Let’s talk about the new Ironman Wisconsin bike course.
In one word, BARF sums it up.
On Saturday I met the newest horrible hill by walking my bike up it. I’ve never had to hop off of my bike in the middle of a seemingly impossible hill before. This was such a new feeling for me. I breathlessly kept saying “there’s no way, there’s no way” over and over again.
This hill has a 21% grade. It’s like riding your bike up a brick wall. When I crested the slight hill before it I saw two people walking their bikes. Oh hell no, I wasn’t going to have to do that. Until I did.
If you’re not familiar with my cycling skills, I’ll bring you up to speed. It’s not a strong suit for me, but it’s not a weakness either. I’m fairly average. I’ve done Ironman Wisconsin twice and have no problem with the regular course and its three “Bitches”.
As I glided down the other side my first thoughts were “How can I better train for this? What can I do to prepare for this?” Ten minutes later I worried myself into a little cry. Twenty minutes later I stopped for a cold can of Coke and felt so much better about life.
Tonight I dropped my bike off at the mechanic to get a new 11-34 cassette. I’ll continue my weekly hill repeats, my squats, lunges, and a few other creative ideas I have to get prepared for this. I am on a mission to earn the shirt I bought the morning before my ride, see below…
The next morning we joined a 200 person group for the run course loop through campus. It was a delightful 70 degrees and my legs were feeling pretty great for day after a 76 mile ride. We chatted with a bunch of newbies, which is always fun, feeling like the wise old owl. My pace is finally back at a reasonable place. After having to walk my bike up that hill the day before I was determined to run up and over Observatory Drive. I did it. And then I regretted it. It burned some matches and I slowed down a bit. Energy was soon found “meeting” a gal around mile 11.
We started chatting, and she goes “Wait, you look familiar, have we met?” And John reminded us all that we did meet two years ago at a Dean Karnezes group run. How random! Later that day, my Facebook memories even had a picture from exactly two years ago at the group run. Weird, random things like that always confirm that I’m in the right place.
Swim 2.1 miles
Bike 76 miles
Run 14 miles