Monday, December 17, 2018

The Grand Finale

The Grand Finale

2018 has been a McMassive year for me in the sport of triathlon. With all being said and done I've competed in and completed 10 events in total, 8 Ironman Distance and 2 half distance. It's safe to say that I absolutely love racing and when the opportunity came up to race at the Home of Motor Sport, The Daytona International Speedway, I couldn't resist in finishing off my awesome year in Daytona beach. What exited me most was dealing with the logistics of racing and Ironman on the West Coast of Australia and travelling literally halfway around the world to the East Coast of America to race again in a 6 day period. Busselton and Daytona literally couldn't be further away from each other, both ways around the world are the exact same travel time!! Through into that the fact i had to make a very important Pit stop to collect a Diamond ring on the way and the week was absolutely full gas from the moment the gun went off in Busselton to moment i crossed the finish line 6 days later in Daytona. Was the absolutely perfect way to finally burn the last bit of runner left on my continental tires and empty the physical and mental tank for 2018.

There are no secrets that i love America, and i love Motorsport. Despite the circumnavigation of half the globe and everything we crammed in between i was bright eyed and bushy tailed when we touched down in Daytona in the early hours of Friday morning. I snagged a few hours sleep but as soon as the sun was up i was off to the race track, I couldn't wait to get behind the walls of a Motorsport venue I've been glued to the TV watching over the past 3 decades! Pinarello decided to sponsor the event to celebrate the mantle we've earned over the past 2 years of the fastest bike in the sport being able to cut some laps on the fastest race track in the world. On top of that the Guys from Epic Cycles in Claremont Florida had a massive expo setup to give the Bolide some VIP treatment and display for everyone to came take a look at it. Fallon and i often joke now that people ask first where is Olive and secondly where is the bike,Then they ask how we are!! It's actually become rather comical how much attention that particular bike gets, and the dog of course, it's really cool.

Friday rolled on with the usual briefings and intros for the weekend with it being clearly evident the influence NASCAR had had on the organising of this challenge family event. Everything was so organised and as a pro athlete they really made sure we knew how important it was for us to interact and be as accessible as possible with the fans, just like there drivers are on a entirely different level of popularity obviously but you get the drill. They wanted this to be very American, a big show!! To ensure this they had invited a great group of pros to ensure that's exactly what they would get. The womens field was stacked with champions across all disciplines from ITU to Ironman Distance making it impossible to pick a clear favourite. The men's field was set be equally as exciting with Andrew Starkyowiz gunning to exact some revenge on me for what transpired in Kona and Dylan McNiece & Peter Heemeryck both sat tied one place behind me in the Challenge Family World Bonus rankings which basically meant whoever finished ahead of each other would be 4th instead of 5th and take home $12000 instead of $5000. Basically put i had a big target on my back. Through in local Ironman legends Andy Potts and Matt Russel and a whole rath of ITU guys and the men was set to be an epic battle from start to finish, exactly what you want the seasons Grand Finale.

Saturday morning i was up again ready to rumble, it was race day 1! I'd suggested to the organisers that us pros spread out in teams for the sprint relay to add a bit more of that interaction the NASCAR guys had spoken off. I was paired with Lesa France who's grandfather built the track and family now are not only the owners of multiple venues around the country but the driving force behind the sport. It was amazing to meet Lesa under such circumstances as I always say as i always say sport is the greatest leveller and to see her passion we consider very small on the grand scheme of global sports was really exciting. Along with her assistant Wendy we had an absolutely fantastic morning and the 850m swim head to head with Dylan where i finally learnt how to swim on someone's hip!! It's like your surfing, amazing revelation for me, was a great way to blow out the cobwebs for Sunday's main event, I actually felt fantastic.

Sunday morning finally rolled around. I was up and feeling great, excited to leave whatever energy i had left on the race track, literally. When we arrived at the track there was an announcement about bad weather on its way. The organisers decided to have all the age groupers go off as planned at 7am to complete a modified course and the Pro's would race once the storm had passed later in the day to ensure we could do the planned half Ironman distance. We were called into the "Green Room" for a meeting which was a special room setup for the Pro's complete with treadmills, exercise bikes, food, drinks ect to basically ensure we where comfortable all weekend. This room alone was something I'd never experienced at a previous race and yet another indicator of how serious NASCAR where to help innovate our sport.

During the meeting they outlined the details of the storm due to hit in a few hours and when it would pass to allow us to race safely. The speedway has a direct line to the national weather centre and it was remarkable how to the minute they where of predicting the weather to hit and pass. After a lengthy discussion of the different race and route possibilities we all agreed on a modified distance to take place entirely inside the stadium based of a 1600m swim. In other words that worked out to be a 60km ride (15 laps of the speedway, how AWESOME!!!) and a 14km run zigging and zagging around the infield of the track. The start time was set for 1pm so we all ad 5hrs to kill. Some went back to the hotel, some just hung out, while passed out on the floor in between a couple of treadmills, the jet lag had finally caught up with me! Finally 12:30 rolled around and just as predicted the rain stopped dead and the sunshine appeared, it was go time!!! All the athletes like one big happy family now after spending all morning together happily headed to transition to set up bikes and make the final preparations. Then bang on 1pm the gun finally went off for the final race of the season!

When it came to swimming I definitely saved the best till last and blasted off the line. Ive never felt better at the start of a swim and soon it was only the two super swimmers in Andy Potts and Dylan McNeice ahead of me. As we exited the water after 800m to then jump back in for a 2nd lap i was only 15seconds behind those guys, I couldn't believe it. The second lap Peter passed me but i clung to his feet and exited the water only 45 seconds down on Andy and Dylan, this was a massive improvement for me and i was absolutely wrapped. Now for the really fun part!

Going along to watch Jimmie Johnson at so many races I've always dreamed of riding on the speedway and i was finally getting my chance. I launched myself onto the bolide and set off in pursuit of Andy and Dylan and the lead of the race! About halfway through the first lap i knew i was in trouble as I just didn't have the punch I've enjoyed all year which left me with a simple decision, go hell for leather with what you've got and see if your remarkably hang on. Through the start finish straight people where giving me splits to Andy, was so cool having so many people so close to you so often, just and incredible experience. 3 laps in and i was in the lead and while it knew my pace was dropping every lap i just kept hammering away with every bit of horsepower i could muster.

Around 7 laps in i really started to struggle to compound my issues could also feel the looming Starky baring down on me like a ton of bricks. He was moving like a freight train and sure enough a few laps later he passed high up on the wall which was pretty cool to see actually and try as i might to stay in touch he kept riding away from me. I simply didn't have the goods to stick with him and was absolutely powerless to do anything about it. I'd experienced this 12 months before in Ironman Western Australia where that was the one race too far and i blew up halfway through the bike and latterly climbed off and sat on the road side. That was a horrible experience where i felt very foolish infront of my family and the fans so in this case i had the chance to wittier those wrongs and hang tuff as best I could and try to give the spectators the show they couldn't wait to see. Somehow i kept Starky insight until a few laps to go but then he just disappeared for good and pumped 2minutes into me in the last 2 laps, he was flying and on a mission! When i finally reached transition still in 2nd, I hadn't given up hope of one last blistering run for the title for 2018, I'm certainly ever the optimist.

Once my feet hit the ground it was very apparent there would be no fairytale ending to my 2018 season. My running legs picked up where my cycling legs had left off, flat out running out of sight on a dark night. 1 by 1 they ripped passed me until when I finally waddled over the final finish line for the year in 10th place. When it came to the exciting pre race hype between Starky and I battling the bike leg and could I hold Peter off to hold onto 4th in the world bonus I was well and truly the days biggest loser on all fronts. Peter not only finished ahead of me but he did it emphatically winning the race and obviously in the process ensuring himself a bigger Christmas bonus than I would receive, he was far and away the better athlete than not only me but everyone on this historic day for NASCAR and Triathlon and great inaugural champion of this great race.

With the curtains finally down on what was far and away the most fulfilling year I've ever had in all my years of sport I was looking forward to holiday. The race couldn't off been in a better location to get stuck right into the festive season with Fallon and I heading straight for Disney world and the first line at Magic Mountain and my favourite the Magic Teacups that I spun so hard in a bid to knock Fallon off her feet. While I didn't quit succeed at Disney World in doing so, later that evening once reunited with olive in her home town of Deep Creek Lake Maryland, I delivered her that Diamond ring I mentioned earlier. It fitted, she seems to really like it and I can't wait for whatever adventures lie ahead for us. It's been on amazing few years together where year on year has just kept getting better and better and naturally simply cannot wait to see what 2019 brings.

Merry Christmas and happy holidays everyone and I look forward to hopefully seeing some of you if not all of you somewhere on some continent sometime soon.


P.s. As always my race data is all on strava, one victory I did have was the fastest lap recorded on a bicycle around the famous speedway!!

Sent from my iPad

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Hi Ho Hi Ho, Back to Busso I Go

Hi Ho Hi Ho, Back to Busso I Go

12 Months ago I Travelled to Busselton for Ironman Western Australia full of confidence and a lack of respect for the sport of Ironman. Fortunately i got exactly what i deserved, a big dose of reality and severe embarrassment in front of my home crowd and most significantly my family. That day i not only DNF'd but I didn't even finish the bike leg, i was so out of shape and thought i could still blow everyone away that i literally blew myself up after 100km and could even complete the bike course. It was a long long flight home to Tasmania with my tail well and truly between my legs but what i vowed to myself was no matter what happens in 2018 ill be back to Busselton to redeem myself. 12 Months on and i can proudly say i feel I've done just that this past weekend.

