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Riding Update . . . from Jules

Good afternoon everyone

This is my last “Riding Update” as I have decided to step back from the Bike Coach role in the club. I will still be involved in coaching & in RTC, so you haven’t seen the last of me!! We have a new & exciting format for our Saturday rides – in the sense that they will be planned up to a month in advance & appear in the monthly training schedules on our website. By the way, if you haven’t been on our new website (well, new as of a few months ago!), check it out . . . it’s great to see many club members are going onto the site, and especially the calendar tab. Thanks to Paul Skelton for all the fantastic work he does with our website

All rides are leaving at 6am this week from Coffee Club North Lakes, so please be there by 5.50am, so the rides can leave on time. Everyone must have front and rear lights for all rides

SAFETY – Please continue to obey all road rules and be aware that there are many instances of tacks being put on the roads, especially in bike lanes. Those who are leading the groups should always be looking at the road in front of them and calling out obstacles or dangers as they arise. It is also timely to remind you to think about getting a “yikes ID” or “Road ID” band – you can order these online (yikesid.com or roadid.com.au) and it is a wristband with your emergency contact details and allergies listed on it, in case you are knocked unconscious

Please ride safely everyone; remember safety always comes first, along with courtesy

The new Linkfield Rd overpass extension (over the train line at Bracken Ridge) is now open and is 1 lane each way at this stage. I checked it out this week & there is no shoulder on the eastbound land, and only a shoulder for part of the westbound lane…so my recommendation is to stay away from this road. If you’re thinking of doing our normal loop, please turn right into Lacey Rd, then left into Beams Rd, left onto Sandgate Rd, then right at the Deagon racecourse & you’re back on the normal loop

RIDE A – (6am) – out Eatons Xing Rd, Mt Samson Rd to Dayboro, up Mt Mee, (re-group back at Dayboro), then home via Dayboro Rd, Petrie. Approx 90ks

RIDE B (6am) – alternative hills option…as above, without going up Mt Mee. Approx 70-80ks

RIDE C (6am) – another hills option…out & back Winn Rd, approx 70ks. This group will be at a steady pace

RIDE D (6am) – out through Redcliffe to Sandgate (Park Run anyone?), home via Redcliffe, approx 50-60ks

SHORT / BEGINNER (also known as “F Troop”) (6am) – Ed & Louise’s adventure, approx 40-50ks. Speed & distance depend on those in the group

JUNIORS – “normal loop”, going via Beams Rd. Approx 60-70ks

NOTES RE: RIDES

Your Saturday ride is an LSD (long steady/slow distance) ride – it isn’t meant to be high intensity (unless you are required to do efforts or a fast TT)

OTHER STUFF

PRESENTATION NIGHT – Have you bought your tickets yet? Sat 28th June 2014 at Norths Leagues Club, Anzac Ave, Kallangur. Starting at 5pm. Tickets prices are: juniors (12 & under, with a “junior” meal – $10; 13-17 – $20; adults $30). Please click on this link to buy your tickets, or you can deposit direct to our club account (please use your surname in narrative & email Gai at treasurer@redcliffetriclub.com)

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12666

MORETON BAY GRAND PRIX – JUNE 14
Only 2 weeks until our club race, the Moreton Bay Grand Prix on June 14. This will be the third year we have organised this race at Lakeside Raceway and the first two were really fun events. This year we have made a few changes with holding it on a Saturday afternoon instead on Sunday morning and we have added the Enduro category. All the event info is on the RTC Facebook events page at https://www.facebook.com/events/495195983922745/ . Just look for the photo of Tom looking like he is about to vomit as Marcus chases him across the finish line. And entries are now open at

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12063

Quote for the week

If you never chase your dreams, you will never catch them

A massive thanks to everyone for their help, support and feedback over the past few years whilst I have been Bike Coach at RTC, it’s been a great experience and awesome to meet so many fantastic people. I have a massive passion for triathlon, and coaching athletes to be their best in triathlon, especially for Ironman & long course. If I can ever be of any assistance to anyone, please continue to feel free to ask

Please . . . continue to train safe and enjoy your triathlon’ing

Achieve Beyond Your Dreams 🙂 

Regards . . . Jules

0497 078543
julesdillon@bigpond.com

RTC Weekly Update (just a little late)

Hi all,

Sorry for the delay this week.  I’d blame it on jet lag however no excuses…. Anyway here we are – short and sweet.

MORETON BAY GRAND PRIX – JUNE 14
This is coming soon and have you entered?  Come on all of you who have just done Ironman.  You know you have fitness so let’s see you race against your friends in duathlon format (sorry swimmers) and see who still has some speed in their legs.  This is a great opportunity for friends to race against each other in a friendly but competitive format.  You know who was fastest at Port Mac, now who is fastest at Lakeside??  To enter go to the RTC fb page or to the RTC webpage.  All the instructions are in James email earlier this week.  You know you want to….

With this in mind we will have a ‘training’ session at Lakeside this Sunday starting around 6.30am (not 6am sorry).  This is a great chance to go over the course and test it out, and for the in-experienced to learn how to ride the course, gears, lines to take etc.  All are welcome.  Lakeside is open to the public Sunday as part of the 4/52 BUG ride that MBRC put on.  That means that anyone can ride there Sunday, family, friends, kids etc.  It doesn’t matter what sort of bike you have, just come and have some fun with us.  If you haven’t been there before take Lakeside drive off Narangba Rd and go right to the very end.  Drive in the gate and park just before you get to the race track (don’t go to the left this time).

Thanks to our club’s sponsors- ASICS, The Run Inn, Avantiplus North Brisbane, Jetts Fitness, Endura, and Entire Health we will have heaps of prizes on offer and for the fast people thanks to Moreton Bay Regional Council, there is $2000 in cash to be won.  I will once again be running a race for all our children around the PITS and the two duathlons will be spaced out enough for parents to be able to compete and have time to between events to hand over the children.

We would love for all RTC members, family and friends to enter the race and also if you are on Facebook or Twitter, can you please share the event so all your friends can enter as well, thank you.

CONGRATULATIONS
A MASSIVE  well done to Jerrod, Nic and Mark Bristow for awesome runs at North Face 100.  It is an incredibly tough 100km run and these 3 were amazing. Great work everyone.

Well done also to those juniors who have recently competed in the All Schools X-Country championships. Some great results and well done to everyone who raced and had a go.

CHANGES TO COACHING
As you may have heard by now, Mark T has stood down from director of the junior program to take some time off from the end of May.  After a few meetings to discuss how we want to proceed we have decided to change the structure a bit and whilst we will be continuing with a number of the weekly sessions, these will be coached by a few regular coaches, and some of the sessions will be combining with the adults over the winter months.  These in particular are the swim sessions on a Monday and Wednesday.  For full details of the new winter training schedule will be available shortly but if you have any questions do not hesitate to contact Gai or myself.  We thank Tucks for the work he has put in over the past 3 years and hopefully we will see him around out on the training field.
There will also be some minor changes to the adult sessions over the winter months so make sure you check out the RTC calendar to see what is coming up.
JUNIOR WEEKLY UPDATE – Training sessions for the rest of May
Thursday 22 May 4.30pm – Cycle / Run Session – Criterium Track, Hedley Avenue, Nundah
Friday 23 May 5.30am – Swim Session – Murrumba Downs Pool
Saturday 24 May 6am – Long Ride / Short Run – Coffee Club North Lakes (remember to bring lights as starting to get dark at 6am)  Remember each junior must have a spare tube with them for the ride.
Sunday 25 May 6.30am – Brick Session – Lakeside Raceway (with Mary)
Monday 26 May 5.30am – Swim Session – Murrumba Downs Pool
Monday 26 May 4.30pm – Core / Run Session – John Oxley Reserve, Murrumba Downs
Tuesday 27 May 5am – Speed Ride – Torque Toyota North Lakes (you need to have both front and rear lights for this session / no lights = no ride)
Tuesday 27 May 4.30pm – Swim Session – Murrumba Downs Pool
Wednesday 28 May 4.30pm – Run Session – Gravel carpark on Lakeside Drive, North Lakes (opposite the boardwalk)
Allan’s Monday night group are now invited to attend this session. Need to be able to run 2km without stopping (session approx 5-6km total) – Cost $5
Thursday 29 May 5.30am – Swim Session – Murrumba Downs Pool
Thursday 29 May 4.30pm – Cycle / Run Session – Criterium Track, Hedley Avenue, Nundah
Friday 30 May 5.30am – Swim Session – Murrumba Downs Pool
Saturday 31 May 6am – Long Ride / Short Run – Coffee Club North Lakes (remember to bring lights as starting to get dark at 6am) Remember each junior must have a spare tube with them for the ride.
Sunday 1 June 6.30am – Brick Session – Suttons Beach
Coaching Fees –  Mark – $5
Pool entry – $5 per visit
We are moving to North Lakes Pool for June, July and August, so if you multi-session card has expired, do not renew and purchase one at North Lakes Pool.
Gai / Allan  Monday and Wednesday night juniors –
Primary school – $3
High School – $5
Now that we are moving further towards winter, it is a good idea to bring a light jacket to put on after sessions to keep warm.
Also, insect repellant for running is a smart idea.  There are still alot of mozzies around.

