Ironman Canada 2013 – my journey to the start

The 2013 Ironman Canada in Whistler on Sunday, August 25 will be my fourth Ironman start line and the second of the summer.

As always, it’s been an interesting journey. I guess it started with my journey to Ironman Coeur d’Alene and then after I crossed the finish line on Sunday, June 23.


We celebrated our finish and enjoyed a week of recovery and spare time!

I struggled through the first couple weeks of July and debated numerous times whether or not I should partake in Ironman Canada.

In the end, despite my screaming legs, I decided to persevere for a few reasons: I’m stubborn, I want to test myself, these races are expensive, and I truthfully don’t know the next time I’ll sign up for an iron distance triathlon.

I had a bit more time for training once Kelly decided not to participate. I tried to focus on the bike, which is my weakest discipline. I even got in a few hill repeat sessions, which I haven’t done before.


I rode 185km in an organized Tour and was proud to have someone draft off me. (I was obviously nowhere near the front of the Tour, but it still felt good!)
My sister-in-law, who is participating in Ironman Canada for her first, came into town one weekend so Kelly joined us on a long ride through the country.
The next weekend I tackled a triple brick to test my legs. I was really happy with my bike and run paces, and remembered how lucky I am to experience the quiet mornings on the bike.fog3I continued to only run twice a week despite my love for running. But I tried to run once a week in the river valley to enjoy the softer surface of the trails and keep it fun. This inevitably led to some hilly runs, which I haven’t regularly incorporated into training in years.CivicTrailRun2My longest run was only 10 miles, but I’ll take it! The marathon of an Ironman is so mental and I didn’t want to tire my legs out even more than they have been by going on a long run (not to mention risk injury).
I’ve also continued to swim only once a week and at a comfortable pace. My legs have been thankful for the recovery swims! I swam one 4km swim to remind my arms how tired they get near the end of an Ironman swim.My left knee has started to bother me again over the last couple weeks despite keeping up with my physio exercises. KT tape is becoming a close friend again!

I definitely fell off the yoga bandwagon but tried to roll and stretch often.

My two favourite training sessions of this journey were on our trip to Jasper: my bike up Maligne Lake Road and peaceful, morning trail run.


I took extra days off when I needed them, shortened workouts when I needed to, but felt like the sessions I did have were more focused.

It has again been a journey with unique challenges. I leave for Whistler tomorrow and plan to arrive sometime on Thursday.

I hope to meet Alison, who so kindly sent me info on the area and the course.

Although it’ll be a very different experience without my favourite training and racing partner, Kelly’s sister Alicia will be in the race so I know I won’t be out there alone!

We’ll also have the support of my parents, my in-laws, Alicia’s husband, and her in-laws!

Once again, I go into this race having no idea what to expect. I know it’ll be a challenging but beautiful course, but my legs seriously tire quickly.

I want to have fun, regardless of how long the bike takes me or how exhausted I am on the run. I want to take it all in- the crowds, the other participants, and the town of Whistler.  Most importantly, I want to cross that finish line and get there with a smile on my face.

Then I’m looking forward to meeting Kelly and Harold in Jasper for five days of relaxation and lots of s’mores!


Is anyone else racing this weekend?
Do you make goals for each race?

29 responses to “Ironman Canada 2013 – my journey to the start

  1. Good luck!!! you’re going to go great, you’re obviously in great shape and your mind seems to be in a great place and that’s most of the battle anyways. your 5 days of relaxing in Jasper afterwards will certainly be well earned! BTW- i nominated you for a sunshine award! because your posts always brighten my day 🙂

  2. Best of luck this weekend! I’m toeing the line at Whistler, too… my first ironman! It’s sure to be a spectacular and challenging course, and I cannot wait!

  3. Best of luck to you! I hope you have a wonderful day. I love that you can pull off great races even with less training than the norm–10 mile runs, for instance! You rock.

  4. Good luck – I’m glad that you have been resting your legs as much as possible. I can’t wait to read all about your race – you will do great!!!
    Have fun!!!
    And – WooHoo for knowing that you have 5 days of total relaxation coming up!!!

