My Ironman journey was meant to start with Ironman Austria in 2014 as my first race, but 10 weeks ago I ‘won’ a last minute entry as part of #TeamSportPursuit. This meant I only had a 10 week training plan for Ironman UK, although I’d been training hard anyway. One of the most experienced ‘Ironmen’ in my triclub – and my now coach – Musty has been an absolute star, and without him I wouldn’t have even made it to the start line, thanks Musty, I owe you big time.
So here is my final blog entry on IMUK2013 and race report;
Swim – uneventful, started front row and hammered it to the first buoy, then just went really steady and relaxed. Got out and started running to T1, turned and saw my friend Amy, did a double take and then we both looked at each screamed so loud in each others face, had a high-5 and ran on – the crowd found this hilarious! The hardest part of the swim was the after the second turn buoy as it was swimming right into the sunrise and impossible to sight on anything, so I just made sure I had plenty of people to the left and right of me and kept going.
T1 – forecast was for rain all day so I put arm warmers and gillet on – putting arm warmers on wet skin is a mission, a lesson learned here for sure!
Bike – fairly uneventful, i enjoyed the bike course but the wind meant I could not use the tribars as much as i usually do. Took it steady as I wanted to save energy for the run. I have a lot more to give on the bike; I didn’t feel like I was pushing hard at any point and felt really fresh when I got off. From 90-miles to the T2 was a bit tedious though, and my backside was looking forward to getting off the bike!
T2 – was just glad to get my runners on and get off the saddle!
Run – I started the run feeling amazing and plodded along really slow for first 20 mins to get the HR down. Felt great and loved seeing all the crowds in town. My ‘stomach issues’ were present again though, and I totalled 7 ‘comfort’ stops; probably didn’t help with overall marathon time! At around mile 11’ish I think it was, the wheels fell off and I started hurting badly! I was aware of my friends Tom and Amy both gaining time on me fast during the marathon and every comfort break was worrying me as I knew it was giving them more chance of overtaking me, Tom very worryingly was really close on the last lap and somehow that spurred me on to pick the pace up and I ran my heart out for the last 2 miles – not that I’m competitive or anything! ;o)
I saw Troy from Team SportPursuit a couple of times and he looked so comfortable and fast on the run, this actually picked me up a little and made me keep going…
Crossing the finish line was the best experience ever – and I somehow I didn’t cry – that really surprised me! I had a minute to compose myself then the SportPursuit media crew grabbed me for my post-race interview – think I was blabbering like a total idiot – we’ll see when film is ready!
Overall it was an Amazing day and I couldn’t have done it without the support and training help over the last 2 years from my club – in particular Musty, Maurice and Mitten – they have all helped me so much and I appreciate it more than you would ever know. The whole club has been so supportive and I thank you all. And a huge thanks to Rob who stood around in the rain all day and has been there to help me through the last 10 weeks training; he has been my biggest help on the bike for sure.
Thanks also have to go out to the SportPursuit team – particularly Juls and Doug who have been doing the blog updates – you guys have made the whole experience more memorable and I cant wait to see the video – no matter how grim I look at the end!! [For 140 miles and 13 hours of racing you were looking fresher than us! – Doug]