The Build Up in Tassie

I thought long and hard how to do Ironman WA right for the past 12 months and the 1st priority was if your going to do it do it properly. Last year i tried to keep things ticking over post kona and what that basically amounted to was i slowly but surely de trained post kona and became less and less fit to the point that it was out of shape come race day which subsequently led to me blowing up on the bike for the first time in my IM career. This year i took a completely different approach and took my off season immediately after Kona to refresh my body and mind and didn't do any exercise for 3 weeks. The result was when i returned to Tasmania in early November i was chomping at the bit to get going again, perfect. This basically left me 1 week to get moving again and 2 weeks of solid training to get myself back into some sort of condition knock out one last IM for 2018.

That first week was a real battle which it should be if you've had a proper rest. In fact on the Wednesday my very famous Running Edge Training gang dropped me during our track session. We do 30min + 3 laps and after 20minutes i could not only no longer do my turn on the front but I couldn't even hold the wheel of the boys. Anyways i expected this as the local lads are tuff as nails and there is no room for passengers in our group, was exactly where i wanted my condition to be and exactly the kick starter i needed. Things got better as the week went on and by the Sunday i was able to survive the whole Professional Criterium at the Launceston cycle classic without being dropped which was 55 minutes plus 3 laps, an hour of power basically and this told me the body was now ready for 2 weeks of solid training for Busselton. The next 2 weeks went perfectly to plan, the boys hammered my most mornings on the bike and i even survived the track session both weeks! I added in my intensive and long runs and the key swim sets we used building up to kona. If you want to know more about what i did in those sessions its all on my Strava as usual.

The middle weekend was another awesome Tasmanian event, the Point to Pinnacle touted as the Toughest Half Marathon in the entire world!! I'd done it twice as a rower in 1hr 52minutes both times. I vowed if it couldn't beat that time then I'd quit triathlon immediately and go back to rowing as that would've just been embarrassing. Fortunately for me and the work I've done on my run i had a 17 minute PB stopping the clock in 1hr 35min which i was absolutely wrapped about and gave me huge confidence ahead of Busselton which was a whole 2 weeks away. The final days went to plan and that gave me a week to freshen up a little for the big day. We decided to make the feared track session the final test on the Wednesday morning before the IM and I passed with flying colours. Fallon and i loaded up the Ute for the 15 minute drive down to the airport, life is so simple in Tassie!! And off to Western Australia we flew with my Mum in tow. I couldn't wait for race day.

Special mention to the Running Edge Training Tribe:
Kimbo Gillard (2:15 marathoner)
Mickey "The Fox' Dalton (2:16 marathoner) Team Captain
Hayden Armstrong (Strongest cyclist I've ever ridden with)
Matt "Cat' Geappen (if you think your suffering look in his direction)
Wellsy (similar to cat)
Lewy (Super Fish swim prep finisherrrr)
Al Mearns (never missing a training session and never doing a turn!!)
Drew Ginn (google him)
Rhys "Shlonga" Long (has a lot under the hood in every respect)
Aaron Dunn (Pro cyclist who gets paid to be an electrician)
Brad Stevens (Crowd control, opens and closes the gate for us at track sessions)
Pete Barrett (similar to Al)
Justin "Mad Dog" Morris (he's actually very tame)
Gilly (once a week wonder at the track)
Matty Rundle (the only one who actually takes sport seriously in this group)
Andrew "smarty smart" (because every team needs a JP) Leigh "Waxy" Walker (team marriage & relationship therapist)

The Race

Despite the 3am wake up on race morning i was bright eye'd and bushy tailed. The favourable time change from Tasmania being 3hrs in front of Western Australia meant I'd basically be getting up at 2:30 am Busselton time for the past 3 weeks. I chomped down my 2 crumpets with butter, peanut butter and honey, a cup of coffee and off the start we went. Got my bike all prepared in transition and as you'd expect for my 8th Ironman of the year I've got that routine pretty dialed and had plenty of time to relax with fallon and Mum and Dad before the start. The new qualifying system for Kona meant that I'd need to finish in the top 2 to get that finalised in Busselton and consequently insuring i finished no lower than 2nd was my entire focus for the race. I was confident that a solid race would gain me that position but always felt if i had a perfect race i could challenge Terenzo Bozzone for the title. I shimmied into my wetsuit and it was finally time to get this party started and get some redemption.

The Swim

I've grown very confident in my swim since my performance in kona and being in a wetsuit i was even more confident i could put myself in a very strong position for the race. I knew Terenzo would be two quick so i simply wanted to ensure i got out of the water to who i saw as my two main threats for that 2nd place i needed, Luke McKenzie and James Cunnama. To do this i ensured i got a fast start and had those two behind me. I got myself between terenzo and the boys to ensure they didn't get away with him and ideally he'd be solo so have to work harder than he would've liked in the swim. It worked out perfectly and once i was confident he had an gap too big to close i let james and Luke pass me and i followed them around the swim course. When we exited the water we where only 50 seconds behind Terenzo and things couldn't have gone more perfectly to plan in what was probably my best swim of the season.

The Bike

I had a great transition and was one my bike before Luke and James, again i had them right where i wanted them and was in control of the race for 2nd. Once I Boarded my fancy new Pinarello Bolide TR+ it was time to go to work on racing for 1st! I quickly shut down the gap to Terenzo and was in the lead solo after 15km, I couldn't believe how perfectly things where panning out as I'd expected a 2-3 minute deficit on T out of the water. Getting in the lead so early meant i had more time to extend that lead and I didn't waste a km of road doing that. I'd been crossing my fingers for a fast bike course but despite the flat profile i knew with the West Australian prevailing winds off the ocean and the very heavy slow roads that wouldn't be the case. Instead the course would be relenting with no free kicks and if you wanted to go fast you had to keep the pressure on the pedals at all times. Obviously this makes the legs much more tired for the run but you'd be rewarded with potentially a race winning lead. I obviously decided on the pressure on the pedals approach and as much of it as i could muster of my 2 week preparation. I had some shakes moments in the last 50km where i had to bring out Mars Bar to get me to T2 in a position to be able to run but once that was on board i was ready for whatever the boys where going to through at me. I got of the bike with a 4 minute lead on Terenzo which i was confident wouldn't be enough given his running pedigree but more importantly Luke and the new threat to my 2nd place Matt Burton, where more than 12 minutes behind which was fantastic news to me!

The Run

As I headed out on the run i very clear heard my Mum say "Go Ribsy" which upon hearing that i instantly forgot about the fatigue and hit the turbo button. Hearing her voice made me decide to throw caution to the wind and just go for it. I sprinted through the first 10km in 37min, my 3rd fastest 10k ever and actually pulled away from terenzo slightly. More importantly this put even more pressure on Luke to chase after me hard as otherwise he and Matt where going to run out of Km's to chase me down. When i saw the situation after 10km i decided to keep my foot on the throttle and run as hard as i could for as long as i could. By the 21km mark nothing had changed and i was still holding Terenzo and starting to edge away from Luke and Matt, I'd finally broken them!! Unfortunately the effort of running my second fastest ever half marathon, 1hr 23min, had also taken its toll on me and during the 3rd lap of the 10.5km run course Terenzo shut down the gap quickly.

By the start of the final lap and into 10km to go he passed me and i felt i didn't have much left in the take to I fight him. At that point however we ran past the start finish area and where all the crowd was which gave me a second wind all be it very brief. I re passed Terenzo for the lead and held it for the next km or so, I'd never been involved in a head to head running battle like this before and although it was brief it did give me another little piece of race experience I didn't have in my bag of tricks. As we turned at the top of the course to head north for the final time with the wind at our backs, terenzo put up his Spinaker and set sail while i dropped anchor and powerlessly watched him run away from me with the title. I mustered all the strength i could to keep him within reach should he faulter or a miracle 3rd wind. Alas neither happened and i arrived in the finish Shute in 2nd place in 7hrs 57min, my fastest ever IM and around 1 minute behind Terenzo. This was by far and away my best executed race and the closest I'd ever come to beating an athlete of Terenzo's caliber. Hats off to T, he's been one of the best in the world for nearly 2 decades and after the horrific injuries he sustained in a hit n run bike accident early in the year its just great to see him back to his blistering best, he certainly hasn't missed a beat.

So that was that, i got everything came for, my 2nd place and 2019 kona qualification and redemption in the eyes of the Aussie fans and my family. Mum seems to hold a bit of a secret key as every race she's attended I've had a breakout performance, last year in Cairns where i ran 3:02, this year in Zurich where i finally broke 3hrs running 2:58, and then this weekend in busselton where i basically had the best race I've ever had in my Ironman career. Maby next year she better come to kona!!

That's a wrap for my IM's for 2018, there isn't actually anymore i could enter this year thank god! I will race for the final time this weekend at Challenge Daytona which is half distance so fingers crossed there is still a little left in the tank for that and to enjoy Disney World on Monday!! Ill take another Mini Break now until Christmas before G and I re convene in LA to start it all over again. We both seemed to have a pretty good year so only thing to do is try and do things even better in 2019.


P.s. As always if your interested on the data from my race or my training you can find all that on my Strava under my name, Cameron Wurf.

Sent from my iPad

Friday, October 19, 2018



Well..... Kona couldn't have gone more perfectly and so imperfectly at the same time. The entire year we'd had a plan we believed in and a scenario that would allow me to catch my rivals off guard. For just over 6hrs on Saturday it seemed we'd pulled off the ultimate cue but as happens every year to whoever doesn't win the race one man and women stand up tallest in that last 1/4 and Patrick once showed that the smallest man of the men up front would tower over us yet again and take another emphatic win. Fortunately due to the fact I did in essence exactly what i set out to do, the race wont require much analysis on my behalf. However as everyone loves hearing how things played out behind the Camera Screens here's my take on the 40th running of the Iconic Hawaii Ironman World Championship.

