Thursday 7-13-06 Before Ironman Austria

Last night, I tried to sleep early but it took me a while to assemble my bike. Somehow the gorillas at the airport have nearly destroyed my bike case again. They tossed it so hard that they bent my rear drop out (slightly) and totally broke the inner lining of my suitcase. Unbelievable.
I took a photo and sent it to Tom Ritchey over at Ritchey Logic. I love my Breakaway and hope that comments like mine will continue to improve the design.
This morning I get up and go with the tour group over to the pier to swim. First we go for a quick jog and once again we are dusted by our pro tour guide, Andrea Fisher. But I am heartened by the fact that I do this jog and don’t even feel my HR increase noticeable. This was in sharp contrast to last year at Ironman NZ when I felt this light jog raise my HR to a very high level.
We come back to the pier and put on our wetsuits. Jumping into the lake is like jumping into a warm bath. The water is *really* warm, almost too warm for our sleeved wetsuits. I swim to the first buoy and then hang a left to see the channel into which we swim before we come out of the lake.
After swimming, I head for registration. We pick up our materials and go shopping. The stuff they have is OK. I buy some stuff and head back to the hotel and get my bike adjusted by our mechanic. This is when I find out my rear dropout is bent, as it affects shifting. Sometimes I really wonder what happens in baggage handling. They must really just toss suitcases around in a haphazard manner.
I get the bike all ready and now I find my first problem. My ATM card, which worked great at London Heathrow and at the Klagenfurt airport, has now stopped working at some local ATMs. Now how the heck am I supposed to get cash? More on this later as I go search tomorrow for an ATM machine that will take my debit card.
Later in the afternoon, I head out with my tour group on the bike course. I notice on the elevation map that there seem to be some daunting hills. I hope this is an illusion. And I think I was mostly right. We go out onto the course and quickly gain up the speed. I am glad for the compact cranks as I effortly spin up and down the rollers at 20+ MPH. This is a great confidence builder as I do these hills and my HR has barely moved close to my lactate threshold. But, I do still worry about my IT band.
At night, we go to a special dinner for our group at an old castle. The food is good, but takes 3 hours to get to us! We’re eating, but we’re all jetlagged and want to go home soon.
In the background, we hear a random selection of American music, that seems to move back in time as dinner progresses.
Why is it that European countries always play retro American music?
See photos here: Ironman Austria Thursday 2006-07-13.
More tomorrow – time for bed!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts