Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Journey Begins...

I am very excited to announce that I have entered the 2011 edition of Ironman Western Australia!
I have watched the last 3 races in Busso and I feel that next year is the time to give it ago. I am really excited about the next 12 months. I have an awesome support network and will have some great athletes to train with and learn from.

In other news, I had a cortisone injection on my Achilles tendon yesterday. Fingers crossed is will give me enough relief to have a couple of solid weeks of training and run well at the Port of Tauranga Half Ironman in a couple of weeks.

I am flying home via Melbourne where I am meeting up with the team to do a training camp in Falls Creek. I am really looking forward to meeting a few more members of the team.

Well can't believe it is Christmas already. This year has gone so fast, and what a great year it has been!

I would like to thank everyone who has supported me during the year. In particular:
  • Tony and Cam from
  • Kevin and the team at Tanita
  • Ian from XU1 Sports
  • Stu my coach from Eclipse Fitness
  • Stu from Glen Parker Cycles South for his help during the 2009/2010 season
  • All my training mates, who motivate and inspire and make the sessions fun (Johan, Helen, Ben, Scotty, Doug, Janine and everyone else!)
  • Mark, also a training mate and best mate, we have come along way, but we have allot more work to do!
  • My very supporting girlfriend Lisa, I love you! Thanks :)
  • My family, Mum, Dad and Lauren.

Looking forward to the challenges and goals I have set for 2011, starting the the Port Of Tauranga Half Ironman in New Zealand on 8 January. I will give up update from over in NZ.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Love Andy!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Canberra Half Ironman

I have just arrived back from Canberra where I raced the last ever 'Half Ironman' in the world (apparently). Since the Anaconda Adventure Race at the start of November, I have been back into some solid training and getting strong on the bike again (finally!). About 3 weeks out from the race I started to feel a niggle in my Achilles, so I went straight to the physio and backed the running right off. After a few easy running weeks it was feeling much better and I was getting through 10km runs with no pain. I was happy with how it was feeling leading into the race, but a little unsure of how it would go over the 21km.
I travelled over to the capital city on Thursday with Johan and Helen and we met up with Scotty and Stu once we were there. Unfortunately for me, the swim was cancelled due to contamination issues in Lake Burley Griffin and the race was turned into a duathlon. We were also informed at the race briefing that the bike course had changed into a 5x17.1 km lap course, rather the the advertised 3x30km course. This was due to the high level of rain fall, causing Coppins Crossing to be flooded.
I wasn't all that fussed about the changes, I was focused and ready to race hard.
I woke up nice and early on race morning, ate breakfast and we all waited for our lift to transition. Once we got to the race site, my iPod was in and it was time to focus on the day ahead. I set up my bike and made sure everything was ready to go for a quick transition. Once Johan was ready, the two of us went for a 4km warm up run. My legs were feeling great with no pain in my Achilles. We made our way to the start line and I had a gel and stretched while I waited for our start.
The first 4km run was very important. I needed to keep the leaders within sight. At 6.45am our start siren went. I had a good start and a lead group of about 8 of us form early. The pace was on early as expected, running the first km in about 3.15 min. I was feeling good and felt comfortable. I stayed with the group till the turn around and then the strong runners put the pressure on. I ran stride for stride with Scotty and we came into transition together with a 14.07min run, around 47 seconds behind the leader. My GPS gave me a 3.40/min average so I was happy with that.
My bike was in the middle of transition area, so before the race start I made sure I knew exactly where to go. I moved very quick through T1 and made up a few places easily. I slipped my running shoes off, put my helmet on and I was off onto my favourite part of the race.
The bike section was slightly short, being approximately 85km. Because the bike course had changed, we had not had a chance to ride it before the race. We were told that it was flat, and being from Perth, flat means Busso flat and this was not the case in Canberra, it was undulating the whole way. This suited me very well through. I went out hard on the bike and my goal was to maintain consistent lap times. I was riding on a Zipp 999 set and they were amazing on this course. I had a sip from my gel flask every lap and sipped my water and Gatorade throughout the ride. For the first time in a Half Ironman I had someone to ride with. #508 joined my on my second lap, as he was going out on his first one. I spent the rest of my ride with him. We shared the pace setting and legally rode together. I passed Helen as we were both going onto our 3rd lap but didn't see any of my other friends during the ride. I new that I had a very solid ride, averaging just about 39.4/km but I didn't pass anyone in my age group right up until 4km to transition. I asked how many were in front when I finally passed someone and he said 1 or 2. I was happy to get off the bike in 2nd (2.12.56), with the fast ride time in my age group. It was a tough ride and the wind really picked up from lap 3. I was pretty consistent in my lap times especially considering the wind in second half of the ride.
Coming into T2 I prepared myself, getting my feet on top of my shoes and I really attacked the dismount line. I powered through, slipping my K Swiss K-Onas with ease and I was out and running just behind fellow team mate Levi Hauwert. I was moving along well for the first 5km or so, but I began to feel a bit of pain in my Achilles. From there on I knew it was not going to be a fast run and it became a matter of getting to the finish line. Unfortunately from here I started falling back in the placing which was very disappointing. A crossed paths with Johan who was having an awesome race, he was in 5th at that point. I had water at most aid stations and had a sip of my gel. The run was 2 laps on a relatively flat course, with a nasty hill at around the 8km mark. I pushed as hard as I could, and was struggling big time. When I put any pressure on my ankle it was very painful. A very disappointing run for me of 1.46.51, crossing the line in 4.13.55, 8th in my age group. I hobbled around for the next few hours, iced my ankle and ate some ice cream and fruit salad.
In summary, I was extremely happy with the first run and ride, and happy enough with my run considering I was running with an injury. I am disappointed with the result, but can take a number of positives out of my race.
Congratulations to Johan for finishing 5th in the Open category with another awesome performance. Helen, 3rd in the 18-24 age group with another great race. Scotty, 9th just behind me, I was worried he was going to pass my late in the race! and Stu, well done for participating haha!
The Elite Team had a terrific day, with Michelle Wu winning the women's race, Dave Green winning the 30-34 age group and was the first age grouper home 6th overall, Brock Prime was 6th in the Open and 7th overall and Levi Hauwert won my age group (18-24) and was 15th overall.
Also, thanks again to Ian Mansfield from XU1 Sports for the loan of the wheels and his continued support.
An easy recovery week and straight back into another hard 2 week block before heading over to New Zealand for the Port of Tauranga Half Ironman in early January.
Thanks :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Anaconda Adventure Race, Augusta 2010

When I crossed the finish line at Augusta in 2009, I told myself I wanted to crack the top 10 in 2010. That was my goal going into the race (as well as not getting chicked!).

