Fond memories of sunny coast from a previous race and made special having my family and the Fluid movements & MTCers (both athletes and support crew) here. 😝😍👯. Lots of giggles and smiling faces made this one special.
Was feeling the pressure a little though; only 4 weeks prior to this race I had started my run/walk program having had a left Achilles injury post IMOZ. The weeks leading up to this, I was mentally struggling to believe I could even finish the run -uninjured – for the big dance in Hawaii 🌴🐢🐬. Having all my friends and family around provided me with the belief and attitude to enjoy the day. ☀️🙏.
The plan : to go hard in the swim & bike and hold on at the run.
Swim 🏊 – calm and flat. Saw a turtle swim under me 🐢 – magical. 29 mins (6th out of the water).
Bike 🚴 – flat initially with a head wind back and then the hills – oh boy the climb 😬 was looking forward to seeing it and getting it out of the way! I made the right decision to use this race as a training day – (I chose not to wear race wheels or an aero helmet) and it paid off having the 2nd fastest bike split by 20 secs (2 hrs 39 mins) and 3rd off the bike in my AG. 💪🎉🎉.
Run 🏃 – started to get hot and windy (coming out of training in Melb winter!) and pushed hard in the first lap then the wind picked up on the second lap. Felt good until approx 16 kms (ironic given this was the longest I’d run since IMOZ) but I held on with the support of Ferg and the girls, Foz, JD, the Atlees, Laura, Lesley and her family amongst other friends. (1 HR 46 mins).
Lucky number 13 🎉 in AG out of 176 (119th overall female out of approx 1500) 👏🎉💪🏅.
Congratulations to all those who qualified for the Half Ironman World Championships – it’s the journey which makes it special and I was lucky to share it with a great bunch of friends. Thanks to all the spectators and volunteers who make it happen. To Cory Prout, my physio for getting my body into shape and providing me with the initial rehab and run / walk program. Sean Foster, my coach who helped me get stronger on the swim & bike and then to incorporate my run at the right time. 💪👍. The fluid / MTC training buddies 🏊🚴🏃💕🎉🍾. Lastly and most importantly The Big 4 – Team Ferg 💕💜.
Since we met in March at the Town Hall, I have been gradually building my swim, ride and run and am feeling stronger in all three disciplines, leading up to the Hawaii Ironman in October which looms large.
Throughout my triathlon career, I have been very fortunate to have not missed many training sessions due to injury, illness, or other incidents, and like to think I am relatively durable. But unfortunately one Saturday morning in May, as I was an hour into a 130km ride, I was hit by a car who didn’t give way to me on a roundabout on Beach Rd. He collected me side on without having a chance to brake so it was a substantial sort of hit. It was a pretty harrowing and scary experience, however a apart from a sore coccyx and fairly extensive bruising, I had a lucky escape as my bike took the full impact of the hit. I feel extremely lucky I didn’t suffer any more damage to my body as my bike was completely smashed up!! Fortunately I had my bike insured and have been able to source a brand new replacement bike. Not ideal 5 months out from the big day!!
To add to that a few weeks later I was ready to take on my first long 180km ride down to Sorrento on my new bike. On probably one of Melbourne’s windiest and wettest days, I was struck by cross winds and blown off my bike 80km into the ride when my wheels hit a wet white line on the road. What a way to christen it the new weapon!!! No serious injuries apart from grazing and bruises, so I got back on it and finished my ride as I needed to get back to Melbourne to get the kids off to a party!
So it’s been an eventful couple of months to date and my “Build” phase certainly has a new meaning to it!!
With 3 months until race day, I am taking the time to reflect on what I have achieved so far. We all face challenges in life whether that be professionally or personally, nothing comes easy. You can choose to give up or keep chipping away. My choice is to keep chipping away as I know this goal is worth all the challenges and setbacks, and as people say it’s more about the journey. More importantly, I am counting my blessings to have been given this opportunity of a life time.
Have a great day everyone.
Zoe will compete in the Sunshine Coast Half Ironman in approx. 9 weeks before she competes in the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii in 13 weeks (Saturday 11th October)