Ironwoman Wednesday: You ARE an Ironman!

Ironman Louisville 2014
Pre-RaceSwimBikeBrink of a DNFRun

Welcome back to Ironwoman Wednesday! Over the past few months, I have been linking-up with Jamie at From Couch to Ironwoman and Michelle at IronwomanStrong on Wednesday to talk triathlon as we trained for Ironman Louisville. We talked swim, we talked bike, we talked run and much more


Today we are back as 3 Iron(wo)men! Yep, WE DID IT! All three of us finished Ironman Louisville on Sunday and heard those 4 amazing words: YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!


My official time was 15:08:46

My race recap is going to span across at least 4 posts, because there is just so much to tell you. At this point my words and emotions are still all jumbled. I am happy, I am exhausted, I am in disbelief at the ease at which my mind tackled the race, I am mad at myself for not executing my nutrition plan correctly, I am amazed at the strength my body showed me, I am excited about future races, a ball of tears about Sunday’s race and most of all I feel extremely proud of myself, Michelle, Julie, Jamie, Jamie’s husband, my own rockstar husband, and every other person who gave their all on Sunday.

Ironman Louisville gave me everything I could have ever dreamed of for a first Ironman. 

If any of you dream about completing an Ironman, DO IT! I guarantee you, you will not regret it. Every minute, even the darkest ones, were amazing and I am so happy Pablo and I pulled the trigger and decided to sign up.

So let’s start at the beginning…

On Wednesday, Pablo and I headed for our last pool swim pre-race, then we packed up the car and headed to Kentucky with his parents. We were pleasantly surprised with the townhouse we rented. It’s spacious, well-kept, 3 blocks from 4th Street Live and 1 block from the run course! If you’re doing IM Lou, let me know and I can share the house details with you! Kentucky Bound

After we unpacked the car , we headed for a 4-mile shake out run. While it didn’t feel super hot (it was 7:30pm when we went out), I was sweating buckets in no time and I knew race day was going to be a brutal one.

Hello Louisville!

Thursday we headed to the Ironman Village, checked in for the race and attended the athlete briefing.

Check In Time

Then we drove the bike course and rode a few of the hills (a special thank you to Pablo’s parents, our IronSherpas, for their support).
Riding the course

Friday was an official 100% rest day. We did some stretching, stayed hydrated, prepped our gear bags and had some fun taking pictures. Then we headed to the athlete banquet where we met Jamie and Mike, watched some inspirational videos and sat with a 74-year-old who would be completing his 17th Ironman, how’s that for inspiration!
Gear Bags

Saturday it was time to get in our last workout: a 15 min swim, 15 min bike and 15 min run. We joined the open water swim and battled a fierce current, which we luckily would be swimming with instead of against on race day.

Iron Couples

We saw Jamie and Mike while training. Seeing them on their bikes while I was running was awesome and I knew seeing them on the course would be a major motivational boost. I tried to find Michelle at the underpants run, but didn’t see her, although I did see this awesome dog:

Underpants Run

We finished prepping our gear bags and headed to transition. My parents were supposed to arrive around 6pm, but as we left transition they called to tell me they had missed their last connection. I almost had a meltdown, but luckily there were 3 other flights they could catch and they got on one that would get to to Louisville by 9:30pm.

Sherpa Gear

I headed to bed and waited for them to call. When they arrived, we checked in quickly, I gave them the rundown of the course, their Sherpa gear and then it was time to really go to bed, because in a few short hours race day would be here!

  1. Congrats Gabi on your IM finish! I look forward to reading all the race reports from Louisville! I had a friend/training partner racing, so I know you all had some extra challenges with the added heat/humidity. Enjoy basking in your new IM glory and some much deserved down time from the crazy hours of training! As of today, I am one month removed from my IMLP finish and I still smile to myself when I think back to that accomplishment! I don’t know that the excitement from that day will ever fade:)

  2. I can’t wait to read your review, it was so fun knowing we both did Raleigh and Louisville, and to live the races again through your reports. I was so glad to see you on the course, it was a hot one and ended up melting my brakes on my bike that I just replaced a week prior to the race! I’m so glad you loved the city and had a good time, I love my hometown and am so glad it was my first Ironman, and I am so happy we are Ironwomen!

    • Your brakes melted?! No way! It was awesome seeing you! Sorry I didn’t run over the high five you, I was on such a mission to make it when I saw you!

    • I can’t even begin to describe it. It still feels so surreal. And because my body feels pretty good, I sometimes wonder if I actually did it! What an experience!

  3. Amazing!!! I am contemplating my first IM for next year and reading your blog makes it that much more exciting! Congrats again!! I can’t wait to read more your experience!

    • Yes yes yes, do it! It requires a huge time commitment and lots of hard work, but if you put in the work, you will reap the benefits and it is so amazing to achieve a goal that once seemed completely impossible!

  4. So proud of you & Pablo!!! Can’t wait for you to blog about the marathon portion & specifically, what nutrition/supplements/hydration techniques worked & what didn’t… I have yet to try any salt tabs/supplements , so curious about this Base Performance salt you raved about!!

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