This is going to be a long babble so I'll break it into sections.
The whole reason I chose Ironman Mont Tremblant (over IMNY or IMLP) more than 15 months ago was because the race was centered around the village. The fact that the family could watch me start the race and then head back to the hotel was very appealing despite the fear on how tough this course really was. The profile on the Ironman website showed the climb to Lake Superior to be a 14% grade over 5 km long! Where in the world would I ever find hills like that to train on? Turns out that the hills weren't as bad as everyone made them out to be. This was confirmed by the NRG training camp in June. I felt much better as I did the two loops (minus a short 10 km out and back) in around 7 hours. That was including a nasty flat tire and also a bout of puking on the side of the highway on the second loop.
One of the tricks, Scobie taught me, was take a sleeping pill two nights before the race. I have no idea why a good sleep is important two nights before the race. I've heard it before before but the sleeping pill does the job. The night before the race, sleep is a luxury. Tammy and the kids wanted to go out for ice cream so at 8:00 pm we walked along the main through way of the village. I ran into a bunch of people from the Markham Tri Club who immediately questioned me why I wasn't at the hotel resting/sleeping the night before the big race. I was very tired and this seemed to be a very good idea but the family wasn't cooperating.
Once we got back, I immediately crashed but woke up at 1:30 am and that was pretty much the end of my sleep. I tossed and turned but couldn't sleep. I even updated my blog two hours before race time but in hindsight, probably wasn't a good idea. One of the problems of being so close to transition (literally a 5 minute walk) was that I goofed around too long.
I headed down to transition around 5:45 am for body marking and was shocked on how many people were already milling around. I looked around for Adena who said she'd be marking people. I looked around for 10 minutes but didn't see anyone who looked like her (I've never met her and she doesn't have a picture on her blog). I ran into Mandy and said "hey have you seen Adena?" And, that's who Mandy was talking to! Bloggers meet!
After chit chatting, I headed to transition, only to realize, I left three water bottles in the fridge so I had to go back to the hotel. I finally was set up for the bike, run, bike special needs bag and run special needs bag but I had to go back to the hotel and get my wetsuit. Tons of people were heading to the beach which was about one kilometer (0.6 mile) away. I got back to the hotel and the kids were still sleeping. I was on the verge of panicking as no one wanted to get out of bed! Finally we headed out with Tammy carrying Jake on her back and I was holding Vanessa's hand (who also wanted to be carried) and Rebecca was limping up the hill with her broken ankle (in a walking cast). We got down to the beach and it was packed! People were milling around while athletes were trying to get to the beach. I said my goodbyes and ran into some guys from the Markham Tri Club. Like lambs being led to the slaughter we headed to the beach while Mike Reilly sent the pros off at 6:50 am and was counting down. I was no where near the water. At 7:00 am, a CF-18 fighter jet flew overhead and a cannon was supposed to be fired but there were too many people milling around the cannon. Next thing I know, Mike Reilly was yelling "GO, GO, GO, GO!!!" What happened to the cannon? I looked around for my friends and only saw a sea of black wet suits so I waded into the water to start the swim with 2,000 other wanna-be-Ironmans.