In 2019, our Hawthorn team all decided that we would aim to complete a physical goal that was way beyond our capabilities from that current point in time. The goal had to be something that both scared and excited us at the same time. A goal that was pushing us physically and mentally. We have called this our "Stretch Goal"
1. What is your Stretch Goal and why have you chosen this?
My stretch goal is to run a 3:30' something Marathon, at the Sydney Marathon Festival on October 13th. I have chosen this because I am very comfortable going long and slow when it comes to running but as soon as I put a time on a race, I freak out. This is something that over the past few years I have come to realised and I work myself up so much where I end up extremely disappointed at the end no matter what the result is. For me, this goal is 99% mental and 1% physical. I will be pushing my boundaries WAY out of my comfort zone.
2. What are you going to ensure happens to achieve this goal and what does your training look like?
I need to make sure that I am constantly pushing myself faster rather than going straight into 'cruise mode'. I have a Triathlon Coach, who I will be working with and alongside my swim and bike (which will remain in my plan) I will have a higher focus on the run component. I will be running the Gold Coast Marathon to help set a bench mark for the rest of my training. Since completing my IronMan I have been more consistent with my training than ever before, what I will need to do is make sure I communicate effectively to my coach. I am known for shutting down when my training isn't going well so I need to ensure I am having conversations about how I feel.
3. What scares you the most about your goal?
Having to race for a time. My last Marathon was in New York 2017 and from that race I am aiming for a 50 minute PB. As some may be aware, I didn't train properly for New York (or at all... I don't recommend that) so I know I am faster now but the thought of what lies ahead doesn't sit well with me. Even writing this now it's giving me anxiety! I need to make sure I don't get too much in my head. Trust the process and my ability.
4. What are you most excited for?
I am excited to see if it is possible. I mentioned earlier that I am an endurance athlete, I LOVE the long, slow and comfortable. I would rather be on an 8 hour bike ride then a 1h tempo run! I am not known for my speed so I am so excited to see what my little body is capable of! It's scary but exciting!
5. What difference is this going to make to you after you have achieved this goal?
My biggest barrier to my race performance is my race anxiety. I want to do well and I put so much pressure on myself, I am 100% aware what I do, but in that moment, I can't stop it. If I can walk away from this stronger mentally (in a sense of performance) and learn to be okay with being uncomfortable, who knows what I am going to be able to do next. I have big goals, and my long term fitness goal is to race at the IronMan World Championship in Kona. If you don't know what this is, you need to qualify to participate in the event. Is it the pinnacle of IronMan! I need to learn to race hard and fast to help me achieve my life goal of Kona.
6. Do you have any tips/tricks for someone who is thinking about pushing their own comfort zone with health and fitness?
My number 1 tip for someone wanting to push the boundaries is that you MUST have a 'why'. Your why is going to be that reason you get out and train when you might not feel like it, or when you are tired, or busy or are feeling like you can't be bothered. If your why isn't strong enough it is not going to happen. Also understanding that not every training session is going to be a good one, roll with it and learn from the tough sessions.
'Train hard, race easy'
*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.