Monday, November 27, 2017


Last Sunday, a group of us took a quick trip to our nation's capital down south. Being able to complete three qualifying events before the end of the year was a huge bonus. However, I definitely underestimated the toll it took on my body:
Can I just lie here forever?

We arrived in transition to find out it was a non-wetsuit swim. In a freshwater lake.

All the non-swimmers were like:

But secretly they were thinking:

THE SWIM - 750m

There were about 85 of us in the under-40 wave all going at once, so you can imagine the carnage in the first 200m:

I've become accustomed to the bashing that comes with competitive racing. Still, every time I got hit, I was like:

But hey, that's what happens when you're in a mass start, right?! I didn't let it bother me too much. After a while, I finally caught my breath and settled into a rhythm:
Me, settling into a rhythm

BIKE - 20km

I really love draft-legal racing! When you can get on a pack, its fast & furious. I jumped onto the wheel of two girls who were up ahead, then a couple of minutes later, my friend Alicia (who ended up winning our age group) zoomed past and told me to jump on her wheel:
Me, trying to hold on for dear life

We had a few others girls join the train and let me tell you, these girls were motoring!

I lasted for about 10km before I got shoved out the back. The girls were just too strong, and there I was:

Learning how to hurt takes practice, but I'm happy that I managed to spend a little longer in the hurt box than my last race. Luckily I found two girls to work with in the last few kilometres & we helped each other get home:
"I'm still alive but I'm barely breathing..."


Out of transition I went:

It was a one-lap, straight out & back course. I saw Nicole Ward at the turnaround (ex-pro now racing age group). She had started 5 mins behind in the over 40's wave & caught me with about 500m to go on the run. I tried to stay with her but she was moving at around 4 min k's:

I think lasted about 10 secs before my body said:

Thankfully, I saw my support crew near the finish line and could not have been happier:
Did someone say chips?
Photo by Glenn McPhee

Made it to the finish with some pretty wobbly legs:

Then it got announced that I had come third in my age group:

I thought he was playing a joke on me, so I went over to check the iPad which showed the names and places of everyone who had crossed the timing mat. He wasn't joking. I had come third:

The post race feels got me all like:

I had to keep pinching myself because I just couldn't believe it had happened. I know what you might be thinking: "settle down, this isn't the Olympics!" But let me to explain...

When I think back to my first ever sprint, I used to dream of podiums. I always thought those people were freaks of nature who were totally out of my league. I would watch girls collect their medals for first, second or third and hoped that one day, just one day, it would be me. I'm pretty sure I came 25th in my age group in my first triathlon. It took me a few years to get there but what I will say to the people out there trying is that it IS POSSIBLE!!

I'm not usually one to reflect too much on my races. But now that I'm coming down from the post-race high, three top-5 finishes is a huge step in the right direction for world championship qualification.

Thank you so much to my friends who came out to watch. It always gives me such a boost and definitely helped me sprint to the finish!

I hope to be alongside these legends, racing in the green & gold next September:
The ladies of Balmoral Tri Club:
L to R: Catherine Coulson, Nicole Ward, Bright Lady in Lycra, Ingrid McPhee & Laura Van Den Hoenert

But for now, it's time to enjoy some well earned sleep:

Next up: Husky Sprint in February, 2018 which will be my last qualifying race. Hope to see you there!

P.S. I've just ticked over $1K for the Love Your Sister Foundation! Thank you to so much to everyone who has contributed so far.

For more info, click here.