It has been 4 days since Ironman UK has come and gone. I am sure most athletes who took part will have done the usual post race analysis, comparing themselves to club mates and fellow competitors who they know were racing. For many, it will be a spring board to further races, for others it will be a box ticked never to be repeated again! But for all who managed to get across the finish line to hear those famous words- Well done and don’t underestimate what you achieved out there.
For myself, I was race support for Fraser. Assisting in any way possible before, during and after the race to make his job all the more easier. I love going to races and being part of the action. You can go through a whole myriad of emotions during the course of the day and it is really important how you manage them in order to be as useful as possible to the athlete you are supporting.
Unfortunately Fraser didn’t have the day he was hoping for. You can read his own words about the race here http://www.frasercartmell.com/ironman-uk-bolton-2017/
However, you can learn a lot about yourself on days like these and getting to the finish line is sometimes even more rewarding than when you are having a great day. It was even more important for how I conducted myself on the course and how I presented myself to Fraser every time he saw me. Of course I was very disappointed for Fraser that his day had gone south very early in the race. But the key was not to let him see that disappointment or frustration and turn that into positive reinforcement that was going to encourage and motivate him. In my head I was turning my own goal from helping Fraser finish on the podium, to getting him to the finish line as quick as he could. It is certainly a job that becomes easier with experience and knowing the athlete you are supporting.
It was not only great to be able to support Fraser, but also cheer on so many local athletes who were competing. There were many athletes racing from Stirling & Grangemouth Triathlon Clubs with athletes achieving podium finishes in their respective age groups, brilliant! Finally, congratulations to all the professional athletes who managed to finish on the podium after a competitive day’s racing.