Fadi “Lake Fadi” Mashnouk happily gets ready to get in the water on day one. From the look on his face, the main set has yet to be announced.
Ironman Coeur d’ Alene Camp 2004In 2003, cold & wet weather greeted campers at the first Multisports.com Ironman Coeur d’ Alene Camp. 2004 was a very different story.
Huddle and Roch arrived on Tuesday to meet with the local agencies and volunteer captains as part of the planning for the June race and the weather that greeted them was on the cold side to say the least. With forecasts calling for lows in the 30’s and highs in the 50’s…and lots of rain, things weren’t looking good for the weekend. Thank goodness the forecasts were wrong and a repeat of 2003 was avoided as clear skies and warm temperatures greeted campers from all over the country.
All of our Ironman camps follow a schedule that gives every participant the opportunity to experience the key workouts they should be doing each week on the actual course of their goal Ironman. Training during the day is followed with lectures on Ironman specific training, tapering, nutrition, and race strategy…and, of course, a lot of great food and tri-bonding.
Friday started with registration and orientation quickly followed by a short ride on the Ironman course to the Liberty Lake Athletic Club for a 3000 to 4000-yard (depending on each participant’s level of swimming ability) workout that featured a main set specific to the demands that 4km of open water swimming would exact in 9-weeks time. Everyone got through the workout with no problem despite all the anxious faces and sandbagging comments about how slow they were as lanes were organized. “No, no, you go ahead - I really haven’t been swimming much lately.” – get on with it campers!
The short ride back to the hotel confirmed bikes were in working order and was followed by, perhaps, the most popular lecture topic of any Ironman’s agenda: Nutrition. The lecture was the perfect segway to dinner at arguably the best restaurant in Post Falls, The White House. This local legend of Mediterranean culinary delights didn’t disappoint with garlic to spare. Thank goodness everyone shared in the humus and pita so that the garlic levels of all were equal – yikes!
Saturday started with breakfast, which at the camp host hotel, the Sleep Inn, means waffles! A short lecture with Roch on swimming allowed the sun to come up a little higher and warm up the roads for the long ride and transition run. The questions about the dreaded hills on the bike course were quickly put to rest as everyone got a guided tour complete with the opportunity to ride the hardest hills and most technical descents twice in the 5-hours allotted for this key ride. Once off the bike, no one was eager to run but run after riding you must if you intend to race well at this distance. The transition run was everyone’s opportunity to see if the nutritional strategies they put in to practice were adequate or left them a little short on fuel. If they were short it wouldn’t be for long as lunch soon awaited. After a short nap, it was time for the lecture with the coaches on the final 9-weeks of training and how to structure it optimally.
Sunday dawned cool and crisp under a cobalt blue sky. There’s no prettier place than Coeur d’ Alene on a day like today. By 7am, we were at the transition area/swim start ready to head out for the final key workout of the weekend, the long run. After an explanation of the new finish line, everyone rolled out on to the run course for a first hand look at the will soon be the finish of their day on the last weekend in June. Again, the fear of the unknown was quickly dispelled as everyone covered the course and got to taste the dreaded hill to the turn around on E. Coeur d’ Alene Lake Dr. – not so bad when you’re only doing one loop…after a good nights sleep! It might be a little different with a 2.4-mile swim and a 112-mile bike on the front end…but at least everyone now knows what to expect.
Upon returning to the hotel it was time for a much deserved brunch, final Q & A, and, of course, the camper awards ceremony where everyone was roasted but the coaches and given all sorts of goodies (Timex watches, $100-off certificates for X-terra wetsuits and TRIALL3 bike cases, etc.). This is the best part of any camp. What started as a group of strangers ends as a group of friends who will support each other on race day. We’ll see everyone in Coeur D’ Alene in June – train safe!