I had a 3-month build up to the race after a 2-month holiday in Europe. I had a really good build up to the race and was feeling confident.


The race start was at the Lewin lighthouse. It is a spectacular place to start the race and the media helicopter was putting on a awesome show hovering and flying around getting great shots of the start. We had a bagpipe player on the rocks with us playing some music prior to the race start at 8am. I knew the start was one of the most critical parts of the race as there is a bottleneck within 50 metres. I lined up on the front line and went hard from the start. Another competitor lost his footing and pushed me as he was falling, which pushed me off my line. I didn’t fall and recovered quickly. I managed to get through with a clear line and settle into a rhythm over the rocks. The first 1.5km is involves rock hopping following the coast around before heading inland. I was in a good position and started over taking the guys that were heroes on the start line. Deanna Blegg (female winner) was running with a small group of us before stamping her authority on the race and put the hammer down. We double back onto the beach and start the next section of sand and rock hopping (approx 8km). The sand was pretty good to us as it was hard in most sections, there were a few soft sections, which were slow going but on the whole the beach was pretty good to us! I was strong over any rock sections and made up some ground to the guys in front. We had the helicopter following us which was awesome. I had awesome support from Lisa and Mark out on the course, following the run and getting down on the beach where they could. Was great seeing them and hearing words of encouragement always makes it easy to push a bit harder. The final part of the run was back inland and on flat sand tracks. It took me a while for the legs to adjust to the fast tempo but I eventually got them moving. I focused on getting some nutrition down and fluid down before the swim. I came into transition in 1.16.32.


I new what I had to do in transition, I had been through it in my head leading into the race and just before getting into the transition area, but that isn’t quite how it played out in real life. I ripped my bib off and pulled my wetsuit on quickly. I grabbed my drink bottle I had ready, expecting water, and had Gatorade, the bottle which was supposed to be in my bike! Grabbed my goggles and cap and ran out of transitions, just about at the water and a spectator yells out to me that I didn’t have my bib on! Armature mistake! Quick run back, Mark threw it back to me and I was asking him to change the bottles on my bike to the Gatorade. Another lady passed me my cap that I dropped on the way back to the water. I still had a fast transition considering, but that did not go to plan.

I just wanted water! (the orange stuff is Gatorade)


The swim was hard. No other way to describe it. Swimming after a hard run like I just did was tough. It felt like I was swimming very slowly, and I was compared to how I usually swim, but I was making up ground to the guys in front. I had trouble sighting the buoys and had to stop and take my goggles off to check where they were a few times. A couple of team swimmers passed me along the way. My triceps were killing me during the swim. I just kept turning the arms over knowing that I would eventually get there. I got to transition in 35.11 and now in 9th.


The nice lady helping me get ready.

I had a nice lady help me get my wetsuit off and put my bib back on over my PFD. Was a little less eventful then T1!


This is easily my weakest leg. I just had to work as hard as I could during the paddle and minimise my losses. We had a nice current for about 2km pushing us out the river mouth and then out into the ocean. There was a head wind going out to the turn around. It was a hard slog for me. I consciously drank my water and had a gel when I needed. At the turn around I was happy with how I was going and was hoping to make use of the small runs that were forming. There were very small and I had to work hard to get on them. I just didn’t have the energy to work that hard to the return trip was pretty slow going. I eventually saw the finish of the paddle and was happy to be there that’s for sure. I was back to 20th place! I finished the paddle in 1.22.01.


We had to carry our ski up the boat ramp and to a grassed area. It was pretty tough! I was happy to put the paddle down for the last time and get onto the bike. I ran to my bike and made the transition quickly.


I was getting pretty tired by this point in the race. I got out on the bike and made it to the first hill and went about getting up it as quickly as I could. I was drinking and eating while I had the chance. The first climb is about 2km, and is just long grind up a gravel track. There is then a down hill section which is pretty rough, lots of loose tree roots and very sandy. The track then goes to a fast flat section before heading up the next hill. This hill is a hike a bike hill and it was time to get off and walk it up. I tried running but the calves did not like that, so it was a slow walk pushing the bike up! Once up the top I got back on my bike and pushed as hard as I could. I was going through some high and low patches at this point. I made the effort to keep getting fluid and nutrition down and pushed hard when I was feeling average and even hard when I felt good. I eventually passed Deanna Blegg on the bike with a couple of km to go and gave a few words of encouragement. She had a big smile on her face and was smashing the woman’s field.


I was back at transitions in 1.28.34. I had a triathlon like transition with me feet on my shoes, quick change over into the racing flats and ran hard out of transition for the last 2.5km run.

Speedy transition, already off and I still had my helmet in my hand!

Final Run

This was HARD! my legs were toast. I pushed as hard as I could as Mark was telling me there were a few guys just ahead of me. I push and pushed and felt like I was going no where. I had a bit of time to reflect on the run back to the finished line and I was happy with my race, no matter what the time was when I crossed the line and raced as hard as I could go. I finished the run in 14.58.

There might have been a swear word yelled out when I was called over the line in 12th place...AGAIN! I was very happy to finally be finished.

My finishing time was 4.57.16 and 12th Open Male. I just got to the finish line before Deanna Blegg. At least I achieved 1 of the goals I set!

In my last 3 Anaconda Adventure Races, 2 in Augusta and 1 in the Gold Coast, I have come 12th, so I am consistent! I am really happy with my race. I can honestly say I went as hard as I could on the day.

Thanks to Mark for driving my car down on Saturday, setting my gear up and also our tent. Also, thanks to Lisa for driving me down on Saturday night, after Brent and Erin’s wedding. We only arrived at 2am and had 3 hours sleep! Not ideal preparation and I was pretty wrecked a few hours after the race! Lisa and Mark were the best support crew on race day, getting to every point they could to see me! It really makes the race easier!

This has become Mark's tradition, no shirt while supporting!

