Saturday morning started early as usual and we were down at the Kailua Pier by about 5am to setup in transition and meet up with the rest of our Pittsburgh crew out for the race, Chad, Matt, and Beth. My parents were there to cheer us on, in addition to husbands, wives, and parents of some of the others. The race was underway at 7am and then it was on for the next 9+ hours. At times the conditions were the challenge, and others my body, but sometimes you just have to bear down, knuckle up, and as Jens Voigt has said, "Shut up legs!" Or perhaps, "Puke and Rally!" It was very tough at times to keep the pressure on and to continue pushing so hard when quite often my body was in revolt, but that's when you learn the most about yourself, when the chips are down and as I constantly reminded myself, that this was the world championship, you are here to do your absolute best and to suffer mightily in the process. As hard as I thought I had it, my tough as nails wife was pushing through the 140.6 mile race with a bum knee, which was probably swollen to almost twice its normal size. Seeing her out on the course in addition to my close friends and also the sport's top talents gave me so much inspiration to draw upon, to allow me to reach deep within myself for every ounce of effort I could. Hearing people shout, "Go Jeremy" and "Go Ballou Skies" at every turn was so powerful and I couldn't help but smile and do as they asked. I came across the line at about 4:30 HST for an Ironman PR with the following splits on this most competitive, fulfilling, and magical of days.
My official race report is soon to follow, but I just wanted to put something out there before I undergo radio silence during the long journey back to Pittsburgh tomorrow. Thanks everyone for reading and for all of your support leading up to and during the race! Mahalo.