REGULAR WEEKLY TRAINING

Friday 5.30am – Swim session NL Pool
Sat 6am – Coffee Club Rides.  Routes as per weekly email
Sun –6.30am (NOT 6am) cycle / run session Lakeside.
Sun 4pm – Trail run Bullocky Rest
Mon 5.30am – Swim Session NL Pool
Mon 5pm – Track session John Oxley Reserve. Cnr Dohles Rocks Rd and Ogg Rd
Tues 5am – Speed Cycle Toyota North Lakes. Meet at Toyota on Anzac Ave.
Tues 5.15am – Speed run Bullocky Rest
Tues 6am – Swim technique session – North Lakes Pool
Tues 9am – Swim session NL Pool
Tues 5.30pm- Swim session NL Pool
Wed 5.30am Swimming at North Lakes Pool
Wed 6pm – Road Track session – Murrumba Downs- Cnr Russell St and Dohles Rocks Rd
Thursday 5.15am Easy cycle – M & M ride. Please mention on FB if you are intending to go.
Thurs No pm criterium track
Thurs 5.30pm Swim session NL Pool

UPCOMING EVENTS
1st June – Doomben ½ Marathon (+ other runs)
8th June – Cairns ½ and full Ironman
14th June – RTC Race Lakeside
15th June – City 2 South
22nd June – Lakeside BUG ride / Brick session TBA
6th July – Gold Coast Marathon festival
20th July – Jetty 2 Jetty
10th Aug – Qld Duathlon Champs (Worlds qualifier)
16/17th Aug – Rainbow Beach Triathlon 750/20/5 (each day)
24th Aug – Challenge Gold Coast
27-30th Aug – Worlds Triathlon Championship

PRESENTATION NIGHT
PRESENTATION NIGHT is confirmed for Sat 28th June 2014 at Norths Leagues Club, Anzac Ave, Kallangur – so put it in your calendar! Tickets prices have been confirmed – full info in James’ email earlier this week. Please click on this link to buy your tickets.  Don’t miss out.

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12666

CLUB SHIRTS / SWIM CAPS
The new RTC shirts and swim caps have finally arrived.  These will be handed out at some of the sessions so if you still need your shirt make sure you get one.  If you can’t make a session please contact Gai at secretary@redcliffetriclub.com to arrange to collect it.  Swim caps will be available at the swimming sessions so don’t forget to ask the swim coaches.

Get better soon to young Elias Gonzalez who had surgery on a broken arm yesterday.  Get better quickly Elias as Pix needs help still with all the weeding in the yard.

The post Port Macquarie IM reports and still coming through so make sure you check out fb and read them.  The latest 2 are from Scotty Dowling and Jo Banney.  Both beautiful reads and honest reports.  Great work everyone.

You may have noticed that I’ve taken off my sign off this week ‘stay upright’ as unfortunately I joined the ‘meet the bitumen’ crew today.  Doh!  Maybe I should read more closely what Jules and I write each week.  Anyway have a great week, enjoy the beautiful weather and train safe.  See you at a session very soon.

Mary  0409 002 082 / coaching@redcliffetriclub.com

Weekly and Riding Update – 22nd May . . . from Jules

Good evening everyone

CONGRATS to everyone who raced last weekend, including the 3 or 4 who were crazy enough to do the NorthFace100 (yep that’s right, a 100k run!! through the Blue Mountains)

All rides are leaving at 6am this week from Coffee Club North Lakes, so please be there by 5.50am, so the rides can leave on time. It is getting darker so please all have front and rear lights for the 6am rides

SAFETY – Please continue to obey all road rules and be aware that there are many instances of tacks being put on the roads, especially in bike lanes. Those who are leading the groups should always be looking at the road in front of them and calling out obstacles or dangers as they arise. It is also timely to remind you to think about getting a “yikes ID” or “Road ID” band – you can order these online (yikesid.com or roadid.com.au) and it is a wristband with your emergency contact details and allergies listed on it, in case you are knocked unconscious

Please ride safely everyone; remember safety always comes first, along with courtesy

RIDE A – (6am) – out Winn Rd, back Eatons Xing Rd, Bunya Rd, Old Northern Rd to Rode Rd roundabout, Beckett Rd, then across Linkfield Rd, Sandgate, Redcliffe, home. Approx 100ks

RIDE B (6am) – alternative hills option…as above, returning to North Lakes after Beckett Rd (via Warner). Approx 80ks

RIDE C (6am) – another hills option…out Eatons Xing Rd, back Dayboro Rd, approx 70-80ks. Thanks Nana for taking this group, it will be at a steady pace

RIDE D (6am) – normal Sandgate loop, approx 60-70ks

SHORT / BEGINNER (also known as “F Troop”)  (6am) – Ed & Louise’s adventure is ride, back for Park Run, then ride again, approx 40-50ks. Speed & distance depend on those in the group

JUNIORS – please join in either Ride B or Ride C

NOTES RE: RIDES

Your Saturday ride is an LSD (long steady/slow distance) ride – it isn’t meant to be high intensity (unless you are required to do efforts or a fast TT)

OTHER STUFF

PRESENTATION NIGHT is confirmed for Sat 28th June 2014 at Norths Leagues Club, Anzac Ave, Kallangur – so put it in your calendar! Starting at 5pm. Tickets prices are: juniors (12 & under, with a “junior” meal – $10; 13-17 – $20; adults $30). Please click on this link to buy your tickets, or you can deposit direct to our club account (please use your surname in narrative & email Gai at treasurer@redcliffetriclub.com)

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12666

MORETON BAY GRAND PRIX – JUNE 14
Less than 4 weeks until our club race, the Moreton Bay Grand Prix on June 14. This will be the third year we have organised this race at Lakeside Raceway and the first two were really fun events. This year we have made a few changes with holding it on a Saturday afternoon instead on Sunday morning and we have added the Enduro category. All the event info is on the RTC Facebook events page at https://www.facebook.com/events/495195983922745/ . Just look for the photo of Tom looking like he is about to vomit as Marcus chases him across the finish line. And entries are now open at

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12063

AVANTIPLUS NORTH BRISBANE SHOP RIDE – Sunday 25th May, leaving the shop at Brendale at 4.15am (returning approx 9am), 100ks to Mt Cootha & back. Cost is $20 before the day or $25 on the day – includes support vehicle during the ride & meal and drink when you get back. Contact Dan McTainsh for further details 0430 483 807)

ROAD ID app – great not only for cyclists but also for runners (swimmers probably don’t need this one!). It’s a free app that includes eCrumb tracking (your partner can see where you are – if he/she needs to come & get you), a stationary alert (will alert your partner if you are stationary for more than a designated amount of time – hence if you have an accident whilst riding alone, this will alert him/her that you are not moving), and a custom lock screen (with your I.C.E. details on it) . . . yes I know, some peeps may go out riding so their partner doesn’t know where they are (??!!) . . . but this is a great safety initiative. Have a look if you want to know more . . .

http://www.roadid.com/ecrumbs

Quote for the week

Well, it is that time of year, State of Origin is upon us . . . so let’s go with a joke . . . New South Wales!!       (apologies to all of our cockroaches!!)

