At 5:50am on a chilly Sunday morning in Busselton WA, 1,700 athletes jumped into the ocean to start a grueling Ironman Triathlon. The weather for this Ironman course is traditionally hot and sunny, however a sudden change in the weather made this day cold and stormy adding extra challenges for the racers.
These athletes had spent years training for this demanding course that would test their physical and mental strength and endurance.
Precision Management Accounting proudly sponsored an athlete, Adam Barbalet to compete in this event to raise money for the charity, beyondblue.
The race started at 5:50am with a 4km swim around the Busselton Pier through very rough conditions much like a washing machine.
As athletes were being pulled out of the water to be treated for hypothermia, Adam emerged after 1 hour and 40 minutes, unscathed and in good spirits. (Adam was not happy with his "slow time" but lets not go there...)
After a swim, the athletes undertake a 180km bike ride.
On this day it was raining and cold and many racers were not prepared for the harsh conditions. Some riders had cut the ends off socks to wear up their arms to protected them from the cold.
Through rain and cross winds, the athletes continued....
A 6 hour bike ride over 180km (the average distance of a Tour de France stage!) is hard enough, however the Ironman requires one more challenge... a 42km marathon!
The crowds lined the beach to support the racers who had to run four circuits of the beach course.
As the hours progressed, racers bodies started to shut down... their legs were collapsing, their minds were questioning their ability to endure the physical challenge to the finish line.
We stood in this position for hours, encouraging every single racer who passed by... some were walking, others were jogging. We gave them words of encouragement, shouting motivational lines to help them keep going.
When we saw our athlete, Adam, he had pushed his body to the extreme and needed to rest. He came over for a hug, and we told him he was inspirational and he had the strength to finish the event.
Every athlete has overcome unebeliveable physical and psychological challenges to get this far. We would do anything to help them finish the race to be crowned an Ironman.
Adam found the strength to push through the physical pain and to complete the race.... Adam, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!
In order to complete an Ironman you need motivation, commitment, courage, and support.
Ironman is not as much of a physical battle, as it is a mental one. Training is not only about strengthening your body, but it is about strengthening your mind.
As an accountant, I think training for an Ironman is like running a business
- Both require constant dedication. Every day requires motivation and focus to achieve what you need to do in order to reach your goals.
- Results don’t happen overnight, but every day you work you are closer to achieving your goal.
- You can achieve a lot on your own, but you achieve more with a support team. Be it words of advice or tough love when you need it.
- Don't under estimate the kindness of strangers. There are lots of people who have been in or are in similar circumstances who will offer their support and advice.
- It’s not a race, it’s an endurance test.
- Your mind is your most powerful asset. Sometimes you doubt yourself and start to question what you're doing and you must find the inner strength to continue with what you believe in.
Adam has raised thousands of dollars for beyondblue competing in two Ironman events in the last twelve months and we would like to thank everyone for their support. We are proud of all of the Ironmen and the work of beyondblue to support others in time of need.
Beyondblue works to reduce the impact of depression and anxiety in the community by raising awareness and understanding, empowering people to seek help, and supporting recovery, management and resilience.
Just like in business, you can achieve a lot on your own, but you can go further with a healthy mind, and a good support team.