Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Ironman World Championship



Keeping the flame lit in Kona, Hawaii (Monday)
We are five days away from the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii and I am writing this daily blog to share this experience with all the people who helped me get here.
Nannette and I arrived in Kona on Sunday afternoon and were joined by Scott Boylan (my training buddy from Frisco), his wife Joanne and Jim Shelden. We are sharing a house on 2.5 acres of flowers and fruit trees that overlooks the Pacific Ocean and is 800 feet above Kona. The view is spectacular and the peace and tranquility are very welcome.
Our day started off with a one mile swim. Swimming in Kona Bay is never just a training swim. In addition to the emotional thrill of being on the race course, Kona Bay has crystal clear water and is only 15 to 30 feet deep. The coral that covers 75% of the bottom is a magnet for beautiful tropical fish. So the sightseeing really makes the training very enjoyable.
Later that day, we went for a for a 6 mile training run on Ali’i Drive (famous for being the first 10 miles and the last ½ mile of the Marathon.) We had plenty of company and the runners (men and women) were all impressive and intimidating. This is when I remembered that the people here this week all think that training 20 to 30 hours a week is normal. Each person has already competed in an Ironman and finished in the top three percent of their age group. There is nothing average about anybody. We are all crazy.
Kevin Moats, the current world champion in our age group had the five us over for dinner on Monday night. Kevin has been competing in the Ironman for over 25 years and has a house right on the Ocean on Ali’i Drive. Kevin lives in Atlanta and was a wealth of information.
It feels great to be back in Kona.

12 comments:

jamesadell said...

Mike, you are our hero back here in the Atl. Beautiful picture and great word descriptions. Just know that we will all be thinking about you for the big race. Do your best!

jamesadell said...

Mike, jamesadell is really Marty Mercer!

Panther Hospitality said...

Go Mike...

You are an ispiration to so many!

Panther Hospitality said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
smoste said...

I will be sending you positive vibes all week. All the best!!! Thanks for being an inspiration for the rest of us "normal" people.

Dawn said...

That view is almost worth trying to get into a Kona IronMan!! Well, maybe not . . . :-). You get to be a bad a** while enjoying that kind of accommodations and view - what a perfect experience! I look forward to reading more!

RWT5454 said...

Good luck Mike. Enjoy the beauty and tranquility before all hell breaks loose on race day. Your best is all anyone can ask!

akustician said...

I'll be thinking about you and Scott and wishing I could be there to watch the finish.

Ken said...

What a great view Mike! How can I not buy a couple of more lottery tickets again for Amy for Christmas. Good luck and I'm happy you'll be out of my age group next year at the local races. Regards, Ken Ferguson

Jennifer said...

Mike,
You are an inspiration! I'm training to walk in my first 1/2 marathon in December. Thinking about you competing in the Iron Man Championships motivates me to continue my small, but daunting, challenge of walking 13.1 miles.
Have fun!
Jennifer Bush

Oliver said...

Mike,

Thank you for including me in your updates. I enjoy reading about how you are enjoying the house, the surroundings and the competitive atmosphere... Hope your wife and you have a wonderful week together...while also getting ready for the BIG event.

Oliver

Susan Dansby said...

You make me want to get on the next plane to Kona, Mike. Gorgeous!