It's been a while since I posted. I've fallen into that trap of waiting till I had time to write something meaningful regarding Ironman France and the whole Lance Armstrong affair - but I guess I'll never really have time to get my head around that one. Sometimes your heroes have feet of clay :(
I have more to say on that but just thinking about it makes me realise it's a post in itself - so I'll take a deep breath and leave it for now.
As for my Ironman France experience - well, amazing event and if you get the chance to do it - and enjoy the heat - then my advice to you would be to leap at the chance. Beautiful, tough course. Hot sunny blue skies. Great crowds. No reason to not go!
As a race I knew I wasn't going to be in great shape - I prioritised spending time with my son over training time and was seriously undercooked, preparation-wise. But I'd managed a couple of 5 hour rides in the build up so knew I'd at least make it round :) The couse includes some significant climbs, including a 21km climb just before the half way point - and even trying to ride conciously easy up there, I was DONE by the top of it. In fact, I rode up next to an old buddy of mine, Paul Skipper, and we both had a kind of half-crazed giggle with each other about how much trouble we were in!! I managed to get to about the 25km point on the run before my just about everything told me to take a rest - both achilles, ITB, etc - the usual, given lack of preparation. But I walk -jogged the rest of the way, enjoying the sun and camraderie. The best part was walking through an aid station and realising the guy next to me was Jeff Mobray, who I had trained with 10 years earlier for my very first HIMUK. Small world :)
Beautiful world, too.