SunSmart Ironman 70.3 Busselton

In Blog by PixelWhip

This was to be my third event and I was feeling quite happy. Sure I was nervous about dealing with unexpected events such as punctures on the cycle leg but generally I felt I had put in enough training.

We had been watching the weather forecast closely during the week before and it promised to be a good day. Having completed the Mandurah 70.3 in blistering 36 degree heat I was hopeful that this was not going to be repeated. The weather on the morning was perfect. Gentle wind and a very respectable 18 degree max was the prediction. It was, however, freezing (no pleasing some people) and it was a relief to paddle our feet in the water while we awaited starter’s orders.

We stood on the beach, all matching swim caps, the excitement was palpable. There was lots of back slapping and the calls of ‘have a good race’ and ‘see you soon’ filled the air. Then we were off. I really don’t enjoy this part the splashing and jostling for a place in what suddenly feels like a very small ocean: people ahead of you blocking your path, those behind patting your feet and either side of you blocking any change in direction. Soon we had found our rhythm and after a few zig zags I was heading round the last buoy. It did feel like longer swim and the time on the clock suggested this too. After the race the murmur was that it was 2.1km and not the planned 1.9km.

Now onto the bike leg. 90.1km was the goal and what a great ride it was. I reached my goal of 32km/hr and the wind was only a small issue. It was actually enjoyable. The week before the race I had suffered with back pain and was anxious that this not come to reality on race day. Thankfully it didn’t and although there were the normal aches and pains of sitting in one place for nearly 3 hours, I pulled up quite well.

The year before, as I had got off the bike, the whole of the back of my thighs and calf muscles had cramped up and walking, let alone running, was an issue. This year there was tightness in my calf muscles but I set off at a reasonable pace. The run is 3 laps of 7km and this way you see the crowd and hear the music twice before you come to the end. Then there is the dancing green gorilla man that year in year out, entertains the runners. These people are a blessing. I had some right quads pain but was able to keep going with just a couple of rest stops to shake it off and then the finish line was in sight. I managed to sprint to the finish and passed through the arch with a personal best.

It, as always was a great day and the atmosphere is fabulous. I will definitely be heading back next year. I have a goal in mind in terms of what time I am aiming for and so I have started the planning already.

The best thing is seeing people of all shapes and sizes doing the race. It has definitely been a journey for me to get to this stage and I am learning as I go, but I am not finished yet.