For the last 4 weeks or so I've just been chomping at the bit to get onto that starting line at Kona Pier on Oct 13. Ive never ever felt so fit and healthy in my life and the stress of how much work I needed to do during the year to condition the body for a run at the title was replaced by fear of ensuring nothing went wrong in those final days. For the first time in my sporting life i was truly ready to compete at the highest level of a professional sport. Our mantra this year was pretty simple, improve on last year. My coach Tim was confident that we did everything right last year and this year we simply had to do things a little better and we ticked every single box. Most importantly perhaps we finally cracked a bit of a flaw in my swimming when i discovered a shaft two beat kick simply needed enough force to keep my hips high in the water instead of acting like an anchor. I'd always felt if i kicked I'd be too tired to ride my bike but just "faking" a kick as our swim advisor Denis Cottrell calls it requires basically no effort. In fact its easier just keeping them up there and out of the way now that I'm used to it. Anyways this small change was the final dilemma that still lingered after an intense training and racing schedule over the European summer and with that now solved we knew it was the difference between the 54 minute pack and the 50 minute pack.

The rest of that final 4 week period we focused on our mantra, just do it a little better this year. Instead of sleeping at Big Bear Lake Fallon, Olive and i moved the base camp to Running Springs right on the ridge of the range sitting high above Redlands. The altitude difference was merely down to 1900m as opposed to 2000m at big bear but most importantly i was able to drive to the swimming pool in 15minutes as opposed to 60minutes which 12 months earlier meant i skipped quite a few important swim sessions. Not only that but i was able to drop down to the San Bernardino Valley inferno to ride and run easily and it just basically made it much easier to maintain a high quality of work during that period. Fallon was closer to the organic markets which if there is one thing that girl loves its organic grocery stores, if anyone ever wants to take her out on a date just take her to one of them, she just melts and is entertained for hours. Olive had an endless amount of trees littered with squirrels to keep her eyes, ears and nose occupied 24/7 so the whole team was much happier. Again all we had to do was simply do things better. We headed to Kona a few days earlier this time.

The heat was a bit of a shock last time so we landed on the big island a few days earlier. Also following my exploits of 12 months ago there where a few more demands on my time which i was determined to not interfere with what was most important, racing. We Took Olive with us this year, she'd been with us all year long and there was no question of keeping the team together for the Super Bowl. Last year my best mate Timmie looked after her while we where in kona so this year we just brought him with us as well. Timmie Eaton is perhaps the most capable person I've ever met on this planet and nature lay one of his endless lists of talents is a bicycle mechanic so also gave me the peace of mind the New Bolide was in the state my race mechanic Win Allen had prepared it to be in before i left LA. Naturally when you have the best hands in the business on your bike it didn't even have the faintest of glitches on race day, absolutely perfect. Other additions to our retreat in the coffee plantations this year was Fallon's best fried Emily whom just refuses to allow any doom and gloom in any room she's in, shines brighter than a shooting star that girl.

And finally but perhaps most importantly of all, Tim Reed. Tim's my childhood buddy from Lord Howe Island whom happens to also be one of greatest triathletes of this current generation. I was so excited that Tim wanted to join our rolling circus for race week as knew he'd ensure i knew exactly what was going on regarding the race and my rivals at all times. He's the ultimate professional and has race week absolutely down to science. I simply had to follow the leaded, it was awesome. Naturally everything went perfectly on those all important days leading into the race and we ticked another box in the doing everything better category.

The Race

Naturally Tim had race morning schedule all mapped out and i just did what I'd done the previous 10 days and followed the leader. Dropped off the all imported run bottles, loaded the bike up with the war food and for the first time ever had a solid hour to relax with Fallon and Olive before the start whilst i got dressed for the race. Finally 20minutes before the race start Fallon zipped me into my swim skin, it was go time. I can honestly say the entire year I haven't felt any nerves or jitters when i thought about the race but merely excitement and optimism. Well walking away from Fallon and Olive toward the swim start that after all the sacrifices, camps, product development, training, suffering it was now me, my race suit, swim skin over the top, Swim Cap and goggles and a timing chip. It was now just me who could effect the outcome of all that everybody had put into me walking barefooted to the swim start and i tell you what that made me so dam excited. I just couldn't wait to get in the water and get stuck into it.

I lined up surrounded by the known strong swimmers knowing i was ready to box on with them. I'd done a 1000 standing starts in training and rehearsed the sound of the cannon. Its a sound i can here more vividly than just about anything else. When it went off i went off right with it and immediately led the field away. I could see Dave McNamee over to my right and just decided to keep him an arm length behind me until the chaos settled down and i was certain i was in the front pack. Sure enough after around 400m the argy bargy settled down and I allowed Dave to lead our pack that had formed on the right over toward to faster guys who's taken off on the left. From there i looked for a solid set of feet to follow and trust for the remaining 3k. I knew it was going to be a great day as of all people i spotted the Professor Himself Tim Reed and beside him my hero Sebastian Kienle whom was also having a much improved swim. I wedged myself between these two and enjoyed the most peaceful tow around the swim course I could've ever dreamed off. I felt like I'd really hit the Jackpot. When we exited the water i had the biggest grin on my face and it was such a surprise for everyone except myself that I've never seen so many concerned faces as i bolted past them to get to my bolide in the first few and really pile on the pressure. My transition was flawless just as I'd visualised it would and thanks to my tri specific Pinarello Bolide which is 1 Inch lower to the ground than the bolide i used last year i launched onto that thing and was outa there! Was time to go win this thing.


I knew there was a group of strong swimmers up the rd and my plan was to get to them and leave Kienle behind. I needed him chasing and causing panic in the running group as there was no way they could let him disappear up the road. I knew Sebi was behind me so i just went for it to ensure he stayed there. Sadly i had no idea of the mechanical issues he would face in those first few miles which really ruined his day. He'll be back with a vengeance in 12 months time that's for certain. I galloped across the gap to the front within 20km and was finally in complete control of the race. I scooped up starky and Josh and went to work on gaining time. I felt sensational, could keep my heart rate under control and could use the power spikes where I needed to to keep the speed where i felt it needed to be to give myself a shot at the title. Timmie had ensured my food would make it further than mile 3 this year so was nice to actually have something to eat this time around. Not only that my hydration was spot on aswell. The way i was plucking the bottles out of the hands of the volunteers at the aid stations would've made Bill Bilacheck want to through me into the Patriots lineup as a wide receiver. The gap back to Patrick continued to grow and all the way out to Hawi just couldn't believe how on earth everything was a going so perfectly.

When we finally saw the running group after the turn around something caught my attention. Andy Dreitz was dressed the same as Patrick and it could tell he was riding the perfect pace to pace Patrick so long as some others provided some extra protection and didn't realise what was going on. Sure enough Patrick was sitting around 4-5 spots behind and barely looked as cool as a cucumber, he was in complete control. I couldn't help but admire what they had managed to do, it was really really clever. Keep the fastest runner on your team as close to the front as possible and let him loose. The Brownlee's mastered this tactic in London, i just never thought I'd see it happen in an Ironman. Well gloves where off, it was just as i imagined it would be, me v's the german's. To be honest I wasn't overly worried about there tactic at that point as i knew nobody could hide once those ferocious trade winds starting blowing from Tasmania across the pacific. I simply went to work on lifting the pace and blowing things apart on the way back to town.

As the miles ticked down i noticed the gaps weren't blowing out as they usually would with how quickly i was going. At this point, around 20 miles to go, it dawned on me that there was no wind. The running group wasn't blowing apart the way it had every single year since the races inception. No, instead they where back there happily rolling along behind Patrick's domestic delux, lets call him handy Andy, and where happy as pigs in mud. I had to make an important decision. Go all in and just get as bigger lead as possible. Or, cool the jets and accept if i want to win this thing I'm going to have to run faster than I've ever run before. There was really no decision to make, i was here to win so i eased up and started to prepare for the run, i had to go for it. Last year it was pretty exciting entering T2 all alone, a dream in fact. This year was all business with the nostalgia replaced by a determination to nail transition and finish this thing off. I rocketed through transition and headed out in my fancy red Nike's determined to get as much real estate between myself and Patrick before he starts running.


If someone had've said I'd have a 7 minute lead last week onto the run I would've taken it. The reason I would've taken it was because i knew for these guys to be that close would mean they'd suffered like hell in the trade winds and would've had the sting taken out of there running legs. Unfortunately for me this was far from the case today but still i had the same self belief that it could be enough as i settled into my rhythm. Along Ali drive i felt great as i churned up pace that i felt would have me losing time but atleast make them have to work hard to take it off me, unlike the way i stared the run last year 12 months prior in this exact position. My focus on the run was simply to get in and out of the energy lab in contention and then see what i could muster up down the stretch. When i saw all my rivals at the first turnaround i felt like i was on track to do just that as i focused on eating and drinking. Just on that if i had $1 for every person during the run that reminds you to eat and drink I'd have enough many to buy Ironman from the Wanda group which is for sale by the way. Might try and set that up for next year!! I hit Palani still with a good lead and passed the legend Jan Frodeno whom gave me the biggest cheer I've ever had from a German in my sporting life! He's another that was sadly missed from the front end of the race this year, be bloody exciting to have a fit Frodeno and Kienle on the line next year.

Once atop Palani all that stood between me and the title was the most feared running out and back in the Ironman world, the infamous Queen K, Energy lab in midday sun combo! Once here assuming i was in the exact position I planned to just get in a good groove and as stupid as it sounds now, try and recover a little for that final 10km. Well probably comes as no surprise that once i mentally shifted to being soft the wheels well and truly fell off. I lost my nice flighty rhythm and was now reduced to a slow heavy grind. The gap to Patrick began to plummet rapidly and around 17km into the race the inevitable occurred and I wasn't going to be the winner on the day. There has been much interest in the infamous fist pump as Patrick ran past. I simply complimented them on there tactics on the bike and said I didn't see that coming. I then encouraged him to make sure he goes on and smashes the record as that's what i dreamed of for the race and the race was perfectly set up for it. It was a nice moment and one I'll cherish but also one that'll drive me going forward to try and avoid it ever happening that way again. I did rally and try to match his pace but when he sensed i was staying there he kicked again and broke my will, i knew I couldn't match him, he was simply too good for me this year.

