Essential Sports Nutrition


IMWI '18 Race Report - 112 mile bike

Photo: Jay Baker
If I had one complaint about this course, it's the first few miles on the bike path. Even though the course was altered a bit due to recent flooding, it's still a technical way to start the bike in a race. Thankfully, it's not more than a few miles of navigating cracks, turns and bumps and a railroad track before you are on an open road and heading out to the country.

With the temp around 50 degrees, I was happy I had my arm coolers on as they were keeping me warm. I felt very comfortable (body temp) when I started the bike but I still gave myself a few miles to wake-up my legs and to settle into a nice rhythm. I always start the bike with my helmet shield up so it doesn't fog and then after a few minutes I snap it in place as my "sunglasses" for the rest of the ride. It's also a lot easier to get on this way.

After losing both my rear bottles at Ironman Chattanooga last year in the first few miles of the bike, I was extra paranoid at IMWI with every bump on the road. I kept tapping down my rear bottles before and after every noticeable bump for the first few miles as I didn't want to make the same mistake twice (and this is even with very secure gorilla bottle cages). But just to be safe and not sorry, I filled my hydration flask with 2 bottles worth of INFINIT powder just in case I were to lose two bottles. I chose not to use my hydration system for this race because I am very comfortable grabbing my bottles and it's easy for me to see how much I am drinking and to get in full gulps. But since it is more aero with the hydration system, I keep it on my bike. I've only had my new Ventum to ride for just a few weeks but I have tested out the straw and plan to use it for extreme conditions (ex. rain and wind).

It wasn't too long into the bike when I heard my name and it was my athlete Ericka who was racing in the professional women's field. She is a super strong biker and she loves to ride her bike. It was great to see her ride away from me and I was so pumped for her to experience her first Ironman - and to share the day with her.

The Ironman Wisconsin course is tough. There's little time to settle into a rhythm with over 91-turns per loop (over 200 turns over 112 miles). While the course has 5600 feet of elevation gain, you are either going up or down and rarely do you get a lot of momentum to get yourself from one downhill to the next uphill. There are a few technical sections with tight turns that can be executed safely but you have to be on alert, especially when other athletes are around.  And when there is a flat-ish segment, you usually get wind. On our race day, the wind was angry. And lastly, the road conditions are rough. While several segments have been paved over the years, it's not a "fast" course. However, having said all that, the scenery is beautiful (think farms - lots and lots of farms and fields), there are designated spectator-heavy spots that you can get a ton of energy from the crowds, the course is very-well marked, the course is safe (even though it's not closed to traffic, there are police and volunteers everywhere) and it's a fun course!

I keep my nutrition super simple during an Ironman so that I can focus on my execution but also ensure that I can optimize digestion and absorption of all calories consumed.  For my nutrition in an Ironman, I use 1 26-ounce bottle of INFINIT per hour (I use my own custom version of my endurance base formula, discount Trimarnicoach if you'd like to try it) with around 500mg sodium, 250 calories, 62g carbs and 15g of sugar. One of my 6 bottles (3 for the first loop and then 3 in special needs - already filled with water and powder) contains caffeine and aminos (mixed in my custom formula) - 50mg caffeine and 1g aminos. I use this bottle as my third bottle on the bike (so around 2 hours of riding). This is the same strategy I use for every long ride. To help with taste bud fatigue, I bring along 4 different flavors (watermelon, pink lemonade, fruit punch and grape) so that each hour is a different flavor. My front bottle cage holds my primary bottle and when I am finished with it, I either toss it at an aid station (I use an old bottle that I am happy to get rid of) or move it to my rear cage and replace with my rear bottle. I keep rotating bottles so I can always grab my front bottle. For this race, I didn't grab water in the first loop but grabbed water at each aid station on the second loop to use for sipping and cooling. While I like to have a plan for an Ironman, I am also always listening to my body. I always bring "extra" fuel with me for those just-in-case situations and in this Ironman, I brought along a Clif PB and pretzel MOJO bar as it's something I have practiced with in training and have had good runs off the bike when I nibble on the bar throughout my ride. So I broke up the bar in advance, put it into a baggy and stuck into my bento box for easy nibbling throughout the ride. I mostly went through the entire bar throughout hour 2-5 of the bike. I also had a small flask filled with 1 Enervite cheerpack (caffeine) that I took a swig from anytime I needed a little burst of energy. Again, I practiced with this in training. So aside from drinking my INFINIT bottle every hour, 4-5 chugs every 10-12 minutes (give or take depending on the terrain and how I was feeling), the extra nutrition was based on how I felt.

Picture: Brian Comiskey

The IMWI bike course is very similar to what we train on in Greenville so I think that helped me a lot with my execution and knowing how to ride my bike on the course. While we have a lot to climb where we live (and bumpy roads), this helped my bike handling skills, terrain management and strength on two wheels but it leaves very little opportunity for steady state riding. So my long rides are always outside and my more specific rides are typically on the trainer. I usually ride my road bike once a week for an easy spin and I have found that I need to incorporate variable cadence work (riding at a very low or very high cadence) during my workouts to keep the fibers firing, versus just focusing on steady state efforts. I haven't done a power test in over a year so all my rides are by feel as I know what each effort should feel like and I adjust based on how I feel for the day. My bike fit is all dialed in thanks to Karel as it wasn't a difficult fit as my new Ventum fits me so well. Whereas my Trek Speed Concept was a size small (700 wheels), it was a bit too big for me. This new bike is just perfect and with my 155mm cranks and Dash saddle plus the shape of my aerobars (Ventum product), the bike feels extremely comfortable and rides so well. And with the wind, I felt like I was just slicing through it! This never happens to me as with my old bike, I felt like I was always getting pushed around. With no downtube on my Ventum, there is less for the wind to hit. Also the chain stay is shorter than on most bikes which brings my weight more towards the center or the back of the bike while still maintaining an aero position. This makes the bike feel more like a road bike compared to a heavy tri bike. The bike road so well and I was so happy with my choice to ride my new Ventum at IMWI (even though I had only completed 2 long rides on it prior!).

As for my training going into this race, my longest ride was 5.5 hours and that was with our campers in August. Other than that, the majority of my rides were around 4-4.5 hours. While I don't do many "long" rides, my workouts are very specific and intense. Either the terrain brings up the inside or the workout itself. Plus, our miles go by very slow where we live so it's not uncommon for us to average 16-17mph for a long ride. Thus, completing a 100+ mile ride would be a long day in the mountains and we feel there are other beneficial ways to gain fitness versus spending so much time in the saddle. While I love to ride my bike and train, I'm always looking for the most efficient way to gain fitness in the least amount of time possible.

