Ironman training is in FULL EFFECT. This is the 9th time I've been through this and each time I learn a little more. This installment has required entirely new levels of efficiency since Troy is training too. I take the days, and he takes the morning and nights. I generally get Saturday, he generally gets Sunday. I train 2.5 hours to his every 1, he eats 2.5 calories, to my every 1. So, a few observations this go around:

1.) We need huge amounts of training fuel. 18 bars will last about 5 days, and energy drink needs to be purchased in $100-$200 lots. We totally go through it. Chomps, blasts, gummies, etc... we need lots of different kinds so I'm pretty much buying these ANY time I see them. A LOT of them.

2.) Freezer Meal Parties. Thank you Michelle Ford for becoming a Wildtree rep and letting me crash most of her parties. At one point I had 37 frozen meals in the freezer (and I fit it all in the freezer side of our refrigerator). We are down to 8 meals left, and there are 6 weeks to go. I will need to crash more parties STAT. These have been the biggest lifesaver because most of them are done in the crock pot so we just put one in each day and there is food ready when we need it. Hot food. There is something about training that makes you want HOT food that smells good. Between these meals and our weekly door to door organics box we barely have to go to the store (usually only at 9pm for cookies and ice cream).

3.) Leftovers. I will admit that the biggest fight Troy and I have gotten into during this double Ironman situation is over leftovers. I thought it would be about who trains when, OH NO, that's been fine. But if I come home from training and I'm hoping to eat the leftover fajitas and Troy has eaten them, and I'm starving...huge blowup! So we had to sit down and have a heartfelt conversation about leftovers. He was under the assumption that if it's in the fridge it needs to all be eaten ASAP. I had to tell him that leaving me lunch is a sign of love. Now we are on the same page. He eats the leftovers, but always saves me some so I don't lose it.

4.) Uncle! Sometimes we just have to call uncle. Troy and I have both experienced this. When it was just me training my training was priority and now that there are two of us, sometimes we can't get everything we both need done. Sometimes, we have to bag it. I think this is what keeps triathlon marriages together. Both people need to be priority and sometimes training has to get ditched. In the long run, it all works out. It helps that Troys training schedule is rather loose, so he moves and shakes depending on his mojo. But I have lost my motivator. He used to really shove me out the door when I was stalling, and now he's like "Maybe you should nap and I'll go train."

5.) Feelings! Troy totally knows how I'm feeling. He's feeling the same way. I thought this would be a problem, but actually, this time around when I talk about being tired or just wanting to go to bed, I don't feel bad anymore, because he is like "I totally agree." His empathy for me and my empathy for him have really gone up and that's been good for our marriage. I have felt less bad this go around than any other. We are both happy to be able to go to Brazil and being in it together just makes me smile.

6.) Sharing successes. This has been another awesome perk. We share our training successes so much more with each other. He had a breakthrough in the pool the other day and called me the minute he got out. I finished a big session and went straight to him for kudos. Also, we have really contributed to each others athletic success so much more than ever. Now we are in the pool with each other pushing one another, and it's all for the same goal. The other day he wasn't getting on his bike when he should have been and I told him "I don't want to come back at midnight to pick you up, you better get on your bike." We literally sat there and laughed for 5 minutes over that one.

7.) Laundry. Barely happens, and forget folding.

8.) Annie. Her life has really been minimally impacted in a negative way. She's in swim school two nights a week and has lots of homework, so sometimes she's busier than we are. This morning, Troy was traveling for business, and I meet with my trainer at the gym (Jen) at 7am. So I got up at 5 and packed everything up and then woke up Annie and she came and lifted with me. Jen gave her all these exercises and she had so much fun. Annie also gets lots of extra time in the swimming pool because most of Troy and I's workouts are longer than her swim school, so she plays afterwards (just like she's doing as I write this). So Annie doesn't really see or notice any changes. I'm really happy with the lack of impact to her.

All in all, things are going really great. I am so darn happy this year. I'm having so so so so so much more fun. I'm enjoying my training to the n-th degree and I feel so much more well adjusted this year. Sure I still have my freak outs, but all in all this year is a 180 from last. I think a big part of that is having Troy in it with me. I'm so glad we are an Ironman family and that we teach our daughter daily to chase her dreams, to work hard, to have fun, and to be healthy.

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