30.3.12

The Weekend Review: In Melbourne.

I have just landed back to earth after a fantastic long weekend in Melbourne. We had the best time and it's feeling strange to be back to the daily grind. We left very bleary-eyed on Friday morning. I had approximately 4 hours sleep because I worked the late shift the night before but we made it to the airport. I also managed to fit in some shopping at Witchery at 6.30 am so the weekend was off to a good start. We also needed coffee and chocolate croissants. The chocolate ended up all over my face but thankfully Mike didn't snap a sneaky photo of me.
After landing in Melbourne we got introduced to a nice and chilly wind. It was cold and I was not prepared for it. If I had known I would have brought my coat. Then again, layering always works and that's what I ended up doing. I always carry a scarf or two in my handbag so that came in handy too.
Necklace from H&M, sweater from Miss Shop,
singlet from Supre, Jeans from Forever New
and Strandbags wheelie suitcase.
We rented a car and headed straight to St Kilda so Mike could officially register for Ironman, watch the security briefing and sign the participants board with a golden pen. I passed the time by shopping ironman products and having a glass of rose at Republica.
It's all in a hard day's work.
I know I already said it was windy but here is some more proof. The town I grew up in actually holds the Norwegian record for being the windiest city in the country so I am experienced with wind. One tip I always give is to never apply lip gloss before you go out with your hair down, it just won't end well.
Here I have added a scarf from Beck Sondergaard, sunnies from Oroton,
cardi from Country Road and a Sportsgirl bag.
Afterwards we drove to the Hotel, checked in and got ready for the afternoon's carb-party and welcome show. I do love my carbs and this event did not disappoint. There were breadrolls, potato salad, cous cous, chicken paella, lasagna, fruit and cake. I'm glad I didn't take too much food because I got full pretty quickly.
After dinner we walked over the Palais theatre where the welcome show would be. And what do you know, the really funny and charming Daniel MacPherson hosted the show. He has competed in five Ironmen himself so he knows what he is talking about. I used to meet him often in my old job and he was always friendly, smiling and really fun to talk to and it's great to see that he hasn't changed.
After the event we went back to the hotel and I caught up with one of my colleagues who was also staying there. We had both gotten a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine sent to our rooms so who were we to deny the encouragement? Mike stayed in our room to pack and get a good sleep and I went to K's room for a drink or three. We also had on Snog, Marry, Avoid? in the background and if you haven't seen it before, check out this article by Zoe Foster, she explains it all. When I returned to our room I thought I was quite the quiet little mouse but Mike says I was more like a drunken little mouse. Which is just right for a Friday night. 
On Saturday morning Mike and I walked to Melbourne Central, a fantastic mall. We were both really liked the mall and I spent a lot of time in Mecca Maxima which I simply have to write a separate post about. It was that great. We also found a fantastic chocolate shop, but we resisted tempation and only had mochas. They were made with real melted chocolate though so I guess we weren't that good after all.
It's always important to wear a comfy outfit for shopping because you will get changed a few times. I also needed to layer due to it being cold.
Necklace from Norway, sweather from Cotton On (I wore it when
I first met Mike), Sportsgirl scarf, jeans from H&M and shoes from Wittner. 
After staying at the mall for a bit Mike went to Frankston to check in his bike and then to the airport to pick up some friends of ours. I went to a few more shops, including on Chapel Street, and then headed back to the hotel for a spa and a workout. 
Shoes from Asics, Sunto watch and
Ministry of Sounds Running Traxx.
In the evening our friends came over and Mike's sister and mum had also come to Melbourne so we had a little gathering in our hotel room. Room service was also a must, with a waguy burger and wine for me and club sandwich and veggies for him.

We went to bed around 9pm and it was hard to sleep knowing we would get up at 3.30am on Sunday for the race. It wasn't as difficult as I thought it would to get up be but the tiredness really hit me a few hours later when I realised what a long day it would be. 
Wearing new threads from Topshop (hoodie)
and JayJays (sweater). Stockings are a must.
Thankfully there were plenty of coffee stands at the starting area and we were quick to line up. There is something special about the spirit of 1600 athletes and their support crew all anxiously waiting for that 7.15am start time. 

First they did the 3.8km swim, then there was the 180km bike and lucky last, the 42km marathon. We were able to snap a few pictures along the way but next time he will have to wear something fluoro because it was too hard to recognise him with wearing just neutral colours. It was great to see him in such good spirits because we knew how hard he had worked and we were/are so proud of him.
Action picture by me & smiling picture  by J. 
After he finished his bike he started running from Frankston to St Kilda and we kept up thanks to slow traffic. He managed to run past us a few times too so that was great for his motivation. When we got to St Kilda I simply had to have gelato from Fritz Gelato and it was amazing. I bought chili chocolate and salted caramel and I would fly back to Melbourne just for that. I have already started scouting local gelato places for the same kind of gelato so let me know if you are aware of any Sydney places with great flavours like this. 
Photo Credit: Taken by W.
Waiting for him at the finish line was both exciting and I was also feeling nervous. I so wanted him to make it and I knew he would but I just wanted him to be safe. Mike ended up finishing in just under 11 hours and it was such a great moment. I was also really inspired because there was a 66 year old male and 71 year old female racing and it's not just anyone's grandparents who can do this kind of thing. 
Naturally we headed to Republica for celebrations whilst Mike had a massage and some food; they get ice cream and lollies - surely that's motivation enough? He has not had any alcohol since our New Zealand trip so he was really excited to have his first beer. We also needed to feed him something greasy as he has lost over 13 kg since he started to train for Ironman. I think after the week we've had it's bound to be back on him very soon. 
I had Sauv Blanc, margarita pizza and olives.
We had such a great night, three of our friends were there and his mum and two sisters and it was just so special. We also ran out of phone batteries (smartphones aren't so smart after all) so there are no pictures after a certain time so that might be a good thing. I got tired before Mike even though I hadn't raced, so we headed back to our hotel around 10pm. I've already mentioned that being support crew can be hard work and my body was craving sleep.

On Monday morning Mike had to pick up his bike from St Kilda and I had my eyes set on the South Wharf DFO. Luckily he was still able to walk and drive but he was pretty slow so now I know how he will be like as an old man. I got up before him so I just hung out with my ipad in the hotel bar and the made me a great cappucino.
Sweater from Vila (in Norway), skirt from Cotton
On and a Supre shirt underneath.
Now I was really impressed with the DFO, they had some really cool stores (even a Burberry outlet - a girl can dream) and I also went to the Villa & Hut Cafe for some breakfast. I had to "trai their chai" and it's not something I usually drink but it was amazing. I actually bought a pack of Indian Spiced Chai so now I can make it at home. I also had half a cajun chicken sandwich. Mike promptly had the other half and a coffee + meat pie combo. He loves his pies. 
In the afternoon we realised we would have to bring his bike back to Sydney on the plane (it was driven down for us last week) and we had to stop at a Bourke St bike shop to get a bike box and the guy in the store was really friendly and gave Mike everything for free. We then headed to St Kilda for the presentation and after party. Dan MacPherson hosted the presentation and it was again really inspirational to see all the age group winners and this is how they get the many tired Ironmen to sign up again. The after party was really cool - heaps of greasy food (think burgers, sausages, pizza) and the alcohol was flowing. I had offered to drive so Mike could have a few and although I was a little nervous driving in Melbourne because of the trams, it was all good. Now I can tick that off the list of things I didn't think I would do. 

All in all it was a fantastic weekend and I can't wait to go back. I like how Melbourne is so close to Sydney but yet so different. 

What did you get up to last weekend? What's the best gelato flavour you have tried? 

xx



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