Its 7 days today since my first Tri, and my body is letting me know I was right.
Ironman deserves respect for its magnitude as a physical effort.
Training to do an Ironman deserves to be very difficult.
Undertraining and still doing the event is very foolish.
Bussleton is quite easily the hardest event I have ever done. There was this one time on top of a volcano in Indonesia where a 230km stage finished with a Hors Catagorie climb in altitude, and the people at the top had never seen caucasions before; But its a far away second.
As a lifetime Cyclist, I had always pledged to do a full IM event at some point in my life. Bike racing isnt always exciting for me, and especially with my personal focus being on building a business and a life, training has taken a back seat.
Life seemed to be settling a little so I entered on the assumption that I would have some spare time to train through winter.
Fast forward 6 months from that commitment and I have done a total of 55km running km’s + the 42.2 that was part of IM busso.
I had seen a pool 11 times for a total of 25km and 2 open water swims for another 5km.
I had ridden my TT bike less than 500km and a total on the bike of less than 3000km for the year.
I trained 2 times in the 2 weeks leading to the event.
I ingested a parasite and was medicated for it up to the night before.
Never done a triathlon.
Never done the training.
FOOLISH AND BRAVE
Ill skip forward to the point where I admit that I finished the event in 12 hours (and 40seconds). Its one week past and I can confirm no major injuries and other than general lethargy from overexertion that has continued through the following work week.
I have had plenty of time to think about how stupid it was to do an event SO underdone in the training stakes, and its been said that I have been very lucky not to have done myself an injury or worse, in overestimating my ability to start. I prefer not to believe in luck, but instead will justify my ability to finish with what I did right pre-event.
**I DO NOT ENDORSE MY OWN TRAINING PLAN FOR THIS EVENT
All of my swimming concentrated on technique, not fitness.
I invested time in getting the best technical advice for wetsuits you could hope for (via Anthony from Volare (https://www.volaresports.com/)
Position 100% dialed in for my current inability. Best possible choices for the condition I was in for the day. Not the ambition I had when I committed to the event.
Power meter and strict discipline on race day to stick to the plan.
I spent 5 appointments with David and Nathan from Cobra9 Podiatry (http://www.cobra9.com.au/) choosing the best shoes and orthotic devices.
Brett from Megabake Kitchens (http://www.megabakeenergybar.com.au/) came up with my nutritional plan for the day.
I had my wonderful partner Jenni and Sports Psychologist Craig Pearman (https://www.facebook.com/GCPPsych/) as well as the on course motivation of my first coach, Geoff Frost.
Tenacity was my friend on the day, but the point that has really hit home for me, is that I did do SO much right that athletes often forget. Training is by far the most significant portion of preparation, but in my case, the technical aspects that I dedicated my time to were enough to get me through.
I would estimate that I spent 20 hours on the details like Bike-fit, event psycholoy etc, and had I invested that 20 hours training instead I doubt very much that I would have finished.
So my point in telling you about how under prepared, and foolish I was, was to highlight that those things that are considered 1% to some, were valued much higher than that to me on the day. With a sample size of 1, and an injury total of 0, I would ask, are you best spending your time and money? Can expensive carbon wheels give you a technique to cope with adversity like a Sports Psych can?
Can money be better spent with the performance outcome being the goal?
The professional technical advice was everything to me on the day, and maybe it should be part of your preparation for your next event too.