Photo: Jay Baker

As for the race, I hit lap every 30-35 minutes once I got on the loop (~40 miles per loop). I used the stick part of the course to build into my effort and I made sure to keep the first loop very sustainable. I felt strong but tried to hold myself back. There was a lot of sitting up in the saddle or standing on the climbs which I liked as I am much more comfortable changing my position than being stuck in aero for miles at a time. The crowds were incredible on the two longer climbs on the course, in addition to the 3 sisters (or b!tche$ - however you choose to call them). I saw a lot of familiar faces on the course which was awesome - thank you Ed, Diane, Cory, Michela, Tim and all other friends/family for being out there! I was getting updates on my position that I was leading the female amateur race and first in my age group. While this news was motivating, I didn't let it change my game plan of riding my bike well. After a stop at special needs to get three fresh bottles (for those who thinks special needs is a waste of time, my stop was only 12 seconds according to my data), I was looking forward to the second loop. Knowing that fatigue was building, my goal was just to ride the same effort as before but to save a little for the stretch going home as I knew it would be windy and in my face. I was starting to warm-up and while I probably could have kept on my arm coolers, I decided to remove them around mile 60 just to feel something different. I tucked the arm coolers into my jersey pockets. Not too long later, it hit me. A low. After 14 Ironmans, I know these lows come but it's always a guessing game as to how long. While the miles were going by very quickly, my low stayed with me for some time. Maybe it was the wind, the part of the course where I was riding (I was alone for a very long time) or being passed by two very strong girls but the low stayed with me for more than I would have liked. It's hard to describe this feeling but it's easy to get negative and to start having doubts. I took in some calories, did a few check-in's with my body and all was still feeling ok so I just rode it out (literally) and was able to bounce back from it.

Karel was spectating around the 3 sisters and I was super excited to see him. I gave him a big smile but also told him "I'm feeling tired." He yelled back "you should be, you are doing an Ironman." Sometimes it helps to say what I am feeling as it's kinda like a little self-talk for myself to get out of my funk. It helped and I felt stronger soon after I saw Karel. I was prepared for the final section of the bike (the last 14 miles) to be very tough and it was. It was slow but I just focused on smooth pedaling, staying relaxed and doing my best to deliver myself to the run as fresh as possible after riding a super windy and tough 112 miles. While I was passed by two girls, I was still first in my age group so that gave me a lot of motivation to keep taking good care of myself and giving my best on this day. While sometimes our thoughts tell us negative things, thoughts aren't always actions. I had nothing to convince me that I was having a bad race so even with a low on the bike, I still told myself that I could have a great race. I reminded myself of all my hard training sessions and no matter how I feel on the bike, I can still put together a solid run. To be honest, I had my normal thoughts of quitting and questioning why I do this crazy sport but something deep inside myself loves to prove myself wrong. 

As I neared the helix, I couldn't believe how fast the day was going and that I was about to start the marathon. Only 26.2 miles until the finish of my 14th Ironman! With the lead in my age group and 3rd female amateur overall, I questioned if history would repeat itself and with only 2 and 3 minutes between me and 2nd and 3rd place in my age group, I was in need of the run of my life to take the age group win.

112 mile BIKE RESULT (per Ironman tracker)
5:37.55 (19.86 mph)
2nd fastest AG (35-39)
14th female
141th overall

Bike specifics:
Any questions about these components, email me and I'll send your question along to Karel. I don't do bikes - I just ride them :) 
  • Ventum One Frame size 46 (custom paint) 
  • Ventum handlebar set up with TriRig ultra light elbow cups with CeeGees pads
  • Wheels: Alto CC 86 rear and Alto CC 56 front wheel with Specialized S-works 24mm tubeless tires and Ultegra 11-28 cassette.
  • Crank: Rotor 3D24 crank arms 155mm with Rotor Qarbon 53 aero big chainring and 39 small chainring with Power2Max pwoermeter. 
  • BB: CeramicSpeed bottom bracket (red) 
  • Saddle: Dash Stage Custom saddle 
  • Other components: Shimano Dura-Ace 9100 and Utegra 8000 Di2 group set with CeramicSpeed oversized pulley system (red) 
My race data (Garmin 810): Each split represents when I lapped my computer (I wasn't always perfect, sometimes I would forget)

-14 miles (39 minutes/21.7 mph), 169w NP, 87 RPM
-11 miles (30 minutes/21.3 mph), 168w NP, 85 RPM
-10 miles (31 minutes/19.3 mph), 180w NP, 84 RPM
-10 miles (32 minutes/18.9 mph), 170w NP, 83 RPM
-13 miles (37 minutes/20.9 mph), 164w NP, 83 RPM
-12.4 miles (37 minutes/20 mph), 169w NP, 82 RPM
-9.66 miles (30 minutes/19 mph), 159w NP, 81 RPM
-10 miles (34 minutes/17.6 mph), 161w NP, 80 RPM
-6.6 miles (19 minutes/20.9 mph),135w NP, 80 RPM
-14 miles (45 minutes/18.5 mph), 140w NP, 78 RPM
Data recorded 111 miles in 5:35.59 (19.8 mph)


IMWI '18 Race Report - Pre-race + Swim + T1


I was looking forward to my 30-minute swim on Friday morning at the Pinaccle Health Club. Karel joined me but swam about double my distance as he is still in training mode for his upcoming races. Because two days out from an Ironman is a relatively light day of training for me, I was really looking forward to connecting with our 13 athletes who were racing IMWI (and seeing their family members). In usual Trimarni fashion, we had our pre-race pizza party + course talk as a way to connect everyone and provide last minute advice and tips. Our athlete Lisa lives in Madison and offered up her rooftop deck/clubhouse for our party. The views were incredible. Plus, you can never go wrong with pizza two days before a race. We ordered pizza from Pizza Brutta and it was amazing!
The rest of the day was very low-key for me and it was early to bed to try to get a good night of sleep as you never know how sleep will go on the night before the race. 