Also thanks to Kevin and the team at Tanita! Tanita is one of the major sponsors of the event and I was lucky enough to get sponsored by them for the race. Team Tanita had some great results with Sean O'Neill and Brendan Sarson, winning the Open Team of Two category and Grant Suckling came 2nd. Great work guys!

I'm back on the time trial bike now with the Canberra Half Ironman coming up in 5 weeks!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Classic Paddle 2010

Today I competed in the annual Classic Paddle which is a river race from the Narrows Bridge down to the Left Bank in East Freo.

Was the perfect hit out before the big race next weekend and has given me a lot of confidence! We had great conditions this morning and I finished just under 1.15.
Pre race at the narrows, there were lots of boats this morning!
Race finish at East Freo.

With a week to go until Anaconda its time to start the 'taper' and get the gear ready. I have to get every thing organised and sent down with Mark on Saturday morning for him to set up, as Lisa and I will only arrive late Saturday night.

Not to much else to report at the moment. I'm feeling great leading into the race. Can't wait to get down to the start line on Sunday morning!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

10 days to go...

10 days to go until the Anaconda Adventure Race...............

Tanita Body Composition Readings
Weight - 68.9kg
Body Fat - 9.0%

My body composition readings are looking a whole lot better from what they did 3 months ago. I must say it has been very interesting monitoring the changes over the last 3 months. Over the next couple of months I expect my readings to change quite rapidly as I move the from the 'pre season/base building period' into the racing season.

I will be taking my scale down to Augusta and will take a reading just prior to race start and one directly after I finish. I will post the readings up in my race report in a couple of weeks. Should be quite interesting to the see difference!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Anaconda Build Up

Check out the Rapid Ascent website. They have published an article about my goals for the Anaconda Adventure Race in a couple of weeks!

I am really excited for the season to start as I am getting bored of training and not having anything to show for the hard work I am putting in.

I had a paddle planned for today after work but the weather has been average today, so I will make up for that with a down wind (something I haven't done for a while) tomorrow afternoon. I have a day off tomorrow which it nice (first in a while), and I have a long run, ride and paddle scheduled.

Mark has invited my to join the Endurance Fitness Busselton Training Camp next weekend. It will be nice to head down to Busso and go over the course and get some solid training done.

It's hard to believe that Lisa and I have been back from Europe for nearly 3 months already. This year has gone way to quickly its scary! With the Anaconda training almost done and dusted for another year I am starting to get some planning done for the rest of the season (I am still 100% focused and committed to my training for Anaconda).

I am hoping to qualify for the World Long Course Champs next year (in the USA) and recently frond out it is the longer version, being 4/120/30. If I qualify it will be an awesome build up to see if my body can handle the work load and I will see if I can attempt an Ironman in 2012.

I am starting to work towards getting my Valuers License (I have to prepare 3 valuation reports) and have an interview. I am planning to get my reports submitted by the end of the year and get an interview as soon as possible after that. I am really looking forward to getting my license and deciding the direction I am going to head with my career.

It's happy times!! :)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A weekend full of racing

What a weekend of racing. The Hawaii Ironman was obviously the main event, and what a race it was. Won by Australian's Chris McCormack and Mirinda Carfrae, awesome result for the Aussies! I was also involved in two smaller events; the first on Saturday, which was the Sorrento Challenge and this morning, was the Champion Lakes Duathlon.

These races were the first of my season and I am generally happy with how things went.

The Sorrento Challenge comprises a 1.2km swim (2 laps with a 400m beach run in between each lap), 7km ocean paddle and a 7.5km run (with a beach section on each of the 3 laps). The race has a reputation of being held in bad weather, however the weather gods put on a show for us and we had a 30-degree day with calm waters. The race start was 12pm so I was able to have a sleep in which was nice :)

I had a bad start to the swim, but managed to get a decent rhythm on the first lap and made up some ground to a few guys in front during the beach run. My second lap was a struggle and took me a while to get going again and I dropped off the back of the second group. Not my best swim but considering the lack of racing I have done I was pretty happy.

Onto the paddle I wasn't in a bad position, but then the stronger paddlers came flying past me. I lost a big chunk of time to those guys during the paddle, which was expected. I was happy to get off the ski, after being on it for way to long!

I had a quick transition into my running shoes and started the 7.5km run. I made up some lost ground in the run but the damage was already done from the paddle! Only one runner passed me, so my running is slowly improving!

I crossed the finish line in 1.46.35 in 12th place.

Sunday morning was the Duathlon and I had planned to ride out to the race venue, but the weather had turned over night and the roads were wet so we ended up driving out. The Duathlon format isn't my ideal race, but I was looking forward to testing how my running is coming along. The format was 5/21/2.5.

I was planning on racing with a Zipp 999 set, but with the slippery roads and the bike course it quite tight with a few sharp turns I opted to just race on my training wheels. Turns out the roads were quite dry by the time the race started, but not to worry.

I was very conscious not to go out to hard on the first run, so I settled into a good rhythm that I could maintain for the 5km. It was an out and back course so we could see where we were in the field at the turn around. I was happy with my first run clocking 18.17.

The bike was a 4-lap course. We had a nice head wind on the long straight section and a tail wind through the windy event path. It was the worst I have felt on the bike during a race, but I put that down to lack to short race pace efforts which is not in my program at this point as I have been building my fitness back from Europe!

Onto the final run I worked hard to consolidate my position. I finished in 3rd place in 1.03.48, 1min behind my age group winner. This was also the State Duathlon Championships, so I got a 3rd place for that as well.

I am happy with how the races went. Given it is so early in the season there are some good signs but also a lot more room for improvement, which will come over the next few months. One thing that needs to happen as soon as possible will be a haircut as it is starting to get a little out of hand! Also, a big thanks to Lisa and Mark for their support at both races. I really appreciate it guys!

Mark like's to 'show' his support!

Next up is the Anaconda Adventure Race, 4 weeks to go. Then we are back into the triathlon season, but the Bunbury Classic and then Canberra Half Ironman.


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Keeping on track with Tanita

I have been back into training for close to 2 months now and I am really happy with how things are coming along. I have been using my Tanita body composition scales to help access my progress during this time.

Here is some data from my initial reading a few months ago:

Body Fat 11%
Body Water 63%
Visceral Fat 1
Bone Mass 3.1 kg
Muscle Mass 59.7 kg
Physique Rating 5
Metabolic Age 12

During the past 2 months I have been taking regular readings from the scale which have helped me see what my body has been up to in terms of my weight and more importantly the muscle and bone mass. Another key area which is the body water % which as an athlete, is obviously very important.

