5 Days until Ironman Muncie 70.3 & My First DNF

As we all know, I took some chances this year and entered some big name expensive races which I normally avoid.  Ironically, I won’t be running the Chicago Rock N Roll Half due to the tear in the tendon in my foot and although I plan to participate in Ironman Muncie 70.3 on Saturday, I will have to DNF (Did Not Finish) due to my inability to start/complete the run.

ironman muncie

5 days out from a half iron event, I’ve never felt so unprepared.  My swimming is okay.  I’m not fast but can certainly cover the distance with or without a wetsuit.  Of course, I’d like a cold front to come thru and cool off the Prairie Creek Reservoir so that water temps are wetsuit legal and I can feel fast and free as the wetsuit corrects the imperfections in my form.  But regardless, the swimming will be the easy part on Saturday.

As for the bike, OUCH, it’s gonna hurt.  I knew upon registering for this race back in April that it would be a real push to be in good enough shape to ride the 56 miles well this early in the season.  The way my schedule works out, time to ride is a real luxury.  I have ridden way more miles on the trainer this month than ever before in my life. I’ve ridden outside, maybe 100 miles this year.  OUCH, this is gonna hurt.

bike cartoon_Stuart McMillen Source:  Stuart McMillen

I’m obviously looking at a less than ideal situation.  Since I’m already planning to DNF, and I’m not really ready to kill the 56 miles on the bike, you might ask why I’m even going?  Because I can!  I can cover the 56 miles even if I do shed a few tears.  I can learn from this experience and move forward with more knowledge as a TRI athlete and I’ll be one step closer to being a better cyclist.  I will get to experience the Ironman atmosphere to see if it is one which I want to spend my money on try again.  The $250 race fee is non-refundable so I’m going to go and do what I can do and walk away with the satisfaction that I didn’t give in and quit when I had so many excuses as to why it would have been “ok” to sit this one out.  And really, after I finish the swim & bike on Saturday, I can officially consider myself 33.33% of an Ironman.  Think they have a tat for that?  A pretty design for 57.2?  No, I didn’t complete the 70.3 this time, no I didn’t even consider the 140.6.  Just 57.2 for me!


The 57.2 would forever represent courage to step outside the safety zone.  Courage to do what you can do in any situation.  Courage to push your limits.  Courage to TRI even when you know you could use a few more months of training today may not be your best day.  So I’m heading to Muncie to do what I can do, and on Saturday that will be swimming and biking at the best of the ability I currently possess……..for 57.2 miles of pure hell bliss.

Would you go to a race even if you knew you would need to DNF?  This is certainly a first for me and it just seems strange.

**Keep TRIing! ** Amanda – TooTallFritz ** amanda@tootallfritz.com

15 thoughts on “5 Days until Ironman Muncie 70.3 & My First DNF

  1. I think it’s awesome that you’re not letting this injury slow you down. I love the idea of doing 2/3 of a Triathlon! I think that’s badass.

    I think if it were a running race, I don’t know if I would start it if I knew I couldn’t/shouldn’t finish, because knowing me, I wouldn’t pull myself out when I needed to, and that would be bad. But with an event like a Tri, I assume it would be easier to pull yourself out when you have to, since the events are separate.

    • Mentally, its still a struggle but I will be right there in transition and I KNOW that I can’t run so I don’t have a choice. If I go out and tear this more, then I could do permanent damange. 😦

    • HaHa! Yes, but I was only doing a 1/2 IM to start with so that’s 66.6% of a half ironman. Just sounds kinda pathetic. I think I’ll just focus on the 57.2, much more inspiring in my own head. 🙂

  2. Good luck! I think participating in the swim and bike portions is a brilliant idea! You already know you can’t do the run, but why not get in some swim and bike practice in a competitive environment? Great idea!!

  3. I can’t imagine how tough this is for you. But on the bright side, you can still finish the majority of the race. I doubt I’d have the self control to bow out of the run portion if I was injured. I’m happy you are able to make a positive experience out of this 🙂 best of luck to you this weekend in the swim and cycle portions. Those distances are much further than I can ever imagine covering at this point!

  4. Amanda, I think that doing 2/3 of the race makes me respect you MORE than if you did the whole thing. You are going into the event knowing that your goal is just to do your very best. I think it’s silly when people feel like they need to set a personal record at every race. After all, isn’t the idea to do your personal best and try your hardest no matter what you are doing? So why “save up” for just one race or event! I think that 57.2 shows that you are not a quitter. I was fist pumping when I heard that you were still doing Muncie! Winners don’t quit, and quitters don’t win. You are giving this injury “the finger” by showing it who’s boss!

  5. I have the utmost in admiration for your courage to keep battling it out despite the challenges you’ve been going through with your injuries. It would be so easy for most people to say, “I’m injured. I can’t do anything. I’m not even going to try. Woe is me.” But you are out there fighting the good fight!!! The amount of heart that takes to keep battling is truly awe-inspiring!!! Keep it up and I wish you a fabulous race!!!

    Absolutely I would go to a race even if I knew I would be a DNF. I registered for the Chicago Marathon back in February, all the while fearing my nagging injuries might rear their ugly heads sometime in between February and October. But I told myself that no matter what, I’m going to get out there and participate. Even if I only run one mile, I still want to experience at least some part of the race! (The nonrefundable registration fees certainly push me in that way, as well. =D )

    • My Plantar Fasciitis was sooo bad leading up to and during the marathon last year. I seriously considered stepping off the course at the Board of Trade (mile 2!) but I kept running. That certainly wasn’t the smartest decision I ever made but I finished. Good luck and enjoy! I have to sit this year out. 😦

  6. I agree – I think this is admirable. And you’ve sunk time & money into training, so I think it’s good to continue. And for me, I know that I can always learn more about cycling in a group environment & pacing on the bike, so that’s probably good to practice as well! Although I can only imagine how hard this is mentally on you, esp. when you start to see all the other people who are planning on the whole thing. Good luck!

    • That was pretty much the plan from the point that I registered. I knew I wouldn’t be fully prepared on the bike but was considering this a high intensity training event in respect to the biking. Its hard to imagine that I’ll ever be where I want on the bike.

  7. Excellent approach to making something positive out of Muncie Ironman. You can’t run, but you can swim and bike it! Don’t fret about the biking….you can ride 56-miles…maybe just not as fast as if you had more training in. Last, but most important, you are doing 66.6% of an Ironman….2 of 3 events, not the percent of mileage. So consider it 2/3 Ironman and be proud of it!

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