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What happened? « Mathieu O'Halloran's Blog


What happened?

Hey M@ happened in Phuket?

Well in a pool with no black lines somewhere and at sometime before the race.I was doing speed work and f*cked up a flip turn and twisted my spine good enuff.It was more than good enuff, I was painfull to breath and had tingling in my fingers.

After a few hours in pain and almost crying like a little girl. I saw a “healer” and told me it wasn’t to bad, that I possibly damaged some nerves. Or worst case got a disckal hernia.

Okay so with the best case senario in mind. I keep to train very easy, nurse my spine with heat and take anti-inflamatory.

A few days after the incident, I woke up for a morning jog and waking up was the best I did, because just pushing myself out of bed and taking a piss or dressing myself and very pain full.

It sucked.

After talking to the people who are clossest to me. Everybody told me the same thing. You still got time before the race, take some full rest.

So I did, 5 days with no training. Just nursing my back wth warm sand or hot towel and hanging out.

The first race came and went.
I spectated the race.
It was tuff to sit out, this was where I had my best race last year.

I sucked it up and starting training a bit but 2 days before the 70.3 I tested my body a bit with some speed on the bike/run after that, I decided not to race.

But I still ended up race, a waky race near Bangkok last monday that I had originally planed, to race 3 times in 8 days.

Even though I was still injured, I figured I could suck it up. The race was 6.5km ocean swim + 2.5km run. 30 000bath for first place, thats about 1000$ US.

Thats a lot of money in my world. And I was desperated for some chrismast cash.
Especially after a pretty shitty year of racing.

So the aquathlon start on Koh Samet Island


And then we had to swim 6.5km back to the mainland.

The race started in the afternoon, so you can imagine it was wavy, very wavy.

Once the race started, lead group formed and I hanged at the back. Because of my spine problems, I was feeling greedy. And I only wanted to follow, and sight for the bouys as lease as possible.

In fact, there was exactly 15 bouys in between the Island and the mainland, yea I know what you all think ;)

So after a while and mostly focusing on not swallowing sea water because of the waves, I started to swim into the guys in front of me as the pace had slowed down and the guys in front, keep doing breast stroke kicks?


I took a look around and realised we where quite off course bUt more importantly, THERE WHERE 2 GUYS OFFTHE FRONT!! ARGGGGG!!!

So I went around the guys in front of me and pick up the pace. I pushed for about 10 mins and again had a look at where I was. The 2 in front had actually gained some ground, and then guys behind me. Well where just behind me.

That point, was the hardest of the race. I knew there was a big drop off from 1st to 2nd place for the prize money and then of course, my spine started to hurt.

I used all my hanger and disapointement from the passt 11 months and charged forward, I wasn’t going to finish my season like this.

After hammering for a while I felt the waves had subsited as I was getting closer to shore.

I keep to push the pace and about 500m from the beach my hands touched the beautifull white sand and I stood up and realised I had swam all ut 20m into the guy in 2nd place.

And I had also a huge gap on the group behind me.

Once in transition, I was informed I had to carry a big Canadian flag for 2.5km! Is this a joke? I wasn’t told that? Does everbody have to do it?

I was actually asking myself those questions as I was running down the road. Quickly I passed for 2nd place but still no sign of first.

I stuck the flag down my suite and the tip of the pool was jabbing against my p*nis and the other end of the flag poll was smaking me in the face!

Is this a bad dream?
Can I wake up now please?

Oh and today is a holiday in THailand, so plenty of people in the streets pointing at me.

I was breathing had and running fast as caught sight of the guy leading the race. The finish was near as I could see where I bought my pre race lunch at 7/11. Banana bread, chocolate milk and coca cola.

I passed for 1st place in the final stretch.

Got my biggest pay check of the year soon after.

Turns out the guy I ran down is one of Thailands current top distance freestyler so good thing the organisers bothered with adding that shortrun eh!

The picture up here, is me getting my trophee as this race was actually part of a very big festival after the kings b-day!

You can see it in the picture, bbut theres thousands of people in front of the stage and it anybody has been to a Thailand full moon party.

This was pretty much the same, with all the street vendors and lady-boys included ;)

Okay before I forget, I would like to post a few pictures of my little Joyette who had her best race in Phuket. Unfortunatley, she got a flat half way into the bike. Where she lots tones of time. But finished with a strong second half of the bike and very quick run.

I was pretty funny to see her blow by the men on the run!

Okay and now for somefunny stuff. I was watching the 70.3 near the end of the bike course. Where at about 78km, the athletes hit a nasty hill called tri-sara.

These two are doing syncronyse slalom.

This guy has taken off his bike shoes so it means, hes been walking for a while!

These guys are having a walking party!

This guy I actually know, and hes walking his bike in his aerobars!

And this guy, well just looks depressed…

Anyway, this blog is getting long and a bit weird. I’d like to thank the race commited of the Phuket tri for letting me freeload several meals even though I did not race!

Klaus and Thomas and Jaques for behing top guys and doing their best for my back.
I will be back in Phuket, thats a promiss!

Also thank Joyette and Brett who always seem to tell me the same thing, even though they far way from each other.

And finally, i’d like to thank myself, for sticking in out all of this pretty shitty year. Racing all the way to the end each time. I feel embaressed by several of my results this year, which im capable of doing much better….

PS: I appologies if I embaress any body whos picture I posted, I find it funny and in fact this guy bellow, rode up the entire hill with only 1 leg!! In fact, he did back to back Phuket races!!!

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