Coming back to full time training after 2 months of traveling around Europe was initially a bit of a shock to the system but I am feeling great again. During my holiday period I lost a lot of my muscle mass and got a little but chubby which was quite evident (to me anyway). My weight has been very slow to come down as I am loosing fat during my base building period and my muscles mass is building up again (muscle weights more than fat).

I have noticed as I am changing cycles in my program my weight is slowly starting to drop. Below is some data from today:

Weight 69.5kg
Body Fat 9.1%
Body Water 69.5%
Visceral Fat 1
Bone Mass 3.1 kg
Muscle Mass 60.1 kg
Physique Rating 5
Metabolic Age 12

The data above is starting to show signs of improvement which I am happy about but most importantly I am starting to feel strong again in my training.

My Tanita race top for the Anaconda Adventure Race

I went down to Augusta to check out the Anaconda Adventure Race course on the weekend. It gave me a lot of confidence and motivation for the last 4 and a half weeks until race day. Its going to be a great race!

Keep an eye out on the Tanita face book page for a pre-race update, hopefully my readings will be back to where they were prior to last years race!


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Augusta Training

I have just got back from a training day down in Augusta. Rapid Ascent put on a course familiarisation day prior to the Anaconda Adventure Race. We are now 5 weeks out from the race and it was a great opportunity to go over the course and see where my fitness level is at.

Here are a few clips and photos from the weekend:

Well, overall a very successful weekend. I had a good look over the course and have a pretty good idea on how I will structure the next 5 weeks. I have some areas which I can really focus on to give me the best chance of achieving my goals for the race.

Mum and Dad are now home from South Africa and Lauren is back from her trip soon so the house will be full again!

First races this weekend! Can't wait :)


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

More of the same

I'm in the middle of a 3 week training block that will end next weekend with a couple of races, being the Sorrento Challenge on Saturday and the Champion Lakes Duathlon on Sunday.

Training has been going really well with the solid km's logged in all 3 disciplines and I am getting into the swing of paddling again! I did my first Wednesday night group paddle for about 9 months last week and it went surprisingly well! I will continue that over the next 5 weeks in the lead up to Anaconda.

I have started to do a few runs of the bike and from the couple I have already done, I am feeling strong off the bike. A good sign! I am slowly building the km's up in the running department and hopefully will be able to improve my run splits starting in Canberra!

Some exciting stuff happening with the team, with sponsors including K-Swiss and Trek. Hopefully I will have a few more details over the coming weeks.

The race season is just about to start with the first of my race entry fees paid for yesterday! I am off to Augusta on Friday to do a short training camp, with Sunday being the Anaconda Course Practise Day.

Lots of races happening over the next couple of weeks with the Gold Coast Half Ironman on Sunday (good luck Mark!) and the Ironman World Champs in Hawaii next weekend. Its very motivating seeing all the media coverage over in Hawaii, hopefully I will be there in a few years!

Hopefully the next few weeks will continue to progress the way things have been. Exciting times ahead :)



Friday, September 17, 2010

On Board with

I am pleased to announce that I am now a member of the Elite Age Group Triathlon Team for 2010/2011. The team has just been finalised and the team sponsors will be confirmed shortly. Thanks for Tony and Cam for giving me the chance to join the team. I am really excited about the season ahead and look forward to working with LSDsports to achieve my goals.

I'm just back from a paddle session. I am quite happy with how my paddling is coming along given we are still 6 weeks out from Anaconda.

I am planning a training camp down in Busselton in a few weeks time. It will be 2 and a half days based in Busso before heading down to Augusta on Sunday for the Anaconda Course Familiarisation Session.

Everything is coming along well in training. Its just business as usual getting my fitness back and my body is holding up really well. My swimming is really improving which I am excited about.

The weather in Perth is fantastic at the moment with temperatures in the mid 20s forecast for next week!


Friday, September 10, 2010

Training Training Training

Not to much to report on over the last couple of weeks. I have been logging some good kms in the pool, on the bike and on foot. Paddling is coming along slowly, but steadily.

On Wednesday morning I went to did a swim analysis with Paul Newsome. It was a really valuable session that I have taken a lot of positives out of. Paul was generally happy with my stroke and has given me a few areas to work that will hopefully get me a little bit faster! Its so much easier to understand what you are doing wrong with a video of you swimming!

I am really happy with how my swimming is coming along. I think I now have the understanding (through my session with Paul) of how I can improve my stroke and I have now been with Stu for 2 season so we both have a pretty good understanding of what I am capable of and will work hard to make the most of my ability.

My cycling is coming along. We are riding with another group on Saturday mornings, who at the moment are all on fire. A lot of them are training for Hawaii (4 weeks away), so are in great shape. Its a bit of a struggle for me up the hills but I can feel some real improvement.

Running is also coming along. I am lacking speed but I am getting the kms into my legs which at this early point in the season is important. From next week I will start to get into some longer runs to build up for Anaconda and Canberra.

I have been doing some good sessions with Mark recently which are fun. As we train with different groups we don't often get the chance to.

Triathlon Australia has finally given some details on qualifying races for Long Course Worlds next year and Canberra and Busselton will be qualifying races to get me into the green and gold again.

Its about a month away from the Sorrento Challenge (swim, paddle, run) and then the next day is the State Duathlon Champs which I will do for a bit of fun (duathlons are not my specialty!).

Last week I received my race top with TANITA branding on the the Anaconda Adventure Race. Its a long sleeve compression top (white), so hopefully will provide some advantage with muscle fatigue, getting the wetsuit on after the run and also keep the sun off my arms and neck. It looks great. I will post some photos up soon.

Things are coming along really well. I will keep working hard to get myself in the best possible shape to achieve my goals.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

the week just gone....

On the training front things are coming along really nicely. I am happy with how I am progressing and building up fitness back up. I had a couple of really solid swimming sessions and and running sessions through the week and I got out on a long ride with Mark out to Jarahdale on Friday morning. I will give a more detailed update through the week.

