Thank You Augusta

Before I write a race breakdown and review my taper week, I want to thank the people that put on the Augusta Half Ironman.

First, Race Director Alyssa did an absolutely incredible job with the race. The courses were fun and lively, there were volunteers all over the place the whole weekend, and the overall vibe was exhilarating; even if my face didn’t show it 90% of the time. I saw Alyssa everywhere I went the whole weekend. Thanks for putting together such a great race.

Next, the town and volunteers that helped bring Augusta to life. Even 28miles away from the start, there were folks on their tailgates cheering on the riders. The run course got HOT, with many of the athletes starting the run in 95+ degree heat and thick humidity. Residents were on their porches with hoses, water guns, and sprinklers. There were plenty of well stocked aid stations along the course, but the periodic water blast made the stretches between stations just a little more bearable. The aid stations were animated and encouraging. Volunteers were trying to read names from the bibs to give a little more personal cheer. Thank you for keeping a smile on my face when I felt like my body was melting.

The police department did an incredible job as well. Every single crossing felt safe, well run, and controlled. At nearly every intersection and turn I heard a “You got this” or “almost there, keep it up”. That was not part of the job description. They were engaged with the riders and runners and wanted to see the best out of everyone.

I also want to thank everyone that supported me. I kept up the momentum knowing I had friends and family waiting for every split to pop up on the screen. Every time I heard that little beep at a checkpoint, there was someone on the other end with a reaction. I finished the race and already had several missed calls and messages congratulating me and asking how I felt. I couldn’t have done this without such a supporting community. It’s not easy to wake up at 5am most days of the week and get in the work but knowing someone will be meeting you at the track, pool, or on the bike to keep you accountable makes all the difference. I even got an awesome wake up check in from someone who did not need to be up that early but wanted to make sure I was. Thank you to everyone who got me to the starting line.

Finally, the athletes. Thank you to every single person that woke up at 4am this morning, emptied half a tub of petroleum jelly, chugged their XXL coffee, and toed the line for a very long day. We all knew it was going to be hot, but there were very few complaints heard throughout the day. Every left the negativity at home. Some were there to win, others just to finish. Everyone had a story, hundreds of hours of dedication to training, and a reason to be there. Every one of those reasons were supported on the course. Congratulations to everyone who started the race. Very few people understand what it takes just to get to that point. Well done.

Thank you Augusta. This was an awesome experience and I cannot wait to come back next year.

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