What a year! 2017 IMWI did not disappoint, with great weather, amazing crowd support, and some excellent races by Team PBC. We truly became a family over the course of the season, grinding out sessions, training camps, and using each other for motivation ad support when times get tough. After months of preparation, everyone was ready to have THEIR best race.
Of the 7 of us that toed the line, 3 were first time finishers, 3 set Ironman PR’s, and 1 is going to Kona in 2018!!
The results speak for themselves. They are the product of smart work and hard work. Commitment day in and day out to get the best out of yourself. And an ability to execute under pressure. I’m so proud of these athletes!
Our Team has a great group forming for IMWI 2018. But first we have a few more big races on the calendar for 2017, including IMKY, AZ 70.3, IMAZ, Madison Marathon, and more!
As a coach, days like IMWI are the reason I do what I do. Seeing so many athletes accomplish their goals and learn more about themselves, it’s very rewarding to be a part of that.
Spots for the 2016 Team PBC Ironman Wisconsin roster are filling up. Every day I continued to be more and more inspired by people’s stories, commitment, energy, and drive. 2016 is going to be a great year for Team PBC and I’m already looking forward to team camps and training sessions. Furthermore, I’ve had a number of athletes commit to doing Ironman Wisconsin in 2017! I feel so fortunate to be a part of this journey for so many inspiring and motivated athletes.
A handful of spots are still open for the 2016 Ironman Wisconsin roster. I’m offering a special from now through the end of September. Any athlete who signs a 12 month contract will receive a discounted monthly coaching price, a free 1 piece PBC tri suit, a free PBC t-shirt of your choice, and a free PBC hat.
Ironman Wisconsin is truly a unique event. It’s known for a beautiful sunrise mass start, an incredibly hilly bike course, and thousands of enthusiastic fans. It’s always been one of my favorite venues. I won’t be racing this year as they’ve eliminated the men’s pro race (women’s will be back for 2016) but I will be out there spectating and cheering on Team PBC. I have confidence that my athletes will nail it on race day (missing a few from this pic)!
I was recently fortunate enough to be interviewed by Discover Wisconsin and was given the opportunity to blog about spectating Ironman Wisconsin on their The Bobber. Enjoy!
IRONMAN WISCONSIN: Spectate the Right Way on Race Day
Triathlon is a rapidly growing sport in the state of Wisconsin. Google will tell you that there are nearly 30 triathlon races in Wisconsin in the month of August alone. Every year new races pop and established ones fill quicker than you can change a flat bike tire.
Ironman Wisconsin is perhaps the most well-known triathlon in the state and also the longest with a 2.4 mile open water swim, 112 mile bike, and 26.2 mile run. That’s a total of 140.6 miles as triathlete’s bumper stickers across the state will proudly remind you. I’ve toed the line several times on hot September mornings (it’s the 13th this year) to measure up against the competition at Ironman Wisconsin. This year I won’t be as they have eliminated the professional race in this venue. The silver lining of course is I get to enjoy the race as a spectator. I’ve raced or attended this race every year for over a decade so sharpen your pencils and get ready to take some tips from a pro.
Here are my top 5 ways to win the day as a spectator at Ironman Wisconsin.
On your way into town stop by Waterloo, Wisconsin and visit the Trek Bicycle Company. Weekly tours are led by enthusiastic employees Wednesdays at 10:00am. Guests can drool over championship bikes in the lobby and atrium and feast their eyes on those of the future in the race shop and the custom paint booth. Many triathletes will race Ironman Wisconsin on bikes hand built in the Trek Factory in Waterloo, WI.
Colectivo Coffee on Pinckney St. opens at 6:30am on Sundays.
Sunrise on race day is 6:35am.
The race begins at 7:00am.
Here’s your plan: Get yourself a fresh brew from Colectivo Coffee, a trendy little café located in an historic building in downtown Madison and loved by local cyclists. Then follow the pedestrian traffic to the rooftop of the Monona Terrace where you can watch the sunrise dance across Lake Monona in front of a crowd of excited racers and spectators. The nearly 3,000 Ironman Wisconsin athletes start en masse as the gun goes off and it’s a beautiful sight to see.
OLD SAUK PASS AND TIMBER LANE, SOMEWHERE IN THE COUNTRY BETWEEN CROSS PLAINS AND MADISON
So 112 mile is a long way to bike. If you look at a map you’ll see athletes leave the Monona Terrace and weave their way out of the city towards the fair town of Verona, do a loop, then do it again before heading back to transition. I’m often asked about where the best place to watch the bike portion of the race is and my answer is always Old Sauk Pass and Timber Lane. This stretch of road is the longest hill on the course and athletes get to do it twice. Watching from this location is nice for spectators because you’ll see your athlete two times and they will be going a bit slower than average so they’ll likely see (and hear) you. Having fans in this location is great for athletes because you’re likely in the pain cave and a familiar face might be all you need to get through it.
STATE STREET, MADISON WI
One of the best places to watch the run is on State Street. Athletes do a half marathon loop twice and go up and down State Street both times so if you stand still, you’ll see your athlete run past 4 times. The street is closed off to vehicle traffic and lined with spectators sipping frosty beverages and snacking on unique Wisconsin treats such as cheese curds and popcorn. The race finishes between the State Capitol and the Monona Terrace so from the top of State Street it’s a short walk to the finish line.
On the other end of State Street you’ll find the Memorial Union. This gem of a hangout is another local favorite. On any given summer evening you’ll be hard pressed to find a seat but the scavenger hunt that ensues to find one is worth the pay off. On race day athletes will run right past the Memorial Union as they exit State Street and trudge up the only real hill on the run course. After you’ve cheered your athlete on grab a pitcher of tap beer and enjoy people watching and a glorious view of Lake Mendota. If you stick around past sunset you’ll likely hear some live music. Make sure you don’t leave without a scoop of the Orange Custard Chocolate Chip Ice Cream. Sounds weird. Tastes amazing.
Ironman Wisconsin is an amazingly well-run race and is known in the triathlon community as one of the best when it comes to rowdy and supportive fans. As your friends and neighbors get ready to toe the line Sunday, September 13 make sure you’re putting in the recon work to make this your best day of spectating. See you out there!
Everything you need to know about the race can be found here.
If we experience a cold spell in June we all it “June-uary”. In August we just pray that it’s not the beginning of fall. Those competing in Ironman Wisconsin lay awake at night thinking about what if it’s this cold on race day… When you wake up on August 20 and it’s not even 60* you can’t help but think that a cold Ironman Wisconsin is a real possibility. We had one year when it was in the 60’s and raining but for the most part we have been lucky and the weather on race day as of late has been just about perfect. So we are crossing our fingers that will happen in 2015.
Meanwhile we refused to show weakness last night at bike group and everyone still dressed like summer…
If you’re wondering about good ways to track the weather I’ve recently discovered a pretty cool website called www.windyty.com. This site shows live wind patterns, temperature, snow, rain, ocean waves, etc. You can view the entire globe or zoom into a certain area. You have the option to view patterns at surface level all the way up to 13.5k in the sky. For those of you about to head out for training, it’s work checking out. It’s worth it for the therapeutic attributes of watching lulling wind patterns alone.