Have a great weekend . . . train safe and PLEASE stay upright

Regards . . . Jules

0497 078543
julesdillon@bigpond.com

IRONMAN PORT MACQUARIE 2014 Race Report – Jo Banney

Lots of people decide to do IRONMAN after some sort of inspiration – attending/supporting at a race or hearing of someone’s experience of ironman. Sometimes the preparation and its impacts are not that well contemplated until you’re well into the training. People who have done the preparation or people who have supported an ironman in training know that it takes a village to make an ironman. It would be a tough endeavour without at least the support of your family.

My preparation was no exception. It wasn’t a breeze. It was a constant struggle. Some days were better than others. I struggled with being unavailable to my kids even though they are young adults. I struggled with times I had to miss training because my dad was having health problems. I struggled with my work demands that seemed to increase the closer I got to race day. Then there were the times I injured myself from falling off my bike and falling while I was running. They were the external influences.

I have always struggled with my confidence. The dreaded inner demons that are not always talked about. These were the biggest struggles because at the end of the day my kids supported me as did my whole family. Even the people I worked with were behind me. Not to mention the fantastic support of RTC and the coaches. But even with all this I still doubted I could line up and do this again. I always felt underdone. The times when my training was not quality or I simply had to miss it played on my mind. I failed to focus on the good training or the times I was very consistent. I didn’t believe.

What got me to the start line? A few people re-framing my negative thoughts and giving me a reality check. You know who you are….and I would not have lined up at the starting line without you. The reality is, although there were bumps in the road, I was as consistent as I could be with all that was going on around me.

On the day there were lots of little victories for me. I got through the swim which was better than I thought it would be after all the weir consternation. Enjoyed the ride even though the conditions were windy and at times gusty. Did what I could with my run – my ITB starting playing up with the muscles around my knee in the last lap.

But the biggest victory for me when I was coming down that finish chute was conquering the inner demons.

So thank-you for being there for me. Without you there to help me manage my thoughts I would have bailed.

IRONMAN PORT MACQUARIE 2014 Race Report – Scott Dowling

Ironman is not just about race day, Ironman is about everything it takes to get to race day.  That is why I have written about the challenges I faced to becoming an Ironman. This is my story and I hope it inspires just one person in their life to achieve a goal of their own

Growing up I never wanted to do Triathlons. I watched Hawaii Ironman on Wide World of Sports and thought they were crazy, me I wanted to play Rugby League – it was my life. After a few too many injuries I retired at the grand old age of 22 and 8 years ago I did my first team race at Noosa after my brother signed me up while I was living overseas. My first training sessions were in a 30m pool in London whilst dodging band aids and hair.  I eventually moved on to short course and Olympic distance races for a few years and really enjoyed it.  I never really enjoyed the run leg but managed to get my battered knees through it.

That was until I had another injury 4 years ago.  This changed my life forever and was the toughest year of my life.  This latest injury required 3 operations, 1 to re-attach the muscles and tendons to my knee, 1 to break all the scar tissue to help it bend again and a ACL knee reconstruction.  Add this onto a previous right ACL reconstruction and a previous left ACL reconstruction and a arthroscopy to remove loose cartilage.  After all this I can not squat or kneel , and I was told I could never play any sport with side way movement.  So it’s a struggle just to play with my son in the backyard without worrying about hurting my knee again.  This time also bought back another part of my life I have struggled with, depression.  Being stuck in a bed for weeks living off drugs does crazy stuff to your head.  I still struggle with it today. It comes when I am stressed and exhausted and zaps your will to keep moving forward (pretty hard to avoid when your training for an Ironman).  Remember that ‘Are you okay day’ should be everyday.  It really does help.

It took me a year to learn to run again and another 6 months to do a Bribie short course race, with a shuffle for a run but I was happy to do 3km for a run. If I ever got back to 10km I would be stoked.  Eventually I ended up competing in Olympic races again and realised I wasn’t as fast I once was and started thinking about longer races. I remember reading an Ironman race report from Fiona Buckland, my inspiration, about her first Ironman and how she walked the entire Marathon and I thought to myself that maybe I could do that.  I entered a Half Ironman, got through it, loved it and was hooked, I wanted the full one.  So I went to support 2013 IM Port Mac and was hooked and made my decision, even if I may have been a little drunk.

So I convinced my wife Michelle and signed up in the first minute it was open.  My goal was to jungle training, family (with a new baby girl and 3 year son) and run my landscaping business. It was time for me to make sacrifices to achieve my goal.  Time away from the family, time away from the business.  These are the sacrifices that must be made and it’s hard. I never really manage to get it right.

I worked all my races out for the next year and was training really well with no leg complaints and  only the occasional ear infection.  I got through another half Ironman and was starting to enjoy training as the weather warmed up.  The only problem was this ear infection never went away no matter how many drops or ear plugs doctors gave me with the advice to keep it dry for a while.  Yeah right.  So eventually I saw a specialist at the end of November and found out I had a Cholesteatoma, or a growth inside my ear which had to be operated on immediately before it started to  affect my hearing.  I had it removed in mid December and had to keep my ear completely dry for the next 8 weeks which meant no swimming.  What I didn’t realise was how much it would affect my balance.  I was allowed to get back on the wind trainer within a week and running when I felt like I could run but  I knew I was in trouble when I nearly fell off my bike, on my wind trainer. So the first 6 weeks of my training program was very limited and it became a 14 week program for Ironman, not ideal but it would do.

So for the next 14 weeks I struggled with fitting in work, training and family.  All 3 never got my full attention and it put a lot of pressure on me and my family and bought me down a lot.  I averaged 1-2 swims a week, 2 runs – long and short and 2 rides –  road and short wind trainer. A normal day for me would be wake up at 5am, swim at 5:30am-6:30am, go to work somewhere in Brisbane and be home around 4:30pm-5:00pm, spend time with the kids, run 6pm-7pm, come home and kids would be in bed already, have dinner, help out with housework and get food ready for next day, paperwork until about 10pm and hopefully asleep by 10:30pm. If I didn’t swim in the morning I would go to work instead.  I continued like this for the next 14 weeks, some days better than others. It was hard, it’s hard when your son is asking you not to train, to stay home and play.  They don’t understand why.  Why you get angry with them at them for the smallest things because your tired from riding 6 hours that morning.

My body held together until about 3 weeks out when my knee would grind and ache most days.  My coach got me to back off my running and told me just get to race day.  I had finished my training with 1 ride over 180km and a longest ever run of 22km.  So there were a lot of doubts in my head in those weeks but reassurance from my coach kept me focused on the goal

So race week arrived and we travelled down on Thursday with all the fun of travelling with a 4 and 1-year-old.  My son started the ‘are we there yet’ before we got to the gateway bridge. So it was a long drive and I was stressed upon arriving and needed a bit of quiet time to get my head sorted for the next few days. We headed down to check – in and get it out of the way, weigh in on the way out, 106kg, I hope those scales are wrong.

We had organised for my Mother-in-Law to come down on Friday and my mother to stay until Tuesday to look after the kids so Michelle could share the next few days with me. She had put up with a lot of shit to get me here and I wanted her to experience the Ironman festivities.  I got through the Friday test swim and do a quick ride out to Matthew Flinders and a ride up the 15% hill and think riding back to the hotel, ‘Shit, I haven’t done enough training’.  I was so glad I didn’t drive the whole bike course as I think it would have made me doubt myself more.  I didn’t do any running down there as my ankles where playing up and I didn’t want to aggravate them more so we drove the run course and it scared me, I didn’t realise 10km was so far.