From there i just focused on getting to the finish as quickly as possible as comfortably as possible. The championship was gone and I'd have to wait 12 months for another shot. I know there wont be many times in your life you can go to the well on that run in that environment and I'm simply not even capable of doing that at the moment. My run has improved out of sight compared to last year but the glaring facts where there for me to see as the next 8 men rolled on by my, they are simply stronger. They just look so bloody strong and know how to suffer on that run, something i just seem incapable off still. It's funny because in the swim and on the bike I take those two disciplines personally, i refuse to not be in the position I believe i should be in, I fight and fight and fight. Once on the run i just can't seem to maintain the same intensity so that has to change, obviously that has to change.

All in all i go back to what i said at the start, the day couldn't have started anymore perfectly than it did. Had the conditions been like they'd been every single other year for sure the dynamic could've been different but the outcome certainly the same. While everyone continues to lift there game Patrick's been able to do it the most. He's raised the bar both physically and tactically which gives us a whole new range of things to plan ahead of next years race. To be apart of the fastest race in history and the only other man to lead other than Patrick on the run is a massive step in the right direction for me. Also entering T2 in a shade over 5hrs was also something i doubt people thought they'd see in Hawaii so I've relished the challenge to move that swim/bike benchmark up a little. Having said that considering my coach is the mastermind behind the last 6 out 7 Tour De France wins and a former Olympic swimming physiologist you'd definitely have to label me uncoachable if I couldn't at the very least be good for that part of the race. At the end of the day we did exactly what we set out to do this year, simply do everything better. Judging by where we've come from and where we have gotten to, i cant see any reason to change too much of what we do, just simply do it better. We may have come up short this time around with 9th place, however, despite losing this battle I'm more determined than ever to keep fighting to ultimately win the war.


P.s. As always my racing files are there for everyone to see on Strava because if it ain't on Strava it didn't happen (unpaid advertising)

Sent from my iPad

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Euro 2018

Euro 2018

Finally the time has come to switch continents & begin the final phase of our year long pilgrimage to Kona. Before we get there however we have one last important stop off in California for an Altitude Top-up in Big Bear Lake, a couple of hours south east of Los Angeles. While I'm extremely excited to finally be getting closer to the showdown at the World Championships both geographically & also by the colander! I'm also leaving Europe behind with a little sadness as I've had the most incredible Euro 2018 i could have ever dreamed off.

When Fallon & I arrived in Europe it took us a little time to finally get settled. First we tried living in Nice but logistically it just wasn't quite easy enough for me to get the work done training there that i felt i needed. We decided to move onto Andorra and quickly fell in love with the little principality ultimately settling in a cosy little apartment at Anyos Park, right next door to the training facility I Swim and Gym at. Basically its turned into an oasis for all of us as Fallon loves the mountains & Olive (the Golden Doodle) loves everything Fallon loves! Olive also does swimming lessons twice a week so its by far the most settled we've been in our few years traversing the globe together.

For me and my training its simply everything i could ever wish for. I have about 5 swimming pools to choose from, endless trail running options, a track, and off course some of the best rd riding you'll find anywhere in the world. The gym also has a state of the art recovery centre with ice baths and anything and everything else you could imagine so being fortunate enough to find a home literally 50m from the centre was an absolute stroke of luck. Through in the fact the people in the Catalan region of Spain are some of the nicest you'll meet anywhere in the world and its really ticks every single box we could think off that needed to be ticked.

The Reason I'm in Europe in the first place is really for one simple reason, my coach Tim Kerrison. Tim is head of performance at Team Sky & I'm his little side project experiment if you like as the man seems to just love endurance sports. Tim was national Rowing team coach way back when i was on the national team and coached the world championship Winning U23 Lightweight Quad in 2002. In 2004 he was a physiologist with the Australian swimming team before performing the same role with the British Olympic team in 2008. Following that he was recruited by Dave Brailsford to be head of performance at Team Sky obviously signifying there intentions to do things differently than had been done historically in cycling and the rest they say is History. 7 years down the line and 6 Le Tour De France titles down the line with 3 different athletes, a giro and Vuelta title thrown to ensure he's athletes have claimed the whole set, he's obviously one of the most successful cycling coaches ever. And now he's graciously decided to apply that knowledge to the sport of Ironman Triathlon with me as the test pilot. Yes I'm extremely fortunate to be in the position i find myself in.

So back to why we choose Europe as our home these days when not in Australia. Again because of Tim. Obviously for Tim to be able to apply time to me i need to be heavily integrated with the Boys at Team Sky as i spend many many many many days with them at team camps all over the world really. In the past 18 months I've been at camps in Australia, LA, Monaco, Tenerife, Chatel, Isola 2000 and each spot on more than 1 occasion. Basically during the season which for me spans January to October there are not too many months we are not at a camp checking to see where things are at. Now the other unquantifiable advantage of me being in Europe is that the standard of not only world cycling but also world triathlon is based in Europe. Simply put all the best guys setting the standard in the sport are there so its an extremely motivating environment to be in and certainly ensures you never ever rest on your laurels. For example Jan Frodeno lives just 90 minutes from me in Girona Spain, a place made famous by Sir Lancelot Armstrong. When i go to races i can line up against the likes of Sebastian Kenle and Frederic Van Lierde for example so a reality check of exactly where your are at compared to the best is never more than a short drive away. Being someone that gets distracted easily the constant reminder that I've got lots of improvement to do has really kept me on the straightened arrow this year.

Back to Tim and how all that works. Ove the past 18 months my Time around Tim and the team has definitely become more and more structured and specific to my goals in Kona on October 13. Initially i was simply tagging along to there team camps and squeezing in the odd swim and run where it fitted. I had 3 years away from top level sport people have to remember and lived like a normal person and certainly to the fullest!! It's taken 12 months just to get myself back to I'd say a semi elite level of fitness and the Team Sky training camps where the perfect way to get me back into shape. At the same time the fact i was available to be at the camps often meant Froomie and G had someone to train with which i feel like hasn't hindered them in anyway as they've both had a rather successful couple of seasons since my first Team camp with Chris back in January 2017. So last year i was most definitely tagging along as i very very rarely swam or ran at the team camps which my give a good indication why i was able to ride rather well in Kona last year but swim and run extremely poorly. Still there was no option as i was so out of shape 18months ago it took time to build the body back up.

In January this year Tim really started to ramp my training up while i was with G in LA. There was the first time my swimming and running was really structured into the daily routine aswell as i actually started misusing rides to do hard swims and track sessions instead. This at first upset me as i loved doing all the rides with the guys. Yeah its awesome having the opportunity to ride with the best guys in the world but also we just really have a great atmosphere in our groups when on these camps. After a few days of missing out on the harder ride days and seeing some instant improvements in my running i was reminded Tim knew exactly what he was doing and it was all part of an evolution to the level at which I'm able to train at today. The next camp in Tenerife was more off the same where I spent lots more time in the pool than on the bike and finished rides early to go for runs but again with my weaker legs improving i embraced the process all be it with some slight trepidation that I'd lose some of my edge on the bike. Sure enough this never happened and by Challenge Salou i was able to win my first half Ironman and run 1:18 off a 360watt average 90km bike ride which was absolutely full gas for me. This race was the first indication to me that if i can continue on this path ill be capable of attaining my goal of riding as hard as i possibly can and then running as hard as I possibly can and was interesting to see the correlation between the way I'd worked at the training camps and then performed in the races.

Fats forward to august and the team camp in Chatel and yet another evolution in my tagging along at Team Sky training camps. Tim obviously has friends in the swimming world all over the world and organised for Team GB open water swim maestro coach Sean Kelly (not the cycling legend version!!) to join us at the team camp. This camp also Tim kicked things up a gear in my training and also added running in daily. So for the first time ever I'd go to the pool each morning with Sean, saddle up on the bike with Kwiatkowski, Puccio, and Sivakov, and then run in the afternoons where we Tim introduced me to sprint sessions for the first time!!!! Was by far the most productive 10 days of training I've ever done in my life and certainly the most food I've ever eaten in a 10 day period in my life! All my data is on Strava pretty much so easier for you to check it out there than me explain here what i did. Obviously training in the company that i do everyone wants to know what we do. Honestly i have no idea. I'm absolutely focused on survival pretty much every single day of training that i just focus on each and every interval and move on. I'm hoping myself that one day i can go back through my own strava files and figure out what i did! So August really kicked off with a bang but there was more to come.

Fallon, Olive (yes we also take the dog to the team camps) and I shot back to Andorra for 5 days to recharge before jetting off again to Monaco for my final camp with the guys ahead of kona. Here again Sean was present so got us access o the Olympic pool on the Monaco Port each day for 90minutes before they opened the doors to the public. Can't thank the Monaco swim team enough for along me to steal one of there lanes and get another couple of weeks of consistent swimming in with one of the best swimming coaches in the world watching over me. Not only the pool but we where also able to utilise the Mediterranean for open water sessions which as you can imagine is a pretty enjoyable spot to be swimming! From the pool it was a quick change and up to the team house to meet the boys for the days ride where Tim showed zero mercy on the fact I'd been swimming that morning. Once the ride was done I'd shoot home and pull on the running kit for the final session of the day and they ended up being the biggest runs I'd ever done. I did two back to back weeks of 100km of running which i did in 4 runs a week, one of 20km's, another of 30km. Pretty easy to rack up 40+hr training weeks when your training like that.

