Four week itch

Numbers have been assigned,  my longest workouts are finished, and we’re less than four weeks out from IMCdA.  I had a minor panic at the thought of it.


Thankfully, my husband broke it down for me.

  • I did a 4km swim the other weekend, so I know I’ve got it (barring no serious issues or hypothermia).
  • Although I won’t get in a 180km ride before this race, I biked 160km by myself this training cycle and I’ve ridden 180 a handful of times before.
  • My furthest run will be 13 miles, but before IM Canada last year my longest run was only 15 miles.
  • If my knee(s) bum out, the worst that happens is I have to walk and have a lot of fun cheering for other people!
  • Most importantly, we do it for FUN!

I think nerves are something I will always have to deal with, regardless how prepared I am and how often I’ve participated in a distance. I ran track years ago and would get extremely nervous every single time, whether it was a small or big race and no matter how well I had trained.

I remember sitting on the grass about 20 minutes before Ironman Canada started last year wondering why I signed up for it. But during the event, I loved it!


Like always, my nerves are already kicking in along with doubts. I’ll just keep training, look at our race photos from previous events (to remind me how much I love it), and try to break down what makes me most fearful.

If it’s something I can’t control like water temperature, winds on the bike, rain, and other people on the swim and bike, I shouldn’t waste my energy worrying. (All part of my anxiety!)

Hopefully that will help me stay calm and get me to the start line with a smile!

Do you get nervous before a race? What keeps you calm?

45 responses to “Four week itch

  1. I’m not a “nervous” person- that feeling of jitters rarely creeps up on me. That being said, I’m sure it would before a race like Ironman!!

  2. You take those butterflies into motivation and workout energy!

    Completely normal to feel that way, but like you said, you can’t control that or the weather. Focus on what you can do! You are going to be great, aces, amazing.

    You are an inspiration!

  3. I’ve been following your training and you are going to do GREAT! You’ve been so smart about it! My husband also sits down and calculates his nutrition before the race, if that helps? Let your nerves power you to the finish!
    emma @

    • Great tip! I’ve never written down what I did after the other races, so each time it’s a guessing game again! I should sit down and try to figure it out. At least that’ll be one more thing under my control.

  4. Well, i would say nerves are completely, totally and utterly warranted before an ironman 🙂 i ran track in high school (i was a miler) and i STILL remember those nerves like it was yesterday. my method of calming myself down was to start singing a song in my head. (in fact i still do this sometimes when i’m really nervous) focusing on the lyrics and the rhythm is just something that helps me be in the moment and lessens the nerves.

  5. I don’t usually get nervous before races…but I’ve never done a challenging race! I’d be SUPER nervous for an Ironman! In fact, I know I’ll be nervous for my sprint triathlon too! Running is easy, biking and swimming are scary for me! 🙂 You’re a champion! I can’t wait to hear all about your great race!

  6. Yes, i get very nervous! You’re so ready for this though! Can’t wait to see how it goes 🙂

  7. So exciting!! I can’t believe you are 4 weeks out!! I think the lake is gonna be warmer than previous years so I think you will be good there!! 🙂 you have done the training….the race is the FUN part!!
    I do not get too nervous usually. I try and go through my race plan a couple of times during that week. That works out my nerves pretty good. I will get some butterflies as I walk down to the lake but as soon as the gun goes off they all go away!!

  8. I am sure you’ll have a great time and do so well! If it makes you feel any better, I have a few friends doing a half ironman in mont tremblant on the same day as you and they JUST started training a week ago.. oh dear! I get nervous before every race as well, but I think thats natural and everyone will feel like that. You’ll do great!

  9. I still get nervous before events and races, but I always feel better once the gun goes off and the race is underway. You’re going to do great! It’s nice that you already have IM races under your belt because you have the confidence from past experiences. You’re going to do AWESOME, and I can’t wait to read about it!

