Tomorrow marks the date 5 months out from my first half ironman. While my “official” training program starts at four months out, I have been starting to train on the bike the past couple of weeks and did my first training swim this past weekend. Below is the beginning of my story.
Why 70.3? The idea came to me actually from a new fitness friend, Joe Krantz. I had done several small gestures to help support the Heckendorf Family throughout the year since Bryce’s diagnosis-from collecting money from my bootcamp class for minutes exercised, to donating a jersey to his fundraiser, to organizing a 5K in his honor/memory. When he told me he was going to compete in his first half-ironman as a way to B.Strong and honor this little angel, I really didn’t think I had it in me to do something like this. I completed a marathon two years before in memory of Clint Sitzmann, a family friend, who lost his battle to Ewings Sarcoma at the age of 21. I signed up the day after he passed away. So naturally, when Joe mentioned this, a small part of me started to think if this was in any way possible. After lots of self-doubt and soul-searching, I decided to do it. I got kicked out of registration 3 times because it took so long to register due to my hesitation and fear. On the fourth time, I turned to my husband, Shane, and said, “What’s the worst that could happen?” You don’t want to know what his answer was. And the rest, is history.
I would be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I’d be lying if I said I was confident I could do this. But I have several guardian angels that will be guiding me through this journey. When I want to quit, I’ll use the strength from Kris Keene, Clint Sitzmann, MaKayla Hore, Doug Pink, and of course, Bryce Heckendorf, the smallest angel of all. I know I will have the support of some amazing friends and family and a great trainer who will push me until I don’t think I can go anymore, just to prove to me that I can. I have a mentor, Jennifer Maguire, who completed a full Ironman this past September, which I witnessed in awe, that will help me along the way. I have a fitness family at SUPPZ Gym who will continue to encourage me, and many training partners along the way.
I can do this. I can B.Strong. This is no doubt going to be one of the greatest physical accomplishments of my life.