Nearly 2 weeks until this years Sprint and Olympic Distance World Championships being held in New Zealand, each week ‘Zoolander’ will catch up with one of our qualifiers to find out how their training is going and their thoughts leading into this years Age Group Championships. Our last athlete is Emma Donati read her story here.

An interview with Zoolander

Z: The World Championships are not far off now, how has your training been so far?
ED: This has been very consistent year to date. Mentally I went hard early and experienced a couple of dips in motivation along the way, but right now I’m feeling pumped and excited 🙂

Z: What have you found has been the most valuable lesson from the training regime and the decision to race at this level?
ED: Pressure is created by Numero Uno. Get on top of that and move onto more important issues.

A couple of questions around the race,

 Z: Why have you chosen to race Olympic/Sprint Distance?
ED: I take a while to warm up and usually a Sprint Distance race is over before it began.

Z: What do you think your biggest challenge will be leading up to the race?
ED: Controlling my nerves about the bike course, as we all know how much I love descending and cornering in the same sentence!

Z: What do you think your biggest challenge will be during the race?
ED: Having a good swim. Swimming is not my strength but I have no worries hitching a lift, happy to cop a kick in the face or two, I just need to make sure I’m in the middle pack and not chasing the back end.
I don’t wish to discuss the bike any further!

Z: How has your motivation been?
ED: I started ridiculously focused with huge expectations on myself to improve over the year. I’ve learnt that it is not easy to maintain that level of determination and that when it drops you need to look at why. Usually there are internal and external factors that contribute and you need to allow yourself to be ok with it, not to give up and most definitely don’t throw yourself up against the wall over it.

Z: What has motivated you?
ED: What or Who? Everyone & Me! Adam (Husband) because he works hard all the time and I do too but I’m living my dream, so I better do it well. My friends and family because they always support me unconditionally and every Tri Alliance athlete I come across has a story and should never underestimate how their basic actions inspire and motivate others.

What has inspired you in the past? Has this had an effect on your training?

ED: As above and yes it does have an effect on my training. When you’re feeling good it just makes things better and when you’re feeling tired or a bit down it helps you along (most of the time).

Z: It is an exciting time, heading off to the World Championships, the Olympic Distance and Sprint distances have a uniqueness about them. You are an official member of an Australian Team that is competing internationally, how do you feel about the lead up?
ED: I sway between feeling very excited and then feeling a bit like a bit of a fake as I’m no Olympian. But that is exactly the great thing about this sport there is something in it for everyone and Worlds creates a fantastic opportunity for us everyday Tri fanatics to represent our country, where else does that exist.

 Z: How much planning have you had to put into your preparation?
ED: Because this race lined up with Noosa I’ve been lucky enough to go along for the ride with the squad. I did spend a lot of time early on considering my strengths and weaknesses generally and against the NZ course. I’ve placed a lot of emphasis on building a good strong core as my main concern was avoiding any injuries.

Z: It’s easy to get caught up in the hype of what everyone else is doing, sometimes you can even feel left out, as the majority of the squad is in a different training phase, how have you coped with this and what have you done to compensate?
ED: To be honest I haven’t it felt that much at all. We have been very lucky this year with Noosa a mere 2 weeks after Worlds. With the exception of the September Apollo Bay camp, my training has lined up well with the rest of the squad and I have been lucky enough to have some fantastic training partners. I’m more concerned about Noosa as I will be in party and celebration mode while everyone is gearing up for what is for many their “A” race!!

Z: Of course, making the team is one thing, you have to qualify, what has the journey been like for you during this time?
ED: Very emotional.

Z: Will you be racing in an aero helmet? If not, why not?
I’ve made the leap and to be honest if racing with beetroot juice in my water bottle and a leopard print latex suit would potentially make me faster I would do it.

Z: One word association (and be honest with your first thought)

Swim: Has to be done

Bike: Descent

Run: Fast

Gel: Caffeine

Wax or Shave: Shave who has time

New Zealand: White Wine

Film: Rom/Com

Song: Top 40

Wetsuit: Thank God

Pool or Ocean: Pool, seriously people have you forgotten what the bay is like?

Apollo Bay or Falls Creek: Apollo Bay





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