Saturday I tried to chill out, picked my brother and my mum up from the airport, take my bike down to transition after realising that I can’t fit my shoes and helmet in the race bag so I have to start with my shoes on the bike which I hadn’t trained for.  Get back home and rest until bed time and guess what, I can’t sleep until about midnight.  The brain won’t stop.

Race day and the alarm goes off at 3:45am.  My wife and I head off at 4:30am and get to transition at 5:00am it’s weird feeling that everything is ready and special needs bag are dropped off and it’s 5:10am.  We head back to the swim start and meet up with my mate who had come down on the overnight bus to watch me.  After what felt like an eternity waiting I got my wetsuit on and headed into the sub 60min holding pen where I met up with other club members.  Back slaps and hand shakes done and we are at the start line, about 10 rows back.  Anthem done and AC/DC playing and I was ready. We where doing a rolling start so every 5 seconds 6 people are released. It created a fast incident free swim which I really enjoyed. I got into a nice group and we were all on a good steady pace. I didn’t worry about sighting too much just followed the group.  Over the weir and I took it easy and dropped off the back of the pack. I looked behind and saw no one  so sprinted to get back with the pack.  I got on and stayed with them to the end even though I was struggling with muscle spasms in my legs because I’m too lazy to kick my legs.  Swim done in 53:30,  I shuffled  into transition trying to move my legs.

10 minutes later I was out on my bike. I took it easy in transition with a full change into my cycling gear and still manage not to get my arm warmers on which was a mistake for the first 90km. I took it easy for the first 40km and watched everyone fly past me. I wanted to conserve myself. I completed the first lap incident free, just enjoyed the sights, but realised the wind had picked up and was struggling with the wind gusts going down hill and was worried about being blown off my bike. I see my family on the way back out and it gives me a lift and a smile to see their faces. I pick up my special needs, arm warmers on, toilet break and I was away.  The wind was strong and for the next 40km in was mostly a head wind so I  just tried to stay ‘Aero’ for a long as possible and tough it out and start to count the kms down.  At the 140km mark I started to tire, not enough long rides in training, and had to give myself a bit of a talking to, get my head back in the game and remember all the early morning rides and sacrifices I made to be here.  Before I knew it I was back on Matthew Flinders and had Ironman legend Leon Colbert ride up beside me and have a little chat.  He left me just before the hill with the words ‘can’t do the walk of shame’. So I sat in the saddle and ground it out to the top, got to the top and while my heart rate was doing 190bpm and with my legs burning, realised I had to do a marathon in 10km time.  Oh well heading back into town and have a big smile with all support along the way. Just trying to spin my legs and get them ready for running.  Time 6:32:00 and enjoyed it all with all the supporters along the entire course.  Now for the fun bit the run.  It’s all about the run everyone keeps telling me. I now know that I will finish the race.  Even if i have to walk the whole way.

I only spend 7 minutes this time but I do have a chat to other club members

I start out walking the first 5 minutes getting my legs going.  Plan is to run 4mins/ walk 1min and walk up and down the hill.  It goes to plan and I get to see all the club supporters, a kiss and hug for for my wife, high fives with other competitors.  I was really enjoying myself.  I plan to eat a bar every lap from my special needs so I grab it and try to eat it for the next 5 km but I just don’t feel like it and I start to feel pretty average and start walking between 12km and 16km where a PIS supporter yells out to her club mate about his nutrition which jogs my memory.  I hadn’t had anything to eat and had to get a gel straight away.  So from there I had a gel every second aid station and cola/Gatorade and water at every aid station.  It worked as I got into a good rhythm until 30km when my legs had enough.  Coming past the finish Shute for the last time my legs were tired, my knee was starting to hurt. My coach saw me, asked how I was I told her the truth, ‘I was f@#ked’. My family were at the end of the finish area where they had been on every lap.  They saw I was hurting and I teared up trying to tell them I was struggling. I came to the conclusion that I could walk the last 12km and finish, I just had to get my head around it.  Finishing was what I wanted, not finish time. I got to my special needs bag and had asked my wife to put something in there for me when I need a lift.  It was a letter with some quotes, a bracelet that said “you can do it, love you and proud of you”, a photo of the family, and some fruit tingle lollies. It motivated me and I tried to run again but my legs cramped  running down the hill so I went back to walking.  I held onto that letter until I got to the finish shute.I came past the breakwall for the last time and my family and mate were waiting there pushing me along. I told them I was right and I would see them in an 1 hour.  Heading out of town for the last time I just tried to keep a good pace.  It is dark, cold and lonely out there at night.  Your head can play tricks on you.  I was worried about falling in a hole or tripping and hurting my knee.  I just wanted to see that aid station at the end of the road.  It meant that I was homeward bound once I got there.  They were offering tomato soup at this stage so I tried it, it was something different after all that sweet stuff and  I liked it. Heading home I had the blind competitor and his handler pass me, what a champion, it gave me a smile and I chatted to a few other athletes which helped pass the time.  I came up to get my last arm band and Dan Vass was coming the other way. He gave me a hug and it meant a lot to me.  He knows what I have been through, a fellow tradie, small business owner and how tough it can be.  He told me to enjoy it and soak up the finish shute.  Coming back into town it was great to still have supporters out there cheering you home.  I got to the end of the shute, stopped looked at the finish and soaked it up.  I slowly walked down looking at everyone cheering me, hi 5′s until I got to the Redcliffe supporters.  Thanks guys.  A big  hug and kiss for Michelle.  Hug for my mum and brother and mate.  More hugs and hi 5′s to supporters.  Pete Murray was telling me to run it out. No way, I’m enjoying all of this.  Then finally get to the line and hear those words – “Scotty, Scotty Dowling YOU ARE AN IRONMAN”. And I let out a big scream of relief.  I had done it.

The catcher was great.  Got me around the back to my bag and into the tent where other club members were sitting and I had a quick chat.  I didn’t feel like eating anything. I just wanted to get outside to my wife and go have a shower and change and come back down.  An hour later I got back to the supporters and other athletes. I got to chat to a few people and thanked everyone.  I felt sick and had to sit down.  I was convinced to have some hot chips and it did the trick.  Back to the finish shute to cheer all the club members home. I love that place.

Get back home and into bed just in time to hear the last finisher cross the line – then silence. I get a good 6 hours sleep and wake up feeling surprisingly good.  I was a little bit sore but I can’t believe how good I felt.  I have felt worst after training sessions.  I said when I finished that I wouldn’t do another one but as each day goes on I am getting the urge to do it all again. But first I get to be a husband and a dad again which is the greatest gift of all.

So why did I do an Ironman…. I needed to fulfil a goal that I had set myself.  I have always had high expectations and big goals that never got met because of injury.  That is what drove me to that finish line.

Looking back now I still don’t think it has happened.  The day went so fast and I didn’t get that big buzz that I thought would happen but more of a sense of relief.  Maybe over time it will sink in and I will remember more.

Thanks to my wonderful wife Michelle.  With out you none as this would of been possible.  you are a truly amazing person for putting up with me.  Enjoy the thermomix, you deserve it………Thank you to Harrison and Georgia too, the smiles and high fives keep me going…

IRONMAN PORT MACQUARIE 2014 Race Report – MARTIN SCHETT

My ironman journey started last year in January when I did my first sprint triathlon and was very pleased with myself for completing it and loved the thrill and excitement of competing in a triathlon. I have been in awe since of the ironman distance and those immortals who manage to complete it. When the excitement in the club built up and I actually saw how many will be doing the Port Mac Ironman I started to slowly realize that this might be a possibility and might be achievable. With a lot of support from all the other club members and Jules planning my training the decision was made and serious training started. My limits of the long rides and swims increased very quickly and I had lots of fun along the way in many long club rides and brick session with the RTC team.

