I’ll be in
HPP lake at on Sunday morning with nothing left to do to prepare. My focus won’t be on 140.6. It will be on the first 200m being target 1 get some space, get into a rhythm. Target 2 will be half way up the lake when I will be flowing. Target 3 will be the first marker. Target 4 the second and the turn for home. Target 5 the bottom of the lake. Nothing else will have my attention – in order tick them off! I will thrash the fuck out of my arms ‘cause I won’t need them again for that day and I would rather sacrifice my arms than have my day end at 8.15am still in the water!
T1 is going to be fun - the marshals will whip my wetsuit off but the Morphsuit will require some jiggery pokery to get out of (think Mel Gibson in Lethal Weapon getting out of the straight jacket). I will not spend 22 mins there. I will have to dry off to get the ride/run Morphsuit on, wellie some bread and marmalade and a drink or two (Coke to avoid last years every 15 miles shits and water). Have a slash ‘cause once it’s all on its staying on! Zip the hood up, pop on the cap (to shield the sun so I can see through Morphsuit) and helmet to create the ideal 3 layer blazing sunshine head decoration! Then it’s just a case of taking a deep breath of ‘MTFU inside Morphsuit Sauna’ air and get out on the bike. The next target will be feedstation 1 then feedstation 2 etc etc. The helmet, cap and hood have to come off at each feed station to wellie food and drink then back on and on my way. Ill be sipping water constantly as the inside temp is gonna be off the scale and changing bottles for fresh water at each station.
I will doubt, I will wobble but I will get back to
HPP to start my run! T2 being a simple ditching of helmet and shoes and popping on trainers. Maybe a Jelly Baby or two if time allows then I will hit the run. I will say now that if I start the run in time I will Ironmorph on Sunday. I can’t guarantee that it will be pretty, or without incident but I will finish! I will look no further than the next water station on the run and try to absorb as much strength from everyone there doing it, supporting it or organising it.
I know I am stronger than last year, I know I can swim faster, I know I can ride faster and I know I can run faster.
I know I am mentally stronger but then I will need to be as a Morphsuit creates isolation and self examination (not in an are my nuts OK type of way you understand) not too mention that it will make everything a lot hotter! I will have to overcome the natural urge to doubt, to fear, to highlight inadequacies and failings and ignore the temptation to fall back on perceived weaknesses.
I have been overwhelmed by support and sponsorship over the last few days. Emotions are nuclear and far from stable. It is impossible to list the Team behind me that get me through this but if you are reading this, or you’ve sponsored me or you’ve trained with me, or you’ve followed this journey or you’ve told me to MTFU or stop whining and get on with it or you’ve been there for me when I’ve doubted, wobbled or fallen then you are that Team that makes this possible.
None of this however, absolutely none of this is possible either as an idea or in practice without the unwavering, unquestioning, ridiculously blind belief and confidence that Mrs Brightside has in me. My Ironwidow will go through it all on Sunday as she did last year. She will be awake from , she will wonder if I am safely out of the water, she will be scanning the tracking and chasing the Marshals to find out where the fuck is 605 on the bike and she will mentally run every step around the lake and up and down the river with me. For this gift I am utterly grateful.
I would love to say something inspiring here – to give a boost to anyone else doing it, some for the first time – but whatever I am likely to say will have been pinched from a better man.
I will see you on the run!