After my 43 mile WINDY ride and 45 min. run on sunday morning, I was glued to the computer most of the day. Even before my ride, before i discovered I had a flat tire on my training wheel that I put back on after my race, I was sending good luck emails to people doing IMAZ. When I got back from my ride I was super tired but i needed to get some school work done so I at least felt somewhat productive for the day. So I would study, check online, study, check online and then once the live video aired in the evening, I was stuck on the computer. I was checking splits, reading forum pages, contributing to chats online and just feeling super excited for all the athletes. I started to miss Ironman training, Ironman racing and just being an Ironman. Of course I know I am an Ironman but when you sign up for an Ironman, your whole life changes. You dedicate weeks, months and lots of money to one long day and when it comes and you do whatever it takes to cross the finish line you just feel complete. I was so happy for everyone out there and just seeing the excitement for everyone crossing the finish line was overwhelming. When you complete an Ironman (first, second, third, tenth...) you know you did something remarkable that not many people can understand..unless they too are an Ironman. It is a society, a group a distinguished club that many want to join. And once you join, your life changes. Everything becomes easy, your perspective on life changes and you just appreciate everything much much more. I almost forget what it was like to do an Ironman. Sometimes when I train on the weekends I forget that I am not doing an Ironman. I am focusing on 70.3 races for the next two years until I do another Ironman (Thinking IMAZ in 2010!). Right now my focus is on school but that doesn't mean that I am not still an Ironman. I want everyone out there to know that if you haven't done an Ironman, it is something that requires a lot of time, patience and dedication. however, it IS possible. YOu find an inner strength that you never thought was there...to get you out of bed to go ride your bike for half the day. You challenge your mind to make you run for over three hours and when if you think about it, you don't even like to drive that far. You make yourself swim and swim and swim only so you can learn how to be efficient in the water. You know you can't win an Ironman in the swim and that is only 2.4 miles of your 140.6 mile journey. But for those who aren't quite ready for an Ironman, I know you feel the same passion for triathlons, running, cycling, etc. for whatever you train for. So remember when you train that you are an athlete and you must eat, sleep, train and think like the athlete you want to be. Have goals, even if it is just to finish and remember that no matter what the finishing time, your goal is to finish the race you decided to sign up and train for. So no matter what you call yourself, you are an athlete..a dedicated, hard working athlete. Never let anyone take that away from you!!! my friend Angela emailed me on sat. and mentioned she saw me on TV again in the very beginning of the 70.3 world championship airing on NBC (listen for the word PAIN and you will see me cross the kona finish line). I must have missed that part so I went to my DVR and saw myself painfully crossing the finish line. I almost forget what it felt like to complete an Ironman and as I am watching everyone cross the finish line at IMAZ on the computer, I was glad I saw myself on TV again just to remind myself why I love what I do and more so, why I love helping people with their nutrition to help them get to where they want to be. Congrats all you IRONMAN and dedicated athletes!!!!