OK so maybe my ramblings here are not quite as significant as Neil Armstrong quoted regarding landing on the moon; however in my little life I feel some similarities in that I have finally taken a huge leap forward in my triathlon career. As this is my first blog I should probably go back a few stages to give a little bit more insight into what has been going on!
I think it’s fair to say that since starting triathlon I had a huge feeling of uncertainty. I felt very lost, as if I didn’t belong in the sport, unsure about what I was doing, leaving a good job and my family to jump into the unknown. I constantly questioned if I made the right decision, questioning if I was ever going to be good enough. Believe me, if you want to be good at this game or in fact any job, this is not the right headspace to be in and certainly didn’t help me in the early stages as it was a constant battle of one step forward, 2 steps backwards for various different reasons which I wont bore you with the details now.
So I let my head win for a short while and decided to quit triathlon at the start of 2011 reasoning that is wasn’t for me. However I then felt defeated, even more miserable and incredibly unsatisfied. I felt I hadn’t given myself the chance to really prove what I could do, and didn’t want to live with a big 'what if' cloud over my head. So I started to build slowly back into the sport with the attitude of 'see what happens,' targeting the World duathlon championships as my first race back in 2011, and totally blew my previous expectations away by taking the World title.
2012 began with another injury this time a stress fracture to the foot, however my goals had been set and with a change in mindset, change in training and some actual consistency I was able to have a great year and win my first ever ITU triathlon world cup. This was with thanks to bike coach Adrian Timmis and run coach Mick Woods for helping me get back on track, but then at the back end of 2012 another incredible opportunity then arose.
I had signed up to one of Tri Dynamics master class sessions with world class triathlon coach Darren Smith at St Marys and I had the opportunity to see if the incredible things I had heard of Darren were true. Turns out they are...! He has such a wealth of experience coaching some of the sports best athletes and is known for his immense precision and eye for technical detail. So after meeting him for what I thought would just be a few tips to take away I couldn’t believe it when he then invited me out to Arizona to train with his ‘D’ squad, I was over the moon!!
So fast track a few more months and I am now currently training in Australia with the rest of the fantastic squad and support team, learning how to train smarter, faster and more consistently each day in order to help me reach the highest level of triathlon racing. Its a great opportunity and I am now getting ready for the next giant leap as I prepare for my first ever start in the ITU World Championship series in Auckland in April!
For now I will leave you with another moon related quote I quite liked! (by the way I’m not really that into space or the moon just found this quite appropriate!)
"I think we're going to the moon because it's in the nature of the human being to face challenges. It's by the nature of his deep inner soul... we're required to do these things just as salmon swim upstream." Neil Armstrong