Blog — 15 April 2013
This is one truly inspirational story of a lady that following making a decision to change her life, overcame HUGE obstacles. She was once 140kg’s, a smoker and never ever exercised. Dom raced the Ironman at 65kg’s, having prepared for the Ironman whilst working full time and looking after 3 boys. If ever you think that something can’t be done or it is a little too hard or the obstacle too big, this is one story that should motivate you. I feel privileged to have help guide her to the finish chute in the Melbourne Ironman. Hat off to you Dom….
“DOMENICA WHITBOURNE, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!!!”
By Dom Whitbourne
Even now a few weeks down the track, it makes me chuckle and then those words make me cry…
For most people who enter an ironman, they have spent a long time in triathlon and banked many seasons before. They have a swim or run or bike background…. but here am i. I had none.
I am a mum of three boys. I work, and 6 years ago weighed 130 kilos. I literally lived contained within 4 walls almost hermit like.
In a fear of getting old and not having a story to put to my life, I spent 2 years losing weight. An entire year going through reconstructive surgery, and inbetween underwent a second ACL reconstruction.
2 1/2 years ago i did not know how to swim. Did not own a bike. And no, i did not run!!!! So I started learning!
2 years ago i did my first half ironman, before i did an olympic distance or a come and tri triathlon, because my training partner asked and i didnt have anything else better to fill in some time. I loved it!!
AND ENTER ALEX PRICE AND AP10. Life changing stuff.
A phone call to Alex and a hesitant question of could you show me how to safely get through an ironman??? I explained what i can give him in terms of time. Alex assured me those hours would be enough and taught me to really believe in myself…. So the process of dreaming and taking action to finish an ironman began.
A journey begins of learning to believe in yourself. To be able to back yourself. And know that even when you dont believe in yourself, your coach does and he knows your on track. And I trust Alex 100% and since the Ironman 110%!
Arriving in Melbourne was surreal. Registering, a blur. Working out what goes in what colour bags: too much!!! The weather conditions, almost spirit breaking.
Race morning: No nerves, just a solid belief that today was just another long training day… and i had done my training and i never waivered in my trust of Alex and his plan.
In the lead up, as part of the mental preparation Alex had told me think about all the things that could possibly wrong and mentally plan how I would overcome them… And i did.
The weather conditions, my worst nightmare and when the swim was shortened, i lost my cool and sobbed… feeling a little ripped off. In less windy conditions than we faced on race day, I’ve had to call for a rescue car…
But i had trained for this over and over and over, and the only way i would not finish would to be carted away. This was going to be my time.
I read somewhere early that there are two types of people who do ironman. Those who race it for a time, and those who want to fulfill a dream… I am the second kind, so for me, I knew I had it in me as long as I kept smart and solid and just remained in the moment and totally process driven, which Alex had drilled into me over and over. I followed my race plan. I followed my nutrition plan. I remained in the moment. And I fulfilled my dream. I swam one stroke at a time. I remained consistent on the bike. And I pitter pattered for 42.2 kms…
Etched now in my memory is the finishers chute. I stopped at the start of that chute to make sure i soaked it in mentally, emotionally.. and for each step I took, I thought about all the shoulders of the giants I had the honor of standing on to make this possible. Totally blessed to walk that last part with my sister and brother in law banging on the signs shouting and crying, my mum watching her daughter, friends who rode and ran and came on this journey…. all there. Thoughts of my boys.
Simply amazing. A memory making moment. A chapter in my life story for always.