Saturday, May 19, 2012

The road from Busselton to Hawaii – the life of an age group athlete...

It was been two weeks since Busso 70.3 and it has been an interesting couple of weeks. Training once again has been on the back burner as a result of an extremely busy work load. Things seem to have finally settled down which is music to me ears! Only 10 days I will on the plane to the Big Island.

I thought I would share what has been going on with me over the past four months. Since arriving home from my holiday in Europe in February, my passion and motivation for triathlon diminished which led to what I have called ‘Triathlon Depression’. I believe this change in my attitude was a result of a number of big changes in my life, the biggest being buying a house and moving out of home. With an ever increasing work load from my day time job (which has in recent times become a day and night time job), house work, house renovations, shopping, bills, a mortgage (yes all the ‘grown up’ things is life) there was not much time left for triathlon.

After Ironman WA in December 2011, I took almost 3 months off training and resumed mid-February. In December I was in the best shape of my life. I had just finished my first Ironman and I was on top of the world. When I started training I had obviously lost a lot of my fitness, gained weight (yes a month is Europe will do that…) and had a lot of other things going on in my life (as detailed above). Mentally, my mind was back in December where I was in the best shape but my body was well and truly in the present, this was hard… 

I made the decision to participate in the Cottesloe Beach Triathlon 6 days after arriving home from Europe. I did this race because I wanted to be a part of the race. I love the sport, I love being involved – I wasn’t expecting to win, I just went out and had fun, which is exactly what I did and my result was very average by my expectations, which was expected. However, I think the bad result stayed in my mind, which didn’t help my journey back to fitness.

I few weeks later I participated in the Darlington Half Ironman. I ran 1.48… 

I was struggling physically, but the biggest problem was the mental side…. I was making my scheduled training sessions and be out there thinking to myself ‘why am I doing this?’ I felt awkward in the pool, I had no power on the bike and I had no endurance on the run. Things were not going my way and I could do nothing about it. I was not enjoying the sport.

I went on a weekend training camp down in Busselton with Team Break Your Limits. I had a solid weekend of training and it was great to train with a different group of athletes for the weekend. Thanks to Tom Kroyer, Steve Gleeson, Andrew Boxsell (aka Bokka), Shao Wu and Aaron Robertson for a great weekend of training. 

Up next was the Karri Valley Triathlon. This is a fantastic race, one of the best on the calendar. I showed up ready to see where I was at after solid training camp two weeks prior. I swam reasonably well, rode with no power and jogged the run… I finished but for the first time I did not enjoy racing. This race reflected how I had been feeling in training over that period and it was not a happy experience which left a lot a unanswered questions in my mind.

In April a few of us made the trip to Kalgoorlie to do the Goldfields Classic. I had such an awesome time at the race due to the atmosphere of the club event. This event was a major turning point for me. It reminded me why I love this sport; mentally things were slowly starting to come back!

Race week came and Lisa and I did our final interval run along Shelley Foreshore. A short set with 4x1km efforts, I finished the set and I knew I was mentally back (both mentally and physically). My attitude noticeably changed (just ask Lisa), just in time.
So here we are, two weeks after Busso. I had a solid race, finished 2nd and qualified for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships is Las Vegas. It has been a long few months and I have struggled through. I can assure you that I am motivated with a fresh outlook on my training and ready to chase my dreams. These few months will go in the memory bank and will help me become a better athlete.

Thanks to everyone who stuck by me over this period.

See you on the Big Island for the Hawaii 70.3 in a few days!



  1. Very honest Andy. My inspiration. Goodluck in the big island

  2. Hey mate
    Good Luck in Hawaii! Have a cracker and enjoy it!