Saturday was all about waking up the body and fueling for the long adventure that awaited me on Sunday. Interesting, I never felt “too full or heavy” despite eating far more than I normally eat before a race. I started the day with my typical pre-training snack (2 waffles w/ PB, syrup and Greek yogurt) and a small cup of coffee and water. Then it was off for a 55 minute spin on the race course (with the terrain dictating my efforts to raise the intensity) followed by a 15 minute run off the bike. I’m not tied to any specific goal times, paces or distances to achieve with my pre-race warm-up as I’m looking to warm-up until I feel good and then save it all for race day. Karel started with me (and our athlete Thomas) but then continued on with his ride as he had a big day of training planned with a 6-hour ride followed by a 20-minute run. After a big glass of milk while cleaning up, I prepared myself 2 big slices of French toast w/ scrambled eggs and fruit. 



I re-packed my gear bags (I had them all laid out and almost packed as of Thurs evening) and then around 11:30am, headed downtown with Thomas, Karel’s mom and Campy to check-in our bikes and gear bags. Because the wind was gusty, I noticed that a few other athletes had used duct tape to secure their saddle on the transition rack. This was a great idea since my bike is too small to touch the ground so I did the same by taping down the saddle rails to the bike rack. After dropping off our gear bags, we walked around the outside expo and checked out the finish line and then headed home. 

But first, we had to make a quick stop at a local bakery to pick-up a few treats for Karel so he could survive his day of spectating on Sunday. Sadly, they were out of croissants but I substituted with two scones and a huge cinnamon roll (for me). If you didn't know, I LOVE cinnamon rolls. 

When we returned home, my lunch consisted of leftover pizza (from Pizza Brutta), cottage cheese, a handful of arugula. I really cut back on my veggies in the 48 hours before the race. I also yummed over some of my cinnamon roll (it was calling my name and I couldn’t wait to dig into it). Then it was time to fill my bottles with my sport nutrition powders (topping off with water on race day morning) and put my feet up and relax. Since I am not the best relaxer, I found a movie to watch on Netflix which distracted me for a while. Karel eventually came home from his workout around 3pm and he provided us with some great feedback on the course (since he did the entire course and a little more during his ride). I snacked on corn chips and fruit throughout the afternoon and ended the day with a bag of microwave rice (high in carbs and lots of sodium). Our professional athlete Ericka (doing her first IM!) came over with her husband in the evening on Friday for a last minute pre-race chat with me and Karel.

Since carbonated water can sometimes irritate the gut, I avoided it and just drank plain water all day plus 1 bottle of precision hydration (1500). Even though the temps were not predicted to be warm for race day, I still found it important to load on sodium to optimize my hydration level before the event. Since Karel was tired from his training, we both headed off to bed around 7pm and lights were off around 8:30pm. I think Campy was the first to fall asleep – this Ironman stuff is tough for his almost 11-year old body!

Race morning
My alarm went off at 3:45am and surprisingly, Karel was quick out of bed. He was starving and ready to eat after his big day of training on Saturday. This made it easy for me to get out of bed but I made sure to sit up slowly as to not throw off my blood pressure and faint (which happened to me at IM 70.3 World Championships in 2017). Campy (as you see below), was not quick to get out of bed. 

While I felt a little nervous, I didn’t let it get to me too much. I knew once I got to the race venue, my nerves would disappear. I ate my typical pre-race meal (which is also the same thing I eat before every training session – just in higher quantities for race day and a few extra toppings) of 2 waffles, PB, yogurt, syrup, banana, cinnamon, granola. I had a cup of coffee (instant is what I like), glass of water, 3 MAP BCAA’s and 1 scoop Osmo pre-load. I filled all of my 6 bike bottles and 4 flasks with water (since I put powder in them the day before) and then packed up my race day bag. 

Karel’s mom and Campy stayed at the house as Karel planned to go back to the house before heading out on the bike course to cheer. Karel drove Thomas and I to the race venue and we parked on the street just a block from the capital. We walked first to special needs to drop off our bags (Bike and run bag drop offs were both by the capital, before the finish line) and then headed to our gear bags inside the terrace to drop off any last minute items (like nutrition). I kept myself warm with pants, a jacket, a hat and gloves because it was a bit cool out (in the low 50’s) and a little windy. For every race, I always bring a bag of "extra" clothing like gloves, ear covers, shoe covers, arm warmers, leg warmers, rain jacket/vest and anything else I may need if weather changes. I made a mental note of where my bags were before heading to body marking and then to our bikes. 

Karel stood outside of the transition area and gave my tires a touch to see if they were good to go for the race. Since we pumped them up the day before (gave the bike a full charge for my electronic shifting on Friday night), they held their pressure on race day morning. It was nice to see so many familiar faces throughout the morning, including several of our athletes. Of course, I made sure to untape my saddle – that would have been no fun if I would have forgot! 

It was nearing 5:45pm when I was finished with my pre-race to do’s. I made a potty stop inside the terrace (nice clean bathrooms with no line) and then did a little light mobility work on the floor in the terrace for the next 10 minutes. Around 6pm, I put on my wetsuit, gave Karel a kiss and hug good-bye, found a doggy to give a kiss (can't forget the furry ones) and then made my way down to the swim start. It was a little crowded to get down there so I was happy to give myself extra time. I was hoping to get in the water but it appeared they weren’t letting anyone in the water so I just kept myself loose before getting into the corral. I had an Enervite pre-race Jelly around 20 minutes before the start. With the pros going off at 6:40am (in-the-water start at the first buoy), it was getting rather tight in the corral by 6:20am. I wanted to get around the 1-hour group but the only sign was 1-1:10 (predicted swim time for the rolling start). This created a lot of chaos even before the start for there was a wide range of swim abilities all crammed together (plus those that probably shouldn’t be near the front anyways). While it may seem like standing around for 30 minutes in a tight corral would be stressful, I didn’t mind it for I knew that for the next 10+ hours, I would be moving and using my body. 

Swim 2.4 miles - 59:38 (2nd 35-39, 6th female, 24th overall)

Once the gun went off, the line moved quickly. I first stepped over the timing mat and then walked to the water. It felt like forever until I crossed over the mat and then entered the water but I’m guessing it wasn’t more than a 30 seconds. I made a poor decision and started on the left of the swim start which was a bit more crowded since we needed to keep all buoys to our left. I found it very chaotic in the water for the first few buoys due to the large amount of athletes who lined up in the 1-1:10 time frame plus the sub 1-hour swimmers. There were many times that instead of focusing on staying on course, I was sighting to find clean water. The best part of the early part of the swim was swimming next to my athlete Stephanie who is a great swimmer. I immediately noticed her as we both wear the same Xterra vengeance wetsuit and I know her swim stroke. I eventually swam away from her but she wasn’t too far behind me as she had an awesome swim. The stretch to the first buoy went by rather quickly. While I found myself needing to swim by many swimmers, I finally found my groove.

However, once I made my way around the two turn buoys and started to swim back toward the start, the water became incredibly choppy – more like an ocean. Since I have a pretty straight-arm stroke, I really focused on catching the water and trying to time my stroke with the chop. While it worked for a little bit at a time, the chop would change and then I would need to reset my rhythm. Since it was a good mile of straight swimming against the chop, I had no time to think about anything in the future (bike and run) but to stay in the moment. Since it takes me some time to feel warmed-up (this is for any sport), I like to pick up my effort as the swim progresses. I found myself around a few other girls (pink caps) which gave me a little boost to keep my effort going and to swim really strong to the finish. Since I always wear new goggles for an Ironman swim, I could see perfectly throughout the entire swim which also helped me stay on course. Although the long stretch felt long, the final stretch to the shore came rather quickly. I felt strong throughout the entire swim and felt I paced it well. Since I don’t wear a watch, I didn’t know my swim time but quickly glanced at the race clock and saw 1:10 – which I figured was for the pros. I quickly did the math and figured I was right around an hour which I was happy about. It was a nice tone to set the day.  Karel stayed inside the terrace and then made his way near the mount line to cheer me on (and our other athletes) for the start of the bike.

T1 - 6:10

The transition from swim to bike at IMWI is a loooooong one. I first got my wetsuit removed by the “strippers” and choose to go to the very end before laying down as to not get stuck around other athletes. I kept my cap and goggles on as two less things to carry up the helix. Oh that helix. The crowds were incredible as they were 3-4 rows deep cheering as I ran up and up and up to the entrance to the terrace. This race is also special because the transition area is inside! The volunteers were great as always and directed me into the room with our blue bike gear bags and then into the female “changing tent” (a room). My volunteer helped me put on my gear and held my timing chip as I put on my compression socks (typically I put it in my mouth so I don’t forget it). I wasn’t planning to wear my arm warmers as the swim really warmed me up (water temp was in the 70’s) but the volunteer told me it was rather chilly out and in looking back, I was glad I had them on. They were actually arm coolers so they were really light but provided my arms with just enough warmth for the early miles of the bike (well – actually until mile 60!). While the Ironman is a very long day requiring patience and not taking risks, transitions are nothing more than “free speed.” 

Since this transition is naturally long, I made good use of my time by removing my cap and goggles right when I entered the terrace, put my helmet on as I ran to the changing tent and then carried my bike shoes with me until I got to my bike. While running the entire length of the parking lot to my bike (on the very far side near the mount line), I also put on my arm warmers while running. Once I got to my bike rack, a volunteer held my bike, I turned on my bike computer and then put on my shoes. I grabbed my bike and then I was off. I felt like it was one of my best executed transitions, even though it’s a long one. As my first race on my new Ventum, I was really excited to put it to the test and see how it dealt with the bumpy roads, gusty winds and technical terrain that was ahead of me for 112 miles of riding. 


2018 Ironman Wisconsin - quick recap

Every athlete is in pursuit for that perfect race. We'd all like to believe that if you keep racing, it’s bound to occur. But what if that perfect race never happens? Does this mean that all past races are failures? More so, what really defines the “perfect” race.....Is it a time, a place or a feeling?

After 13 Ironman races, five Kona qualifications, several podiums, an Ironman PR of 10:06 and an amateur female win at 2017 Ironman Chattanooga, I'm incredibly grateful to my body for what it's accomplished over the past 12 years of endurance triathlon racing. But even with all those accomplishments, I have yet to have that race where I felt like it was perfect. In reflecting on my performance at Ironman Wisconsin, I feel that IMWI was a perfect race.

For me, Ironman Wisconsin was the perfect race for a few reasons.

Going into the race, I was full of emotions. Two weeks out, I felt so exhausted and tired. I felt flat during all my training sessions and my efforts felt much harder than I wanted them to feel. Karel reminded me that I get this way before every Ironman but my taper-brain was giving me a ton of misleading signals. I trusted Karel and my training and just carried on with my workouts. The best part of the weekend before race week was watching the Ironman 70.3 World Championship which had me fired-up to race (even though I felt sluggish).

Come race week, the emotions got worse as word was getting around that there was a lot of flooding in the Madison area. This created a lot of talk (and rumors) about the swim being cancelled and possible modifications to the bike and run course. As a coach, I needed to keep my ears open for any changes as I needed to stay on my toes to communicate accurate information to the 13 other Trimarni athletes who were racing. Perhaps the unknowns of race day were getting to me for I had trouble putting myself into “race mode” on Monday. But once I arrived to the race venue on Tues evening, I felt more at ease with whatever we were given on race day. Once I got myself into a good place mentally, I found myself feeling really good with my sharpening workouts leading up to the race. With each workout, I felt better and better and more excited for the race. I didn’t have any pains or niggles and this was something that I constantly reminded myself of, for there’s no better feeling than feeling healthy, strong and injury-free before an Ironman. I felt like I had a good rhythm during the week because I didn’t venture too far from my normal workout routine. 

Each morning after a good night of sleep (no alarm), a substantial pre-workout snack (2 waffles + PB, syrup, Greek yogurt and fruit – similar to race day) and a bit of mobility work, I did my planned workouts. We had to move a few things around because of the weather on Wed but other than that, I kept myself swimming, biking and running on race week with something every day. On Wed I ran and swam (am run and pm swim), Thurs we biked one loop of the bike course (~40 miles) and on Fri I swam. Sat was the typical bike/run combo. 

I found that every time I was at the race venue, I was getting more excited for my 14th Ironman (and 3rd Ironman Wisconsin). I made sure to get in a few pool swims on race week (even if the swim was to be cancelled) because that’s my happy place. Riding my new Ventum felt amazing and that was getting me super pumped for race day. Even though I had only rode my new Ventum about 5 or 6 times, I was confident with my decision to race on a new bike for I felt very dialed-in with my fit (thanks to Karel) and the bike was the perfect fit for me. The run always leaves me a little concerned as it's a continued work-in-progress for me but I felt confident based on my previous run training.
Come race day morning, I was antsy to get things going. I knew from past experience that once I got into the water, I would feel so much better. I just needed the race to start.