  5. Woohoo!! GOOD LUCK! I am so excited for you 🙂 Have a great time in Whistler and at the race, you’ll do great! I will be cheering from a distance and cannot wait to read about the re-cap. Safe travels to and from as well!! If anyone deserves 5 days of relaxation in Jasper it is definitely you!

  6. You make Ironman training sound like no big deal! I hope that the race is wonderful for you!!!!

  7. Good luck this weekend! Have fun and enjoy the ride. What a huge accomplishment to tackle two IMs this summer. And savor every moment of your vacation in Jasper. Can’t wait to hear the details and see lots of gorgeous pics!

  8. Good luck with the race this weekend! I’ve enjoyed following your training for the back-to-back Ironmans (or is it a plural Ironmens? or Ironwomans? … the back to back races). Five days in Jasper sounds like a fantastic way to relax and unwind after a hard year of training.

  9. i think you definitely approached racing a second ironman smart and took off when appropriate to recover! i love that picture of you on the bike with the sun in the back, soooo pretty! i can’t wait to read about how it went. Jasper sounds amazing!

  10. Good luck out there, hoping for some race day magic for you!

  11. Good Luck! I can’t imagine doing 2 that close together!

  12. and i thought i was badass by signing up for tough mudder!! this is amazing – ironman races TWO TIMES?! you go!!

    good luck with your race!

  13. Good luck!! I hope you have a fantastic race weekend! I’m so impressed that you are able to do two ironman events within just a couple months. Enjoy your post-race vacation!

  14. Wow, I cant believe its already this weekend! I will be thinking about you and good luck!!

  15. Good luck! I hope all goes well, and I look forward to your recap when you have a chance to write it. In the meantime, enjoy your well deserved post-race time with Kelly and Harold!

  16. GOOD LUCK! I’m sure you’ll have a great race. Can’t wait to hear all about it!!

  17. Good luck! Cheers to you for listening to your body. I feel like so often I am more likely to log junk miles than to either tune in for a focused workout or rest day. Can’t wait to hear about your race!

  18. Best of luck out there and enjoy your day!! You’ll surprise yourself — just like you always do 🙂

  19. awwwww, ab. i am soooo sad that i can’t be there with everyone to cheer you on and watch you cross the finish line live. can’t wait to facetime afterwards and follow along online. love you and am soooo proud you are my sister.

  20. Good luck!!! So fun your SIL is also doing it! And look at those two waiting at the finish line for you. If that isn’t motivation I don’t know what is! Just remember, you’ve done this and you can do it again! Can’t wait to hear!

  21. triathlonobsession

    Good luck this weekend—have fun! I love to make goals–I have fun goals, realistic goals and of course the ‘reach’ goal. I think it’s kinda in a triathlete’s constitution to make goals isn’t it. Otherwise, we’d all be on the couch! LOL! 🙂 Best wishes for an awesome race!

  22. You are amazing, good luck! Coeur d’Alene is such a beautiful place, close to where I was born.

  23. You will have a great day out there – how can you not in such a beautiful place!

  24. It’s great to read through your journey! I will be cheering you on from Chicago this weekend! Do you know your number so we can follow your journey further??

    You deserve that down time with your boys when you’re down! Have fun!

  25. I loved your recap for the last 2 months!! I think you were super smart in your training, you totally have the fitness. You worked on your weakest leg and had some great rides!!! You have the PERFECT attitude going into this race!! I know it’s going to be a good one!! Good luck!! I can’t wait to get your perspective…of course by that time I will have already signed up for next year!! 🙂
    I am racing Hood To Coast this weekend and very excited!!
    I almost always have goals with races. It is hard not to now that I am not a beginner!! 🙂 but sometimes it is just to have a good race!!

  26. GOOD LUCK!!!! You are an inspiration ! Go out and “have fun” if you can 🙂

  27. You are going to KILL this race, I am so glad you chose to go through with this!!! I cannot wait to hear ALL about it, and you will have earned those relaxing days for sure!

  28. I’m so excited for your journey and can’t wait to read all about it. I know you’ll have a fab race. HAVE FUN!!!!!

  29. runnerbydefault

    Enjoy your downtime after all that hard work!!

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