We decided to through in challenge Almere at the end of the block to test some things ahead of kona on an equipment front and also see where my running is really at as with me we really don't know unless i run the full distance. Sure enough Tim the genius had got my running legs moving finally over the marathon distance just in time for kona where i was able to run a 2:52 marathon off a very hard bike ride. I honestly couldn't believe my watch when i went through halfway in 1:21 and got very scared about damaging my legs ahead of kona so did my best to just enjoy the sights for the back half of the marathon, running on grass where possible and looking after my body with nutrition and hydration. I don't know what surprised me the most, running a 6 minute PB or doing it on the back of the training camps I'd just endured without any rest. I'm just so excited about how I'm feeling running at the moment i honestly cannot wait to get out on that run course in kona on October 13 when it really matters!

Following Almere our techniqual partners organised a wind tunnel day for me at the Boeing facility in Germany. We had the opportunity to make some final examinations of equipment we'll use in kona and off course get some data on how well my Rower/Cycling/Wannabe Triathlete body moves through the air. While i wont reveal what we've got install for kona as really all i can tell you is nobody outside that tunnel has seen what we'll use.... I can reveal i have a CDA value of 0.214 or whatever that means. I believe it good but again don't really know what good means but i guess i have to hope that being comparatively weaker than my rivals might keep me closer if I'm more aero?? Anyways it was a really interesting day spent with some incredibly intelligent people where i learnt a hell of a lot including how planes get off the ground, stay in the air, and come down to land! I guess if your ever going to learn about that the airbus factory would be the place to do it!

Finally back to Tim and the evolution of the Team Camp. Following Almere and the wind tunnel adventure i had one final 3 day training block in Monaco. Again i started in the pool before it opens to the public!! Made me feel so special, then rode one day with Kenny and the Next with wout before my afternoon Runs. On the final day however Tim through a curve ball in that not even I expected, Geraint Thomas got added to our Ironman Training group chat! Sure enough i was asked to bring along some swim trunks and googles for the Tour de France champ and pool buoy and band! He turned up full of beans which is very unusual for G at 9am in the morning and was in his new trunks and chasing after me up and down the beach. I have to say when i turned around at the end of the 200m stretch of water we use at Larvotto Beach for our supervised open water sessions I couldn't believe how close he was. He can definitely swim!!! He made it very clear he'd like to transition to Ironman in the next 3-5 years and like the champion he is he's laying the foundations.

And as if that wasn't a surprise enough for one morning!! Following the swim he pulled his running shoes on with me for some speed work where he seemed at ease rolling along at 3:40km/pace, absolutely blew me away. In fact he'd only swam around 500m before announcing he'd like to race a half IM before the end of the year to get his feet wet so to speak!! How cool would that be!! But honestly how cool that a guy like that you'd expect to be wrapped up in Cotten wool looking foil something to entertain himself with for the off season, just an absolute class act he is, an absolute class act. Ill also add this for free, don't rule Froomie out from a similar off season approach. He's been running this week aswell and i gave him a new swimming wetsuit on Thursday, wouldn't surprise me in slightest if he utilised those things and climbed aboard his bolide for a race himself!! Watch this space!!

So as I set sail to America for the another milestone in the journey that began on the Gold Coast last January its been nice to reflect on the evolution of where I started out with these guys and where I'm at not. Certainly the "Team Camp" transformation is one I didn't see coming from me tagging along, to adding in some swimming and running, to a swimming coach at the camp, to one of there Tour de France champs joining me for swimming and running sessions!! Holly guacamole to me it just highlights what a unique enigma Tim Kerrison is in the world of endurance sports coaching and just how so dam fortunate i am that he's allowed me to Tag along.


Sent from my iPad

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Breaking 3

Breaking 3

Last weekend was without a doubt the absolute pinnacle of my Running Career!! Finally my proud pigeon plod carried me through a Marathon in an IRONMAN!!! in under what was proving to be the elusive 3hr barrier, 2hrs 58min 58seconds to be precise. In the running world I've noticed everyone rounds down so lets just call it a 2:58, that sounds good to me. They say most of the fastest marathon times are set on the most picturesque courses in the prettiest cities and I've got to at running around the pristine city of Zurich full of celebratory Swiss spectators was a great way to take your mind off the suffering. Like everything Swiss they where educated and informed and seemed to know the exact right thing to say at the exact right moment to ensure you got the very best out of yourself. It was just splendid but off course it was a marathon so a bit had gone on before i even strapped the red Nike's on for my jaunt around the city.

I love Zurich so was always going to be at the race regardless of where i was at in my preparation. Back in my rowing days i had some of my best races in lucerne just down the road and cherished every off day we had in those days to explore the city of Zurich. Always thought that one day I'd live there and work in a bank, who knows that could still very well happen one day but I'm happy what I'm doing for now. Another reason for racing Zurich was the fact that its Fallon's favourite city in Europe and she desperately wanted to take Olive there so she could swim in the pristine lake Zurich! So why not make a family holiday out of it and through in some Sunday sport for good measure. The Brady bunch actually grew to 4 in Zurich with the arrival of my Mum from Australia so we stayed an extra few days to enjoy some precious family time considering the fact Fallon and i operate across 3 continents during the year.

I had modest goals for this race as has been the case all summer. It's a little tuff to set your expectations to high when your simply training up to and through all these events but i always try and have some small goals to strive for regardless. In Zurich my goal was not to get caught by any of the women in the swim as they started only 3 minutes behind us. Secondly was i wanted to break the womens run course record on 3:00.24 seconds. The bike would be what it would be but when i suggested in the pre race press conference the bike course was quicker than you'd expect Ronnie Schildknecht scoffed and said he'd be very surprised if it could ride under 4:20. That type of comment is like a red rag to a bull for me so then had 2 more goals, to go sub 4:20 and beat Ronnie to the finish line. The stage was set and i was champing at the bit the start gun to go off on Sunday morning.

When the start gun finally did go off i quickly felt very unready for the challenges ahead that day. I don't know if it was the fatigue but I've noticed that as I've raced more and more and trained harder and harder between races I've been more and more sleepy on the start line. This was extremely evident in Zurich when i was dropped like and absolute hot potato in the first m's of the swim. The days eventual winner Jan Van Berkel had muscled his way in beside me on the line and was out off sight and swimming before i even took my first stroke! Made for a very very lonely 3.8km swim where i was now only focused on staying ahead of the girls! Fortunately I exited the water a minute or so head of Aussie Annabel Luxford and only had people in my category to pass on the bike, as there was already a lot of them!!

Once on the bike i settled into my rhythm began to feel a little coming back into my body, I've noticed the fatigue usually subsides and the race goes on and feel better and better so with the experience of that in Nice and Roth i knew if i could keep the pressure on the pedals on the first lap I'd definitely have a stronger 2nd lap. As expected i was further back than fullback on Jan and his band of Swiss merry men in the lead group and took me around 120km to catch them and get into the lead. Once in front i really smacked the throttle as if I'm racing I'm racing and regardless off my condition I'm going to do everything i can to fight for the podium. I was able to hit transition in the lead and was confident i had a big lead on Jan and his pack. I was very wrong about that I had only managed a 30 second lead on David Plese who'd ridden in way nobody knew he could. Even he admitted he couldn't believe it but he saw the opportunity to match me and went for it. I love it when guys get stuck into it and actually put themselves in a position to win. It may not be the smartest but it sure makes the race way more exciting. Anyways i was wrapped with my bike leg regardless and clocked a 4:14 to take 10minutes of Ronnie's bike course record, that felt good!! Now just had to break the women's run course record to make it a perfect day.

Onto the run and i realised i only had a slim lead so i booted it, i wanted to get to Fallon to receive my first turbo bottle in 1st so had to survive 2km! I did and also meant mum got to see me in the lead of an Ironman for her first time, was a big day of milestones. Once they objective was ticked off i settled into my lazy long run pace. Like in nice and Roth i decided to not look at the watch and just go on feel. I find a pace that i feel like I'm running at but not fast enough that i risk blowing up, basically a pace i could run at for 50km if they decided to through in another lap. I've learnt over the summer if your going to race for training you have to take the ego out off it and be sensible and risking a blow up is certainly not acceptable as I could leave me in a hole I can't get out of for kona. David flew past after a few km so was a pretty lonely first half marathon while i waited for the inevitable charge from Jan. Sure enough as i enjoyed a nature break at the Porta John around the 25km mark, he ripped pass me so fast he sucked the hat clean off my head. To say he was on a mission was an understatement and knew that was the winner. The only questions for the final 2 laps was could i catch back up to David and would anyone else catch me in the process. I slowly began to build my pace and with 10km to go i was still trailing David by 3 minutes. With 5km remaining it was down to 2minutes so I upped the anti again with some more purposeful running for the first time that day but fell 45 seconds short at the line and had to settle for 3rd.

I was wrapped to finish on the podium, absolutely wrapped with mum there and all was happy I'd put together the best race i possibly could. I didn't want to ask about my run split as I couldn't handle hearing another 3hrs something! But when i saw fallon and her face i knew she had good news and i was absolutely overjoyed when she informed me I'd run a 2:58(rounding down remember). So with that I'd also broken the women's run course record so ticked all my boxes for the day and on top of that Fallon got some more flowers and sunflowers are her absolute favourite which was a real cherry on top. Oh and I beat Ronnie across the line but like the 9 time champ;ion he is he pushed hard all day, he's just the type of guy you hate racing, he's never beaten till your across the line. I was extremely happy for Jan to win his first ever Ironman in his home race and 7th attempt. Was also so great to witness how he did it. I knew form the second he elbowed me out of the way at the start he was going to win that and in course record time to boot!!! What a way to take your first big win and he's an absolute gem of a bloke, one of the few that's always been there to offer me advice during my journey. All in all a very successful day and record breaking day, what more could you wish for on a smoking hot Sunday summer afternoon than smoking hot racing to match it!

