** By the way – Saturday cycle: leaves at 8:00am tomorrow from the pool. Seniors and juniors welcome. It’s your last time to get in a long cycle with the club before the End of Year Cycle.
All 8 of us have landed in Kalmar and are busy acclimatizing and pooping our pants. Actually we are in the Goldilocks weather zone for Ironman – not too hot and not too cold with the wind being just right. Most of the pants pooping is coming from Keith and Andy’s room. It was a bad idea to put them together in the same room as they are psyching each other out of it. All that’s missing for the perfect trifecta of doom and gloom is Kevin Sherlock.
As you can imagine, the only topic of conversation is triathlon – for any other halves that are reading this – count yourself lucky that you didn’t come. Ironman strategies have been debated to death (Sinnead won, obviously – she also noted that the motorists here drive on the wrong side of the road and they were actually at fault for nearly knocking her down as she stepped out onto the road). I also never knew we had so many nutritionists in the group – everyone has some advice to give on when, where, what, who and how you should eat! Seán won the eating competition on Thursday – well it wasn’t a competition it was just an all you can eat buffet. He finished the buffet.
There isn’t much time for relaxing as there is always somewhere to go and something to do. We are located about 2km outside the city so plenty of walking has been necessary. For lads that have been training 20 hours a week for months, a little walk seems to strike fear into them. Majella has taken on the role of team ‘mammy’. Here you can see her cutting Keith’s nails. She has been at the heart of all the wrong turns that have been made. As you can imagine, Andy McLoughlin was put in the bold corner pretty early into this trip.
Be prepared to be dazzled by the array of new Ironman merchandise coming home with us. Just in case anyone in Nenagh or Ireland didn’t know the lads are doing an Ironman, they have bought enough Ironman branded gear to show off in, that everyone will soon get the message that they are now Ironmen. Ironman gloves, bandanas, tshirts, hoodies, bags, sweat bands, tattoos – you name it we got it! I am sure someone will even get the surprise of finding a pair of Ironman knickers or boxers staring back at them!! There will be no avoiding it.
The race will be starting tomorrow morning at 7:00am here in Sweden = 6:00am Irish time), so by the time ye start the Saturday morning cycle we will be out on the bikes too. All our bikes are racked now and ready to go. The crowds are huge as you can imagine, with a huge amount of bike porn on view. Everyone looks fit as fiddles (I am not sure how fit fiddles or these people actually are) and they are covered in tan and compression gear. Us Irish stick out like sore thumbs. Thank God we have the Adonis with us. He brought his bronzer with him so he is looking the part at least.
The lads want to thank everyone for the goodluck messages that were sent. A good example of the sort of kindness and encouragement we are getting came from Johnny Dunne this morning “Best of luck tomorrow Keith. Be strong and listen to your heart…..seriously listen to it, that thing could pop like a paper bag!!” Touching words from Johnny as always.
We hope to have a link to the live Ironman tracker up on either the website or on our Facebook page so check it out.