World Triathlon Series Update
Okay…most will now be aware that the WTS Series has finished for me. The final KO blow was an injury to my foot that was confirmed last night as being a 5cm tear to my left Achilles. Not quite sure what I have done to 2016, but for some reason it was not my year. With not being selected for Rio, I focused on ending the season well in the Series but now I’m unable to do that so what do I do?! I’m devastated that I won’t be able to race the Grand Final and end the 2016 season on a high.
I escaped to Boulder to go and train with Siri Lindley and her bunch of star athletes, who all welcomed me with open arms. Before going out I’d picked up what I thought was just a niggle, that would soon clear up with a bit of treatment and rest. This resulted in not much running at all in the last month, so on top of not going to Rio, I couldn’t even go and do what I love to help heal my heart break. Sometimes for me, the best medicine to mend a broken heart is to go out and kill myself in training. Pushing as hard as I can is kind of a relief for me – it makes me feel good. This is what I did on race day in Rio. I watched the race, and cheered through the TV, but then to control the mixed emotions I went on a bike ride, and got lost!! As you do! But I came back feeling better, and focused on ending the series as high as I could. For me, if something doesn’t work out as planned, I set a new goal, something to aim towards and keep my mind on track. I was happy to fight for this series and do whatever possible to end as high as possible. I don’t think I had been out of the top 4 all season, and now it’s all gone, and what makes things worse is that it’s not something I can even control.
Edmonton came, and I knew in my head I wouldn’t be able to run, I was even worried about the run up to transition, but my heart just said “GIVE IT A GO, YOU NEVER KNOW”. Now, what do I do? Listen to my head or my heart?? My heart won and I raced, but then my head took over and coming into T2 even though I had ignored the pain running from the swim to the bike, I think kind of stupidly hoping the pain would go away but then jumping of the bike and doing a double jump to get the weight off my leg I knew running a 5k was not possible.
In one way I want to hide under the covers and not come back up until 2017, but likewise I thought I’m not finishing off the 2016 season injured (or so I thought, until last night!!!). So what am I going to do? My plan is, I’m home – well I’m in the UK ready for treatment and rehab. The plan until last night was that I would end my season racing the Island House Triathlon. I was honoured to be invited to this amazing event, and have been so so excited to race, and I thought giving myself another goal would help control my emotions . . . until last night. So, I was scanned, and following the scan we found I had a tear, best case scenario – a boot for 3 weeks then build everything back up. Then the MRI results came back which shows the length of the tear is 5cm and it’s a boot for a very minimum of 3 weeks and more likely 6, with no swimming or cycling, nothing at all!!
Thank you so much for everyone that has been on my side supporting me this year -family, supporters, sponsors, coaches, friends and rivals, you have all been beyond amazing and I really cannot thank you all enough for your messages of support. I’m down now lower than I have ever been, but I will be back, I promise! So now I am forced to take my end of season break stupidly early, stuck in a big black boot, but hopefully as long as I do as I’m told, I’ll be able to start building in a few months, ready for my winter block of training so I can go out and smash 2017!
Finally, some will have seen that my Coach Darren Smith has posted on Facebook that our relationship has now come to an end. As all things do. For us both, it’s time to move on. Darren has been my best friend and worst enemy these past 4 years. We have had so many ups and thankfully very little downs. He is the oracle, the font of all knowledge, and has taught me so much. Not just about the sport, but about myself as an athlete, and as a person. He has taught me to be the best I can be. I have had the best results to date with Darren as my coach, WTS podiums, WC podiums, and of course my first Major Games win at the Commonwealths. Anyone who knows Darren knows he doesn’t really show his soft side, and doesn’t like to admit he has one, but he has a huge heart, and this year has been just as tough for him, as it has for me. He was the main person to see me day in and day out, pushing through training to reach that Olympic dream that never happened, but we gave it our all. Sweat, passion, tears, dedication from both of us just wasn’t enough this time, but Coach I will get there, I promise you, and when it happens, I will think of you, and what you have given me the past 4 years.
I will value everything Darren has given me, and I am so so thankful of everything he has done for me over the past 4 years. I wish him all the very best for the next chapter in his life, and thanks also to the lovely Liz, who again has been so supportive of me, and Daz to be able to do what he does. Take care both of you, and I really cannot thank you enough.
I want to wish all my WTS friends the best of luck for the final in Cozumel. Enjoy the after party, have a Mojito for me! It’s been such an amazing year for the sport of Triathlon – I still love the sport and I look forward to 2017 so hurry up and start. I hope everyone enjoys the last few races of the season, and I’ll update you in about 6 weeks with what’s happening.