We left Thursday morning to head down to Port, my son Liam joined me for the weekend and we had a pleasant drive, checking the weather forecast a few times to make sure things are looking good for the weekend. We got to port and did a little tour around town, checked into the motel and I tried to relax. After dinner I went for a little run to stretch the legs and to calm the nerves. I did a few laps around the side streets and happened to run into the transition area with the exit chute and the red carpet. I was in awe and the hairs on the back were standing up, this made it real, I am here to do an Ironman, finally.

Friday morning I met up with the RTC crew, lots of excited faces and we did a swim to check out the weir. What a beautiful area and the swim in the canal was nice, a bit shallow at times but no need to worry about a rough surf on the day at least.

Went for a run around town after the swim to check out the course and got a good commentary of Michael Stark, to get us acquainted. Then home for brekkie, and off to the registration. This was a good introduction into the ironman organization. It was very well organized, went smooth and again the excitement is building because show time is not far away. Went for a ride later to check out some of the course and was surprised about how hilly it actually was but again a beautiful course and very scenic, I was looking forward, very excited and a bit worried what will be in store for me.

At night we headed off to the welcome dinner and that was pretty spectacular. Over 2000 people in a big marquise set up like a gala dinner. They made us feel pretty special for sure and the air was filled with excitement of all the athletes, ready for the big day. Good to catch up with all the RTC team and lots of good photo opportunities. What a great night and the excitement was building.

Saturday morning started with a short run in the morning to stretch the legs and then we headed off for a drive to check out the whole bike course. A very scenic coast and then it was time to check in the bike. I had my bike and run bags already packed in separate bags at home and gave the bike a last clean and oil, double checked the bike and run bags and checked in the bike and went over the transition area to be ready for race day. Here it started already with lots of volunteers and everyone very helpful. Another great motivator was all the face book postings of all the RTC team and everyone was in the same boat. Trembling with excitement and it was great to share that feeling. I had my pre-race day planned quite well with timing and nutrition thanks to all the advice from Jules and the meetings and information from the club I felt quite confident that this should be a good race, but with such a long race anything can happen. Had an early dinner, chicken curry and rice, my favorite, and off to an early night.

RACE DAY

Not a lot of sleep really but went mentally over the race course and felt actually pretty good, relaxed and confident when I got up at 3.30. I actually felt like jumping out of my skin, preparation had been good, no niggles anywhere and I just wanted this to start. I had my usual race day brekkie of fruit toast, honey, banana, optimizer drink and a muesli bar. A pretty chilly morning, grabbed my packed bags and off to the transition area first to drop off the special needs bag, pump up tires and load my water bottles. I had a bottle of endura opti, 1 endura and Gatorade mix bottle and same in the aero bar bottle, and a water bottle. This didn’t take too long and I had a bit of spare time. So I sat in the warm car, tried to relax and did not feel the need for a warm up swim in the cold.

Before long it was time to get ready for the start, lots of high fives of the RTC crew and with the staggered start it went very smooth without too many elbows splashing around and the weir came pretty soon, legs were a bit wobbly over the weir, quick swim around the next buoy and back to the weir, now it was not far back anymore and I felt great. Had a small cramp and stretched it out quickly, paddled home hard and had my best swim ever. Running up the ramp, quick shower and into the transition.                                                                            Swim 1.03 hrs

Volunteers in transition were awesome, very friendly and so helpful. Jumped on the bike and off I went, always glad when the swim is over and had no niggles from the swim. Was past the hills pretty quickly, then onto the long and flat stretch, first lap went very well and heartbreak hill was full of supporters and was an absolute thrill. Back into town past the RTC supporters, thanks guys you were fantastic, then into the second lap. First lap went well and took only 2.40 hours, did the numbers in my head and this was looking very good. But then it got windy, and this made it a good workout. I tried to enjoy the ride, and worked my way back and went quite well, up the hills again and then the ride through town, into transition was very tough and windy, but good to be back and very easy to get off the bike when the volunteers even rack the bike for you. Nutrition on bike worked well, I stuck to my plan and no stomach problems, I did get my special needs bag, before the second lap, had some chocolate, a few pretzels for the salt and a Red Bull. A few salt tablets as well to make sure and together with the energy bars, the gels and Gatorade the ride went great.                   Ride 6.04 hours

Finally I got to my favourite leg, on to the run. Quick toilet stop and then into transition. Again the volunteers were fantastic and so helpful, mionor problem, I realized I left my sunnies in the toilet, too late now and I took off. The first lap of the run was actually hard work but I did not expect it to be easy and was ready for a long tough run as my legs felt heavy. I stuck to my coaches advice and started off slowly at 5.45 to 6 minute pace and hung in, then about the 12 km mark my legs warmed up, everything clicked into gear and I started to feel better by the minute. I remembered Jules email, think about the moment, and I enjoyed the view and the crowd and started to crank up the pace. I had a ball, had heaps of fun and chatted to heaps of volunteers, and got fired up every time I saw the fantastic RTC supporters. The run seemed to go quite fast, I loved the laps and the course, seeing all my RTC buddies and getting lots of high fives was just energizing me even more. Now I started to really believe it, I am going to finish my first Ironman soon and I was getting very excited. When I picked up my last lap band I was on cloud number nine and immensely enjoyed that last kilometer. I heard about that finish chute, but nothing can describe that feeling of energy and adrenaline I felt running into the finish chute. This was just amazingly awesome. My feet didn’t even touch the ground and then I hear it. MARTIN SCHETT – YOU ARE AN IRONMAN. Woohoo I did it and my body lasted the distance. Run 3.59 hours

Volunteers in the recovery area were fantastic again, and what a buffet they had, it was pretty good. Had a bit to eat and soaked up the atmosphere. I had my towel, got the medal and time to find Liam and Jules and see if I can cheer some of my mates on. What a fantastic day. The long training and all the advice of all the people and coaches in the club but especially Jules who supported and motivated me in this long journey paid off.

But I knew as soon as I was finished, I will be back, this is an amazing experience and I am hooked. Port Macquarie is a beautiful place in a perfect setting with fantastic supporters and volunteers. Big thank you to all the RTC team who I was blessed to make friends with and share the journey and the supporters who energized me every time I ran past.

But also a big thank you to my family, thanks Shelley for putting up with me and my many long training sessions.

Weekly and Riding Update . . . from Jules

Good evening everyone

CONGRATS to the Juniors who raced All Schools Cross Country Championships last Saturday, and to those who raced Byron Bay Triathlon, any of the Mother’s Day fun runs, or any other race

All rides are leaving at 6am this week from Coffee Club North Lakes, so please be there by 5.50am, so the rides can leave on time. It is getting darker so please all have front and rear lights for the 6am rides

SAFETY – Please continue to obey all road rules and be aware that there are many instances of tacks being put on the roads, especially in bike lanes. Those who are leading the groups should always be looking at the road in front of them and calling out obstacles or dangers as they arise. It is also timely to remind you to think about getting a “yikes ID” or “Road ID” band – you can order these online (yikesid.com or roadid.com.au) and it is a wristband with your emergency contact details and allergies listed on it, in case you are knocked unconscious

Please ride safely everyone; remember safety always comes first, along with courtesy

RIDE A – (6am) – especially for those doing Cairns IM or 70.3, or anyone wanting strength work . . . out Dayboro Rd, along Mt Samson Rd, thru Samford, Patricks Rd, down to Rode Rd roundabout, along Beckett Rd, left onto Linkfield Rd, then back thru Warner, Petrie. Approx 100ks

RIDE B (6am) – alternative hills option…out Eatons Xing Rd, back Winn Rd. Approx 80ks

RIDE C (6am) – normal Sandgate loop, with 2 groups if required to provide 2 different paces, approx 60-70ks

RIDE D (6am) – normal Sandgate loop, home via Elizabeth Ave. Approx 50-60ks ***Note: this group is designed for those who are stepping up from the beginner group, not for faster riders*** We encourage those who have been riding with us for a while to step up to this group from the beginners

SHORT / BEGINNER (6am) – Ed & Louise’s adventure is back on again this week, approx 40-50ks. Speed & distance depend on those in the group

