Sophies IM NZ
Race Reports, March 29, 2019
Sophie showing what is possible with some planning and determination.
My spontaneous decision to enter Ironman one month after moving to NZ seemed an excellent idea back in November, but it wasn't so helpful for my endeavours to make new friends in a new country. Luckily, one person had no choice but to get know me extremely well and very fast since Christmas, so thank you Annie for being the best training partner an aspiring IMNZ-er could wish to find. Suffer Crater brick runs were quite frankly enjoyable with you alongside!
After "6 weeks of hell by Anna" under our lycra belts, and a last minute dash to the expo to accessorise the race outfit due to the chilly predicted temperatures on the bike (1 gilet, 1 cycling top, socks and arm warmers added), race morning finally arrived.
The impressive Maori Haka was a tear-jerking start to the day and the balmy swim was a glorious as everyone had made it out to be, minus the choppy section. Soon enough I was off on the bike and the temperature predictions were correct, and I felt like I was flying on the first leg out to Reporoa with the tail wind... fast forward 5 hours and I was going slower, boiling hot having not managed to remove my extra layers, cursing the wind that came in every direction other than behind, and eating Percy Pigs (FYI the best UK lolly) every time the sentence "maybe I won't do another IM" went through my head.
180km came and went, and finally it was run time. The course was packed with the highest quality NZ supporters cheering for everyone and I can safely say I surprised myself by actually enjoying the majority of the run, but most of all the unforgettable experience that is the Ironman red carpet. I was then on a high for the remainder of the day, right up to midnight cheering on the heroes that go for nearly 17 hours.
A massive congratulations to everyone who took part, and a huge thank you to Anna and Annie as it would not have been possible without you both! It was an unforgettable experience, start to end, and despite the training challenges, fatigue, bank breaking food bills and people having to endure my one track IM mind, it was all worth it... I loved every second since I entered. And I may even consider doing another! But not right now. Now it is time for Breca.