I don't like the word redemption however this year my schedule could suggest I've been chasing such with my choice of events mirroring that of 2017. In South Africa i improved on my 11th to 4th, Nice I went from DNF to 3rd, Zurich a very distant 7th to 3rd on Sunday. Sweden isn't a male race this year so wont be back to improve on that 2nd and i wont be going back to wales because I've already won so cant improve there! Now ill set my sights on the biggest monkey on my back from 2017 being Kona, and nailing that swim and run. I'm happy with where this training and racing preparation phase has put me physically and mentally. Racing tired has taught me to utilise the low energy stores i have in the most efficient way possible to get the best result i can on the day. In the process i think its made me a much smarter racer and in a much better position to go to Kona and see if i can finish the job i started last year. Time will tell....

With zurich my summer of preparation racing phase comes to an end. From here we will focus 100% on being as well prepared and fresh as possible for kona on oct 13. Many have questioned the way I chose to do things both racing and training and that's fine, everyone has there opinions and i obviously have mine. The fact of the matter is i want to beat these guys in kona and ideally be apart of another record breaking day. There is no way I'm going to beat them by doing things the way they do them. We are all such different athletes. They have all been racing triathlons for a decade or more with the exception of Lionel, off course they will have a traditional build up. Ive rowed at the highest level and raced in the world tour on a bicycle so my physiology is completely different and lots of long hard days is a preparation I'm familiar with and we believe will work best for me. The exiting thing is we are all going to find out in 10 short weeks if i can put it together. I'd like to say I'm nervous but I'm not, Ive got nothing to lose. I just cant wait for that start cannon to go off on Kona Pier on Saturday the 13th of October!!


As always my race data is on Strava. I remembered to not only save my ride data but also wear my heart rate strap so a bit more info than usual for IM Zurich.

Sent from my iPad

Friday, July 6, 2018

Tremendous Two Weeks Part 2

Tremendous Two Weeks Part 2

With round about way of tapering and IM Nice behind me it was time for part 2 of my double header and Challenge Roth. I'd heard so much about this event being a "bucket list" race and figured there are no guarantees on how long ill even keep doing this sport so i best do it while i have the chance. As it turned out this year it fitted in nicely with our little experiment of doing back to back races for training loading. The positive was that with the last minute schedule change a week earlier it had turned out to be the 2nd race so I'd be a little fresher and be able to give it a few more herbs with a rest week awaiting me after I crossed the finish line. We spent Monday in Nice and enjoyed a lazy day with olive at the Dog Beach frolicking on the Mediterranean before attending the presentation that evening which did include another bouquet of flowers for Fallon. Had a good sleep and woke up Tuesday morning ready to crack into another race week. We loaded the Car and set sail for Isola 2000 for a few days with the boys.

One thing that I learnt in this whole experience is the importance of keeping the engine ticking over if your going to back up with two Ironman's 7 days apart. Wednesday morning rolled around and i was back in the saddle for a "cruisy" 6hrs with Luke Rowe, Wout Poels, Micheal Kwiatkowski, and off course my usual sparing partner Chris Froome. Cruisy!!! Yeah right, 6 minutes for me with these guys is never comfortable let alone 6hrs but i did my best to hide my suffering and pretend i felt sensational just rolling around with these Tour de France stars, after all i was preparing for another Ironman in 4 days, off course i felt great!! I managed to survive there "general ride" which means easy for them until the final km of the final climb back to the chalet where I completely ran out of juice. I dropped back to the car grabbed onto the roof racks and told Tim i was empty, a strange empty as my legs felt ok I'd just simply ran out of fuel despite eating all day like a horse. Tim wasn't at all concerned and said the good thing was i had a few days to refuel ahead of Roth and everything would be fine. There are so many reasons why Tim s regarded as the best endurance sports coach on the planet a she could tell me anything and I'd believe and sure enough this explanation took me from down and out to confident as a cockatoo for the weekend ahead!

The next day we headed out again this time minus Luke as he headed off to recon the feared cobbled stage in this years tour, well feared for most but certainly not Luke, he eats them for breakfast. The remaining 4 of us headed down to the valley for some intervals. The first was a 15km 4 man Time trial for a bit off a warm up. I was certain I'd be dropped after my first turn if i even made it to the front but was pleasantly surprised as i noticed the power was already back in legs and I survived the entire interval. From there the boys did some more hard work in the mountains while i climbed casually back to the chalet to cap off my preparations for Roth, i now had 2 full days to freshen up, seemed like 2 months! Fallon and i loaded the car and jetted off to germany. Wa sober 1000km so we split up the drive with a night in Austria on the way and arrived in Roth bright eyed and bushy tailed Friday morning. The organisation of the race is absolutely 2nd to none and they had organised us a wonderful home stay for the event, even our dog was welcome. Surface to say we settled in nice and quickly and once again i had an entire day t rest up and recharge the batteries ahead of Sundays big race.

Now Roth i have now learnt is like no other race. The entire city and surrounding cities shut down for the day as an estimated 250,000+ people come out to cheer which honestly i think is being very German and a conservative estimate! Ive been very excited about doing this race for another reason being it had the potential to have a very similar dynamic to that that ill have to deal with in Kona on October 14. There was one key reason for this and that was the presence of the great Sebastian Kienle. On the drive to the start i said to fallon how cool this was going to start a race where i was literally going to have the opportunity to race shoulder to shoulder with my hero of the current generation of Ironman. I'd enjoyed watching Sebi the most when pouring over recent NBC kona highlights packages be when he won or was beaten, there is just something i really admire about the way this guy races and carries himself. Before the start he did even more to endure himself to me when he helped me pump up my tyres. I didn't have a crack pipe for my disc wheel and fumbling around with Co2 canisters when he jumped to my aid. He even suggested the pressure i run, the ultimate gentleman. Despite being star struck i was extremely relaxed for the race as I felt I had nothing to lose. Sebi once again had a chat to me before diving into the canal for our warmup which again made me pinch myself about the fact i was actually about to race him. I watched him swim off for a few strokes before snapping put of my day dream and said right its time to make his day as challenging as possible!

My goals for Roth where pretty straight forward. Firstly avoid losing 3 minutes to Lucy Charles ensuring i get on my bike before she reaches transition! Secondly try and do a good consistent bike that's put me in a position to again fight for a podium spot, training day or not it was a race and was going to race! And finally stay controlled and conservative on the run again until the final 5km then fight for whatever position is up for grabs at that point. The atmosphere was absolutely bonkers before the start and following my horrible swim in Nice in was so incredibly determined to put that behind me with a great swim here in Roth.

When the gun finally sounded i was outa there!! Quickly into the lead and i put my head down and swam as hard as i could. Lucy Charles was starting 3 minutes behind me and was determined to my as much of the course between her and I in that first 3 minutes. It wasn't long however before i got bulldozed the stronger swimmers but instead of blasting past my more eased past allowing me to jump into a nice slip stream, already this was worlds apart from just 7 days before in Nice! Around halfway in the swim i spotted Sebi and his bright yellow cap as race favourite and settled in beside him behind the front runners. At first I thought oh shit I'm actually having a terrible swim but the lead kayaker was just ahead of us so Sebi was also having a great swim. As we swum stroke for stroke i had visions of the Dave Scott and Mark Allen Ironman and thought wouldn't it be amazing to have Roth War with Sebi! Reality quickly set in when I remembered i cant run but still was nice to pass some time day dreaming about races in future years perhaps. As we exited the water we couldn't be separated on time and i was buzzing like a kid in a candy store as we again bumped shoulders grabbing our transition bags. Again side by side as we headed for our bikes but here i quickly got the upper hand with my superior helmet clipping on ability and i was in motion on two wheels ahead of him, the race was on.

With Sebi behind me all be it 10m's or so i hit the gas hard once out on the open rd. While everyone else including the man i saw as another big threat Andrei Dreitz fiddled around putting there shoes on i decided to get to the lead asap and worry about sliding them on later on. With Sebi behind and out of my vision i really went hell for leather if nothing else to make him panick and have to use some extra matches to come and find me. It was at this point however i was wracked with the reality stick of how fatigued i was as i simply didn't have the power spikes i do when I'm fresh. I decided after around 5km when sebi was not planted 15m directly behind me I wouldn't have the legs to drop him today so the best i could do was make it as uncomfortable for him as possible. Once I'd accepted the fact I didn't have the fresh legs I'd convinced myself i had i decided to just ride as fast as possible the the energy i had and not focus at all on power. I'd forgotten to wear my heart rate strap so i only had power as a reference but to be honest all i really looked at was average speed. I figured a decent ride would be around 44kmph average so just worked on keeping the speed around there as best i could.

At the end of lap 1 i looked and could see not only sebi but also Jesse Thomas. I felt i was probably being a little cautious on the pacing so started to pick things up as we began the final 90km. Soon after Jessie was dropped and it was just Sebi and i and i was very happy with this situation. I knew I couldn't beat him on the run today so figured if i keep it smooth and fast for him perhaps i can set him up for a potential course/world world record held by Jan Frodeno. Around 120km into the ride i looked back at Sebi to ensure he was fine with pacing and he thought i signalled him to come past. He said I don't know if can help you out at all but ill try. Cool I thought I'll just sit back here for a bit for a change of scenery. After about 5 minutes of that i got sick of sitting behind and rode back sebi and told him to save his legs for the run and that I'd keep it nice and smooth which got a laugh out of him. Unfortunately with about 30km to ride i heard the motorbike behind me which knew meant sebi was no longer right behind me and a quick glance back confirmed this. Just like in kona last year i thought well i may aswell hit the gas now and see how big a lead i can get as you never know what can happen on the run. I hit T2 feeling great which is always welcome when you've got a marathon ahead of you and couldn't wait to get stuck into it, quicker you get started the quicker you finish right! Anyways as we exited T2 i had 2minutes on sebi, 6 on drietz, and 12-15 on the running pack, i was right where i wished to, in the race for the podium.