JUNIORS – please join in either Ride B or Ride C

NOTES RE: RIDES

Your Saturday ride is an LSD (long steady/slow distance) ride – it isn’t meant to be high intensity (unless you are required to do efforts or a fast TT)

OTHER STUFF

PRESENTATION NIGHT is confirmed for Sat 28th June 2014 at Norths Leagues Club, Anzac Ave, Kallangur – so put it in your calendar! Tickets prices have been confirmed – full info in James’ email earlier this week. Please click on this link to buy your tickets

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12666

MORETON BAY GRAND PRIX – JUNE 14
Less than 4 weeks until our club race, the Moreton Bay Grand Prix on June 14. This will be the third year we have organised this race at Lakeside Raceway and the first two were really fun events. This year we have made a few changes with holding it on a Saturday afternoon instead on Sunday morning and we have added the Enduro category. All the event info is on the RTC Facebook events page at https://www.facebook.com/events/495195983922745/ . Just look for the photo of Tom looking like he is about to vomit as Marcus chases him across the finish line. And entries are now open at

https://www.registernow.com.au/secure/Register.aspx?E=12063

PORT MAC race reports – a number of our athletes have already put their race reports up on a blog, with a link through to Facebook . . . if you have written a race report (or a supporter’s / partner’s report), please feel free to send it to me at julesdillon@bigpond.com and I will put it up on our RTC website for all to read

GOOD LUCK to those racing (running?) the North Face 100 this weekend – for those unaware of this race, it is an ultramarathon of 100ks . . . crazy!! Good luck to anyone racing any other events also

REGULAR WEEKLY TRAINING

Wed 5.30am Swimming at North Lakes Pool
Wed 6pm – Road Track session – Murrumba Downs- Cnr Russell St and Dohles Rocks Rd
Thursday 5.15am Easy cycle – M and M ride. Please mention on FB if you are intending to go.
Thurs 5.30pm Swim session NL Pool
Friday 5.30am – Swim session NL Pool
Sat 6am – Coffee Club Rides. Routes as per weekly email
Sun 6.30am – Short and Long Course Brick session, Suttons Beach (wetsuits optional but recommended)
Sun 4pm – Trail run Bullocky Rest
Mon 5.30am – Swim Session NL Pool
Mon 5pm – Track session John Oxley Reserve. Cnr Dohles Rocks Rd and Ogg Rd
Tues 5am – Speed Cycle Toyota North Lakes. Meet at Toyota on Anzac Ave.
Tues 5.15am – Speed run Bullocky Rest
Tues 6am – Swim technique session – North Lakes Pool
Tues 9am – Swim session NL Pool
Tues 5.30pm- Swim session NL Pool

UPCOMING EVENTS

18th May – Brick Suttons 6.30am– Long and Short Course
25th May – Brick Lakeside (practice for club race) – Bike / run
1st June – Doomben ½ Marathon (+ other runs)
8th June – Cairns ½ and full Ironman
14th June – RTC Race Lakeside
15th June – City 2 South (run)
6th July – Gold Coast Marathon festival **early bird entries close this week
20th July – Jetty 2 Jetty (run)
16/17th Aug – Rainbow Beach Triathlon 750/20/5 (each day)
24th Aug – Challenge Gold Coast
27-30th Aug – World Triathlon Championship, Canada
7th Sept – World 70.3 Championship, Canada
15th Sept – Sunshine Coast 70.3

Quote for the week

“Always laugh when you can, it is cheaper than medicine”

Have a great weekend . . . train safe and PLEASE stay upright

Regards . . . Jules

0497 078543
julesdillon@bigpond.com

Next Stop . . . Cairns

Good evening

I hope all of our Port Mac athletes are recovering well . . . you’ve all earned a nice recovery, so please don’t rush back into. Your first run should only be this weekend – and if you don’t feel like you’re ready to run again yet, then don’t! If you aren’t sure what you should be doing post IM, please ask your coach or contact one of the IM coaching team. Congrats to those who’ve been brave enough (and received the “nod”) to go back again!

CAIRNS
Our next group to head off to their race is Cairns – I have Tony O’Neill noted as our only athlete competing in IM and Chris Hamilton, Lowana and Dave Cawte for the 70.3 . . . do we have anyone else? Please let me know so we can let everyone know, and so we can track you on race day and cheer you from afar

We will have a full race simulation brick session this Sunday 18th May @ 6.30am – it would be great to have a few of our Port Mac people come down to share your stories and support our Cairns athletes so feel free to join us

CAIRNS PRE IM FUNCTION
We will continue our Pre IM tradition . . . I think we can safely double this one up as a “welcome back” to the Port Mac team as well . . . so keep Sunday arvo, 1st June free . . .

PORT MAC WRAP UP
You’ve seen Mary’s report and all the times, along with some fantastic race reports. Please continue to share your race reports – it’s a great way to re-live your day without continuing to share with your family (in case they are sick of hearing about it!!)

Here’s a different spin and some further analysis . . . Congrats again to everyone and extra congrats to our top finishers – Dan and Benita in the swim, Nathan and Jo on the bike, Danny and Jane on the run, and Nathan and Jane for overall line honours. Well done to Jane, Tobi and Jo for “chicking” many of the guys on the run, and to Jane for 7th fastest RTC run overall! And top age group placing goes to Jane – 8th in her category! Chris Hooley was top for the guys, with 17th! It was great to see a tight battle amongst the leading guys and, similarly, the leading girls.

Whilst Dan, Nathan, Cheyne, Jason, Danny, Craig and Simon were swapping places for the top spots in the guys, we also had Benita, Jo, Jane and Tobi swapping places throughout the day and throughout the various legs in the girls. Dan lead the guys out of the water, and off the bike, before Nathan, Danny, Craig, Cheyne and Jason challenged him for RTC line honours. In the girls, Benita lead them out of the swim, but Tobi took over in the first lap of the bike leg to lead the girls into T2 – less than 10min separated Tobi, Jo and Jane as they started the run. And, with a difference of only 24min in their marathon splits, the girls stayed close all run, with Jane edging ahead in the last half.

In the family battles, Cheyne managed to hold off brother Jason by 6min, after they both took some “time out” in the penalty box – 1 at either end of the course! And Michael and Glenn Smith shared the finish shute . . . Michael must have crossed the start line just after Glenn as Michael won the Smith battle by 3sec. Of our 4 couples, Jo managed to claim top spot over Paul (by just 3min – neither knew they were in the finish shute together!), whilst the other hubbies took line honours over their partners (Carl and Fiona, Michael and Benita, Dave and Meryl)

It was awesome to see many friendships formed and others re-kindled during the Port Mac 2014 campaign . . . most of these friendships will remain forever, either through future Ironman races or just life in general. It is special to take the Ironman journey, and even more special to take it with friends. It has been awesome to be part of this journey with you all

Please don’t forget our Cairns troops . . . let’s ensure we get them to the finish line as well

THE 2015 JOURNEY
We will let you rest a little more first but will soon be kicking in our 2015 campaign – the IM coaching team will meet shortly to commence preparations to ensure we are bigger and better for the year ahead. So we would love to get feedback from all those involved in 2014 – what did we do well? what can we do more of? what can we do differently? Please email me at julesdillon@bigpond.com

Have a great rest of the week . . .

Regards . . . Jules (on behalf of the Coaching team)

Jules Dillon – 0497 078543 julesdillon@bigpond.com
Mary Jackson 0409 002 082 coaching@redcliffetriclub.com
Paul Skelton 0402 782 420 paul.skelton@bigpond.com
Dave Cawte 0420 363 660 davidcawte@bigpond.com
GB (Graham Bliss) 0437 818 949 teambliss@optusnet.com.au
Dan McTainsh 0403 483 807 daniel.mctainsh@yahoo.com

Ironman Australia 2014 Race Report – Nathan Wilson

Introduction.

