Archive for May, 2011

Not what I was hoping for!!

Posted on: May 24th, 2011 by admin 1 Comment

Well, unfortunately Ironman Lanzarote did not go to plan at all! But I guess that is racing! With the way the week went leading up to the race some how I am not surprised!

Friday finally came around, it was the day before and I felt good during my pre race swim, bike and run. I was excited and ready to go. It had been a good lead up with running being at a level it has not been since 2008 I was looking forward to putting it to the test.

Mum and I planned to check my bike and gear bags in then go straight from transition to pick up Dad, Peter and Chris from the airport. The timing would be perfect.

Well, so I thought!

We found somewhere to park the car amongst the one way streets and tiny road ways and were just about near transition when mum commentated how she could feel something wet in my bag! The lid of a bottle I had in my bike to run bag had come off and now everything inside including my hat, socks and shoes was covered in a lovely sticky substance! Great!!

It was back to the apartment to replace the socks, the shoes will have to dry over night, replace that then back to the supermarket for another drink! We finally did get everything into transition but we had missed our airport pick up time so we rang dad and explained they would have to catch a taxi.

It was great having Dad, Peter and Chris arrive, we heard there travel stories (it is a mega flight to get from Perth to Lanzarote!) then they joined me for my Pesto Pasta pig out!!

Not the best night sleep the night before, actually terrible! Normally I can sleep a fair bit, obviously the nerves and excitement play there part but I am still able to get a good 6 hours. But not this time! I was in bed before 9am and watched the clock tick over until 11.45pm! I was then up twice before my 4.30am alarm went off! Not so good!

Waiting for the start and the gun to go off I was ready! After a good warm up I felt relaxed, excited, ready to tackle Ironman Lanzarote again for the 3rd time. I had been working on my swim over the Aussie summer thanks to Paul Newsome at Swim Smooth and off course Guy the floggings I had been receiving from Guy and I was desperately they would pay off! At least 2 mins faster than last year!

Once the washing machine of the start was over and I had been dunked a couple of times, I still had my goggles on, I was still breathing okay and ready to go!! I found a good set of feet and was not going to let them go! Half way through I spotted another female just in front and decided my challenge was to not let her go for the rest of the swim. Half way through you get out and run around a marker on the beach before diving in for the second lap. When I saw the clock showing just over 26 minutes I could not believe it! Wow, I need to put it in this lap, could be a huge PB!

So I did and excited 3rd female (that girl got me by 12 seconds!) and took 4 mins off my swim from last year! Maybe I can swim in a wetsuit after all! YAH!!! Thank you Blue Seventy! Rachel Joyce was long gone and way in front and as I ran through transition I was 2nd onto my bike and off. The winds were up compared to last year but I like it that way!

It didn’t take long before a flying “Swiss Miss” went past, and I was sitting comfortable in 3rd. A good place to be at this stage of the race. Ascending the first major climb I continued to feel good and was focused on staying strong for the second half of the ride. Descending into Haria down the switch backs was when I felt something fly down my top, then a sting, followed by another, then another! What the? As I was so focused of hanging on and trying to descend there was nothing I could do until I had reached the bottom. Once I eventually slowed down, I was able to get it out and was just hoping everything would be okay!

Unfortunately I was not to be that lucky, as the ride went on, I began to feel sick and nauseated and I just wasn’t right. With 30km to go on the bike I saw mum and dad, Peter and Chris on the side of the road, I explained what happened and swallowed a few Neurofen. I had been seeing Medical cars all day going by but now that I wanted one do you think I could find one! I kept going and decided I was definitely finishing the bike and would see how I felt once I got off. Entering transition and gathering my bag it was obvious straight away it was not happening. I wanted to! I wanted to run, but it felt worse to be off the bike then it did actually on! I grabbed my running bag but it was all over. There was no point in pushing myself through what would end up being a 4 hour marathon, for what? I need points and I would not get them by doing that. Although I firmly believe in pushing through when the day is tough and I will always push myself to the limit, this was different, I would not be doing myself, my body any good, it would only get worse.

My bike to run transition ended up in the Medical tent where I was looked after before joining my parents. When I still felt sick a few hours later I knew I had made the right decision. We stayed on the main street of Lanzarote until at least 11pm and there were some amazing efforts! Rachel was awesome! So strong across all three lead from start to finish! Gaye and John, both from Perth, congratulations on making it through a gruelling day! Now you can see why Ironman Lanzarote is considered the toughest Ironman!

Off course I was initially upset and very disappointed but I am over it now! Lucky for me there is another race just around the corner and a chance again to strive to be better than I was last weekend.

The Griswald tour continues and we are all in Barcelona this week taking in the incredible sights and not denying ourselves of a spot of shopping either!