My plan on the run was to take it as easy as possible for the first 37km then race for whatever spot is available to me at that point. I quickly got into a very cruisy rhythm and sebi blasted past me after 4km to relieve me of the lead I'd enjoyed for the previous 4hrs or so. Around 15km into the drietz dropped me back to 3rd and now i knew the final spot on the podium was touch and go. I could see Jesse Thomas, Joe Skipper and James Cunnama all charging along and making light work of there 15minute deficits so i just had to stay calm. Sure enough Jesse galloped passed me with around 10km to go so i knew if he stayed strong the podium was gone for me today. By the time i hit 5km to go Jesse was way to far ahead to mount a challenge and now Joe and James where running shoulder to shoulder and had me in there sights. If I didn't pull my finger out I'd need up coming 6th and again in this quality opposition I'd have been wrapped with that at the start of the day with 5km to go was going to fight to fend them off. Joe was simply too strong and dropped my like a hot potato with 2km to go but not before delivering some good news that james was now struggling and to hang tuff. I found another gear and managed top keep him out of sight to enter the famous Roth Grandstand finish arena in 5th place.

I was extremely satisfied with this but when i looked at the timing board and saw 7:58 I couldn't believe my eyes, my first sub 8 finish to come after the previous few weeks I'd endured i was absolutely wrapped. I quickly checked my watch to find out I'd run a 3:01 marathon which is my equal best ever which was an even bigger surprise as I hadn't looked at my pacing clock once all day. This was far and away the most balanced and perhaps best race I'd ever done. For the record I thumped lucy in the swim!! Well sort off, she only swam 1 minute faster so had 2minutes up my sleeve. I broke 48minutes for the first time and took 3 minutes off Jan Frodeno's bike course record which is particularly motivating to take as many more records of him as i can. And then an equal best ever run on those very tired legs was definitely the best part of the entire racing for training experiment. Yep, i guess i did exactly what Tim though it would do by giving me huge motivation to work even harder as we keep heading to Kona on October 14.....

P.s. I accidentally deleted my power file on my Garmin do to be too over excited to upload it!! But i basically hovered around 300 watts all day and didn't ever go much above 400 watts simply because I couldn't. Every time i tried to on the climbs my legs screamed in agony so i had to back it off, just didn't have the mumbo jumbo on this occasion. Run splits are all on my strava account Cameron Wurf

Sent from my iPad

Tremendous Two Weeks Part 1

Tremendous Two Weeks Part 1

Two weeks i was sitting on the sofa here in Andorra with a very very tired body. I was in the middle off an intense training block that had been kicked off three weeks before with the Venice Ironman as i begun the crucial block of racing and training ahead of Kona. I'd planned to take a couple of days easy leading into Challenge Roth followed by a recovery week before also taking on more Germans in Ironman Frankfurt. As i sat on the sofa on this Thursday evening i was so fatigued i told Fallon I didn't think I could handle another week of the training I'd been putting my body through, I was really close to cracking. In my deranged mind i suggested it might be better to bring the double header program forward a week and take my two days easy now ahead off Ironman Nice and then enjoy a restful week to freshen up for Challenge Roth. I conveyed my suggested scheduling change to my coach Tim who thought it was a marvellous idea as I'd be able to do a few days "easy" riding with a few of the guys on my way to Germany. They where all up at Isola 2000 just outside of Nice putting the finishing touches on the Tour de France preparations which was conveniently on the way. With that the plan was set, i headed to bed for a good night sleep, had a 6hr drive to Nice ahead of me on Friday morning.

Fallon and i have this whole going to races thing pretty dialed as a result of doing so many of them! This has its perks as it didn't take long to load the car including the dog and head off to Nice. I really enjoy driving around Europe. Coming from Australia you spend so much time sitting in germ infested airports and on planes that's it's actually extremely soothing to be in your own space. We've spent a bucket load of time in nice aswell so once we arrived it didn't take s long to settle into our usual apartment we rent and i still had a full day to rest up my second attempt at the Nice IM. Another reason i think something was bugging me about not racing Nice was the fact I'd DNF'd there last year and i had this urge to put that experience behind me. I knew until i at the very least completed the race It would keep eating at me. I really hate failing, its something that really annoys me!!

Considering my lead into the race my objectives where rather modest. The plan was to have a great swim, a conservative bike, and a good consistent run. In other word the only thing i wanted to put serious effort into was the swim, the rest was just an all inclusive training day. The race as you'd probably expect went completely against my plans as is almost always the case. I had my equal worst ever swim alongside my kona performance last year. It was a non wetsuit so i waved a nice big flag to my rivals to let them know i still cant swim without additional flotation! Because i was in a race and now miles behind i had to change plans and give everything i had on the bike to at least feel apart off the race, it was a race after all. The problem i faced here however was that my legs where tired as hell, i was certainly regretting the 8hrs I'd spent riding from Barcelona to Andorra on the previous Tuesday! Anyways i was here now and in the race and on the bike so i decided to empty the tank on the bike and just aim for a good consistent plod on the bike.

I knew the nice Bike course like the back off my hand. I ridden it a truck load of times which was a blessing in disguise as when you feel terrible there is nothing worse than having no idea what's ahead of you terrain wise. Fortunately i only had to deal with feeling terribly tired. I put my head down and pedalled as hard as i could and by the 90km mark I'd erased the 5+ Minute gap, yeah like i said it was a very bad swim! As i came up on the front group led by the legendary Freddy Van Lierde i thought I'd just join them for a bit and enjoy there company. Then in the same breathe i decided bugger that, I'm committed now and I'm going to try and go past them like they are standing still, see if i can put myself in a position to win the race. Crazy how your objectives can change over the course of 8hrs and this i assure you wasn't the last time i adjusted my goals! By the time i reached transition i had a 6 minute lead thanks to my knowledge of the final technical 60km of the bike course, i was just where i love being, in an empty transition and had an empty run course waiting for me.

The moment i hit the run course i had my next reality check, i was super tired after all. You can hide on a bike when it's carrying you fat backside around for you but when you have to stand on your own two feet reality really sets in! It was in that first 100m that I decided yet, just getting to the finish would be a great achievement today as i was absolutely stuffed! Sure enough Freddy blasted past me inside the first 15km and local hero Antony Costes did the same at around the 25km mark. By the 32km mark my leisurely plod had rocketed me in a rearward direction back to 4th when another Frenchmen Romain Guillaume sensed a prized spot on his national races podium was up for grabs. To be honest i was content with this. I felt that for a training day 4th wasn't so bad and I certainly would've taken if offered to me before the start, i figured i just enjoy this last 10km and save the legs as much as possible for Roth in 7 days time.

As I approached the final turnaround with around 7km to go, Freddy coming in the opposite direction said "pick it up cam they are slowing down ahead of you"!! You've got to be kidding me was my first thought and fantastic i can run slower aswell was my second. Then i remembered Fallon told me before the race she felt it was flowers day and t get flowers i know that is reserved for the top 3. I saw Romain at the turn around as he doubled back past me and Freddy was right he looked a hell of a lot worse than i did. So with 5km to i kicked it up a few gears and dropped from 4:40km/pace to 4:00 pace and within a couple of km's i was beside Romain again. I quickly checked with him regarding his kona points situation as if coming 3rd or 4th was the difference between him qualifying and not qualifying then i sure as hell wasn't going to steal that from him. I learnt the previous year just how stressful that whole thing can be and was happy to help a fellow competitor reach the big dance if need be. He told me 4th was fine so i said fantastic, Fallon wants some flowers and ill see you at the finish and that was that. I ended up rolling down the Ironman red carpet in 3rd, the final spot on the podium and yes i got Fallon her flowers. Was just a fantastic way to spend a Sunday.

P.s. no mention of data, power, splits, heart rate ect, its all on my Strava, Cameron Wurf if you'd like to follow me.

Sent from my iPad

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Victory Salou’t

Victory Salou't

On Sunday in Salou Spain i finally put together a decent Triathlon. Some might think I've raced bigger events and seemingly had more significant results but for me this events stands out as a real validation for me deciding to attempt a 3rd elite sport. The Fact i was even on the start line was in itself a very random culmination of events. I'd been due to race the Ironman in Lanzarote on the Saturday but with the airport strikes in Europe and the fact I'd been sick with a chest infection the past week the travel there just seemed like a mission, let alone racing the Ironman on top of that. So i made perhaps the smartest decision i have ever made to stay home in Andorra and race a local race down in Salou just south of Barcelona so an easy 2hr drive away.

On top off that i knew Pablo Dapena was racing who'd a few weeks earlier beaten Patrick Lange and ran 1 minute faster than him on the way to winning the Challenge event in Gran Canaria. Lanzarote is a course designed for me like wales was. I can ride a solid bike and get a significant advantage and my run isn't put under any pressure like it was in South Africa. This course in Salou was flat and fast so I'd struggle to get an advantage on the bike and then have to run my backside off to win, I saw it as a far greater challenge and test of where i was at having to face Pablo. So Saturday Fallon and packed the car, threw the dog in for her first race aswell and headed off to Salou.

