I neglected to mention a very important thing in my post about “running” the Death Valley Trail Marathon yesterday. And that thing is that, as The Runner dragged me across the finish line, I thought to myself, “This was really easy and I bet I could have done this after swimming a couple miles and riding a century.”
And it’s fortunate I thought that.
You see, evidently I didn’t make it clear that I was totally joking when I said I could easily do an IronMan. Because Timex — one of the major sponsors of the Ironman — has contacted me and said, “OK, Fatty. You’re in the St. George Ironman. Let us know how it goes for you, OK?”
Which is awesome, for several reasons:
- Timex is going to give me some awesome schwag to give away and is going to help with my LiveStrong fundraising efforts. Huzzah for Timex!
- The threat of an Ironman gives me something to write about during the winter months, which is when this blog is generally pretty short on material, leaving me staring at the blank screen for hours at a time before I actually start typing something.
- I’ve been meaning to learn to swim for several years now, and this is excellent motivation to finally go out and do it.
- I’ll be able to check this off my Life List and finally be able to move “ride a recumbent” to the top.
- I’ll be able to demand that people begin addressing me as “IronFatty.”
- I’ve always loved triathlons.
But hold on. The race isn’t over. Not yet. In fact, I think it may be safe to say it hasn’t begun. Further, it may even be safe to say that I’ve got some work to do before I’m ready to do an Ironman.
Serious work. Serious work that must be conducted very, very seriously.
Here are a few of the things I am resolved to do, so that I will be able to execute this race with the seriously intense humility it requires.
- Learn to Swim: I have, as of a couple days ago, become a member of a gym. This gym has a swimming pool. I believe that is sufficient, though I may — from time to time — even go swimming in that pool. Well, “swimming” may be the wrong word. I intend to frolic in the pool. Eventually, I plan to be able to frolic for two full miles.
- Buy a Wetsuit: The secret to completing the swim portion of the Ironman is to have a good wetsuit. I am given to understand that these wetsuits make a huge difference in your swimming ability, floatability and technique in general. Let us just say that I am counting on this being true. And while i’m at it, i think i’ll also hope that my wetsuit will propel me forward, with no effort whatsoever on my part. That will be nice.
- Investigate Legality of Snorkels: Are they really not allowed in an Ironman, or just generally not used? Cuz I love snorkeling. I think I’ll check into swim fins, too.
- Buy a Bento Box: I will buy a Bento Box and put it on my bike. I will buy another and will use it when I am not on my bike. I will now eat all of my meals and snacks from a Bento Box.
- Investigate “Win Over The Crowd” Techniques: Specifically, I need to find out if it would be considered extremely cool or uncool to throw out handsful of candy to spectators, as if it were a parade. I suspect that with a $25 investment in candy, I could easily become the single most popular guy on the course.
- Get Proper Attire: I of course want to wear a Team Fatty jersey during the race, but am concerned that I won’t really fit in. So I think I’ll look into having a Fat Cyclist jersey custom-altered to be a half-jersey, perhaps both sleeveless and exposing my belly. This will really help me in the race, because I love to scratch my belly, and now I’ll have unfettered access.
- Always Wear Proper Attire: I will have all my shirts altered to be half-shirts, so I can become very, very comfortable with the idea of showing off my stomach to the world.
- Stop Socializing: I will stop talking to people or waving when I am riding. I will ride alone, and will delete my friends from my phone.
- Have My Sense of Humor Reconfigured: I will stop thinking that triathlons are bizarre and hilarious. I will instead start thinking that whatever triathletes think is funny is actually funny. Provided triathletes think anything is funny.
- Work on My Transitions: In order to fully assimilate the Ironman way of life, I will minimize my transition times between everything I do. Even this moment, I am wearing my pajamas under my street clothes. And under my pajamas is my swimsuit.
- Do Bricks: An essential part of Ironman training is to do two events back to back. This is called, oddly, a “brick.” Because I intend to embrace this race wholeheartedly, I will do bricks in my everyday life, too. I will have a breakfast-lunch brick, where I will eat both meals consecutively. I will have a Dinner-bedtime brick, where I will go to bed right after eating dinner. Yes, this is all very intense, but I am willing to sacrifice for my “sport.”
- I Will Forget How to Ride A Straight Line. And I’ll forget how to pedal circles, too. And buy clip-on bar ends and adopt a much less comfortable riding position, hoping that it buys me a few seconds of time, thanks to my much improved aerodynamic profile. And I will develop a more menacing game face.
Is there anything else I need to do to prepare for my first Ironman? No, I can’t think of anything else, either.