Once the race got going, I had no idea how the day would go and I feel that thinking helped me create the “perfect” race. With no expectations and a lot of Ironman experience (especially with racing Ironman Austria just 10 weeks ag), it wasn't until I exited the water that I felt like this could be a good race for me. What that meant, I wasn't sure but I felt like my body was ready to perform. While I battled low moments (as I always due in an Ironman) and had my typical “I’m never doing this again....why am I doing this” thoughts on the bike, my body was still working well. In other words, I felt like my mind and body were working together which meant I was able to still perform, even during those low moments. Most of all, I was having fun and felt like I wanted to be in the race. Plus, receiving feedback from people on the course about my position in the race (overall and in my age group) had me feeling a bit of pressure all day – which I liked.

While every Ironman requires a bit of good luck and there are bound to be plenty of obstacles to overcome out of your control, things were going rather well for me on the swim and bike. Even on the run, I didn’t have any nutrition/gut issues, no major obstacles to overcome and my body didn’t start to get really fatigued until around mile 16/17 of the run. More than anything, I felt good on the run and it never felt "too long" to run a marathon at the end of the Ironman. I was in the zone. And for me, I stayed in front of my age-group competition throughout the entire race! It's pretty typical for me to get run-down on the run but I couldn’t help but smile throughout the entire run (even though it was an incredibly tight race between me and my competition!) because of how well I was playing my tactics throughout the race. I felt this was the smartest I raced and in looking back, I didn’t deviate from what I know and from what has worked in training. 

You may not be surprised to hear that I felt good on the swim, but it was super chaotic and messy in the water. It was incredibly choppy and felt more like an ocean swim than a lake swim. Oh the bike. It was SO windy. Thank goodness for my new Ventum for it literally felt like I was slicing through the wind. But of course, the low moment came and didn't go away for some time. I had about 30 miles of being in a very low place where I wanted to quit and really considered that this would be my last Ironman. But then,, I popped out of it and I was having fun again. But then it wasn’t that long until I got another low again. While I had a good bike time for the distance, it was very windy which took a lot of mental and physical energy. The bike actually went by quickly for me but it wasn’t without plenty of low moments to ride through. 

Come the run, I had two bathroom breaks which I initiated before I really needed to go to the bathroom and I also intentionally walked once within every mile of the entire marathon as that was part of my plan. I stayed confident with my run/walk strategy for it works so well for me and I trusted my training. Throughout the entire race, I stuck to my nutrition plan and applied what I practiced in training and deviated when I needed to listen to my body and react to what my body was telling me (this comes from experience). As I mentioned above, I didn’t have any nutrition issues (I rocked my hydration belt for the entire run - just like I do for every single outdoor run training session) but I also had no low moments on the run. For me, this is where I feel my perfect race came about. After a solid swim and bike, I was running strong for my current level of fitness. Aside from the expected mechanical fatigue that comes in an Ironman (which didn't happen to me until after 2 hours of running the marathon), I felt in control of my body throughout the entire 26.2 mile run and my mind stayed in a positive place. And you can’t help but get energy from the Madison crowds as the spectators and volunteers are amazing and will lift you up for all 140.6 miles. The race staff did an exceptional job providing us with a safe and fair course.

So while I mentally and physically went through a lot during the race and yes, my body did get tired in the last few miles of the run, my perfect race came from taking good care of my body going into the race so that I arrived healthy, fit, strong, fresh and excited to race and then being proactive, present and smart during the race. Even though my competition was running me down, I didn't let it affect my race. I never chased an outcome and although I was racing my competition, I just focused on doing things well for all 140.6 miles.

Stay tuned for my entire Ironman Wisconsin race report with all the insider details on how I put together my perfect race. In the meantime.......

You can order my new book! In case you missed the Monday announcement on my Facebook page, I am now a published author. A dream come true for me! If you are an athlete, fitness enthusiast, coach, personal trainer, physical therapist, doctor, parent or friend of an athlete or you live an active lifestyle, my book Essential Sports Nutrition offers the most up-to-date nutritional guidance along with delicious recipes to make it easy to eat right to support an active lifestyle and to reach your performance goals. You can pre-order the book here: Essential Sports Nutrition

Thank you for your support – athletically and professionally. 


2018 Ironman Wisconsin Race Results
2.4 mile Swim: 59:38
T1: 6:10
112 mile Bike: 5:37.55
T2: 3:03
26.2 mile Run: 3:45.45
Total: 10:32.29
1st AG (35-39), 5th female amateur, 13th overall female.
2019 Kona qualified (accepted my slot).


Hello from Madison - It's IMWI week!

Wow, I can't believe it's finally here. It's race week! Just three more sleeps until race day.

A little update from this week.

Karel, his mom and Campy started their journey to Madison, WI on Monday morning with a long drive to Indianapolis. They spent the night and then finished the drive on Tues. With traffic and a few stops, it was a long two days of traveling. The house was pretty quiet for me for a day and a half but I kept myself busy with a few light workouts and work until I left for the airport on Tues afternoon. My athlete and friend Thomas and I flew from Greenville to Detroit to Madison on Tues evening and all went smoothly. Since Karel had our bikes and all my race stuff, I traveled pretty light with only a backpack.

To be honest, the week was a little stressful to start because of all the flooding in Madison and the great possibility of a cancelled swim and the unknowns of the bike and run course. Thankfully, the Ironman staff went above and beyond and the course is on for the entire 140.6 mile distance. Sure, anything can change between now and race day but the weather is looking good for an amazing day of swimbikerun come Sunday.

Our homestay and friend Ed picked Thomas and I up at the airport on Tues evening around 8:30pm and it was nice to reunite with Karel and Campy when we arrive to his home. With all the chatter about the weather/rain in Madison, all it took was a drive through downtown - in route to Ed's house in Fitchburg - to remind me why this race is so special. No matter what happens on race day, Madison knows how to put on a top-notch Ironman event. This will be my 3rd time racing IMWI and although it's a challenging bike/run course combo, the crowds are unbelievable!

Campy has been on squirrel (and rabbit and chipmunk duty) since he arrived and he is loving looking out the windows for any intruders.

Ed made us the most amazing pumpkin waffles on Wed after our wet run. YUM!

