Home » sport, travel

Capricorn Resort Half Ironman (HIM T-0)

15 August 2010 7,810 views 7 Comments

previous training posts

how did we get here..?

When I got my bike back in November I fairly quickly did my first triathlon. It was fine but I didn’t love it and realised it was because I didn’t see the point in all the effort for short distances. And at the same time some friends were talking about doing a Half. So, a seed was sown…

Fast forward six months. After an uninspiring week I got stuck into some gin & red wine :) And the next day I decided I should be doing more with my life, so, I researched the Half options with renewed energy, and found Capricorn. The timing and location were looking good so I did a few tester sessions and my pace was ok.

Fast forward a couple more weeks. I had a bit of a windfall, and that was the last hurdle sorted – I could now afford to enter! So I did, on June 15, two months prior to the race.

And then I went away to England and France for a couple of weeks; no sport, no training, just pure cheese, bread & wine. When I got back to Australia I had 40 days until HIM so training started properly. My training is diarised on here – just hit the triathlon tag on the right.

thank you

I know it’s not the Oscars but… Catherine, I did this for you: impossible things are possible :)

And some thank yous:

  • Marie for her unconditional belief and friendship.
  • Sarah for listening, encouraging, supporting and, crucially taking the pi$$ out of me.
  • Lisa – because laughter is essential.
  • Julien & Niki for their quiet confidence.
  • Mark for being flexible with my working hours; although he didn’t know why.
  • Tim – because he always seems to be at the receiving end when one of my pressure valves blows. Sorry mate.
  • Jamie, Michelle, Colby & Liz for their training tips; although they didn’t know they gave them.
  • Crystal who regularly took me apart and put me back together again.
  • Simon, Damo and the boys who first put my on a bike. You were right.
  • Brad who helped me select and purchase my bike; and then helped me take her apart and put her back together.

Race day

So, race day. It was dark when I woke up, did yoga, had breakfast but it turned into another gorgeous day in Yeppoon. Organisation at the Resort was phenomenal; the X-Tri team are outstanding. And, like with the practice days, the atmosphere was really good too; enouraging, light hearted, not too competitive. For first timers it really couldn’t get better. When I put my bike and gear in transition I was racked opposite the pros and even they were really friendly and nice (although I think they’ll request not to be racked near the blondes next year).

The ‘legendary’ walk down to the swim start was gorgeous and I could see that the water was still, calm, not choppy like previous days. Again, at the start the atmosphere was excellent. The pros went first, I think I felt more nervous for them! Then the ladies 35+, it was good seeing how others approached the water. Then we (ladies under 35) were in the chute. Actually I wasn’t too nervous, I was really looking forward to being in the water and swimming.


Countdown and then we went, running (but not mental, thankfully) to the water and then the when-shall-i-actually-start-swimming dance and then in to rhythm. It was a beautiful swim, flat, clear, buoys one side, surf life savers the other. Plenty of room on the field. I got into quite a nice rhythm once the adrenalin had dissipated and absolutely enjoyed myself; I thought about nothing other than swimming!

transition 1

The end was a bit soupy – everyone piling for the shore, and the when-to-stop-swimming-start-wading dance, I swam as far as possible, save the legs. The run up the beach to transition I actually liked – got the adrenalin, lactic acid, focus realigned. And transition was alright too. I must say a word about kit here. Although everyone was really relaxed they all had the kit. I was the only person I saw with a) a surf wetsuit not a tri wet suit b) a camelbak not a bottle with straw between the handle bars c) Coles cereal bar snacks not Gu. All in I looked like I was there for a family picnic compared to the rest.

bike ride

So I got going on the bike leg. Five laps of the same course, away from the resort and back again. The road away from the resort was horrid; very rough bitumen / tarmac, I don’t know what you call it. But after the roundabout, the second half of the course was smoother, much kinder to all the pressure points that were suffering the non stop vibrations. I tell you – I had pins & needles in places, well, where they shouldn’t be. The ride was fine, a bit monotonous. I broke it up with eating my Coles family picnic!, a much needed comfort break and making making making sure that I did five laps – never been so paranoid that I would miscount. Shout out must go to Paul, number 425, from Brisbane who I chatted to a bit on lap three and who then hollered encouragement throughout the rest of the course, awesome attitude, thanks buddy. A mention must also go to all the helpers and officials who were working around the course, a fairly arduous task, they were great.


Bike done, back to transition, another swift-ish change and out to the run. Three laps of a mostly flat course, mixed terrain, semi shaded. It was tough. To me, 100% mind over matter, physical wasn’t part of it. Physically I felt ok, not great but ok. Various twinges, they changed over time, and basic exhaustion from heat and tiredness. So, three laps of thinking about nothing but putting one foot in front of the other. On the last lap I promised myself that once I was out of the sun I was allowed to walk. Then, once in the shade, I promised myself that after the next hydration station I was allowed to walk. Then, after that there was only 5 k to go and I said to myself “you’d be an idiot to walk now, you may as well complete this thing without stopping.” So I carried on. Coming to the end line was sweet sweet relief. I gathered some energy and sped up the tiniest most pathetic amount. Half Ironman, done.


Result, I had completed in 6 hours 15 minutes. I’d been aiming for around seven hours and, realistically had been thinking this was a bit ambitious. So I was amazed and not a little pleased with myself. (FYI split times: swim – 52 mins, bike ride – 3 hours 18 mins 30 seconds, run – a crippling 2 hours 4 mins)

Immediately past the finish line there were crowds of people, everyone piling into the crisp swimming pool and onto the grass. I stumbled around a bit, got a very kind somone to undo my shoe laces, and sipped some water. And then I cried. Relief? Happiness? Exhaustion? Satisfaction? All the above and more perhaps.
I did the same as everyone else and got in the pool, actually with Paul 425 who’d tracked me down, ate some fruit salad & ice cream and relaxed a bit. The resort was all activity: music, cheers, people, families everywhere – it was an excellent end to an awesome event.

course aerial view

View Larger Map


previous training posts

HIM T-1: here we go…
HIM T-2: in Yeppoon
HIM T-5: getting nervous
HIM T-13: Bad news
HIM T-15: no really, it’s gonna be ok
HIM T-19: somewhat unexpected
HIM T-21: it’s gonna be ok
HIM T-33: mini-tri
HIM T-35: mixed feelings
HIM T-38: beginning of training
HIM T-40: beginning of training plan


Leave your response!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.