Thursday night Flight from Düsseldorf to Barcelona was delayed about 3-4 hours and instead of arriving at 10 pm on thursday there, the plane landed late night after 12am on friday, fortunately the transportation company arranging the vehicle to Calella was still operating. After a short wait in barcelona airport, with other groups from different part of the world, like the USA our bus arrived and we started our trip to Calella.
I had already informed in Düsseldorf my landlady in Calella that my flight was delayed and that I will be arriving in the middle of the night. Driving through Barcelona, it was very calm in that late hours and I enjoyed the light and some monuments of the town. Arrived at Calella approximately at 2pm. My landlady there, Christina, told me not to ring the bells, instead to call or write an whatsapp, I dad my doubts that she would wake up at that late, did as instructed and she immediately opened the doors. Showed my room and finally I could go to sleep.
The next day woke up pretty early after a late night sleep, must have been the excitement. The weather was colder than expected. First thing in my mind was to visit the Ironman Village and take my racing gear, like BIP number, timing chip, swimming cap and so on. I took the road through Calella to have a glimpse at the town. It was small and very beautiful with a welcoming atmosphere. Stopped at on of the juice bars and ordered a smoothie. A friendly service like I was used to in Spain, the day was starting nice.
The Ironman village was more then one and a half kilometers away from the airbnb that I rented. Calella’s old town about 700 meters. Walked the rest of the road from the beach side with a nice view of the mediterranean sea. Roadblocks for the race parkour started appearing and my excitement also increasing with every step. Arriving at the Ironman Village small shops starting to appear selling all kinds of triathlon stuff from mountable nutrition kits to spare tires, tricots, helmets. They even had a high end bike rent shop with time trial bikes.
Took some photos of the Village and going past the shops found the registration tent. Found my name on the registration list and received my ironman bracelet, that I had to wear for whole of the event to able to enter the briefing tent, official ironman shop and the transition area. Most importantly I got my Ironman backpack with all the gear and information for the race. Visited the official Ironman Shop and looked at the gear bought an Ironman magnet and a swimming goggles.
There was still time for the english race briefing so again started looking at the shops before the registration tent and decided to buy a bandana for factasticgirl and co2 cartridge for a faster repair if something would happen to the bike. Speaking of which, I decided while preparing for the race not to transport my bike and instead to rent a road bike for the race in Calella. After searching through a few companies I decided to rent from Medbikes.
Infomed Medbikes that I wanted to test the bike after the race briefing and enter the tent where the race briefing would take place. In the tent there was already energizing music playing and a lot of athletes were sitting at long tables and waiting for the briefing. Walked to the front, asked if a the seat was still available and relaxed for a few moments before the race briefing. I had already read the Ironman Race rules beforehand but still there was new information and the race director who also was the presenter, talked about the race courses, the steep hills, small mountains where two of the big climbs were located while riding. The Swim course and finally the running course. Gave a lot of tips and explained again some of the important racing rules: mobile phone are not allowed, no slipstreaming while riding and so on.
Overall visiting the Ironman village was a blast.
After the briefing I walked to the Medbike’s temporary shop to check out my rented bike and test drive it. Took my rented bike from the Medbike shop and drove a few hundred meters to test its gear and overall feeling. It was a more high end bike then what I was riding in Düsseldorf and it also felt like it.
After riding it for a few minutes and very satisfied with my bike, explained the shop that the I will take the bike tomorrow to bring it to the transition area. Left with a big smile on my face, after everything went very smoothly.
Did some grocery shopping for my evening meal on the way back to the apartment.
After arriving at the apartment and talking to my landlady about my ankylosing spondylitis disease, my special diet, to keep my symptoms in check, she allowed me to use her kitchen to cook my evening meal, with a full belly, relaxed, surfed the internet, read the competition rules and called it a day to save energy for the Sunday race.
To be continued…