PM

Blogger Bruce said...

I am still in a state of shock as I never expected all this to happen so suddenly. I remember advising you in a previous comment to qualify early for next year, but I never realized it would be this early. Anyway, you have a fantastic coach. Maybe it was the absence of the splish suit on this longer more important race that helped. I must admit that several of the girls up front look a bit unfashionable, but the main thing is that first past the finish line wins and not the most beautifully dressed.

November 2, 2008 at 11:50 PM

Blogger BriGaal said...

Hi Bree
Marty and I were cheering for you on the run. You looked so focused! Congratulations on having fun out there!

November 3, 2008 at 3:03 AM

Blogger bron said...

it was so great to see you in action and to spend time with you. you made an impression on reagan after him watching you all day on saturday. he had so much fun and on the way home yesturday all he kept talking about was, "ironman older mamma, i bike ironman older mamma." maybe he'll foloow in his auntie's footsteps. love ya sis. -bron

November 3, 2008 at 3:19 AM

Blogger Cricket said...

Yipeee! You did it! So bummed we were unable to make it up. Very happy for you... Continue this happy streak you wear it well! We love you cutie!
Aunt Cricket

November 3, 2008 at 5:00 AM

Blogger Sarah said...

Just catching up on your last couple posts...


I am *so* happy for you. And so impressed. I mean, you basically just thought "yeah, I wanna do this" and YOU DID IT! AND YOU DID IT WELL!

It just goes to show the power of our minds is just as important as the physical power we have.

I'm sorry about the stuff going on at home. You are such an incredible person and you clearly demonstrated what an amazingly strong woman you really are.

Keep smilin' and BIG FAT HIGH FIVES!!

Big hugs,

p.s. the fam pics were the best - it must've been so awesome to have them there!

November 3, 2008 at 3:04 PM

Blogger D'Arcy said...

Bree - not sure if you remember me from IM Louisville (way back in August!) but wanted to send a heartfelt CONGRATS on your Kona slot and terrific finish in FL! I spotted you on my bike out in Hawaii and you were cute to say "hi" back even though you didn't know me - thanks for that! ;)

November 3, 2008 at 6:20 PM

Blogger Speed Racer said...

Wow. If I'm allowed to take any lesson from this I like, I'd like to believe that it is better to race under-prepared and in your happy place –- no expectations, no pressure -- than fully-prepared and hell-bent on just one definition of success (and too many things to call failure). And I LOVE that you pulled an ironman out of your ass! You look like you're YAWNING in that picture. You make it look so easy!

Congratulations on finally getting your slot!!! I'm glad the tough part is already out of the way for 2009 and you can go back to what you do best: enjoying it!

November 5, 2008 at 8:22 AM

Blogger Rebecca DeWire said...

Congratulations. You have really made me believe in the power of racing for fun and with heart. Way to get your slot!!!!

November 5, 2008 at 10:35 AM

Blogger jesslover said...

this is so great!

bree wee #1

November 5, 2008 at 3:40 PM


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