The scene from Humpy's at night. Pouring.
Arrived just before noon, settled in, caught up with roomie Dr. John Post, introduced John to Kona town, then had dinner and drinks at Kona Brewing with the Rouses, Corbins, etc. Sunday was the only semi-mellow day (i.e. no work plans), but it was an extra long day with the time change and by dinner my eyes were heavy as bricks. It poured that night, and I got cold. Really? After Kona Brewing, a big crew headed over to Humpy's because word was that there was going to be another sausage-eating contest featuring the one and only Wattie going at it, which last year was quite the spectacle apparently (I missed it). This year, no sausages (probably a good thing) but plenty of good times with good people. Finally met more of my Skratch peeps, like Jon R., talked beer with Wattie and Heather. Standard. Oh yea, and more rain!
Only in Kona do you run into your
friends mid-swim on the way to
the Coffees of Hawaii boat!
Early-morning swim at Dig Me Beach; first one since last year, ahhh. Steve from Triathlete found me in the water and slapped my image on their website's main page -- glad I was wearing Betty that day ;) After that a leisurely podcast and chatting with Ian Mikelson at Huggo's, followed by supporting Rousey on his birthday run
. Afternoon: prepped for a Mark Allen interview, which got canceled due to double-booking, bummer, but you could tell he genuinely felt bad. That night we watched Rousey finish his birthday run (see his Blazeman roll in photos below) then we all celebrated at Huggo's; a good crowd came out that night. We snuck away a little early that night because my friend Pedro Gomez told me about a party hosted by Endurance Conspiracy at the Hulihe'e Palace. I love Pedro (my roomie from last year) and wanted to catch up with him, but sadly he left before we got there. Thanks to him, though, we scored on a great party that was mellow, fun, had nice live Hawaiian music and, the best part, FREE catered dinner from the Da Poke Shack! Really?! If Tim DeBoom planned that menu, then I love him even more. It was legit.
Podcasting with Ian Mikelson, giving a more in-depth preview of the men's race.
Good view; no wonder Bob Babbitt uses this for Breakfast with Bob!
Above you see a man doing what he loves more than anything -- running a ton in support of a great cause. Rousey is a special guy :)
The scene at The Palace for the Endurance Conspiracy party. Fun, mellow and amazing food!
John was a fan of Kona from the start.
Had a great time interviewing Chris Legh tucked away in
Bike Works - you do what you can, right?! I love this
pic because it looks like I just asked Chris a horrendous
question and he's disgusted by me haha!
Great day starting with another swim, this time we filmed it and John put together this video
, then media check in and mingling, followed by hanging out at the (epic) Zoot booth and filming a short video podcast
being that it was a special year for them -- their 30th anniversary from the time they were founded in Kona. That day i also I recorded two great podcasts. First was with Chris Legh on his last Kona, then immediately after with Mark Allen, who graciously rescheduled. With Mark, we had a great chat about his new book, The Art of Competition, and much more -- that talk and experience was so special to me. Last year, I interviewed Dave Scott, and now Mark. The two are like night and day. With Mark, and in the setting we were in, I felt so calm and at peace. Pretty neat. That night was the Bonk Breaker Team dinner, and of course lots of fun :) I finally met Biju the chef (of Skratch) which was so cool for me -- cooler than meeting Gordon Ramsey, duh!
Chatting with Mark Allen. We definitely had a good time. I am going to get his new book!
A sneak peak at a page in Mark's book...
Later Tuesday we had some fun with the guys in ORANGE. If you were in Kona, you saw the orange. They were
everywhere and did a killer job! Glad to be on the Bonk Breaker team.
Finally met Angela Naeth in person, as well as her new husband. Just had Angela
on the podcast, and I predict she (and Heather Jackson) are the next big things in Ironman.
Started with an early morning run of about 6 miles on Ali'i (this would be my last real
Had some of my favorite Kona treats that I
really only ever get in Kona, including
Thai Papaya Salads. The best!
workout I'd have until getting back home to Calif). It was a star-studded run, I think I saw at least 5 pros and a bunch of other AG'ers I know -- it looked like the 5 freeway at rush hour. Then we worked at the Bonk Breaker booth in the expo from 9-1; gotta help my peeps! Plus, it's really fun working at a booth like theirs. The only problem is controlling your intake of BB samples ;) During our shift, I started recording clips for a podcast on sports nutrition
. After that, had a podcast with Hillary Biscay previewing the women's pro race; she was super insightful and fun. We both sucked down coffee -- I survived on caffeine through the week! Then hitched a ride to the Clif House for their Happy Hour, then hitched another ride from Scott and Macca to the Slowtwitch Party, and I even snuck in a little interview with Macca
. After that, Scott (Macca's manager) invited us on a night swim with the manta rays. That was pretty epic to say the least. Video here.
I think I had avocado and eggs for dinner back at the condo -- one of those long days where eating real meals was of low priority haha.
