The time has come!! Mel is about to take on her bucket list challenge.
If you have been following our blog posts by triathlete Mel Brunker, you will know that she has been training hard for her biggest fitness challenge yet. Back in January we explained that in 2016 in celebration of her 40th year, Mel decided to sign up for a race that inspires many an Ironman triathlon. To recap for those who haven't got their head around what this entails its a 3.8km swim, 180 km bike ride and then a 42.2 k run yes a full marathon at the end!
Race week is here. This week over 2000 competitors will converge on Cairns in far North Queensland to challenge themselves in either a half -distance or full Ironman triathlon. This is the Asia-Pacific Championships for Ironman and involves top professionals from Australia and overseas, as well as men and women of all ages, battling it out in the heat (and maybe rain). They will be testing their fitness as well as their mental strength, and the ultimate award is crossing the finish line and being titled an Ironman for the rest of their lives. Some will also qualify for the World Championships later in the year.
The journey to getting to the starting line is an achievement in itself and finishing the race is the icing on the cake.
For Mel the journey has meant juggling family life (including four kids), work and a grueling training regime so she feels confident that she can get through race day. The professionals finish the full Ironman race around 8 hours but the cut-off time is 17 hours so it can be a very long day for many and it can throw many challenges at you through out the race !
Below Mel gives us her final update and feelings on the race ahead, and answers a few light-hearted questions for us before the focus begins.
Well, with just over a week to go, this will be my last update until post race.
I could not be happier with my lead up so far. The training has gone according to plan, I've managed to not miss too many key sessions, and have pretty much done all the really long sessions that I have needed to do. Last Friday was a 30km run felt fantastic to tick that off, and last Sunday I completed my last long 6hr ride with a run off the bike. It now comes down to staying sharp, keeping well away from sick people and trying not to do anything that will derail me, including getting the best nutrition that I possible can up until the event.
I'm not very good at tapering, but I know that in an event like this you need to be literally climbing the walls with energy ready to go on race morning. This week my training has been short and sharp, and next week will involve a lot of feet up, a massage if I can squeeze it in, packing, making sure everything is ready and packed and then the trip up to Cairns.
So for my last post before race day, I thought I would keep it light-hearted with a list of a few favourite things
Favourite Food: Chocolate and coffee
Thing I have missed most while training: Easy that's gotta be wine!
What I am most looking forward to after the race: Easywine!
Favourite pre race dinner: Very boring rice with chicken
Favourite pre-race breakfast: I'm usually very nervous so only manage a piece of toast with strawberry jam and coffee
My favourite post workout food: Protein shake with banana
My go-to supplements: Rose-Hip Vital with GOPO and a magnesium supplement
Favourite gels for during the event: Gu Roctane
Favourite food on the bike: Powerbars
What's next after Cairns?? I have no idea, hopefully I love the experience and am keen to do another Ironman!!
We wish Mel all the best and hope her race experience is everything she dreamed of. We will also have other Rose-Hip Vital ambassadors Pete McLean and Peter Short competing in Cairns, with some of the Rose-Hip Vital team members cheering them all the way on race day.