2009 Wisconsin Ironman Brick Adventure

>> Monday, June 29, 2009

Sit down. Strap in. Hold all calls. Have you pooped? Because it will be a while before you can go to the bathroom. I have nearly 70 photos to share from the weekend at WIBA (Wisconsin Ironman Brick Adventure). It’ll be a long but fun post. Here’s how it will go down:

I. Arrival and Dinner
II. Open Water Swim
III. Bike Ride
IV. Post-Workout Meal
V. Run
VI. Endurance House Meeting

This was the 4th WIBA. Pharmie and I have been to all 4. We’ve made some good friends out there, and we just like to come and workout with them, even if we’re not training for IM WI.

OK, here we go.

I. Arrival and Dinner

Pharmie and I were able to catch I ride with Iron Girl Nyhus out to Madison. We made it out there in about 4.5 hours:

IGN, Pharmie, Me

I drove IGN’s SUV the last part of the ride, and I realized I’m not used to driving something that big. I mean, just take a look at my parking job:

Next door (at the Alliant Energy Center), there was an Airsteam convention:

We unpacked a little and then headed out to a dinner with everyone else.

Pre-dinner info from Robby

Pasta buffet!!

IM WI bike course analysis with Robby and Sweet

II. Open Water Swim

The next morning (Saturday), we all met at nearby Olin Park for an open water swim in Lake Menona. Here’s IGN, Pharmie, Charile, and Lisa checking out the weedy lake, with downtown Madison in the background (that’s Menona Terrace along the lake to the right, and that’s where the IM swim takes place):

IGN waving

Pharmie and I jumping in. Photo from Wil.

Finishing the swim with Al (who’s eating seaweed)

Post swim with Pharmie

So, there was a lot of algae in the lake. And a lot of weeds. Someone joked that swimming through it was like resistance training. Anyone doing IM WI, don’t worry - it’s NOT like that in the IM swim. Here’s the inside of IGH’s suit when she got done:

Rural Girl had to help Pharmie get into her sports bra after the swim, and it was pretty hot.

Pharmie’s side after the swim, all covered in algae

The funniest part was that when Pharmie took her suit completely off, her boobs, ribs, and belly button caught the algae in such a way that the inside of her suit looked like it had a smiley-face. We’re not making this up:

And here’s a shot from later in the day that shows 2 washcloths in the shower. Both were used. But can you tell which one Pharmie used to clean herself up after the green OW swim?


III. Bike Ride

Right after the swim, we all headed out to Fireman’s Park to ride the IM loop. (the IM WI bike course is about a 16 mile “out,” a 40 mile loop done twice, and then a 16 mile “back.” Fireman’s Park is near the start of the loop.)

Everyone unloading

Pharmie and IGN getting ready

IGN, Tanya, and Pharmie

Everyone putting Wil’s phone number in their phone

Here’s most of the goup all ready to ride:

Click here for a larger version

I got to chat a bit with Mike and Jenny. If you remember, Mike won the Tales of a Virgin Athlete Contest a few months ago with his story of discovering triathlons and losing a combined 365 pounds with Jenny. Here’s the 3 of us together:

It was time to roll out!


Mike, Kara, and Lisa

Pharmie (with Tri-Mama behind her)

I had to get my annual shot of Rural Girl heading to the trees to pee:

Everyone was out riding. I went back to the room and relaxed. I stopped at Taco Bell, spent a half hour in the “fitness center,” and got ready to head back out to see everyone finish their ride.

Kara and Lisa


Pharmie and Al

People were arriving. It was time to hit the grill!!

IV. Post-Workout Meal

A few weeks ago, I told Wil that I wasn’t going to ride, so I could help feed everyone. She asked Stu and I to man the grills. So that was our next task: to feed 80 hungry riders!

I changed into my grilling outfit: my “bowl full of sunshine” yellow shorts, wrist bands, head band, and apron. I think this is a good look:

Making fire

Photo from Wil

Stu and I manning our grills

Mike and Jenny bringing more goodies

“the spread”

With my “meat”

Robby excited to eat (and drink)

People hanging out

Robby giving instructions for the next morning

After grilling, showering, and resting for a moment, a few of us headed downtown to get some gelato. Here’s Pharmie and Jeremy:

Charlie, Lisa, Pharmie, Jeremy, TriSaraTops, Robby, and me.
Photo from Wil.

Pharmie, TriSaraTops, Lisa, and Wil heading back to the hotel

V. Run

Sunday morning, we got up, had a quick bite, and headed to the Terrace for a run. We were going to run the IM WI run course. Here’s Robby telling everyone about the swim exit and T1 in IM WI:

I set my camera up to take a group shot with the self-timer, but 2 funny things happened. First, the wind must have gusted through and tipped the camera forward, because I didn’t TRY to cut off everyone’s heads like this:

Sorry tall people!

Secondly, as we were waiting for the shutter to click, a bird flew though the picture, and we all laughed. As it turns out, that bird made it into the photo. Check the far upper-right:

I can’t make this stuff up

We split into groups, and we headed out:

Here’s everyone heading towards the capital in the first half mile:

Direct link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9kejwJSZVA

Heading down State St.

Doing the little “out-and-back” section on the bike path

“Off-roading” through the construction

I ran with the lead group. We did the full 13.1 mile course (it’s done twice for IM). Sweet led the group, and we chatted about nerdy college teacher things for a bit. I forgot the name of the guy in white (SO bad with names - sorry!). And I talked the most with Andy who’s doing IM WI this September. We had a nice chat. Here’s my group heading back towards the State Capital:

We did the 13.1 miles in an easy 1:44. The run was nice, but with about 20 minutes left, my left achilles suddenly got sore. I might be giving Dr. Folske a call today. Damn.

Back at the Terrace, there were some people hanging around that had just done 6-7 miles. Here’s IGN perched between some parking meters:

Pharmie showed up with Kara a few minutes later. They had just finished the full 13.1 miles too!

VI. Endurance House Meeting

One last stop before heading home. A few of us met at Endurance House - a tri store near Madison. They opened the store an hour and a half early just for us WIBA folks. They were going to do foot-strike analysis for anyone who wanted, and they gave us all a 15% discount! Sweet! Here’s IGN and Pharmie heading in:

Pharmie and I needed shoes shortly, so we thought we’d take advantage of the discount and the foot-strike analysis. Here she is on the treadmill:

Looking at her foot strike in slow-mo

Here’s a look at our foot-strikes side-by-side (be warned: this is one of THEE MOST BORING videos on YouTube):

Direct Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdM5UEXPoOs

Pharmie has a great stride/strike. My left leg is great, but my right leg has a little “flavor” at the end, and it kicks out a bit too much. So I tried some shoes that will work with that. Here’s Pharmie trying on shoes with hunky Justin:

IGN bought some compression socks, and she wasn’t sure how she’d get her legs into these little socks:

(As it turns out, she accidentally bought one size too small...)

So we hit the road for home. We kept joking about how much IGN and Pharmie had in common (I kept saying they were the same person). Well, after an hour on the road, they just proved my point even more:

What a fun weekend!!! Thanks Wil and Robby!

Note to WIBA participants: If you are in any of these photos or just want a copy of a few of them, just e-mail me and tell me what image(s) you’d like, and I’ll GLADLY send you the file(s). My e-mail is: stevestenzelphotography [at] yahoo.com Just put something about WIBA in the subject line because I get a lot of spam.

I might have a few more photos from friends in the next few days. Thanks for wading your way through such a long post!



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