Nothing makes you appreciate how much goes into keeping your fitness until you take five weeks off and then begin a new block of training. So good to be home in Phuket after five weeks away in the USA and Europe doing plenty of coaching but not enough training. Now I can really get to work and build for a solid back half of the season.
I sat down with Bob Babbitt in Atlantic City to talk about my job at Thanyapura and my continued triathlon career. If you’re sick of me now, you’re gonna get really sick of me because I’m gonna be doing this forever. I aim to hold on to a professional license for as long as I possibly can.
I was in Norway for the Ironman 70.3 in Haugesund and was doing pretty well. I got off the bike just behind Filip Ospaly, who had told me before the race he had just had knee surgery, but he was impressive. I was running with Todd Skipworth in contention for second, but I got a four-minute penalty for littering! I’ve never had to take a penalty for littering on the run so I was quite shocked about it. I had to stand down on the side of the road at the 12K mark and serve my time. I was pretty pissed off, but otherwise I was happy with my performance.
I also just did the back-to-back races in Poznan, Poland: an Olympic on the Saturday, and a half-ironman a day later. It was an amazing race, it felt like the hottest week in the history of Poland. I got taken out by an ITU kid from Poland in the Olympic; I thought I had him covered and saved it for a finish sprint, but I realized too late you can’t beat youth!
In the half the next day I had my first true DQ. I grabbed a flat while leading the race, and this man swapped out wheels with me which was an unbelievable gesture, but two kilometers up the road I was pulled off the course. Rules are rules and I know a lot of the triathlon community in Poland were upset that I got disqualified, but I accepted the wheel of a fellow competitor, which is against the rules. Anyway it was a great race and I’ll be back next year.
I will admit that I haven’t completed a full ironman since Cairns of last year. However, I think I’m racing very, very good for this half-ironman distance, so I think I’m gonna do less of these iron distance races, which I think my wife will be happy to hear. Much respect to the age groupers who have to juggle family and career alongside training!
I hit the East Coast of the USA for Challenge Atlantic City and our first MX camp of the year, and although the location was more suited to partying and holidaying than training, I think we had a good balance between fun and properly tapering into the race.
Then I flew into London for our first ever UK Camp and I had a great crew turn up! We just had a lot of fun, really solid training, we did a lot longer rides than we’ve done in the past just because Milton Keynes is such a great training venue with the terrain around there. Then we all had an amazing time at the Jenson Button Trust Triathlon with the heats and the finals that not a lot of races use.
Our Roth social camp was a bit less structured and more of a way for the team members converging to do Challenge Roth to meet each other. I actually enjoy doing the camps, to get up close and personal and get to know all the team members we have from around the world.
We had a very special team member Milhouse fulfill his dream of crossing the Roth finish line a year after undergoing treatment for leukemia. It was a very emotional moment for all of us who have witnessed his journey. I’ve never been so proud of anyone in my life.