Like many other kids in the 80’s I grew up watching the Hawaiian Ironman on television. The broadcast went for several hours and I struggled to stay awake to watch it. Coming from a swimming background I thought to myself I could do triathlons and I started training around our neighbourhood. It started with multiple laps of the pool, followed by laps of the suburb on the bike and running laps of the block.

Every year I would record the Hawaiian Ironman and watch it multiple times, gaining motivation from the likes of Greg Welsh, Dave Scott and Mark Allen.

In 1999 I promised my dad that I would compete in the Hawaiian Ironman.

In 2012 after several years of being in and out of the sport and completing a few half Ironman races, I began my journey to complete my first Ironman, the newest Ironman in Australia, Ironman Melbourne. This was advertised as a fast, flat course right in the heart of Melbourne with the finish chute in St Kilda.

I began my training, working out my own program and just going by feel. I trained the majority of it by myself and found it very boring.

I got to the start line and on a very windy day, with a shortened swim, finished in 10hrs 11mins.

From that point on I made the decision that I would do one Ironman a year in my quest to make it to the ‘big dance’ in Kona Hawaii.

Late 2013, I joined the Redcliffe Triathlon Club in the hope of meeting some likeminded people that had a similar goal of Ironman Australia in 2014. At my first club training session at North Lakes Pool I received a warm welcome and was very quick to learn that there was at least 40 people racing Ironman Australia. The first thing I noticed was that these people lived and breathed triathlon. A passion that I was lacking training by myself. And they were fast. I jumped into lane five with the two super fish and after the first kilometre my lungs were burning and my arms dead. I knew this was where I needed to be.

Shortly after, I started riding and running with some similarly paced athletes. On the first ride to Melany with them I was some five minutes behind up the mountain and honestly thought of calling my wife to come and pick me up. But I hung in there and this was the turning point. I continued to train with the guys all the way up to the big race. We all pushed each other to our limits, had good and bad days, plenty of laughs and created a great friendship which would later get us all to the finish line.

Ironman Australia

A few days out.

On the Thursday prior to the race we flew Brisbane to Port Macquarie, picked up the hire car and headed to our accommodation. Upon arrival my bike was at the apartment waiting for me.

We headed down towards registration and met my training partners, their families and my coach. I wasn’t feeling the best at this time, nor was my son and we later found out he had a throat and ear infection.

With registration complete we headed towards the finish chute to get an idea of the setup. I then headed back to the apartment and continued to swallow vitamin C and Echinacea tablets in a hope to feel better.

Friday morning I headed down to the swim course with the club. On arrival there I thought there was a few other clubs also swimming but I was quick to realise these were the Redcliffe athletes and their families. A quick swim out to the weir to have a look at the scaffolding we would be running over and then back to the shore for an easy five kilometer run with the boys. At this point I was really struggling to get my breath and 5:20 pace felt like 4:20 pace. I was starting to get concerned. I have always been someone that once I get something in my head I struggle to get it out and as it was on this occasion it is my wife that has to give me the ‘chat’ to snap out of it.

I went to the doctors anyway and was told I had a virus and to rest up for the next couple of days. Which I did. I walked with the guys to the welcome party but once there I made the decision to head home and rest up.

Saturday morning I felt like I had a hangover and couldn’t really get motivated, but I got my bike to transition later in the day and started to feel better.

Saturday night I had my usual prerace meal of chicken carbonara with my family and headed to bed early, but I couldn’t sleep. I finally got to sleep late in the night and woke about 3am, just prior to my alarm.

I went through the normal breakfast for the morning and wasn’t feeling the effects of the virus too much, just felt like a head cold.

My wife dropped a couple of us to the transition and I meticulously went through ensuring everything was ready to go. It was cold and windy on race morning so I put my wetsuit on covering my legs and walked to the race start with some other club members.

I wasn’t getting nerves at this stage which I found weird. At the ‘holding pens’ at the start I seeded myself in the sub 60 minute swim category with several of my training mates. I ducked out of the pen for a brief moment to kiss my family and then got focused on the day ahead. It was a good atmosphere at the start line, plenty of handshakes, words of encouragement and laughs.

Soon the pen was opened and we moved to our starting gate. I managed to stay in the same wave as my training mate. We had planned to swim together and work off each other.

And we are off.

We were released in five second waves. I ran down the ramp of casually dove into the water. The coldness of the water stung my face. I started swimming keeping my training partner in view to my immediate left. After about 500 meters my goggles started to fog badly so I lifted my head and flushed some water through which fixed the issue. It was at this time I lost my training mate but I continued to swim towards the weir, reminding myself to relax, it’s a long day. It was a tough swim with plenty of battering from other athletes, at one point I got an elbow in the goggles but fortunately didn’t affect me. Up and over the weir and into the even colder water on the other side. A quick 800 meters then back over the weir heading towards the swim finish.

The last 1000 meters was tough as I got stuck behind a group of about 8 athletes that weren’t swimming at the constant pace. I made the decision to go out wide on a turning buoy to get around them. Once I went wide I found the feet of someone going at the same speed and I soon realised it was my training mate, I had found him again.

I got to the swim finish, pulled my wetsuit down and looked at my watch quickly. I wasn’t sure of the exact time but as I ran into the transition tent I saw 52 minutes. I was stoked with the time.

Things went well in transition, I had two guys who quickly pulled my wetsuit off, put my nutrition in my pockets and sent me on my way. I didn’t put my arm warmers on as I thought I would be fine without them.

The bike, the long bike.

As I started out on the bike I quickly noticed a bit of a tailwind and I also noticed the lack of other athletes on the course which was a new situation for me. The training had paid off. I plugged through town and saw my family and the club supporters at the top of the hill which gave me a push out of town. Onto the rolling hills I was holding good pace and I concentrated on getting nutrition in and my heart rate down.

Along the highway I was passed by a few athletes but nothing like I have experienced in the past. Towards the turnaround point I was passed by a pack of three ‘PIS’ athletes who were working together on the bike. I passed them back and forth a few times but after 10 minutes I decided to wind it back a bit and let them go. At the turnaround I saw my training mate who had swum sub 50 minutes and I was surprised to catch him so quickly. It was then I realsied I may have used too much energy too early, he is an excellent cyclist and I shouldn’t have caught up so quickly if I was riding within myself. Back into Port Macquarie was good with me passing a lot of athletes on the hills, including a few of the professional females.

The second lap was nowhere near as fun. I made the conscious decision to dial my pace back a bit as I could feel too much burn in my legs. The winds heading out of town were brutal. I watched as my average dropped from 34.5km/h to 34km/h. At the 120km mark my throat was really beginning to hurt and I could feel it closing up. I started to feel very tired. I remembered back to story in Chris McCormack’s book where he was tired early in the bike stage in Hawaii and was told by another athlete to start on the cola. So this is just what I did. I got some cola at the next aid station and started to chip away at my nutrition.

The winds at the turnaround were dangerous, and at times making me swerve over the road as the gusts hit me.

The hills back into town hurt a lot, especially Matthew Flinders hill. I took it easy on the descents as the wind gusts were extreme in town. I was very happy to get off the bike. I finished the bike in 5hrs 25mins 44secs with an average of 33.1km/h. My goal time was 5hrs 17mins, so I knew I was about 6mins down as I had banked a couple of minutes with a good swim and transition.

Transition went smoothly again, two volunteers helped me get my socks on, put my nutrition in my rear pockets, slipped my race belt over my head and I was off. I also noticed how numb my feet were.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

I headed out of transition and quickly observed my training partner in front of me. As I ran up behind him a Redcliffe supporter yelled, ‘Go Dan, Go Nathan’ to which Dan quickly replied ‘I didn’t want to hear that name yet.’ I slapped him on the backside, he returned the gesture and gave me some encouragement that I could go sub 10hrs.

My legs were heavy at this stage and I knew I needed to focus. As I ran into town the encouragement started. At the top of the hill the Redcliffe supporters spotted me early and started going wild. This gave me a huge pep up and sent me on my way to the break wall and straight into the headwind, it was brutal and my pace quickly dropped to 5:10 per km. As I headed back towards transition I ran into another one of my training partners and said to him ‘I am buggered’ at which point a spectator said ‘No you’re not, focus, you are running well.’ I thought about that for a second and then started to run comfortably.

