Race week turned out to be a real challenge and ended with a DNF in my first race of 2016. With my diabetes not as controlled as I would like in the past two weeks and physically not being 100% I struggled with my preparation. I was also mentally struggling coming into an event not been 100% ready. It was a challenging week but having gotten through it I have learnt a lot and I think that I will be much better from the experience.
Although my race didn’t go to plan on reflection I was happy to get through to the 10km mark of the run leg and I was able to test myself during all legs and take away some positives which I can build on for this next training block. I’ll be posting a full race report in the coming days but here a a few of the major things I’ve learnt from the week.
- Don’t change what works: With the issues that I have been having with my diabetes I have been changing things regularly to find some better stability. In doing this I ended up not really understanding where things were at and went into the race with a diabetes strategy that wasn’t 100%. In the end it was a technical issue with my CGM that led to my DNF but a sounder diabetes strategy would have been far less stressful.
- Check BGLs at the first sign of something going wrong: Especially when racing I find it difficult to take a moment to assess how I am feeling and I usually just push on (struggle on). I was feeling average at around the 60km mark of the bike leg and I should have checked my BGLs then rather than waiting another 1.5hours when I was near collapse. I would have been able to stabilise my BGLs then and finish the race if I had only taken a minute to check earlier.
- Trial everything, constantly: With the regular changes to my pump settings I haven’t had a chance to properly trial a race plan. This is critically important so that a plan can be setup and then you can trust it during the race. The added mental stress and guessing what was going to happen during the race was the result this poor preparation.
- Look at the positives: As I walked back along the run course to withdraw from the race I was initially very disappointed, but as I walked the 1km back to the transition area I realised that there were some great positive to come out of the race. All considered I was actually in a pretty good place to continue to build from this performance. It’s a simple saying to look on the bright side but keeping that positive attitude really does bring the best results.
- There is no substitute for hard work: Coming back from my broken collar bone things just haven’t been right and my training has been up and down. I know that I haven’t done the work on the track nor spent the time getting my diabetes plan right for this race. No excuses, put in the work, get the preparation right, and the results will come. Simple.
It is onwards and upward from here. I am taking the positives out of my performance yesterday and I know that I can identify and work on certain areas to make a big improvement in my performance. I want to be better and I am motivated to put in the hard work to achieve my goals. Some recovery and planning coming up this week.
- Review where I am at and design my next training block with my coach; Ironman 70.3 Port Macquarie is my next goal race at the beginning of May
- Review race weekend diabetes performance and look at how I can manage my BGLs better
- Set some short-term goals for my next training block focussing on where I want to improve in my race performance
- Complete a full recovery and sort out all body issues so that these do not hold me back during this next training block