  10. I can totally understand the epic case of nerves before something as huge as an Ironman! I mean really, I get all nervous before running a 5K, so I’d probably be curled up in fetal position, weeping gently, and begging for my mom if I had an Ironman on the horizon. 😉

    That said, you’ve clearly been training hard — I’m sure you’re going to kick butt on the big day! You’ll have lots of people cheering for you from afar, that’s for sure. 🙂

  11. So soon! I get very nervous before races, but it definitely varies depending on the race and how much I’ve built it up. I’ve never been so nervous for a race as I was before IMCdA and I had a great race! You can do this – I know you are going to do great and you have the right attitude about it – have fun!

  12. Wow–doesn’t seem possible that it is that soon! Seems like you were just starting to ramp up training. I think the biggest thing you have going for you is your experience–you know you can do this. Focus on that.

    I always use my good workouts to draw confidence. I need that or I don’t race well..nerves are not my friend!

    • I hear you- it did sneak up on us! I was just ramping up the training since it was so abbreviated because of our trip.
      Good point. During a tough part of a race, it is good to remember tough workouts and know you can push through!

  13. I always get nervous before my big races. Just like your husband, my BF reminds me that this is for fun! It’s hard to remember that sometimes 🙂 Best of luck keeping the taper demons at bay!

  14. I hear you, I get super nervous before any race, any event actually. You’ll do great tho!

  15. Nerves can help too! I’m sure ever entrant is feeling the same. You are trained, you are ready; you’ll do GREAT!!

  16. What is the deal with doubts? I hate that we get plagued by them before something that is so important and that we’ve worked so hard for… keep working at staying positive and know that you’re going to ROCK this!!

  17. Hey there! I just started following your blog recently, and also just finished my first IM, IMTX, and it was reading your blog that helped me calm my nerves!!!! Yes! Your blog posts actually had a real calming effect on my mind and spirit, and I just have to thank you. I was able to take that “calm” with me and get through a pretty crazy day, and actually had one of the most fun and memorable days of my life. Even with flat tires and over an hour in technical delays! You’ve already done this, and done extradordinarily well, so I know you will be brilliatn as always.

    • Thanks so much for the kind comment, Danielle. It seriously made my night.
      Congratulations on your first Ironman! That’s such an amazing achievement. I heard it was h-o-t. Technical delays are my biggest fear. I’m glad you have such a fun, memorable day! How is your recovery going?

      • Thanks so much! Considering I went really really (really!) slow my recovery has been pretty nice 😀 Since it was my first one, I really didn’t want to burn all my matches and saved fuel in my tank the whole time. Sure I could have gone faster, but I took the route of “low and slow” and just embraced the fun, excitement, and love in the crowds. I had such a blast, and even made new friends!
        Your posts were so tremendously helpful, you have no idea!!!!
        Your blog really did help me tremendously is feeling calmer; you had some great po

      • Oops I got cut off, sorry. lol
        Anyhow, just wanted to note that reading your blog the weeks leading up to the big day was just what I needed. Your training and posts are very inspirational AND super motivating. I am pretty new to this and love it, and blogs like yours are such a great way to keep my joy alive.
        THANK YOU!

  18. I get so nervous before some races that I want to back out and cry (random because I don’t usually cry). Before my first marathon, my nerves were out of control! Like you I just remind myself that this race is for fun, joy, recreation and that I should do the best I can and be thankful for my strength. I also try to remind myself that training is half the journey and that I have enjoyed that and I will enjoy this race. I think once I get moving, I relax find my groove, see my family cheering me on and off I go : )

  19. Yes, I always get nervous, even if it’s just a 5k. You have the right attitude though and just remember: this is a huge event that shouldn’t be taken lightly. An IM isn’t something you just rock up to on a Sunday morning. Anyone who doesn’t get nervous beforehand is just a fool for not respecting what’s ahead. There, sermon over! 😉

  20. You have such a great perspective. My husband is getting really stressed right now for CdA which is his first Ironman. I know he can totally do it with all the training he has put in. I think it’s the thought of the unknown that concerns him. You guys are all going to do great!

    • I was wondering if it’s his first! By the sounds of it, he’s had great training leading up to it. The unkown is scary, but I guess that’s part of the excitement!

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