Essential Sports Nutrition


IM Kona '18: 2 & 3 days out

The past two days have been incredibly busy. I am not even racing and I have found myself with a packed schedule!

On Wednesday morning, Karel and I both ventured out for a run workout. Karel had a few 1K efforts followed by a 15 min IM effort. I gave myself a workout of 3 x 6 minutes with 1 min rest followed by a 15 min at IM effort just to spice it up. I'm noticing that I have acclimated to the heat over the past week as my breathing is much more controlled, I can run "faster" paces at a lower heart rate and overall, I don't feel like I am running through a blow torch. We both ran along Ali'i drive and as usual, the shoulders were packed with cyclists, walkers and runners. 

The nice thing about not racing is that I can deviate from my training anytime I want, which means stopping to take pictures, especially selfies with friends. This is my athlete Dana who lives in Greenville who is here spectating. It was fun to "run" into her along Ali'i drive. It's so funny how you can run into so many people that you know despite there being 2500 athletes and thousands of spectators and volunteers. 

Karel showing off his custom paint design to co-found Diaa Nour
After the run, we did a quick change into our bike gear as we wanted to join the 3rd Annual IM Kona ventum ride. Not only did we get to see so many Ventums (several with awesome custom paint jobs) but we were able to see the reveal of the NEW Ventum road bike. 

The group ride was led by Leanda Cave and there were also a few other Ventum professionals who were at the start of the ride, such as AJ Baucco, Kevin Collington and Lauren Brandon. 

The ride was an hour long and we rode up toward the airport (on the Queen K) and then turned off to take a picture inside the energy lab. For those who have raced/been here before, this is the "new" section of the energy lab run course to start/finish the section in the energy lab. 

Picture by Ventum Media crew. 
Check out this awesome video with a little cameo of my Pink Rocket.

I even got to chat/ride with Triathlon Taren.

After the ride, it was a very busy afternoon. After a well-needed meal, I got some work done before making a video with my contact at Levelen regarding sweat testing. If you missed the video, you can check it out on my Trimarni facebook page. As for my other half, Karel's Czech friends arrived on Tues evening and one of them had an issue with his bike. Karel was unable to help as he didn't have the right tool for the job but since his friends don't speak English, Karel went to Bike Works with them to help translate so that his friend could get his bike fixed. Karel also had a swim on the schedule but the pool didn't open until 3 (break from 1:30-3pm) so around 2pm, I made a quick trip up to the grocery store (Safeway) for a few more specialty food items that I couldn't find at Walmart (more like produce and fresh bread/croissants) before heading to the pool. We rode our bike to the pool around 3pm but we only had about an hour to swim as Karel had an interview with Czech TV at 4:30pm. I was invited to attend the Clif Bar BBQ which started at 4pm so I drove there around 5pm and stayed for about 40 minutes. As usual, the food was fresh, locally sourced and amazing.

The pool was packed and we even had a few pro sightings (Daniela Ryf, Tim O.). It got very chaotic when 6-8 of us were in the same lane circle swimming and each one of us was doing a different set, with different swimming abilities. Somehow we made it happen and Karel was able to get in his prescribed swim set.

600 warm-up
Pre set:
100 smooth
2 x 75 build
3 x 50's fast
4 x 25's very fast
100 smooth
100 build
100 smooth
50 fast
You continue to repeat the above but add a 50 each round to stop at 4 x 50's. 

After returning home from the Clif Bar house, I had a bit more to eat, we caught up with Breakfast With Bob, Talbot Cox videos and Ironman Now (on Facebook) before I fell asleep around 8:30pm. Karel met up with his Czech friend Roman soon after I fell asleep to get his Czech tshirt (designed for Czech IM Kona athletes) and a few sweet treats from Czech. Of course Karel can't do a race without his favorite treats! 

It's crazy to think it's already Thursday. The IM Kona athletes only have two more sleeps before race day! Karel slept in and had a solid 9+ hours of sleep. I was already out on the patio working on the computer and eating my pre-workout snack. After Karel had his espresso (or three) and his pre-workout snack, we walked down to "dig me beach" for an open water swim. Holy moly the ocean was packed! Not only were the construction crews setting up the finish line area but there were athletes everywhere. This was our first AM open water swim since Sat last week so it was nice to be back in the ocean - navigating our way around so many other athletes.

                                Group photo with our Ventum friends and co-owner Jimmy Seear.

After the swim, we walked back to our condo (about 5 min walk) to get ready for a bike ride. One of my favorite parts of IM Kona week is around this time and seeing the finish line area transform. The red carpet is yet to be laid but the finish line arch and backdrop screen and bleachers are getting set up. It's so exciting to see it all come together! 

For Karel's open water swim, he didn't want to overdo it in the ocean as sometimes his shoulder gets sore/tight so we swam 500 yards out to the coffee boat (Karel can always have one more cup of coffee) before heading back. Although the water super choppy/wavy and we needed to sight almost every stroke to avoid swimming into another athlete, Karel swam really well. I couldn't keep up! Then again, I didn't have a swimskin on (that's my excuse and I'm sticking with it). 

On our way back from the swim, we stopped by the Picky Bars booth and spun the wheel for a prize. Karel one a package of Picky Oats and I won a $25 gift card! Oddly enough, we ran into Jesse Thomas as we were walking up the stairs to our condo. Selfie time!

To avoid the stop and go/lights, we drove our bikes to the Energy Lab (new entrance) and parked so that the only light we would need to get through was the airport light. Then it was nonstop riding along the Queen K for the rest of our ride. Karel kept the ride fairly smooth but included a strong 15 min effort on the way back to town to wake up his legs. His hips were a little stiff to start but loosened up as the ride went on. 

Once again, I'm running into friends. This time in the middle of the Queen K! It was nice to catch up with my friend Emily who is a superstar athlete. 

After the ride, we drove back to town and I did a quick change before heading to the King K hotel to meet Marnie (how cool is that!) who is the Global athlete development director at Ironman. We chatted for a while, I shared my thoughts about helping to grow the sport of triathlon and she told me a bit more about some of the Ironman initiatives to help get more people into the sport of triathlon. 

I then made a quick stop in the merchandise tent to pick up a few requested items for Karel (for race day) before walking back to our condo. Once again, the island continues to transform as the buoys are getting ready to find their location in the water and the finish line area is getting more touches. 

Karel is feeling good. Tomorrow he will do his pre-race brick and then spend the rest of the day off his feet, visualizing and fueling up (with carbs) for the big dance on Saturday. I have a long ride planned in the morning so that Karel can do his own thing before he checks in his bike after 2:30pm. There's something really special about the entire IM Kona bike/gear bag check-in process.

I still remember the very first time I checked in my bike and gear bags for my first Kona back in 2007. 

First IM Kona in 2007 at the age of 25. 

I was so excited to be part of this historic and special event as an athlete and even today, I feel so lucky that I can be here as a spectathlete and to cheer on Karel. Who would have thought that back in 2011 when Karel spectated his first IM Kona (my 2nd IM World Championship) that he would be back here as an athlete for his third IM Kona?? He didn't even start the sport of triathlon until 2012, with his first IM in 2013!

How can this be seven years ago?!?!