Sunday, July 20, 2014

And so it begins again.

Its amazing how quickly life flies by without you even being truly aware of the momentum it has gained whilst your head has been immersed in all of lifes antics.

I realised a day or so ago that one of my greatest pleasures had been put on the back burner for far too long and it was high time I brought this passion back out into the world......writing. And so it is here that I find myself in front of my friend - my laptop - some 11mths since its last post, pondering its contents and how best to begin expressing in great detail what has transpired.

Considering this blog is all about me and my life in the Triathlon world, I guess its only right that I should mention up front that Barbie completed her very first Ironman Triathlon on May 4th 2014.Yes, you read correctly so no need to refresh your screen....During Barbie's temporary hiatus from blogging, she found it within herself to become an Ironman. Cant believe it??? I'm still pinching myself, believe me.

May 2013 I signed up yet again for another attempt at the dream of accomplishing my dream which had eluded me due to illness. When I signed up for it, I did not realise in the coming months how much the training and getting to that start line was going to help me through quite possibly the toughest times in my life, and how much it was going to mean to me. I was completely going to give it my all from the very beginning irrespective of the unforeseen changes about to arise in my life. However, on those particular mornings, afternoons, evenings where life was getting slightly too 'real', having my training outlet really helped me not only work through particular issues but it also gave me focus and an opportunity to zone out as well. Training and exercise are good that way.

The day itself was everything I could have wanted and more and I literally think I smiled the whole way except for when I had a mini meltdown just prior to the swim start. Thank goodness for Paul being in there with me and giving me a big hug or I think I could have lost it. His big bear hug was everything I needed to settle my nerves. 

So now I could go on and on about the actual day itself and all of my experiences and feelings, but we could still be here next year, as I am still recalling new things everyday about that day. But the one thing I do know and would like you all to know - is that I cannot thank everyone enough who played a part in making my dream become reality. And the one thing that I totally shocked myself with is that I beat my own estimated time by 1.5hrs. In my head I had thought roughly 14 - 14.5hrs. But I came in at 

12hrs 27mins

I was completely stoked. I later found out that my coach and close friend Jen had this time programmed in her head for me from the very beginning. Love you heaps Jen. You helped me through some very difficult times and helped keep me focused when I felt like I couldn't go on. And so now our next adventure begins. Are you ready???

So, now I find myself on this end of another training program...prepping myself for the Western Sydney 70.3 on the 30th of November. Am I excited ???? You bet ya. Will I be challenged moreso than any other time in terms of time constraints? Yes. Do I care? No. Ask me again if Im excited...... you bet ya. Im going to be doing something that I truly love.

The great thing is that I will still be having Jen from Sparta PT training me and I wouldn't have it any other way. She totally gets me. Week one has been started and Ive already had a slight hiccup as I still don't think I am 100% recovered.... yes still from IM. Right glute or hamstring is still not 100% happy but can't afford to have it looked at or massaged so stretching and foam rolling are my new found friends.

So now the exciting thing is that I am now proudly sponsored by Yerba Mate Australia. What is Yerba Mate I hear you ask? Well, for all those who know me and my ethnicity I am Australian born but have Uruguayan blood flowing through my veins. Part of our heritage and cultural upbringing revolves around sharing stories and quiet moments drinking Mate. Mate is South Americas green tea. You have a variety of ways to drink Mate however the traditional way is through a Gourd and drinking straw. 

Mate helps fight fatigue and boosts energy. It also is high in antioxidants and has less caffeine than coffee and even green tea itself. The best thing about Mate for me is the flavour itself and the fact that you can literally consume a whole thermos of hot water without even realising it - so a great way of hydrating. My mum, eldest son and I will sit around drinking Mate regularly sharing in good family stories, much the same way as one would over dinner. In South America its common practice to see people getting on public transport with their thermos and Mate the same way that you would see people here walking around with their Gloria Jeans coffee. My mother best describes her experiences with Mate as like having a special moment with a "close friend". She finds peace, relaxation and companionship and her routine is to have her Mate every afternoon, either on her own or shared with friends. I am so proud to be sponsored by Yerba Mate Australia and look forward to sharing my journey with them and with South Americans alike.

So I will leave you with a few images from my day at Port Macquarie Ironman. SO excited to be back.

See you all on the flip side.

Your hard work will be rewarded.

"The path to a dream is paved with sacrifices and lined with determination. And though it has many stumbling blocks along the way, and may go in more than one direction, it is travelled by belief and courage and conquered with a willingness to face challenges and take chances" Barbara Cage