The last 48 hours have been extremely difficult for myself and the closest people in my life. Starting on Friday evening a close relative to the Luckin's (my girl friend Lisa and best mate Marks family) passed away in a car accident. The following morning, Mark had a car accident which thankfully he wasn't hurt at all. And to top it off, we had to put our dog (Lucky) who has been with us for the last 14 years down.

I find myself sitting here writing this blog here tonight, with fond memories of the ones lost over the last few days and a heavy heart. It has been a really tough weekend for everyone but I am thankful for the amazing people I have in my life.

Chase your dreams and stay happy.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Back in the game

I am now well and truly back into the swing of working and training and I am happy with how things are coming along. I have added the Canberra Half Ironman into my racing schedule in December which I am really excited about. Flights to New Zealand have been organised and the season is slowly taking shape.

Over the past week I have eased back into some more structured training and have started my official build to Anaconda (and the rest of the season) as of yesterday. My mind and body is rested so I am ready to hit is hard over the next few months.

On the working front my days have been cut to 3 a week. We are just too quiet with the GFC and uncertainty in the market place at the moment. So I now have a bit more capacity to train and recover properly (which I am really excited about). So the timing has been good on this unfortunate situation as I am not saving for our Europe trip anymore and I have no immediate financial commitments!

I have a double swim set tomorrow before a couple of big days on my days off!



Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Tanita Scales

This season I have been lucky enough to get some support from Tanita which has been a huge help. I have just received a set of Tanita Body Composition Scales which I will be using to monitor my progress throughout the upcoming season.

Tanita is one of the series sponsors of the Anaconda Adventure Race and have been for the last few years. At each of the races they have been there getting people on the scales and giving them some feed back. At the Anaconda race in Augusta last year I was given an assessment. You will see below those results compared to my results from today (please note that I have been in Europe for the past 2 months and have been back 10 days!)

Weight 67.9kg / 70.5kg
Body Fat 5%/11%
Body Water 68.2%/ 63%
Visceral Fat 1/1
Bone Mass 3.2 kg / 3.1 kg
Muscle Mass 61.3 kg / 59.7 kg
Physique Rating 8 / 5
Metabolic Age 12 / 12
*The first figure is from pre Anaconda 2009/the next is from today!

The Tanita scale will become an important part of my training to help me keep a close eye on what my body is doing and hopefully get that fat level down a bit!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Friday, August 13, 2010

Back to training

I have now been back at home for nearly a week and it feels like I have never been away! I was straight back to work and slowly easing back into some easy training.

A mid week wind trainer set with Mark

I have been working through my plan with Stu for the build up to the Anaconda Adventure Race in November and my mountain bike is finally getting fixed (from my crash in the Gold Coast last September!).

I have just received some trigger point massage tools which I am really looking forward to using. Recovery is an area I am really going to focus on (something I have neglected previously) this season and into the future.

The TRIWA race calender has been released and I have penciled in the races I am hoping to do to get me in the best possible shape for NZ, Singapore and Busso. I also saw today that the Sorrento Challenge is on again (a race I have done previously in a team), so I will be entering that as a lead up race to Anaconda.

I am enjoying getting back into the training routine, although I haven't seen an early morning yet! (that will start next week).

Good luck to all my training friends racing Yepoon half this weekend!



Monday, August 9, 2010

Anaconda Adventure Race

With the Anaconda Adventure Race now 13 Weeks away its time to get my fitness back. I have set out my build to the race and I am really excited to begin this afternoon with my first swim in 2 months!

I would like to thank Kevin from Tanita, one of the sponsors of the Anaconda Adventure Race series for organising my entry to the Augusta Race.

Last year I raced 2 of the races in the Series, finishing 12th in both of them. I am hoping for a top 10 finish this year at Augusta.

The logistics for the race have been organised and they are not the ideal situation. I have my cousins wedding on Saturday night so I will be leaving at around 10pm to Augusta. I have organised Mark to go down earlier on Saturday and set up my gear and tent, so I will be able to crawl into bed for a few hours before race start (thanks Mark!).

I will keep updating this blog with my progress in training.


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Back to the real world

After 9 weeks in Europe Lisa and I arrived home last night. We had an amazing time exploring France, Greece, Italy, Croatia and Spain while drinking and eating far too much! We both worked really hard to save for our trip for the last 6 months and it was well worth the sacrifice.

I am sitting here now with a new perspective on life, new goals and ambitions and a desire to become with best athlete I can.

In order to achieve my goals and ambitions, I will be training and racing with the mantra 'Earn your Dream'. With hard work, dedication, the right group of people and the passion I have, my mantra will one day become 'Live your dream'.

After 9 weeks of NO training, I got out on my bike with Mark this morning for a pedal to Point Walter. It was a great feeling to be back out there, but my fitness was obviously not there. I am really looking forward to building up for the Anaconda Adventure Race in November, and then on to NZ half in Jan. I am hoping it doesn't take too long to get my fitness back to where it was.

Back to the real world tomorrow starting with work. I will have a sleep in to try and recover from the jet lag and then get wet for a swim in the evening.

Count down to anaconda is on! 3 Months.

Time to get fit!


Friday, June 4, 2010

Europe Bound

After 7 months of planning, saving, dreaming and waiting.... it is finally the day before Lisa and I leave for our European Adventures.

My backpack is packed, tickets and passport ready, so now i just have to get through the last few hours of work, clean my room and car..... sleep and wake up nice and early tomorrow morning (3.30)to be at the airport for 4am for our 6am flight to Dubai. Awesome!

We are spending 3 nights in Dubai, then onto Paris, Athens, Mykonos, Ios, Santorini, Corfu, Sorrento, Rome, Croatia, Florence, Venice, Nice, Bordeaux (for the tour de france TT stage!!), Barcelona, Valencia and back to Paris. So quite a busy schedule of the next 9 weeks but boy is it going to be fun!

My sister Lauren is also heading overseas for a 4 month trip on Wednesday so Mum and Dad will have the house to themselves for 9 weeks.

On the training front, well i have been doing bits and pieces, getting out for our Saturday group rides, and running and the odd swim. We did do some lunges at running on Tuesday evening and I have been paying for that since!

I have packed my speedos, goggles and running shoes with the intention of getting some very light maintenance training done while I am away (with the hope of making my return to full time training slightly less of a shock to my body).

Until I get back (August 7th).... don't hold your breath for another blog!

Andy :)

Monday, May 31, 2010

Triathlete of the Year!

