Rugby Player to IronAthlete #Part4

We rejoin Olivia in our fourth installment of rugby player to Iron athlete, despite Olivia’s uncertainty. “Don’t know if this one is post worthy a few errors and nothing too exciting!” …Olivia just completed a Half Ironman in training……”this is getting very real!”

Rugby player, teacher and three-time league and Grand Championship winner Olivia “Coady” is taking on her most difficult challenge to date by competing in this Years Taiwan IronMan. Coady understands hard work, dedication, and resilience having played for the Black Ferns, taught in China and now runs her school rugby program at Harrow International School.

Coady is the second “Habitual Athlete” receiving training programs, nutritional advice, mental skills and race day support.

This is her story of a rugby player turned Ironathlete…

[Written by Olivia]  Half Ironman

Swim: 1.9km- 38.18 – best time so far- surprised as felt pretty good and didn’t go all out.

Bike- 3.24.42 – That morning I got a flat tyre so had to change it under a time constraint so it was good practice- but when I got bike i obviously hadn’t put it on right- I learned from the mistake, a valuable one indeed as the bike shop showed me how to fix it. The head wind was awful, definitely, has a mental effect. The neck got pretty painful again- don’t know if it’s getting used to the position or if something more going on. But the position does allow me to go faster I can definitely feel that and am getting a few sub 10 minute per 5km. My knees were also less achy in particular they didn’t hurt in the run. Have got another check up this week at the bike shop and will evaluate options there- I want to enjoy the race and if I’m in pain for a good chunk of the time then I might just not use the aero bars. Also, it is amazing the difference in my left and right leg. My right leg doesn’t even feel it’s working and the left leg does.

Run: 2.20.31 First 10k was good- not rushing just steady pace, last 10k my body felt it, my butt muscles ouch. Unlike the Olympic distance triathlon, I finished very fresh and my body felt fine. This was a taste of what I am going to have to push through on the day. When it’s mentally and physically tough I tell myself people in war go through way worse than this.

Nutrition- happy with it- never felt hungry or lacking energy. Yummy lollies 😊

Recovery- Hard to eat straight afterward but knew I had to and knew I would need a lot of water. Joints were pretty achy that night. I had the choice of fish and chips with mum and dad or mum said she would pick me up McDonald’s- but I said no because recovery meal is so important I went down and got myself a chicken and made chicken salad rolls with a chocolate milk and fruit salad and ice cream. Far more nutritious and delicious.

I had my first day where I didn’t train because mentally I couldn’t be arsed. If one out of my 8 weeks at home then that’s a pretty good record. I was also happy with my readjustments the week before understanding when to change your training by listening to your body- not always easy to do.

I’ve continued reading and watching Ironman related content- it helps keep me motivated. I really like what Jo Friel said “don’t do it because everybody else is doing it, that doesn’t make it right”- a good life lesson reminder too.  I keep this in mind when thinking about the bike- I don’t have to use aero bars.

I need to do more rehab- its the easiest training and I got a bit slack. (you’re on holiday Olivia!)

That’s all for now.

What we can learn from this…

  1. Keep your eye on the goal – Completing the Half Ironman is a massive achievement, but it’s not why Olivia is doing this “I dont know if this post worthy” #StayHumble #Progress #FOCUS
  2. Finish Fresh – Too often we feel if we are not sore or shattered after a work out we have not accomplished anything, this is a mindset that needs to be broken and a mindset Olivia is starting to get. What’s better, one massive work out and feeling broken for days or 5 good work outs. #FinishStrong #FUN
  3. Self Talk – #Perspective Olivia reminds herself of what others go through to bring her back to the reality of the situation. When combined with the next point this creates a stong foundation #BeNiceToYourself #FOCUS
  4. Listen to the body – Taking a day off when it wasn’t working, adjusting the programs, moving away from the aero bars. Pain is there for a reason, feeling tired happens for a reason,  listen and be proactive. #YouOnlyGetOneBody #Life

Until next time, find your challenge, deal in actions and find what works, a little grit and a little resilience always helps.



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Quite simply we get results. Using the Precision Nutrition software and cognitive behavioral coaching alongside positive psychology our practices are evidenced based and measurable meaning we can show progress. Don’t take our word for it, take a look at our testimonials and hear what our clients have to say.

Chris the founder and Chief Kickstarter is a certified personal trainer, nutrition coach and is currently finishing his MSc in Applied Psychology. With a background in teaching and high-performance sport, he get’s the difficulties in juggling life whilst maintaining a level of personal health and wellbeing, in fact In his last two years of teaching, Chris completed an Iron Man alongside coaching International Rugby and starting his Masters!

Habitual has been created to help you achieve personal health goals without turning your life upside down. We don’t offer short term quick fixes, as they simply do not work, instead we deal in long lasting Habit development building upon existing schedules and routines.

Habitual offers individual support in getting your health back on track through #FOOD (nutritional habits), #FUN (exercise programming) and #FOCUS (mental skills, grit, sports psych, lifestyle and organisation coaching).

The Lifestyle Kickstarter is our flagship course, combining all the elements of #FOOD #FUN and #FOCUS into a fully bespoke plan of action.

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