I’m well overdue an update and as I wait impatiently to start my second full Ironman, it seems a good distraction. My last update was an article I had written for 220 Triathlon on how to survive the winter. Sitting in 30 degree sunshine this seems a long way away!
I’m in South Africa, again. I’ve been here for almost a week. This time in Port Elizabeth (PE) for the Ironman African Championships, for those of you not Ironman washed you don’t have to be African to compete. It’s simply a Championship race with more points than a normal Ironman (to help qualify for the World Championships) and more prize money (to help you get the World Championships!)
Funnily enough PE is the first place I visited the first time I came to South Africa over ten years ago so coming back is like walking down memory lane. Last time I came to PE my life way a little different… I was at University, I came out with a close friend (now my husband) and I was a runner (for which a big session would consist of 8 x 300m max out).
Yesterday I ran past the University track which when I came to PE ten years ago was my favourite track (combined with Stellenbosch of course). I think it’s got something to do with the monkeys that jump across the track and distract you from the pain of such a short and intense session. Next time I run past the track I will be in the middle of a marathon, preceded by a casual (!) 180km ride and 3.8k paddle in the sea! How times change.
It’s been a year since I went part time (In fact, the night before IMSA last year I was 700km west of here getting married in the beautiful Hermanus countryside!) and really feel like I’m now able to absorb Ironman training. Which is probably a good thing as I’m racing in less than three days. I’m really excited to be here and see what I can do… Good luck to everyone racing on Sunday. It’s going to be a fun (and tough one!)
If you missed my last update with Tri247 at the 220 Triathlon Show, you can see it here.
P.S. I always say Antwerp 70.3 was my first triathlon, but I actually did my very first triathlon in PE. I was dared to at 10pm the night before the ‘race’ to do it. I borrowed a surf wetsuit and a bike from one of my husband’s friends (who is over six foot). It was fun but having watched my husband's sufferfest in PE the previous year I was never tempted to switch sports! Again, how times change.
P.P.S. The guys at swim practice this morning said they saw a hammerhead shark at 8am, so at the moment shark terrors are providing a good distraction!