After a good night of sleep on Tues evening (the one-hour time change wasn't too hard to get use to!) we woke up to a very rainy day. This was expected according to the weather channels so we adjusted our planned training and instead of riding a loop of the bike course we went out for a morning run and finished the day with a late afternoon swim at Pinnacle Fitness.

Run workout (mostly on a bike/run path):
~15 min warm-up w/ walking to reset form and to control breathing
MS: 3 x 6 min build by 2 min to strong w/ 90 sec walk/rest between
~10 min smooth form focused running

Swim workout:
600 warm-up
Pre set:
200,175,150,125,100,75,50,25 w/ snorkel and buoy
MS: 2x's
2 x 100's build to strong w/ 15 sec rest
50 smooth
50 fast

Cool down: 100 EZ

Between the run and the swim workouts, we stocked up on groceries from HyVee and Karel's mom made us the most delicious vegetable and potato soup for dinner.

Because Karel is not racing, he is able to shuttle me around and also get in a few workouts of his own this week in route to his busy end-of-the-year race schedule with Augusta 70.3, Kona and IMFL all within about 8 weeks.

This morning we drove to Verona to bike one loop of the course. I really enjoyed being on my new Ventum and seeing the Wisconsin landscape of cows, farms and fields. Several of the roads have been paved (and others are still super bumpy) which was really nice. The course is challenging but it's also a lot of fun because it's constantly changing - up and down, left and right. It reminds me a lot of Greenville so it's not far from what we train on on a daily basis.

After the bike we drove back to Ed's house and had some lunch and then ventured to downtown Madison for the athlete briefing and check-in. Although this is my 14th time going through the athlete check-in procedure, I still get excited as if I am a first timer. I always go to the athlete briefing as you never know what updated or race-specific information will be provided. In the case of IMWI, a lot has changed such as the new bike course (first and last 3-miles) and the new swim course and rolling start (instead of waves). Also, IMWI has indoor transitions so it's also worth scoping out the layout before race day.

It was also fun to run into so many Trimarnis this morning. We have 13 athletes racing! 

While it seemed like a busy last two days, it has actually been rather smooth and relaxing. I have stressed myself out in the past by trying to do too much in one day and leave little time to myself to rest so I have tried to do a better job of this before my races.

Thanks for following along!


Case Study - a nutrition change to improve the triathlon run

Running does not require a gym membership, it's fairly inexpensive and you can do it almost anywhere (and anytime). It comes with a list of benefits including body composition changes, fitness gains, stress relief and improved self-confidence. Plus, when you run outside, you get to explore nature with your senses. Running is also a great way to feel connected to your community. 

While running can provide you with a great endorphin-rush, making you feel like you are capable of tackling everything on your to-do list after you finish your workout, running does come with a few downfalls.

Running is very corrosive on the body and comes with a great risk of injury. Running requires good range of motion as well as exceptional cardiorespiratory endurance and muscular strength. Injuries due to overtraining, poor biomechanics and improper shoes or increasing mileage too quickly are very common in runners of all fitness levels.
For triathletes, aside from injuries, one of the biggest concerns that I hear time and time again is the complain of nutrition issues. Those dreaded side stitches and gut-related issues like bloating, belching, diarrhea/loose stools and vomiting are no fun during a run workout or running race. 

A while back, I started working with triathlete Joel, who is a well-experienced long-distance triathlete. Joel and his wife Ali are accomplished triathletes and love to race. Joel was frustrated that he was unable to put together a solid marathon off the bike in an Ironman. Physically he felt like he was able to complete the distance but as the miles progressed, he consistently suffered from fatigue - turning his run into a walk.

To learn more about what Joel changed with his nutrition to help him excel on race day, you can read the full article here on or on page 47 of the August 2018 Triathlete Magazine Issue in print.

If you are interested in incorporating a hydration belt into your workout (or race day) wardrobe, here's a recent blog post on the topic and a discount code for the Naked Running Belt: Benefits of wearing a hydration belt


Race week self-doubts? Boost your confidence with these tips.

I can't believe that it's race week!! Just 6 more days until my 14th Ironman on one of the most awesome race courses on the US Ironman circuit. I can't wait for the cheers from the crowds as Madison knows how to put on a top-notch event.

Thanks to the recent live Facebook coverage of the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, I think I am officially antsy to race. Whereas last week was filled with normal pre-race emotional highs and lows, I was so inspired by the gutsy and strong performances by the female and male athletes at Worlds that I now want my turn to feel the pressure and excitement of racing. If you didn't watch the coverage, go watch it as it'll fire you up for your upcoming workouts or races. Karel and I are huge fans of the sport of triathlon and we just love watching other athletes in action. There's always something to learn from the professionals and now with the live coverage, we can really see all parts of the race (and not just see the results) to truly understand what is really going on within the race and what each athlete endures to get to the finish line. Many times, you realize that the professional athletes are human just like the rest of us, dealing with similar issues and obstacles.


Are you preparing for an upcoming race? Will we see you in Wisconsin for the Ironman? If yes, hopefully the phantom pains and niggles and self-doubts are behind you as you gear up for your upcoming race and you are working on your mental game to put yourself into a calm and relaxed state before race day.

For some athletes, it's easy to ignore the doubts and negative thoughts that can creep into the head on race week but for others, with the race quickly approaching, you may be feeling a lot of emotions such as self-doubt, negativity, worry and anxiety.

Keeping in mind that your race performance is a reflection of your previous training, don't let negativity suck the fun away from what you get to do with your body and mind on race day. While it's perfectly normal to feel some stress, nerves and mental pressure before a big event, use that powerful energy to fire you up so it brings out the best version of you (and your current level of fitness) on race day.

Because lack of self-belief and worry can have a disastrous effect on your race day performance, here are a few tips to improve your confidence for race day.

