Consistency Pays Off – by Thomas Switala

It started a year ago with a race to do the registration. Alarm set, I rushed from the client to my Nairobi hotel room with 5 minutes to spare to start of registration. It was apparently sold out within 13 minutes.  My entry secured and happy and now the training starts. I still had Moolooba 70.3 WC to look forward to but the idea of doing another full distance started forming the base for next year.

The training from the Tissink Team came in and I was really looking forward to it. First time working with a coach for a full distance. I now understand what level of commitment on time and effort it takes actually to work towards it, don’t know how I survived the previous races. Balancing work with a demanding travel schedule and training was challenging. Leading up to the race I was able to put in some great training blocks. Covering the distance was an early goal, signed up for a marathon, and tried to push the 180k early for the preparation.

We travelled to Germany on the 4th July and surprised Jennifer with an engagement on the 5th in Düsseldorf Germany. We drove to Roth on the 7th and quickly got the administration out of the way.  Jennifer took part in the Woman’s Run on Saturday, nice to see her run with the likes of Chrissie Wellington. Also did a quick recon swim and recon on the split T1 from T2 transition, a bit of a challenge to understand as they are in different towns. Then the bike check-in and all the stressful items done.

Afternoon was spend exploring the cute little town Roth and it is amazing to see the energy driven by the residence in support of the race. We drove back to Nuremburg where we stayed for a steak dinner and an early night.

The morning was full of excitement and energy. Found a good parking spot and headed to the swim. My start was at 7:30. Nice and calm, got my wet suit on, had something to eat and ready. My strategy for the swim is to go out calm get into a rhythm and enjoy. Swimming the canal was fantastic. Warmish water not too much of a washing machine. At 3.2k I started to cramp … slightly worried. Stopped stretched the foot and back at dragging the legs. Carefully got out of the water and I was ushered in by some of the best volunteers you can imagine.  Suited up and ready to race.

I got on the bike and started what I love. The racecourse is a two-lap course which leads you through some amazing scenery. It definitely is fast and had some nice challenging hills, especially the Solar Berg with an amazing atmosphere and people-tunnel one can only imagine from the Tour De France. The energy is good there that before you know you are at the top and off it goes again.

Very happy with my time split I pulled into T2. The run is now the focus, out a little too fast and had to give my legs some time to adapt. The run course changed this year and they surprised us all with a nice uphill to a new town with over 224m elevation gain on the entire course. I started calculating what my final time would be on the second loop going out to Büchenbach. I realized that I could do a sub 11, I started to pick-up the pace and really then started pushing it. I did not know what my official start time was. I realized I have to bank some time. I really pushed it the last 6 km trying to run a 4:30 and less pace.  In the end it was a 10:59. Just in time and super happy, beating my PB by 24 minutes.

I could not have done this with the best fiancé in the world. Not just being there on the day supporting and cruising around a Nuremburg City bike, but in the preparation for the race. Joining on some of the TOL runs, getting up early and going with me to the gym and just being loving and understanding during the entire period.  She is the best and am eternally thankful to her love and support.

Also big thank you to the Tissink coaching team, especially Natalie, who dedicating themselves to my training and helping me understand what it takes to be consistent and motivated in the training. Consistency definitely is the key word that I experience and learned.



Author: Tissink_Admin

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