At about the 7km mark I saw my father and his partner and that gave me another kick along. Dad reminded me to run relaxed. I liked the back end of the course where there was no spectators. I think this comes back to my long run training where I run on a long bicycle path where you are lucky to see two people. It allows me to focus more rather than getting caught up in the hype.

The tail wind back into town was great. First lap band gathered and onto the second lap.

The second lap was the toughest mentally and physically. Towards the end of the second lap I tried some Jelly Beans. I started to walk through the aid stations and got plenty of nutrition in. I continued to pass my family near the finish line and got the shivers each time.

About the midpoint of the third lap I started to feel good again and coming back into town the pace was back down to 5:10 per km. It was at this point I realised that if I kept this pace up I wouldn’t be caught by the other Redcliffe members who were steaming home and quickly eating away my lead.

In the last lap of the run I was happy to pick up a few athletes that had flown past me on the first lap. As I got to the top of the hill on the last lap I gave my coach a huge high five as I knew I could hang on for the final 10kms.

It was certainly a long 10kms, especially into the headwinds. At the far turn around, with 5 kms to go, I walked the aid station to get some cola, water and Jelly Beans on board in preparation for the final push for the line.

As I ran with the wind on my back the blood was starting to pool in my feet and they were burning with each step, my hands were numb but I focused on the hard training days and how much fun the finish chute would be.

The distance markers were out along the run course and despite the signs saying there was 2km left to go it certainly felt less. I passed through the gate to collect the last white wrist band, kissed it and really upped the pace. It was great to run through the last aid station and not have to slow for anything.

As I entered the finish chute I saw my family. I knew I was over the 10hrs so I decided to enjoy the finish line. I stopped and gave my family a hug and kiss, then gave high fives to people down the chute, running from side to side. I then stopped and high fived the Redcliffe supporters, gave my coach a hug and looked behind me to notice there was no one else in the chute. I then walked the final 5 meters up the ramp to hear those magic words, ‘Nathan Wilson, you are an Ironman.’

With a finish time of 10hrs 8mins 45secs I was spent.

The aftermath.

I went into the recovery tent and waited for the second Redcliffe member to come in, I knew he wouldn’t be long. While I was waiting I started to shiver. This happened to me after Ironman Melbourne last year so I knew I needed to get warm quickly. Shortly after the next Redcliffe athlete arrived in the tent I had to excuse myself to head to the medical tent to get a space blanket. I was quickly attended to and put on a bed, wrapped in blankets and had my obs’ checked. After about 30 minutes I left the tent and ran into my training mates.

We had a quick photo, congratulated each other with a hug and walked out to our awaiting families. I found my family, got a bit emotional and then headed back to the apartment to warm up and have some dinner.

Shortly after dinner I headed back down to the finish line to welcome some of the other club members across the line. It was a great hour or so. The atmosphere was electric and I had tears in my eyes watching the other athletes reach their goal.

My coach suggested I head home and get some rest, so I waited for one of the club members to come through for his last lap and walked the hill with him. On the way up the hill I reminded him that within the hour he would be an Ironman. He thanked me and I left him to walk off into the darkness that was his final 10kms.

Race reflection.

The long weekends training certainly put me in good form for this race. I think I may have spent too much on the bike leg which affected my run but unless you push to your limit you will never know what it is. I will continue to work on some run pace and endurance off the bike.

I should have taken my arm warmers on the bike and toe warmers would have helped also. I think the cold affected me in a negative way.

Being part of the Redcliffe Triathlon Club is such a privilege and it made the day so much more enjoyable. Thanks to all the supporters who gave up their time and money to make their way down there to support us.

To all of the Redcliffe athletes it was great to be out there with you. Thanks for the encouragement and I am glad we all reached our goal of the finish line and the title of Ironman. Each one of you overcame some type of setback or difficulty during or before the race to make it to the line. No matter what our time, we all got the same medal and have the same bragging rights.

Thanks to my family, friends, coach and club mates who all played a part in getting me to the finish line. Your sacrifices, tips, knowledge and friendships have made this possible and I appreciate it immensely.

As for me I was stoked to be the first club member across the line with the caliber of athletes in the club. I am not sure if the flu affected me on the day or not. I will never know the answer to that but it just means that I will be lining up for another Ironman in 2015 to see if I can better my overall time and get myself the ticket to Kona.

Thanks for reading.

Riding Update – 8th May . . . from Jules

Good afternoon everyone

What an awesome weekend at Port Mac – congrats again to all our athletes on a simply fantastic day of racing. Congrats to Nathan & Jane as fastest RTC competitors, and to Dan, Nathan, Danny, Benita, Jo & Jane for fastest individual legs of the race. My voice is still recovering, but I’m sure it will be fine! Daz doesn’t mind it being quieter!

We have everyone leaving at 6am this week for our coffee club rides, so please be there by 5.50am, so the rides can leave on time. We should have most of our Port Mac athletes back, so it will be a great opportunity to hear some of their stories as you ride with them, or for coffee afterwards. It is getting darker so please all have front & rear lights for the 6am rides

SAFETY – Please continue to obey all road rules and be aware that there are many instances of tacks being put on the roads, especially in bike lanes. Those who are leading the groups should always be looking at the road in front of them and calling out obstacles or dangers as they arise. It is also timely to remind you to think about getting a “yikes ID” or “Road ID” band – you can order these online (yikesid.com or roadid.com.au) and it is a wristband with your emergency contact details & allergies listed on it, in case you are knocked unconscious

Please ride safely everyone; remember safety always comes first, along with courtesy

RIDE A – (6am) – especially for those doing Cairns IM or 70.3, or anyone wanting strength work . . . out Winn Rd, back Eatons Xing Rd, then back thru Warner, Petrie. Approx 80ks

RIDE B (6am) – normal Sandgate loop, approx 60-70ks . . . I’m expecting most of the Port Mac crew to just do a cruisy ride such as this one!

RIDE C (6am) – normal Sandgate loop, at a slower pace than Ride B, approx 60-70ks

RIDE D (6am) – normal Sandgate loop, home via Elizabeth Ave. Approx 50-60ks ***Note: this group is designed for those who are stepping up from the beginner group, not for faster riders*** We encourage those who have been riding with us for a while to step up to this group from the beginners

SHORT / BEGINNER (6am) – Ed & Louise’s adventure is back on again this week, approx 40-50ks. Speed & distance depend on those in the group

JUNIORS – I think it’s the normal loop for the juniors this week, approx 60-70ks

NOTES RE: RIDES

Your Saturday ride is an LSD (long steady/slow distance) ride – it isn’t meant to be high intensity (unless you are required to do efforts or a fast TT)

OTHER STUFF

PRESENTATION NIGHT is confirmed for Sat 28th June 2014 at Norths Leagues Club, Anzac Ave, Kallangur – so put it in your calendar! Tickets prices have been confirmed – this info & full details about this spectacular night will come out in the next week.

PORT MAC race reports – a number of our athletes have already put their race reports up on a blog, with a link through to Facebook . . . if you have written a race report (or a supporter’s / partner’s report), please feel free to send it to me at julesdillon@bigpond.com & I will put it up on our RTC website for all to read

PORT MAC 2015 – is on 3rd May, did you like what you saw and have heard about from this year’s event? Do you want to join in the excitement for 2015? Entries go on sale for TQ members on Tues 13th May and everyone else on Thurs 15th May. Don’t forget to book your accom quickly – talk to any of our members about the best places to stay

GOOD LUCK to anyone doing the Byron Bay Triathlon on Saturday arvo, the Mother’s Day Run on Sunday or any other races

Quote for the week

I may not be there yet, but I’m closer than I was yesterday

Have a great weekend . . . train safe & PLEASE stay upright

Regards . . . Jules

0497 078543
julesdillon@bigpond.com