  1. Stop worrying about the uncontrollables - If you find yourself emotionally stressed out in the week or two before a big event, there's a good chance that you are dealing with the nagging negative thoughts of "what ifs". Worrying about details that are out of your control, like the weather or competition, is self sabotaging. Turn those negative thoughts into something positive so that those thoughts do not paint a bad mental picture for you before or during your race.
  2. Stop focusing on the outcome - Too much mental energy on paces, speed. times or results can leave you emotionally drained, worried and anxious. It can also keep you from making good decisions in the moment. Remove any extra pressure on the end result and focus on the process of delivering yourself to the finish line. Remind yourself of all the tools that you have gained over the season and that a great race day performance is all about being in the moment and dealing with obstacles as they come about.
  3. List your mantras - Every athlete will have low moments in a race - lots of them. There will be voices in your head that will try to convince you to stop, and maybe even quit when the going gets tough. How will you challenge these voices? What will help you take your focus off your self-doubts and refocus your mind to get you to a positive state of flow? By repeating a powerful statement to yourself over and over again in your mind, you'll find yourself pushing through these low moments and getting yourself closer and closer to that finish line.
  4. Reflect on your journey - Look at your training log to see how far you've come. Remember that time when you couldn't do....... or you completed that tough workout on tired legs? Or how you overcome a setback? Focus on the highlighted moments instead of dwelling on what should have or could have been.
  5. Visualize yourself succeeding - Picture yourself at various points during the race and go through all types of scenarios - the good and the bad. Look at course maps, videos and pictures to help you put images to places on the course. And don't forget to visualize yourself crossing the finish line.
  6. Focus on what you can control - Take care of yourself. Focus on what you can control such as your gear and equipment, your sleep, nutrition and hydration as well as stress management. Surround yourself with energy givers, not energy suckers and avoid forums/media that cause self-doubt, worry or stress.
  7. Have fun - Remind yourself that this is just a hobby. Your self-worth and athletic worthiness is not determined by a race. Enjoy being on the roller coaster of emotions as it's your body's way of preparing you for action. Make sure to remember why you signed up for the event and how special it will be to cross that finish line. Don't let your nerves and worries suck the fun out of racing. Focus on what you can control, trust your training, visualize success and don't forget to have fun. 


My 2018 IMWI training stats

                                                       2010 Ironman Wisconsin Finisher!

When I started training for my first Ironman, I was really obsessed with volume. I felt that with every workout, the more miles/hours that I could accumulate, the more prepared I would be (IMFL '07). While I had a great day of racing and loved the entire race day experience, this mindset didn't serve me well in my second season of long distance triathlon racing. I got injured just before the Ironman World Championship - my very first IM Kona.

Over the next six years, I made a lot of mistakes with my training. I was still able to race but I was always frustrated that I couldn't stay consistent with training. My body never felt strong enough to handle the volume and intensity of training that I felt I should be doing to improve as an Ironman triathlete. It was disappointing to feel like I was constantly rehabing myself to get well enough to race, instead of putting my energy and time (and money) into training.

Thankfully, lessons were learned. I changed my perspective on endurance triathlon training. It was not an easy change or one that came naturally. Rather than trying to go longer or to get faster, my focus was on getting stronger. This required a new methodology of training that did not look like the training of other Ironman athletes. I kept worrying that I wouldn't be ready without all the volume. I was doing much less volume and the results were very slow to come. I was hesitant at first but with Karel as my guide (coach), I knew something had to change if I wanted to stay in this sport and not destroy my body.

Overtime, I improved. And continued to improve. And I'm still improving. As I got stronger, my confidence grew. A lot of this happened over the last 4 years. I have been racing more often and I'm racing better than ever before. And with this new style of training, my body is staying healthy.

Because I had spent so many years frustrated with my body, I finally felt what it was like to have a healthy and resilient body. This made me love the sport even more for I felt like I wasn't destroying my body but actually making it stronger with an appropriate style of training. We didn't want to keep this training a secret so we began to apply these new methods to our coaching athletes. While some athletes needed a learning curve to trust this higher-frequency/intensity, lower volume Ironman training, we can confidently say that this style of training works for us and our athletes.

Of course, the definition of "works" is all relative to our coaching philosophy which is focused on helping our athletes reach performance goals without compromising health. 

While my 2018 IMWI training stats may not be all that impressive in terms of volume, I'm very proud of what my body was able to do with my training this summer. More so, I'm so thankful to my body and I hope that my health stats reflect why this style of training works so well for me. 

Training stats:

Number of Ironman starts: 13

Number of Ironman finishes: 13
Kona qualifying: 5 times
IMKona finisher: 4 times
Races completed this year: 1 Ironman (IM Austria, 2nd AG), 3 half Ironmans (IM 70.3 FL 1st AG, IM 70.3 St. George tied for 2nd AG, Challenge Prague 1st AG)

Longest swim (8/29)
5400 yards

Longest bike hours (8/11)
5:20 (88 miles, ~6200 feet elevation gained) - Trimarni training camp

Longest bike miles (5/12)
91 miles (4:56)

Longest run (8/19)
1:58, 14 miles

Mentally toughest weekend of training (8/17-8/19)
Friday: AM 5100 yard swim
Sat: AM 3:56 bike + 1:01 (7.7 mile) brick run, PM 25 minute (2.5 mile) run
Sun: AM 1:58 run (14 miles), PM 2600 yard swim

Biggest week of training (6/4-6/10)
21:35 hours
12 hours swim
11:36 hours bike
5:46 hours run
15 sessions completed over the week

Biggest weekend of training (6/8-6/10)
Friday: AM 4200 yard swim, PM 1:22 bike
Sat: AM 4:20 bike (78 miles) + 1 hour brick run (7.48 miles), PM 45 min run (4.76 miles)
Sun: AM 1:56 run (13.5 miles), PM 3000 yard swim

Number of workouts to "test" to establish training zones:
None this year

Health Stats: 
Last sickness (cold/flu) - June 2007
Last time taking antibiotics - ? Maybe 10+ years ago
Menstrual cycle - regular each month since Sept 2007 (naturally)
Stress fractures - Never
Broken bones - Never
Last injury - Spring 2013 (hip/back)
Average sleep - 8-9 hours/night
Food allergies - none
Health issues - none
Daily supplements consumed:  Iron
Diet: Lacto-ovo vegetarian for 26 years


Feeling burned out before a big race?

One of my favorite parts about nearing the end of an Ironman journey is reflecting on all of the past training sessions that occurred over the past year. Even more so, I like to think back to all of my previous Ironman events to remember why I love the 140.6 mile distance. I have 13 Ironman experiences to reflect on and each one came with highs and lows while getting myself to the start and finish line. There's something so special about the process of mentally and physically preparing for this extreme one-day event. While it may seem like an arduous task, I think of it like any other project in life that requires patience, trust, commitment, consistency and flexibility. I also feel strongly that the Ironman distance is an event to be taken very seriously for it takes a huge toll on the body and mind. While there's a big commitment to the training, I never feel like training takes over my life. If anything, I really enjoy the training for it provides me just enough of a release to explore nature, strech my limits and relieve some stress without feeling too exhausted for more important life responsibilities.