The Triathlon WA 2009/2010 season officially came to an end on Saturday Night and I was awarded Triathlete of the Year for my age group (Male 20-24).

Mark Luckin was awarded 2nd place and Karl Reindler 3rd.

After a long season that is now all finished I will outline a few of my memorable results and achievements:

  • 9th ITU Sprint Distance World Champs
  • 12th Open, Anaconda Adventure Race Gold Coast
  • 12th Open, Anaconda Adventure Race Augusta
  • 2nd State Sprint Champs
  • 2nd State Aquathlon Champs
  • 9th Geelong 70.3
  • 2nd Hillary's Triathlon Race 1
  • 1st Champion Lakes Triathlon
  • 1st Hillary's Race 2
  • Pure Blonde Series Winner (20-24)
  • 3rd Busselton Half Ironman (1st age grouper off the bike)
  • 3rd State Long Course Champs
  • Triathlete of the Year (20-24)
  • Fremantle Triathlon Club - Open Club Champion

A big thank you to everyone who has supported me over the past 12 months and particularly those who helped me getting to the Gold Coast to compete in the Triathlon World Championships:

  • Shelagh Pascoe and the team from Curtin University
  • Dave and Teresa, Commercial and Industrial Mowing
  • Bae from Cottesloe Fitness
  • City of Cockburn
  • Golden Egg Farms
  • Stu from Glen Parker Cycles South
  • Egan National Valuers
  • My training buddies
  • Stu for all his coaching expertise, Eclipse Fitness

A very big thank you to Ian Mansfield of XU1 Sports. Ian has been such an important part of my season and I am really happy to have some good results which I can share with him and fast bike splits which I put down to his awesome wheels he so generously lends me. Thanks mate!

So to wrap it up, a very successful season. I have been looking at my goals and race calendar for next season and I am really looking forward to starting to work towards those on my return from Europe on August 7th.



Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Break is over

2 weeks on from Busselton and I am back into training! I wasn't planning on training after the half before Lisa and I head over to Europe but after 2 weeks of doing nothing an drinking a lot more then I ever would, I started to feel unfit and fat. So I am easy back into some unstructured training for the next 3 weeks.

I am actually going to work pretty hard and get some level of fitness back so while I am away I can maintain some running and swimming.

I have started to plan what I want to do next season with the major races below:
  • Denmark Adventure Race
  • Anaconda Adventure Race
  • Port of Tauranga Half Ironman (New Zealand 2011)
  • Singapore 70.3 (2011)
  • Busselton Half Ironman (2011)

There is also the possibility of the Gold Coast Half, however that will be 8 weeks after I get back from Europe, so I will not commit to that until I am back.

Mark and I were planning on doing the Asian Pacific 70.3 Champs in Phuket in December, but with all the political issues there at the moment we have put that idea on hold.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Busselton Half Ironman Race Report

I was a bit worried about the swim start because in my last race at Hillary’s I got caught up in a bit of trouble at the start as everyone swamped me. This was the first time is has every really happened and I was not comfortable, so I was determined to get a clean, clear start. Stu gave us the heads up on where to start and I must say it worked perfectly! I started to the side near the buoys and when the start signal went, I pushed hard early. I could see people over to my left slightly ahead, only due to their starting position. I had the perfect start and from the get go I was in clear water, the way I like to swim! So, from my positioning I had a very uneventful swim and just went through the motions. I was very conscious to keep my sighting the buoys every few strokes and concentrated on my breathing and stroke rate. The swim was slightly long by all accounts and was reflected in the time, but I was very happy with it and came out 4th in my age group.

Swim – 29.08

Into transition and I heard some cheers from my support crew and made the long run to my bike. I dropped my goggles in the process but didn’t bother picking them up! A quick change over and I was out onto the bike and ready to get stuck into the 90kms ahead.

T1 – 1.39

The bike course was a 2 lap course this year which suited me really well. After my swim I was in a good position sitting 4th in my age group and one of the first age groupers on the road (i think there were 5-6 in front). I went about finding a comfortable rhythm to recover from my swim and for the first 15 minutes concentrated on getting just water down to flush any sea water I swallowed. Just after the Layman Road round on to Tuart Drive I got in the lead of my age group and was the first age grouper on the road. It was a pretty cool experience riding up the front and a place I hope to be in my future races!! I saw Luke Mckenzie leading the pro race and he was absolutely motoring on the bike and had put in some serious time over 22.5kms over the chase pack. I want to learn to ride like him! At the first turn around point I was able to see my position to who I thought would be a threat to me. I was still on my own and had put a bit of time into the guys I passed early on the bike. Johan was not too far behind in a group of about 3 and Mark just behind them. I was very focused on maintaining my nutrition, speed and cadence and felt very comfortable on my bike.

I saw Lisa just as I made the turn onto Layman Road and she was smiling and really seemed to be enjoying herself which was a good sign! I push through the windy, exposed sections on Layman Road and thought that the chase group would have caught me then, but as I got around I had a quick look back and couldn’t see anyone. Riding back into town is always awesome as my support crew always gives me a big boost and going past the eclipse tent was great. I rode the first lap in 1.08.38, averaging 39.3. Being out in front, with no one on the road for 45km was awesome.

My goal was to ride consistently so I needed to maintain what I did in the first lap. With all the other waves now on the course I was able to hide a bit from the chase group as it is always harder to chase someone you can’t see! I was looking forward to getting to the turn around to see my position. I had put in some time to Johan’s group which was a great confidence booster.

The last section on Layman Road was tough and we had a nasty head wind for a few kms. I was really struggling to hold above 31km which was not a good sign as I thought that I was bonking, but as I got around a bit further my speed went up and I finished strongly into transition and passed a couple of pros! I finished the second lap with an average of 39km/hr which I was very happy my consistency.

Bike – 2.18.35

I came into T2 in first place and the first age grouper. It was awesome running into an empty transition area (with the exception of the pros). Another fast change over and a few high fives to my support crew and I was off.

T2 - 0.50

The 3 lap run was going to make or break my race. I started off nice and steady with the intention to really build through the half marathon, but unfortunately this didn’t eventuate. I got into a nice rhythm early and started turning my legs over. At every aid station I had a sip of my gel flask and washed it down with water, and this became my routine for the first half of the run. I then moved on to coke for the second half. Johan passed me at around 2.5km and I was really excited for him because this was his race, he was in seriously awesome form leading in and I was happy to be able to hold him off on the bike!

