IM Kona '15: Day 9

Thursday morning in Kona - that only means one thing.

Put on your best "undie" outfit (aka as little clothes as possible) and run 1.5 miles on Ali'i drive for charity).

The Underpants run (UPR Kona) serves as a great ice breaker for athletes who are racing but also for friends, family, kids and locals to have some fun before the race. 

I shared a few videos on my Trimarni facebook page if you want to see all the fun (and almost naked bodies of all beautiful shapes and sizes)

There were so many people that we filled up the parking lot behind the King K hotel!

I told ya - all shapes and sizes.
Be proud of your body and don't be afraid to show it off!

Love Jesse Thomas! One amazing athlete who writes awesome/funny/oh-so-true articles for Triathlete magazine. 

Bumped into Instagram friend Carolyn who is a plant-strong dietitian and athlete. She liked my custom-made triathlon "Fueled by Plants" shorts from Funnyshirts.org.

Oh Karel :) A little too comfortable walking around in his underwear. 

The undie run isn't just for humans. 

After the undie run (which started at 7:30am), Karel and I went back to our condo to quickly change before our 2-hour private session with Paul Buick (Purple Patch Fitness cycling expert).

Paul offers so much experience with cycling but also with a great understanding of how to ride on the IM Kona bike course with the rolling hills and strong winds. 

Now you may think "why doesn't she just listen to her husband Karel who is a bike expert?"...

Well, we can all learn something new and it's not always about how much experience someone has but also how someone explains the information. 

This was a valuable lesson for both Karel and I as I took away so many new skills and tips to help me on Saturday but also for the future. 

I've constantly been telling myself that the IM Kona course is not "my type of course" because of the gusty winds that make me feel uncomfortable and tense as well as the layout of the course. But Paul gave me the confidence (and skills) that I need to feel as if I can ride smart and strong for 112 miles in Kona.

The great thing about the IM bike course is not knowing what the weather will be like which makes for a day of not chasing power or time goals but instead, being smart with execution, tactics and being patient (aka not racing with an ego). 

Thank you Paul for the great session!
I'm finally looking forward to race day - especially the bike!

Because we were attending the athlete opening ceremony in the evening, I had my ritual pizza dinner (two nights before an Ironman) for lunch - it was a late lunch around 2:30pm since my breakfast was around 11am (pre-workout snack before the undie run/session with Paul) but it was still delicious and totally hit the spot. Pizza is my comfort food and I always feel good when I eat it and after.
This was a frozen Digiorno pizza with spinach and mushrooms. 

This week seems like it is rushing by but we are still making sure to stay inside and off our feet as much as possible and resting as much as we can.

After running an errand to the grocery store for more food/water, we drove a few miles up the road to the Purple Patch Fitness house for a team pre-race course talk.

Matt gave an exceptional pre-race talk which not only calmed our pre-race nerves/anxieties/jitters but also talked about how to race a great race. 

I took a few notes:
-Be task oriented, not outcome driven. The moment you start to do mathmatics on the course (figuring out what you need to hold to finish in x-time or that you won't meet your time goal), you are done. Focus on what you can control and erase time goals. Time goals get you out of bed when you are training but on race day, you want to get to point A to point B as quick as possible. 
-You will get into very dark places on this course, on race day. Only you can get yourself to the finish line. Don't give up. Break down the course so your only goals are to get to the next destination.
-You love to train and you love to race. This is nothing more than a long training day. Manage your resources - never miss a feeding or hydration station.
-Never give in. Maximize YOUR day.
-Focus only on what you can control and look only after yourself. 

After our 4:30-5:30pm meeting with Matt, it was time to head to the welcome ceremony behind the King K hotel. 

The finish line area is now closed to traffic as the transition area and finish line chute is beginning to come together. 

It's truly amazing how this town transforms from a touristy island to the home of the Ironman World Championship. 

The finish line chute minus the carpet, barricades and cheering fans!

The finish line doesn't look too fancy but it will be amazing on Saturday!!

Time to eat! Lots of Vegetarian Marni-friendly options. 

You can check out my Trimarni Facebook page  for some videos from the evening. 
It is quite the performance/show at the Ironman World Championship - certainly not the "normal" Ironman opening ceremony. 

So many people!

So happy to share the evening with Trimarni nutrition athlete turned coaching athlete Kristin (qualified at Boulder) who is racing her first Ironman World Championship on Saturday. 

And finally....the waiting is over.
Just one more full day until race day.

It's such an honor to have this number on my bike and be one of the 20% of females who will be racing in the 2015 Ironman World Championship.