Nearing the end of Ironman training while approaching the Ironman taper, I find that many athletes feel a sense of relief that the Ironman journey is almost over with and they can't wait get their life back and return to a normal state of health and living. This is concerning to me for I feel that even with the monumental task of preparing for a 140.6 mile event, no athlete should feel that training is taking over their life. Sure, there are some times when training will take on more of a focus in life but I don't feel that an endurance triathlete should experience this type of burn out, especially so close to race day.

So why does this happen? Here are a few of my thoughts:
  • Too much emphasis on miles/volume completed and not enough rest and proper nutrition to support this extreme style of training. 
  • Internal and external pressure. 
  • Perfectionism, a rigid training plan and unrealistically high expectations can contribute to loss of enjoyment for the sport. 
  • Training monotony and not enough variation in the training structure of workouts. 
  • Feeling stressed about a performance outcome (achieving a certain time, place or qualification standard). 
  • Ignoring the body's signs and symptoms of being fatigue, overtrained, dehydrated, sleep deprived, underfueled and injured. 
  • Low self-confidence due to inconsistent performances or not meeting self-imposed standards. 
  • "More is better" belief and starting/completing a training session at any cost. 
  • Losing your relationship with the sport and seeing training as a chore. 
  • Spending too much energy on what other athletes are doing, never feeling like you are doing enough. 
  • Poor stress management, self-care and coping skills for when life feels too busy or overwhelming. 
  • Not enough (or any) support from family/significant other. 
  • Your coach is treating you only like an athlete instead of like a human being and whole person. 
  • Too much focus/emphasis on weaknesses instead of on strengths. 
  • An extreme and rigid style of eating. 
  • Obsession with body image.
While it's completely normal and expected that you are going to feel tired at times throughout your Ironman journey, complete mental and physical exhaustion just a few weeks (or months) out from your big event is not something to take lightly.  The pressure that most athletes put on themselves to succeed in all areas of life is tremendous. Remember, you do this sport because of what it gives you in return, with all the other moving parts in your life. If you are feeling burned out, take a step back and figure out how you can train for your event without it feeling like it's another stressor in your busy life.

If you need a break from your sport, take it without guilt, shame or worry. 


Mg12 - The magnesium cream that really works!

Far too many athletes are abusing and excessively relying on pain relieving/anti-inflammatory medications (ex. buprofen and Naproxen) before or after exercise to reduce muscle soreness, aches, pains and niggles. What's even worse is hearing the many stories of athletes using NSAID's to get through a workout or race! These drugs aren’t without serious side-effects.

Overuse can cause a delay in musculoskeletal tissue repair and bone healing. NSAIDs can also damage your digestive tract, liver and kidneys. Other adverse effects are ulcers and internal bleeding. Keeping in mind that inflammation 
is a normal and necessary adaptation to training (it's also your body’s protective response to injury or infection), it's to your performance and health advantage to explore a safer way to reduce pains, niggles and soreness. 
Instead of popping a pill, consider the skin as an effective organ to absorb nutrients. Since the skin is being used more frequently as a means to deliver substances into the body, topical creams/lotions/sprays can serve as a safe, effective, affordable and quick method for pain relief and muscle recovery for athletes.

Magnesium is an important element found in the human body and is known to help with muscle contractions, nerve functioning, cardiac activity, bone health and muscle soreness. Although found in dietary and supplemental forms, you can take advantage of the health benefits of magnesium through transdermal application of magnesium chloride.

According to the Mg12 website:
"We produce the purest and most effective Magnesium oil on the market. The most important aspect is the source of our magnesium chloride. There are numerous salt water sources available for the magnesium chloride needed to manufacture magnesium oil, but very few are considered to be as clean and effective. Only two sources have been found to be virtually free of both; the Dead Sea and deep underground basins. We have chosen the Dead Sea as the source of our magnesium chloride because along with its unsurpassed purity, it also contains a unique combination of 20+ macro and micro minerals that have been known for providing health benefits for thousands of years. The Mg12 process involves combining dead sea magnesium chloride salts with purified water, sending it through our proprietary filtration system that produces our ultra pure, pristine clean, and crystal clear MagneSoothe Magnesium Oil™."

"Mg12 mineral supplements are 100 percent pure magnesium, plus 20 essential mineral salts straight from the Dead Sea, the most ancient health retreat on Earth. Our Dead Sea Magnesium products are formulated and distributed from Tryon, North Carolina. We also produce other magnesium oil based products such as shampoo, soap, deodorant, and body balm for transdermal magnesium therapy."

Mg12 product features include:
• Formulated in the USA
• 100% natural
• No additives
• No synthetics
• Vegan friendly
• Never tested on animals
• Gluten free, non-GMO
• From an earth-conscious company

Mg12 Magne Sport Balm ingredients: 
  • Magnesooth Magnesium Oil
  • Water
  • Saponins
  • Aloe Vera Juice
  • Arnica
  • Essential Oils of Peppermint, Spearmint, Eucalyptus, Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon, Rosemary, Frankincense, Myrrh 

Ingredient profile of a commonly found/used "pain relief" gel:

Active ingredients: Menthol 4%
Inactive ingredients: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Arnica Montana Flower Extract, Arctium Lappa Root (Burdock) Extract, Boswellia Carterii Resin Extract, Calendula Officinalis Extract, Carbomer, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Camphor, Glycerin, Ilex Paraguariensis Leaf Extract, Isopropyl Alcohol, Isopropyl Myristate, Melissa Officinalis (Lemon Balm) Leaf Extract, Silica, Tocopheryl (Vitamin E) Acetate, Triethanolamine, Water, Blue 1, Yellow 5.

From our personal usage over the past 2+ years, we can confidently say that these products work and there's no other product like it on the market. We routinely apply MagneSport Balm before and after exercise, as well as before bed. We never travel without it. With a safe ingredient profile, including no food dyes and free of a strong odor with a non-greasy-feel application, we highly recommend for you to try out the line of sport products before and after your workouts as well as during the day on any sore spots. The MagneSport Balm has become a regular staple in our recovery routine along with the Roll On and Bath Salts. 

To try out this effective product and to support this local company, use discount code: TriMarni.