I kept turning my legs over and just wanted to hit the finish chute and it finally came after a long 1 hour and 40 mins. Not the run I was hoping for as I new I was capable of running 90mins.

Run – 1.40.09

Overall – 4.30.23

Well I finished in 3rd place, and 47th overall. I can take a lot of positives out of my race and will build on those and address my weaknesses for next year. I am really happy with how I raced and the result. My goal was to get on the podium and I did just that!

Congratulations to Lisa on her first half ironman finish in an awesome time of 5.37! Also a big thank you to Ian Mansfield from XU1 Sports for his continued support and lending me his Zipp 999 set! They were made for the Busso course.

It’s been along season and I am really excited with how I have developed along the way. It’s now off to Europe for a 9 week holiday and Lisa and I and then back into at the start of August for the 2010/2011 season!



Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Race Week

The final race of the season is finally here and this will wrap up a pretty long (11 months) season for me. It started in June last year with my build up to the Triathlon World Champs and the Anaconda Adventure Race on the Gold Coast, followed by Anaconda Augusta, the start of the Triathlon WA 09/10 season, Geelong 70.3 then more Tri WA stuff which brings us to now, Busselton Half Ironman 2010!

Looking back over the season that has been, I can confidently say that is has been very sucessful. I am really starting to find my feet in the sport and this is showing in my results. My cycling has come along really well, and I am hoping to put down one of the fastest age group times on Saturday (at least in my age group). My swiming has gone from strength to strength and my running is slowly but surly coming together.

We had out final squad swim this morning which I have been counting down for (no more early mornings!!) and i have a short run this evening. We will head down to Busso tomorrow morning and relax during the arvo. Its time to get my head in the game and focus on having a great day on Saturday!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Starting to wind down

Well with only just over a week left until the Busselton Half Ironman (my last race for the season) things are starting to slow down. I have a tough weekend of training ahead before a nice easy taper week. Only 2 more pool swims!! I'm really looking forward to having a break from those early morning sessions.

I am really happy with the progress I have made this season and I am happy with how my training has come together for Busso. I have a lot of confidence in my riding at the moment and am hoping that is reflected in my time next weekend.

Last weekend I was awarded the series for the TriEvents 2009/2010 Series, which was one of my goals for the season. I got a nice framed yellow leaders Jersey which I will be hanging up in the pool room!

The Busselton Half Ironman is the final race in the Triathlon WA State Series and I am currently sitting in 2nd place behind Mark (by 5 points). So the race next weekend is going to be very important (to get any points I need to finish 5th or higher and Mark needs to finish 6th or higher) and puts another incentive in for both Mark and I.

At the Busso Half last year I finished 7th and 3rd in the Triathlon WA Long Course State Championship. I am really hoping to improve on both those results and finish in the top 3 in my age group.

Only a few days before the race and I'm feeling great. Then it's time for a break, and Lisa and I are off to Europe for 9 weeks. But before we leave, there are a few things to get through, such as: My 21st, Lisa's 21st, Marks 21st so it will be a hectic few weeks of fun!


Monday, April 12, 2010

Hillary’s Race 2

I was very excited for this race for a number of reasons:

-I had won the previous race at Champion Lakes
-From that win I was now leading the series and would be racing in the yellow leaders jersey -It’s the final race before the Busselton Half Ironman

I was racing on Ian Mansfield’s ( Zipp 999 wheel set as they are some of the fastest wheels around! We had to glue on a new front tubular the day before as I had got a slow leaking puncture during the ATTA 80km State Time Trial on Easter Monday. I was glad to see how to do it properly because now hopefully if I ever do get a flat during a race I will be able to change it over quickly!!

Lisa and I spent the night before the race with Johan and Helen and I had not got any of my race gear ready or set my bike up. So when we got home at 9.30 I was in a mad rush to get everything organised and what always happens when you are in a rush?.... something will go wrong. I put the back wheel and my gears did not want to play and wouldn’t go into the top 3 gears and I didn’t know how to fix it (another skill I need to learn quickly). By the time I got to bed I wasn’t in the best mood but I did sleep well as I was quite tired from the day’s training (150km on the bike and an open water swim).

I got up earlier than usual on race morning and had a long shower to wake myself up. We got to the race venue at around 6.45 and I went and registered and picked up the leaders jersey (I was looking forward to wearing it during the race).

I set up my transition and went for a quick ride to see how the gears were, and apart from not being able to get into the top 3 (which I didn’t think I would need on this course) they were running fine. Ian came over and gave my bike a quick tune up and managed to get 1 more gear working so that was a help. It was then time to head down to the swim start for a warm up.

The race start is on the beach with a 10m run to the water. I positioned myself next to Ben Tay, who is always the first out the water by a long way. I wanted to see if I could stay with him during the swim. The start siren went and I hit the water first, but for some reason everyone went out harder then normal and I wasn’t ready for it and before I new it I was in the middle of a big pack with 15-20 guys ahead of me. I am not used to being in this situation and I was a bit unsettled. The start was very rough and congested. About half way out to the far turning buoy I stopped and moved to the side of the pack to get some clear water as they were slowing and I was caught in some traffic! The turning buoy was again rough with people pulling me down but as once through I had some clear water (with the exception of Mark Luckin on my right, who was knocking my right arm every stroke… I think he needs to learn when swimming next to someone you need to be in sync with them! Joking Mark!). I put a surge in and got a small gap during the final section into the beach. It was hard to sight anything on the return journey as the sun was making it difficult to see. I swallowed a lot of sea water but wasn’t an issue during the remained of the race. My swim time was 11.45 which included the run to transition, which was better then I though considering it felt like one of my worst swims!

