I wrote a blog yesterday about how I LOVE racing – I do, more than anything. Then last night I lay in bed thinking about everything I, as a triathlete, fit into my daily routine and I know this applies to most of you – no matter what your end goal is: finishing an Ironman, breaking a specific hour mark in the Ironman distance, completing your first triathlon – whatever it may be.
Most of us get up at ungodly hours when the majority of the population is still in ‘lala land’. We fit in that early training session, get kids ready for school, give the ‘better half’ their share of love, fight traffic, work all day, fight traffic, do homework with kids, make dinner, clean around house, try make time for the ‘better half’, then often work again and then try get 6-7 hours sleep before it all starts again.
This blog is not so much about the one race I have just completed - 70.3 Xiamen, China, but the thing that keeps me motivated from race to race and keeps that desire to compete alive - I simply LOVE racing! Yes, and I won't lie, I enjoy beating others I race against!
I am a person who lives life from goal to goal - I set myself goals in my personal life, at work and in my sport, and I will stop at nothing to achieve these set goals. They hardly ever come easy and some take time and I suppose there is one relating to triathlon that has taken many years. My incredible wife, Sharon, wrote an article on Facebook after I completed Xiamen, about how she is a firm believer that ‘life is a journey and not a destination’.
It’s now almost a month since I competed at Kona and I’m still struggling to find the words for this blog. A few days before the race there was a post on facebook, I think it was by Brett Sutton saying that it should be treated as “just another race”. But I think that’s just about impossible for most of us that were there. It is very difficult not to be overwhelmed by the enormity of the occasion. It is very difficult not to overthink the whole thing.
I arrived in Kona 10 days before the race and my sole focus was to get used to the conditions; to eat well, to train and to REST. My build up to Kona this year was extremely stressful; physically, emotionally and financially. But I don’t really think that this is unique to me. Any Ironman age grouper will tell you about the sacrifices it takes to race well at an Ironman race combined with the stresses of daily life; and each athlete has a unique set of circumstances that they are dealing with. The only thing I could think about was that there was no ways I was going travel halfway around the world (without Kim!), train so hard, spend all that money, sacrifice time with friends and family, to not have my very best possible race. Last year, I finished the race with some “could haves” and “should haves” and as I said to Lucie before the race, I wanted to finish knowing that I had done everything within my power to put my best race together.
I had always dreamed of Kona, and had read so much about the race, the course, the athletes, Huggo’s, the undie run, and so on. What I didn’t envisage was how tough writing about the race would be. Unlike my only attempt at racing on the Big Island, this is my sixth attempt at this race report.
My IMSA performance of 9:51 was fairly acceptable, considering some time away from training and racing for 2 years. But I was still a little surprised to be heading down the steps onto Dig Me Beach to start at the Ironman World Championship. I was feeling fairly neutral heading into the race. After some decent training and guidance from friend, superstar (she’s led Kona for the first 2 and a half hours before!) and coach Lucie, my swimming, biking, and running times and power were all much improved since April.
Where Trifactri athletes get to tell their side of the Swim, Bike and Run