Monday, March 26, 2012

Ironman Florida and IronKids

I came across some old racing pictures this weekend of me competing in my first Ironman triathlon, Ironman Florida about 8 years ago.  I think I was much thinner back then.  What happened??  Too many almond pillow cookies from The Fresh market or adult beverages maybe...  I've cut back on both as I am trying to get faster so I can one day qualify for Kona World Championship.  My run has gotten faster, but I've still got some work to do on the swim and bike.  I need to run faster too.  Anyway, I've got a LONG way to go!

The Ironman Florida 2.4 mile swim is in the Gulf of Mexico in Panama City Beach, FL.  It is two 1.2 mile loops, but I always get off course so my loops were probably about 3 miles each as I floundered around trying to find my way back to the shore avoiding any sea creatures that may be out there.  I'm in this picture somewhere getting kicked in the face.

Ironman Florida Swim
 I looked a little worn out in this picture.  I think I was just coming out of transition off the 112 mile bike ride and about to start the run.  The run is two 13.1 mile loops in Panama City Beach, Fl.  It starts at the Boardwalk Beach Resort, goes out to a loop in St. Andrews State Park and back.  I had run that 13.1 mile run at least a dozen times at the Gulf Coast Half Ironman, which is in May.  It's flat and HOT!   Doing it twice was tough though, hearing the announcer calling out finisher's as they were crossing the finish line, knowing I had to go back out and do the entire loop again.  I watched the sun go down as I headed back out toward St. Andrews State Park.

Back in those days, I even got The Boy to do a kids triathlon or two.  This one was about 10 or 11 years ago in Panama City Beach, FL.  It was part of the Ironkids Triathlon Series that several elite athletes, including Lance Armstrong got their start.  Back then I think he had to swim 100 yds in the pool, bike 2 miles and run about a mile.   I've still got that red Finisher line tape that The Boy ran through at the end of the race.  I was amazed The Boy agreed to participate and even did the swim to bike transition fast and put his shoes on by himself.  And he ran like crazy when he got off the bike.  I was so proud!!

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