We did it! We took the plunge and David registered for Ironman 70.3 Arizona in October. Our last race was Ironman Texas in May 2015, so it’s been a long time and we’re both anxious to get back in the game…
To ease his return into the world of triathlon, he picked this race since he knows the course like the back of his hand. But, registering for the race is not the end game. There is all the other stuff you have to take care of before you can get to the task at hand and we’ve written about the 8 To Do’s to help you along. But, we can’t stress enough to get your hotel booked. Lodging is the single most important thing to take care of once you register for your race.
Being at the right location can make all the difference for both comfort pre and post race, but also for sleep and race day accessibility. We like to stay as close as we can to the race site the night before and after, but often stay there the whole time. It strictly depends on how long we will be there and the hotel accommodations available. At some destination races, we will even rent a home to make us feel more at home and give us the flexibility of preparing meals. The priorities for a race night hotel also require either the ability for you to make a pre-race breakfast or that the hotel is offering one.
That said, right after he renewed his USA Triathlon membership and registered, I started on our to do list and then added these 5 very important tasks:
Plan An After Race Getaway
Going someplace nice for a race is a great opportunity to take a few days after the race and have a little fun. You can do nothing or a bit of site seeing. I love Arizona, because there is so much to do not only in the state – think Grand Canyon and Sedona – but you are close to so many other great vacation spots like Napa, California for a little wine tasting or Taos, New Mexico for a little arts and culture. It’s going to be a tough decision for me to make…
Pick Your Mode Of Transportation
If you plan on driving, feel free to skip on, but if you are flying, this is for you. Booking airline tickets in advance can often save you a lot of money. Many airlines will let you put a hold on tickets if you find a great deal. You also need to determine if you’ll need a rental car or will be using Tribike Transport. If not, you will definitely need to book an SUV. Be sure to also check for packages to include air and car. We have found some good deals that way.
Get VIP Passes
If you have registered for an Ironman race we highly suggest you check out the VIP packages, especially if you are doing a full-distance race and will be by yourself. This includes both domestic and international races, such as Austria. There are usually different levels to purchase, but they can really make the life of the trisupporter on race day a bit easier. There are a limited number of packages, so it’s a good idea to buy yours early. Typical packages include VIP viewing areas, access to VIP tents where there are drinks, food and restrooms, and others include finish line access. Pick the package that is best for you. You’ll find these listed under Spectators for your particular race on the Ironman site.
Post It On Facebook
Do it, make it public, tell the world. Now you are not only committed, but after getting all the congrats and well wishing, you’ll have pressure from your friends and followers to not back out! We also love to post it on Facebook to see who else is racing. Be sure to also join any groups or lists on social media channels for the race. Many times, people post tips and other great information about the race and it’s always a plus to have insiders’ knowledge. You will also automatically have a race family.
It is time for both the triathlete and the trisupporter to get at it. Although you may be months away, if you are like us and have taken a few months off, you’ll need some time to get re-started. Just do it and you will get it done!
As you can see, I have a bit of work ahead of me, but with the race still months away, I have a bit of breathing room. The rest I’ll work on about a month before the race.