In hot Gail force winds I embarked on my quest to become an ironman for 2014. I dream of these events, train for them and think about them every day but to wake up at 5am and see that the weather was already 30 degrees was tough.
I ventured down to the race start and set up my bike, running gear ready to grab. My wetsuit was the next to prepare. As I squeezed myself into this tight rubber I watched as other athletes warmed up. Some laid down and relaxed others pranced around beating their chest, my receipe pre race was to sit and ponder what was to come. It was time to hit the water. A gentle warm up swim was all I needed and as the gun sounded it was a flurry of arms and legs with swimmers going every direction. Two metre waves greeted me with every breath but I navigated my way round the swim course with ease exiting the water in 10th position. A quick change into my cycling gear and drink and I was tearing down the road at 40km/h. Rider after rider I passed wishing them well as I said goodbye. Early kms in the ride saw my enthusiasm sky high but as the weather changed so did my mood. I battled severe cross winds and extreme heat as I climbed with ease and descended with caution. A reminder to drink more fluids was always present and after 90km of riding my race was just starting. I hoped of the bike slipped into my kayanos and spent the first 1.5 km climbing a hill. That hurt. It wasn't long before I was able to find a good rhytme although not fast it was comfortable. Each aid station was like a banquet of food. I ate and drank like a king. All knowing that the body can shut down in an instant. A three loop course saw tail winds cross winds and relentless headwinds. Almost impossible to run into I found myself running, shuffling and walking parts of this. Finally the last 5km arrived. I knew I was almost done but with a calf starting to tighten I was running to protect rather than to conquer. Despite all the hardships a race serves up that last km gives you goose bumps, my supporters were present and with a final leap of excitement my day was done. The students I teach were on finish line duties and handed me cuddles, pats on the back, high fives and my piece of history, my ironman medallion.
Thank you all who were there to support me. It's not about the time is about the journey. My next challenge lies in front of me now. Ironman Melbourne...... 6 more weeks.
I had a family drop in a see me this morning to surprise me with a present. It's easy to forget how we as teachers inspire the students in our class to reach for the stars, aim high and achieve dreams. Thank you Sophie, Lilly and Max for allowing me to inspire you.