Well, today shit got real.
After a solid night’s sleep in our awesome hotel — like 2 blocks from the start/transition/finish — Mom and I wandered down to the lakefront to pick up my Felt and gear bag from TriBike Transport. Lake Monona is beautiful, no?
I didn’t pick my bike out among the racks immediately, but my worst nightmare (I legit dreamed it didn’t make the trip from D.C. and that I made someone escort it out here for me just in time for the race) quickly evaporated and my Felt was safely back in my hands. Looking siiiiiiiiick fast with the Zipps on it, I might add.
The guys at TriBike were nice enough to put my pedals back on and pump up my tires and send me on my way. After delivering my bike and gear back to the hotel, it was time to grab breakfast and go through the hurry-up-and-wait race registration process. Everything is set up in Monona Terrace, the convention center that also serves as the race start site and the transition area. By 3pm tomorrow, this will be filled with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of fancy bikes.
Then I picked up several waivers that required me to double-check all my personal information and sign my life away by releasing WTC from any responsibility for what happens on Sunday. Then I waited in line.
Very nice volunteers took down my weight — ever gotten on a scale surrounded by other people? yeah — and then I waited in line again. I made friends with the people around me. Finally, it was my turn to step up to the registration table and claim my number, wristband, gear bags, all the things that make this Ironman thing legit, not just a fun fantasy.
Next Mom and I headed to the Ironman store. I didn’t want anything besides a pint glass and a visor, but we had to — you guessed it — wait in line again, this time for nearly an hour.
Anyway, after a brief stop at the Newton booth, from which I may or may not have purchased neon pink shoes, Mom and I hopped a cab over to Whole Foods to grab lunch and stock up on some snacks/breakfast foods for the room. Then it was back to the hotel to take the bike out for a quick spin, test out the race wheels, shake out the legs, etc. And I felt fantastic. And the weather is amazing. And did I mention I’m really REALLY FREAKIN’ EXCITED?!?
Dad arrived late afternoon, and we skipped out on the athletes’ dinner to eat at a locally-focused restaurant around the square from our hotel. Wisconsin cheese? Yes please.