Despite knowing that to win the race I'd have to dig deeper in my run than i ever had before, i was surprisingly relaxed on the morning of the race. The one good thing about racing so much is I've got things pretty well dialed now and with the luxury of driving to the race its a hell of a lot easier than trekking across continents to get on a start line! To put myself to sleep the night before i had googled "how to run a fast half marathon". Pretty simple you might say but i knew I'd have to run quicker than i ever had in the past to beat Pablo Dapena. There was pages and pages of ideas but the two things that stuck out where to start slower than you feel you should and that its normal to suffer! The second one really struck a cord with me as I've been so paranoid about injuring myself in training and racing that as soon as i start to feel uncomfortable fatigue while running i back off. The article simply stated that how can you expect to get any better if you don't push yourself. Hell the pain I've been through in rowing and cycling quickly reminded me that my running career to date had really resembled that of a mothers wagging group! No offence mothers, i love my mum! Anyways with starting easier so you can finish stronger and making myself hurt in my mind I couldn't wait to get onto that run course but first i had to swim and ride!

I love beach starts so when the gun went off i was quickly into the lead. I'd lined up beside Pablo knowing he was a fast ITU swimmer and the only man who's been able to swim alongside Josh Amburger in long distance races. My goal was to stay with him as long as possible and test my swimming speed and I know my swimming fitness is still lacking majorly but a good test none the less. I swam stroke for stroke with him for about 300m till i felt the shoulders filling with lactate and getting heavy and retreated some feet more at my pace. Although i was annoyed I couldn't hold him it was good to know my speed is coming and like every other discipline i need to just continue to log the hrs of work to improve. Coupled with that i still had gunk on my chest from my infection the week before so the swim was always going to be a struggle if i went to hard for too long, getting air is rather limited when your swimming! I'd ultimately exit the water just over 2 minutes behind Pablo so I'd put even more pressure on my run as i knew the bike would be fast so limited time to firstly get into the lead and the secondly eek out an advantage.

One positive about having a nice steady swim was i felt fresh as a daisy once i hit dry land. I quickly scooped up the Bolide, gotta say coming into transition and seeing my bike compared to everyone else's really puts a smile on my face, it just looks the business!!!! Once aboard my rocket ship i immediately felt amazing, perhaps the best ever. A couple of weeks earlier Richie Porte and I had had another of our adventures this time doing a 6000m of climbing elevation day which took us 10hrs. My coach Tim Kerrison said if i have the energy to ride that far then the next day i can run a marathon so i ran from Nice to Monaco and back with Tim on the bike following me. Was a solid weekend but as it was followed by 2 weeks of fighting the Man Flu my body probably absorbed it well and recovered at the same time, consequently having me feel at the absolute peak of my powers in Salou. As expected the bike course was flat and fast but having said that i was surprised how quickly i was able to pass my rivals and pull away from them which reaffirmed that i had good legs.

After 35km i had Pablo in my sights and started to plot the best place to pass him. I knew in the next few km's a series of roundabouts was followed by a sharp 200-300m climb which led into a dead stop tight U turn, one off 3 such U turns per lap which there was also 3 off! I wasn't happy about these slow corners as it was ruining my Ave speed! Back plotting my move into the lead. I sized up Pablo and once onto the first roundabout which i noticed he took with caution i ripped passed before the 2nd one and and kept the gas one through the 3rd. I glanced back and saw him try to respond as we hit the hill so i dug even deeper hitting 700 watts on the short climb and my heart rate rocketed to 190! I kept my head down to the corner knowing I'd see him on the way back. Sure enough he'd over cooked it trying to follow me and he was reaching for a bottle at the aid station at the top of the hill. Oh big mistake and that's the moment right there that he lost the race.

I hit the gas as hard as i could again onto the downhill this time and i was gone. 10km later at the next U turn i already had 2 minutes and i being out of sight so quickly i knew i could get a bigger lead than i first envisaged. So i had half of the 2nd lap and all of the 3rd to extend my advantage and i tried not to waste a single mm of road in doing that. At times i considered backing off the power in the hope of running faster but that honestly has never worked for me. In Sweden last year when i went full gas on the bike i had the best run I've ever had. I'm kona and South Africa i tried to be smart and ride easy and my run fell to pieces. I decided I'm just going to go all out on the bike which for me meant staying between 350-370 watts and get as far in front as possible and then think about the run. When i hit transition I couldn't believe my average speed of almost 46kmph specially considering the 9 U turns and all the traffic on the course i had to negotiate on laps 2 and 3. It had by far been my best bike leg ever and now i had to do my best run leg ever, i was committed, i really wanted to win my first Pro Half IM. I racked my bike, once again taking a brief moment to admire its beauty and set off in pursuit of my running transition bag! I was smooth as silk in transition in Salou, I've learnt if you relax and stay calm you do all your bits and pieces much faster. Finally on my run off truth!

Thanks to my last minute instructions from Mr google before bed the night before i started my run nice and calm. My plan was just to get into an uncomfortably comfortable rythm as Kerro would say and not look at my pace clock, what would be would be. Fallon was positioned not long after the run exit with Olive and informed me i had a 5 minute lead. I knew Dapena was capable of running a 1:09, he's one of the fastest over the Half I'm distance and recently run that fast en route to beating and out running Patrick Lang in Gran Canaria so i knew right away I'd need to run a hell of a lot faster than i ever had before to hold him off. The first time I did glance at my clock was at the first U Turn 2.5 km into the run. I decided to measure my margin on distance and as we had 4 laps a shade over 5.3km long to negotiate with two U Turns each lap, they sure love there U Turns in Salou! I'd get regular update on how much real estate was between me and Dapena during the run. At the first turn i had 1.2km, by the start of the 2nd lap is was 900m. I figured if i could maintain this margin of roughly 300m lost for the last 3 laps I'd still have 100m up my sleeve.

With this logic i decided to stay at whatever pace i was running at which 5km in i still hadn't taken any notice off. Once on a rare straight section i took a glance and say 3:40/km pace on my watch. Crikey!! I thought, i felt great and knew if i could hold this I'd break 1hr 20min, the target Tim had set for me prior to the race. The logic in that was how can i expect to run sub 2:40 in kona and break the run course record if i cant even run half the distance that fast!! Baby steps!! So knowing i was moving so well by my standards i just kept chugging along at my uncomfortably comfortable rhythm waiting for the next time distance check at the next turn around. Fallon and olive had switched locations and when i saw her next she said i lost 1 minute to Pablo on lap one. That seemed less than i thought and on that evidence I'd still have 1 minute in hand at the finish if our relative pacing stayed the same. Sure enough at the next turn around I'd only last 100m in the last 2.5km by my calculation which meant only 200m per lap. At the end of lap 2 and halfway point this was confirmed as i still had 700m up my sleeve. Knowing that he wasn't closing anywhere near as quick as i expected i kept at my uncomfortably comfortable pace which whenever i glanced at the clock floated between 3:40-3:50/km. Fallon reaffirmed another minute lost on lap 2 and now it was just keep the ball rolling, i could really smell the big win i so desperately wanted.

When i started the 3rd and final lap and saw that i was still 500m ahead i knew if i held it together he wasn't catching me. Around 3km to go when i past fallon and olive i started to feel that pain and fatigue in my running legs that had scared into backing off for the past 18months. I briefly contemplated doing just that but them remember my instructions from Mr Google the night before reminding me "pain is good, its the only way you'll ever improve". I quickly dismissed the slow down demons and lifted the arms and raised my cadence, i was going to finish this thing off running!! At the last U turn with 2.5km to go 400m still separated Pablo and i and his head stared to bow, i knew i had him. That last half a lap really reminded me what I'd just put my body through as i started getting the dizzy spells and could've happily stopped at any moment. I didn't off course, my first Professional Half Ironman victory awaited me and it had taken my career best performance to pull it off, I wasn't letting it slip away.

Finally into the finish shoot and there was fallon and Olive. People often forget whose behind the scenes and Fallon has been by my side this whole journey. She's studying her masters in wholistic nutrition so really we make the perfect team in my biased opinion, i think she feels the same way! This year we've even brought Olive the dog over with us to really make Europe home and fully commit to this sport. it was our first international race that we where all together for so was important to me to show them (well what olive understands anyways of a race!!!) that the sacrifice was somewhat justified. When i broke that tape I couldn't hide my excitement, it was far and away the best performance I'd ever had in this sport. The first thing i did was stop my watch to check my run split. Sure enough for 20.97km I'd run 1hr 18min 46seconds!!!!!!! I couldn't believe it. I'd run a full minute under our target time and on a very slow course thanks to all the turn around that ruin your rythm as Pablo informed me off at the presentations. With that he said you really ran a hell of a lot quicker than you realise so i was double happy about that. Guess you do the maths and he consistently runs 1:10+- on a flat fast course then with more time i only gave away 4 minutes as i still had 1 minute in hand at the end, i really was wrapped. Far and away my best race to date and really the first time i truly realised that there is potential for me to learn how to run with these guys.

The coolest part about a local race is it doesn't take long to pack up and drive home. A quick stop at McDonald's to celebrate took me back to my junior soccer days when mum would take me along after i scored a goal and we won the game. 2 hrs later we where home at Anyos Park and this place is sporting heaven. An hour after that i was in the world class training centre across the road in the ice bath recovering from an effort my body I'm sure was wondering what on earth i just put it through! Anyways was necessary to enjoy the moment but look forward and recover as quickly as possible as this weekend ill be back on the start line. We decided that as I'd missed Lanzarote we'd through in Challenge Venice as a good long training day. I love doing ironman's for training as I don't have to stop at petrol stations and corner stores for food and drinks, its all supplied for you. The race will begin the next big block of training leading into my big objective of the summer in Ironman Nice. It was a race I DNF'd in last year so I'm determined to not only go back but put together another complete performance as i did in Salou. So step by step we continue to march toward Kona, yeeeehaaaaaa


Oh and p.s. if you want to see my data from the race its all on stava, I don't hide anything, power heart rate ect its all there. You'll find it all under my very own name Cameron Wurf.

Sent from my iPad