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Saturday, June 11, 2005

Race Night Eve – Eagleman Half Ironman

My Homestay is with a very nice couple – Sam and Noreen. They are very supportive of the athletes who do the race and have welcomed me into their home with open arms. Any concern I had about being uncomfortable was quickly put at ease and I can honestly say that I am in the best accommodations I have ever been in before a race.

I started the day by eating breakfast in their very well stocked kitchen. I kept it simple and only had a bowl of cereal. I then got my gear ready for some light workouts and headed to the registration and transition areas.

Registration consisted of the usual fare. Various vendors selling stuff, check-in and bike inspection. Check-in and bike inspection were painless and I made several purchases of stuff that I needed at relatively low prices.

I should point out that the person who inspected my bike told me it was in perfect condition. I had my bike tuned up just a couple of days ago by a member of my Tri-Club. It cost me a couple of bucks to do, but the service was well worth it. The person who referred me to him said that he will make my bike look like it was brand new. In fact, on the day I took it home from his servicing, a person on the train asked me if I just bought it.

After check-in, I went for a short swim in the Choptank River. That is the name of the body of water we will be swimming in. It was very warm – 76 degrees, and had a mild salty taste. It was a bit choppy and slight current, but overall, it looks to be a pleasant swim.

After the swim, I rode the length of the Run Course. It was flat and windy. I will be prepared based on my experience at IMAZ. However, it should be much warmer and much more humid.

I decided it was too hot and humid to expend energy on much of a run. I only ran for 10 minutes or so at a very slow pace. I wanted to save my energy and decided to go back to my Homestay to eat, rest and get ready for the next day.

It is tradition at the house to wear a Hawaiian themed outfit at dinner. If you don’t have a Hawaiian motif, you are forced to wear a grass hula skirt. This is what I wore. Unfortunately, it did not provide enough covering to afford me the luxury of going commando.

Dinner consisted of plain pasta with tomato sauce on the side, grilled chicken, steamed shrimp, smoked blue fish and a salad. It was all very yummy and filled me up perfectly. For desert we had fresh baked cookies and banana bread. This is race day heaven. Hopefully, I will be invited back next year.


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