Turns out one of Hillary's friends, Michelle, live near some of my clients on the East Coast
and teaches their pilates class! Small world!
Hitch-hiking, working, having fun... it all goes together. This is when I did a
short video with Macca during a drive with him and his crew.
It's not just LInsey Corbin who has fans; Chris (her husband on the left) has fans too, aka John!
And that's Linsey's dad in the middle who was an amazingly good guy!
The Linsey Corbin ale up close... a Chris Corbin special. Thanks, Clif, for throwing
yet another great get-together for your pros.
The annual Slowtwitch party at sunset.
Those would be the manta rays, in the dark water. Not scary at all, I am serious! I even got the courage to touch them!
It just kept getting better... UPR aka the Underpants Run ( see our video here
)!! This was extra fun for me -- normally I am filming it/taking pics and not really running it, but this year not only did I get to run the whole thing, I was on the Betty team which was a total blast! Kristin made us look good in her new suits (more pics on FB). It's funny, people always talk about "training" for the UPR (it is quite the scene of low body fat and lots of lean muscle!), but I did the opposite this year for my prep -- I am in full offseason mode, enjoying beer, and not training. If I was a few lbs "heavier" that morning (and all week), I did not care one iota. Thankfully, looking at the pics, it seems a glimpse of leftover abs still showed up for me that morning. After the UPR, I podcasted with Sam Mazer, athlete extraordinaire, followed by work at the condo before quickly heading back for the pro press conference -- all before noon. While standing in that conference room, I literally got tears in my eyes feeling so thankful to be engulfed in the world and the sport that I love so much. Listening and observing was, and always is, just truly special. You learn a lot in those things too -- not just from what's said, but from the demeanor of everyone. Afternoon was "my time" exploring the expo and talking to some important folks, as well as work work work. Have you seen the world's best triathlon expo? If not, click here
. That evening was the Wattie party. Enough said.
Not the greatest picture, but I at least had a good spot in the house ;) You could tell on Mary Beth Ellis' face that she
knew she was taking a big risk given her injury. On the other hand Rinny seemed confident as could be!
Pro press conference, the men. (L-R) Llanos, Raelert, Jacobs, Kienle and Alexander. Only one of these
guys ended up even having a "good day."
The Betty Designs ladies looking good. I am surrounded by fast ones! Hailey, far right, went sub-10!!!! Love it!!!
Photo credit: The one and only SHIGGYYYYYY! Like him here.
The men who make it happen! We got a picture with Paul and Roch after, which I heard got on the front page of a local newspaper, but in taking said photo I got Paul Huddle armpit sweat on my shoulder... ewww hehe.
Our own Abbey Road moment. Amazing idea, and worked out so well! I love The Beatles, so I was all about this shot!
I am super grateful that Shiggy was around this week, not only for these photos but just to hang with. Cool dude!
No UPR is complete without a Rousey sandwich!
The day before the race, always special. We had a meetup with Ben Greenfield and Co. in the King Kam at 9, where we recorded a podcast, which is just on BGF not EP. Then I hit the wall! I had to take an hour or so to shut down and rest a bit. I was feeling fried. Got it together and then spent time at bike check in, followed by a podcast with the Melanoma Research Foundation director, which went way better than I ever expected. Take a listen.
Had another podcast that night with an AG'er. That night was the TGINR party at Huggo's (translation: the "Thank God I'm Not Racing" party). Always a good, classy, fun event. I ate a lot of ribs and drank very good but very weak mai tais (only because they had crappy beer on tap). Their "souvenir" this year was quite epic -- a medal that was a wine cork and beer tap all in one. It is hearty! Word is that it was even a red flag in security at the airport!
Meeting with podcast fans and recording a show on the spot in the King Kam! Fun (minus my hangover)!
This is where I took some time to re-charge when I was feeling like crud. It worked!
Bike check in. I was hoping to see big things from this Luke,
and Andreas to the right. Sadly not this year.
I swear, I've never seen so much Macca in my life, even after having done the double sprints with him. I've become an even bigger fan, not gonna lie. He's a rad dude.
Can't wait until we see Terenzo racing Kona again! Next year?
Not the best photo, but you get the idea: Huggo's has great views! Party time! But don't party too hard here
otherwise you will hate yourself Saturday hehe.
A couple of my favorite dudes, especially when we're all in Kona together! Rousey and Tyler (now with Blue Seventy).
Saturday (Race Day):
We had two athletes in our condo and one volunteer so our house was up by 3:45 AM, baby! No big deal, right?! I was pumped from the get go and possibly a little too wound up that morning with excitement -- I had a mid-morning desire to crash, which I had to ignore. I managed to post a podcast before we even left the house at 5ish. Ha!
|This was also a Kona first for me... as I posted a podcast at 4-something-AM, John made us breakfast! Normally I am downing bars and coffee when I can (no real meals), so a real breakfast?! Heaven!|
So that's it for now... next up will be race day and all the cool things I observed. In the next post, I'll take a more serious look at the race and give you my commentary.