Mentally Preparing for Ironman Attempt #2
It’s nearly game time!! Ironman Cozumel is November 25!! I’ve put in the work, and my body is READY. Now, along with my taper, I need to make sure I am mentally prepared for what lies ahead. (i.e. Don’t freak out!) I’m considerably calmer 9 days from the starting line than I was in June, so that’s a good start! I also haven’t lost weight…in fact, I’ve gained a couple of pounds. Last time I had a difficult time eating leading up to the race since I was so freaking nervous.
With my ongoing training and a flat bike course, I should have a wayyyyy faster bike! When I do the math, I know I’m no longer at risk of missing the 10:30 hour swim/bike cutoff, but race day always presents its own unique set of challenges, so it’s important to be prepared for anything.
My Mental Prep Checklist:
1. Know your mantras. (My go to is “Pain is temporary, pride is forever,” which can also be “Pain is temporary, quitting is forever.” I also like “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming!” You talk to yourself a lot out there.)
2. Set your playlist. (Before the race, I listen to motivating songs on my “Ironman Pump-Up” playlist. During the race, I like to play songs to myself in my head since I can’t use an iPod. Eminem is the most motivating to me, particularly “Till I Collapse” and “Lose Yourself”.)
3. Plan for at least 3 things to go wrong on race day. (I got this tip from pro triathlete Beth Walsh, and it’s super valid!)
4. Find your inner calm. (For me, that means avoid spending too much time at the expo . For world champion Chrissie Wellington, that means taking time to sit quietly by herself on race morning.)
5. Write out your race day plan and stick to it! (I have specific things to think about and monitor on the swim, bike, and run.)
6. Don’t worry about the things that you can’t control. (The 10 day weather forecast currently predicts a 50-75% chance of rain, and a high of 82. How much rain? During the swim, bike, or run? I don’t know, and I cannot stress over it!)
I’ve been trying to picture myself crossing the finish line at Ironman Cozumel, and it feels SO GOOD. I get really, really excited just thinking about it!! Ironman Coeur d’Alene was a weird/sad experience for me because I got to be both a participant (for roughly 9 hours before they stopped me) and a spectator to watch my friends cross the finish line. (Go Team WODS!!) I saw all sorts of creative finishes. There were the serial high-fivers, the painful/limping finishers, the dancers, the sign holders, the flag holders…I even saw a girl with a large mustache (fake, don’t worry.)
So here is my question to you. If I can logistically pull it off…
LET’S DO THIS!!! Any other mental prep tips for the big day?