Gallery: 2017 70.3 World Championships

2017 Ironman 70.3 World Championships

So what did I learn from this one. Simply put, this was the hardest race I’ve ever had. Mostly because I later found out that I was racing with two broken ribs. To break things down, here are my learnings:

  1. Racing is all about problem-solving: From the moment I entered the water and took my first strokes I realised something was very wrong. I couldn’t breathe. It was so painful. But this was the World Championships, two years of work had gone into preparing for this, so I wasn’t giving up in the first thirty seconds. I decided to stick with it and quickly realised that it was only when I breathed to the left-hand side that it was excruciating. Breathing to the right wasn’t as bad. Now, I always bilaterally breathe, it balances my stroke, but today was different, I knew that the only way I was getting through the swim was breathing to the right. So I did that and eventually found my way to the stairs to exit the water.
    Speaking of the swim, here’s an awesome way of seeing it!
  2. The Ventum was fast; really fast. I felt like before the hill and my breathing caught up with me it was almost hard to keep the bike under 38kph. This isn’t something that is normal for me.
  3. Bike fit is everything. Obviously I was on a loaned bike but unfortunately it was just a little big for me. This caught up with me in the back end of the course and I really paid for that in the first third of the run.
  4. The climb was tough but manageable. I found that whilst I did over climb this section of the course it was certainly manageable.
  5. DI2 is awesome on a hilly course. The Ventum was fitted with DI2. I’d never ridden with that before so it was a welcome surprise to be able to change gears on the base bar when climbing.
  6. I can have fun going downhill fast 🙂

    Now in terms of the bike, this is it 🙂

  7. If you battle it out on the run the legs will come. Even in the worst state, I’ve ever started a run, my legs still come. I could barely stand at the beginning of the run, at it hurt a lot to get going, but after quite a few km my back loosened up, my legs stopped hurting and I was able to kick along on the run course.
  8. Find some enjoyment somewhere, for me this was seeing the sign that said, “8 Mile” and singing myself Eminem’s song from start to finish.
  9. Pretzels are a race saver. Now I was really struggling but at one of the aid stations they were serving pretzels. I grabbed a handful because at that point I still thought I was going to be out there for, “a very long time.” I’d never had pretzels when running (and don’t try new things on race day) but post pretzels I felt so much better and really started to tick along at a good pace (or at least a good pace with broken ribs).
  10. Family makes the whole thing worth it. Having my wife, mum, dad, mother-in-law, grandmother-in-law and close friend on course made the whole ordeal that happened on race day worth it. Seeing the pride in their eyes when I come down the finish shute really made my day.

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