11 Ironmans down and my family got to attend one! This was great because it was sort of a mini-getaway for the kids, not for myself. The kids were able to play on the beach and swim in the pool at the hotel so they had fun. They ran around a lot in between my race, and who knows what other trouble they ventured into. Kelly, Seth, and Carli were able to see me at the start of each leg, during transitions, and of course at the finish. Obviously the hardest part of doing all of these races is being away from home, so this race was special in that they were here to support me and cheer me on. The kids were really excited for this trip as I was looking forward to it as well. Lastly, this was actually the weekend of our wedding anniversary! Kelly and I celebrated 15 years of marriage in Muncie, IN....YAY!
For this race, my wife was able to set up an interview from Fox out of Indianapolis. In addition, Ironman set up an interview with the Muncie Star Press. Both interviews went really well, just as the last two did. Tanae from Fox really focused on the details of why I am racing to break the record; she knew there was more to it so she was really curious of my time in service so that she could report accurate information. I really appreciate this because sometimes wrong information is put out there. David, from the Muncie Star Press, also did a phenomal job by showing up bright and early prior to the race and conducting an interview in the transition. In addition, he waited around the entire race until I crossed the finish line where he interviewed me again. David also interviewed my wife, Kelly and asked her about her support towards me this year. I really enjoyed and appreciated their dedication to their profession in helping me spread the word about my mission. One thing to add to about the interviews is that they sometimes leave out my website or donation page, which is: https://fundraising.semperfifund.org/fundraise?fcid=886609 and https://www.thepatriotracer.com/
It was also great to meet Dorice, Kelly's friend from college. Dorice was a great supporter prior to the race and also race day. Dorice offered support and even restaurant suggestions! Dorice also got some great pictures and I really appreciate it! She sure does have tons of energy, I believe I saw her three times on the bike course and once on the run and forsure at the swim start.
Another great supporter is Pure Betalain and it was great to see them! Travis and Jackie have been supporters of me since the beginning so it was great to meet them and feel their support! Jackie was running her first official 70.3 Ironman and she killed it. I think she finished in 4 hours and 53min. I also saw another triathlete that I met in NY which made this his third race of the season. It is always great to see familiar faces the more races I do the more people I run into. Even in the hotel I met a gentleman who has four sons in the USMC; one of which is on his way to attend OCS, Officer Candidate School and another is a PIG (professional instructed gunman), which one step closer to becoming a HOG (hunter of gunman). In the Sniper community, this is a Sniper. This man is a proud supporter and listened to why I am racing. He was actually an official, and it is nice to make friends with an official for obvious reasons!
Each race has been different, not one has been alike, to include Muncie. The day before the race I was on pins and needles because we had storms and tornado warnings. I wasn’t worried about the storms as much as I was about the race being canceled or cut short. Luckily the weather was on our side the morning of the race and we had nothing but clear skies and temperatures in the low 80s. One good thing about the storm the day prior is that it kicked up the water in the lake which cooled it down and made it wet-suit legal. The down side of the storm was that it brought on humid conditions. For being such a small town, this race brought on a fairly large crowd where the entries were over 1,700 athletes. The bike went well and I had the second fastest time in my division! However, my run was very slow in my eyes. I really don’t know why, possibly because of all of the racing I have been doing the past few months. The competitive nature in me always wants to go faster so when I am not happy with my speed or time, I beat myself up. I have to then remind myself that it is not about winning each race or achieving a PR, it’s about completing each race strong and healthy. I did, however, get a PR today of 4:40 this was my fastest 70.3 Ironman races yet.
I really wish my wife, Seth, and Carli could attend every race so they can see my accomplishment after each race and we can go through this journey together. Knowing this isn’t possible as they can only attend a couple of them, I will continue this journey on my own with the support of my friends throughout the race schedule.
Link to the news: