Itโ€™s easy to say โ€˜this is for trainingโ€™, โ€˜no pressureโ€™, but as Russia, and the half ironman distance triathlon got closer, it was nerve wracking for us both. Michiel had his own worries, and it is my job to make sure he is ready, not only physically, but mentally in the right mindset to take on the challenge ahead. This was also just as much a mental challenge, we had to practise managing the pre-ironman nerves.

It is totally normal to get nervous, but its when we let it take control of us where it can be detrimental. I am a big believer in a problem shared, is a problem halved, with this type of thing, so I was encouraging Michiel to always talk about his ‘what ifs’. When I couldn’t debunk them, we would discuss them, and hopefully make him more at ease.

Meditation also helped. Although sometimes overlooked, sitting and having some mind space, or just sitting without technology & noises, for a few minutes, is really great!

Packing everything Michiel could possibly need, including a lifetime supply of protein bars (you know, just in case..), we were ready. Bike too…

I wasn’t sure what to expect from Russia to be honest. Part of me was expecting grey buildings, not many modern things/places, and rain. I was told to expect lots of rain.

I couldn’t have been more wrong in my preconceived ideas…