My fingers and toes are all crossed though that the Ash Cloud stays away from Europe and the UK so we can remain on our scheduled flight to the US on Friday and I can finally catch up with Guy after what has been a very tough couple of weeks!

Reality check!

Posted on: May 20th, 2011 by admin 2 Comments

Mum and I have made it to Lanzarote and it is hard to believe this is my 3rd trip to the island for the Ironman. This was in fact my first professional race and I remember back then after driving the bike course I was in tears because I had never seen anything like it. It is encouraging to feel I have come a long way since then.

After Hong Kong to London, 7 hours in a Yotel at the airport, London to Madrid then Madrid to Lanzarote it was nice to sleep in a bed! Although it did take a couple of days for the body to start to feel normal again.

I met John and Gaye, fellow Perth Triathletes who have also made the journey to the Canary Islands for a swim, bike, run, lunch combination on Tuesday morning and lucky for us the wind was up so it was a good indication of what it is going to be like tomorrow.

Unfortunately it was a downhill slide from there! While I was swimming mum had received one of those phone calls that you always dread. That you never believe even when they do come. Early that morning my Uncle Neil had passed away from a heart attack. I am often referring to my family in my blog, in particular my cousin Wez, also known as “ginger ninja” or the “Wezanator!!” it was his father and a shock to all.

After mum told me it was straight back to the apartment, tears, tears and more tears. Total disbelief, shock and we were already arranging our flight back home to be with the family during this time.

But Aunty Janice and Wez would not have it! We were to stay here and I was to race. So the decision was made and I am racing Lanzarote in memory of Uncle Neil!

He was there my first trip to Hawaii as an age grouper, not the best day out (12.36 hrs!!) but was offering support all day and night! Another trip to New Zealand in 08 and it was my first podium in an Ironman as a Pro with a 2nd place finish! Then December last year, the entire family celebrated with Moet Champagne and toasted my first Ironman victory at Ironman Western Australia.

As hard as the last few days have been for me, I can’t imagine what they would be like for Wesley, Darryl, Aunty Janice, Benjamin and Jonathan.

No matter how hard the road might be on Saturday there will be a little message on my hand “for you Uncle Neil” that will remind me how short life is and how lucky I am to be here doing what I love!

RIP to the man with a laugh that could brighten any mood, an alter ego in “Charlie Brown” and an addiction to “coke and cordial”!

This one is for you xx

Where am I??

Posted on: May 14th, 2011 by admin 2 Comments

That is definitely what it has felt like the last few weeks. Training has been going great but as the days slowly closed in on my departure from my Aussie home in Perth for 6 months it is also the time to try and see everyone, say goodbye, enjoy your winter and that little thing called packing!

Post Kalgoorlie Guy and I jetted off to Brisbane for good friends Grayson and Allanah’s wedding.

It was an amazing afternoon and evening and Guy and I were totally spoilt the following day by the lovely newly weds with Breakfast at their hotel, then Grayson joined me for a flogging by Guy in the pool while Allanah cooked up a storm for dinner before returning to Perth. It was go go go but totally worth it for 2 amazing people!

We were only home for a few days then it was time to pack the car again, this time for Busselton and although I did not end up racing, Guy was plus hundreds of local friends so it was going to be a busy day! I also had Matt, an athlete I coach aiming to hit that 1.20 mark for his half marathon in a team.

And Ruth, dry needling extraordinaire, who I also coach taking on the challenge of her first Half Ironman. It was an exciting day!

It was exciting to watch Guy race from the front and after the disappointment of Singapore he laid it all on the line, leading out of the water, riding the entire 90km solo and leading off the bike before finally being overtaken 4-5 km into the run. Once his run legs come to play, watch out!

Ruth raced with a smile and took in the amazing experience of not only a Half Ironman but racing in Busso. It was a huge effort considering the disruptions to her program leading up to the event.

Matt as far as I am concerned hit his target. Just over 1.20, and awesome effort and with PB’s in the leaf up to the Half Ironman it is exciting for me seeing the improvements he is making. I know he is thinking about a marathon next and I can’t wait!!

It was a quick trip back from Busso for an early morning mothers day breakfast (thanks for organising that one Blake and Robbie!) and I was left with 4 days to pack up my life to 6 months, see the rest of the family of and finish that bloody tax!

But now sitting in Hong Kong with mum waiting to board our flight to London, it is all over and what is done is done! The main things is I have my swim/bike/run gear with me and I am all ready to go for Ironman Lanzarote on Saturday. This is my 3rd trip to the Island and I can’t wait to tackle it all again!

It is time to put to the test all the running on the treadmill in the garage!!

Check out the new gear thanks to SKINS Australia (yep they are on right now for the long haul flight!) and off            course K-SWISS!

I am ready to rumble!! 🙂