I left for work earlier than usual this morning because of road closures for the Ironman triathlon. Driving in, I passed several signs that fans made. The time I was allowed to be on the road was closing in on me and was not able to pull over and take pictures, so you’ll have to just trust me that some of the most memorable signs were, “Lions Eat Cheetahs for Breakfast”, and “Ninja’s Wear Weird Bike Shorts.” I admit I was a little confused by these and thought maybe the sign maker was just trying to give the triathletes something to think about for the rest of the bike ride. Another sign said, “Do It For the Bananas!” Personally, bananas wouldn’t motivate me.
For those of you that do not know, a full Ironman triathlon consists of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride, and ends with a 26.2 mile run. Volunteer and spectator support is crucial in an event of this caliber and the signs from friends and family can get you pumped and sometimes help you push through the hard times.
Fans write with chalk on the roads in hope that their athlete sees their personal message to them. There are many signs that say, “Go Mom!” or “Go Dad!”
Some do a play on the athletes’ name for inspiration. Other signs might have more of an inside story to them, like this sign for Elaine. I asked Elaine’s fan what was up with the sheep and he said it was a cartoon that he’s been drawing for years and that they were from Wales where she trains alongside sheep.
The sign “Iron Crabs” made me wonder if their athlete started with a “handicap” and they were wishing the fan wasn’t announcing it to the world.
Alas, it is just the name of their Triathlon Club down in Maryland. Phew!
Whether or not the athletes even notice the signs is another question. I guess it depends on how fast or slow they are moving. For a slower paced gal like me, I definitely notice the signs!