4. Act like a deep-space radar and note any and all messages from your body and respond accordingly.
If you’re a few hours into the Hawaii Ironman and for one reason or another you’re not in a relatively comfortable state, you need to figure out what you need to do to return to equilibrium. It may be a blister, or a sunburn, or a need of salt, or a chafing problem—if you’re receiving the mildest complaint of pain from your body, attend to ASAP. Sucking it up when you still have another five to 10 (or more) hours of racing usually means that what starts as an annoyance inflames into at worst a DNF and at best a few teeth-grinding hours of severe discomfort. The Ironman has plenty of time to dig her claws into the smallest gripe and make them the center of your universe.
Fortunately, the aid stations at the Ironman World Championship, thanks to the local volunteers, are the best in the world. They have everything you could possibly imagine to apply the first aid you’ll need to keep things as comfortable as possible for as long as possible.