I had a reasonable transition and new Mark was right on my heels, I thought I was in 3rd position at this point. I mounted my bike (not very well, as my shoes flung around) and got my feet in my shoes and started the 20km ride. During the first section my legs felt heavy and fatigued (all I could think was I shouldn’t have ridden so far yesterday). Up the first small rise I caught Jon, who always has a great swim and then was able to check how far ahead Ben was once he made the far turn around. Once I made my turn I saw that I had put little time into Mark and Karl was not too far behind. Coming back to transition for the first lap I started to get my legs and was feeling really good. I didn’t show much love towards my support crew (sorry), but I was in race mode and very focused to get in the lead and build a buffer from the other front runners. The course started to get very crowded on the 2nd lap but I managed to get a fair clear line through the slower competitors. I got a gel down and then I finally caught Ben just before halfway and was much relived to be leading the race. By the half way turn around I had started to put in some time to Mark and Karl which was a good sign. At the end of this lap was happier and smiled at my support crew and gave a wave. The 3rd lap was very busy and I went hard and that paid off as I came off the bike in 35.22 with a lead of 2.07 to Ben and 2.17 to Mark.

I had a very quick transition and went out on the run at a conservative pace and gave Lisa a smile. I worked hard during the run and tried to keep a constant pace and really concentrate on holding form. Having the leaders jersey on gave me a boost of confidence and I ran with a positive mind set. At the half way turn I didn’t see anyone for a while which gave me a lot of confidence that I would hold on for the win. I pushed through the last 2.5km and crossed the line in 1.06.29, 1st place in the 20-24 Age Group which gave me the series win and finished 1.28 ahead of 2nd place. I finished the run in 19.20 which I am really happy with and finished 15th overall.

In summary I am really happy with my race and winning the Tri Events series was one of my goals for the season which I have now achieved. I also had the 6th best bike split which I am stoked with. I am now sitting second to Mark in the Triathlon WA Triathlete of the Year Series, by 5 points, so the Busselton Half Ironman will decide the overall series winner. Should make for a great race between us! I now have another 2 hard weeks before a 1 week taper for Busselton which will wrap up my season.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Duathlon's......not my race

The Point Walter Triathlon was held yesterday and much to my disappointment, it was changed into a duathlon. Perth had a hectic hail storm on Monday last week, which has been labeled "The Great Storm of Perth". This has caused our river be become contaminated due to blocked storm water drains and the Health Department didn't allow swimming (fair enough).

We started the race with a short 3.5 km run to make up for the 1500m swim. I had a reasonable run, but was off the pace from the top runners. I had a quick transition and went about making up as many places a I could. I managed to get into 3rd place and was working with a few guys faded towards the end of the 40km bike which was disappointing. It is a tough course and I had some muscle fatigue from my Saturday hills ride. I was using a wheels set thanks to Ian Mansfield from XU1 Sports. I was lucky enough to ride a 808/1080 set which were awesome. Unfortunately this course is slightly hilly and the wheels were flexing when I was getting up out of my saddle and rubbing on the chain stay so I was taking it easy up them because I didn't want to scratch them.

Off the bike and I had another fast transition and started the 10km run. I eased my way into a good pace but at the 2.5km run turn I started to struggle. I shuffled my way through the remaining 7.5km crossing the line in just over 2 hours.

In summary, not a great race, probably my worst for the season but on a positive note, I had some good transition training.

We are now into the business end of training for the Busselton Half Ironman, only 5 weeks away. Eclipse Fitness is having a local training camp over the Easter break which will be great. On Easter Monday I will be racing the ATTA 80km Time Trial in Wandi, which will be a good hit out for the half to see where my cycling is at. The last race of the TriEvents series is on the 11th of April at Hillary's and I am really looking froward to wearing the leaders jersey and hopefully consolidating my position at the top for this series.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Catching Up

It has been a while since my last update and this is the low down on what has been happening:

I took a few weeks off training after Geelong with the exception of the Hillary's sprint distance race (TriEvents Race 3). I went in to this race with the intention of having fun. I had a great swim coming out in 3rd and then put some pressure on in the bike. I lead the bike race (having the fast split) and had a 23 second lead coming into T2. The run leg was slow and my legs didn't feel like running. I battled through finishing in 2nd 31 seconds behind Karl Reindler, with Mark Luckin rounding the podium off.

My next race was the Albany Olympic Distance Race. I raced in the open category being on of the smaller races to get some experience racing against the likes of Sean O'Neill and James Lewin. The swim was a 2.5 lap course and was ROUGH. I exited the water in 21.41.

The bike course was 2 laps and had a 10km undulating section on each lap. The wind was up and made a few of the downhill sections a bit sketchy but overall it was an awesome bike course. I was given a drafting penalty going up a hill which I though was an incorrect call. Not much can be done once you have given a yellow card. So at the end of the 40km I sat in the penalty box for 2mins. I was really disappointing i was given a penalty as I believe I race honestly. The run was also 2 laps and along a beach foot path. It was slightly undulating and I felt strong on the run. I didn't have the fastest run but I felt in control and focused which is a good sign. I finished 7th overall (last in the open category). I would have placed first in my age group so that gives me confidence things are going in the right direction.

Race 4 of the TriEvents series was next up at Champion Lakes and I was very motivated for this race. A few of the big guns in my age group were not racing (Johan Borg, Karl Reindler and Mark Luckin) and I was very confident that I had a strong chance of getting a win (my first for the season) which would put me in the leaders jersey going into the final race of the series. I had a solid swim coming out in 11.40, in 3rd place. The conditions were perfect for the ride with not a breath of wind in sight. I powered around the course posting a solid bike time and i entered T2 2.55min lead. I run confidently across the line 2.25 ahead of second place. I finally got my first win of the season and have put myself in the lead of the TriEvents series. The last race is Hillary's Race 2 on April 11.

Yesterday I was asked by Karl to compete in the Corporate Triathlon in Freo for a bit of fun. We entered in the Pairs category (where they add our finishing times together, with the lowest paired time being the winning team). We had a great time and flew around the very short course, consisting of a 250m swim, 10km bike and 2.5km run. We were basically going to be racing each other and see how fast we could go. I came out the water in 3rd with Karl hot on my heels in 4th. We flew through transition and onto the crowded 3 lap bike course. We pulled each other around the course ducking around everyone (legally) and before we new it our feet were out and we were off on to the run. I got a few meters on Karl through transition and basically maintained that distance throughout most of the run. Towards the end Karl pick it up and came level with me but we decided to cross together. We won our category and posted the fastest overall times (both finished in 32.12). Nice little hit out, but I forgot how much those small races hurt!

So that the low down on whats been happening on the racing front. Training is coming along nicely with 6 weeks left until Busselton Half. I will be working really hard for the next 4-5 weeks to get my fitness up ready to knock over a PB at busso.