Over the next few posts, I would like to share with you and celebrate some the fantastic performances from the athletes I’ve had the pleasure of coaching this past season.
Let’s start with Jason, the JBall himself.
Jason is one awesome dude. I have been coaching Jason for the past 7 years & have seen him grow so much as an athlete and a person. His commitment to sport and upbeat attitude is an inspiration to myself and so many other people in the Victoria running community.
Last year Jason had a major breakthrough season with a personal best performance at Ironman Arizona of 10:33 on a wet and cold day. So awesome buddy. He swam 1:22, biked 5:11, and ran 3:48.
When we sat down at the beginning of 2016 Jason told me that he wanted to qualify for Kona and my response was. “Awesome, we need to be able to run a 3:30 marathon off a sub 5-hour bike.”
Let’s remember that Jason’s 10:33 in Arizona was a PB of close to 1 hour! So for me to tell him that he would need to take one more hour off his time was a pretty big ask. After 7 years, I know Jason pretty well, and this was just what he needed to hear.
We put together our season goals, picked races, and decided our qualifier would be IM Maryland in September. Fast forward through thousands of miles on the bike, hours and hours of hilly trail runs, a major swim focus, and Jason was on the start line fit and healthy for IM Maryland.
The day of the race brought torrential rains, a subsequently canceled swim, and extreme flooding on the run course. Jason is the kind of guy who thrives on adversity. Even though it was to his advantage that the swim was canceled, he had made such massive improvements in his swimming that he was disappointed not to have the chance to test himself on the full course.
He saddled up for the time trial bike start and proceeded to shatter his previous best bike and run by riding 4:26 and running 3:31. Mission accomplished my friend!
Although Jason just barely missed his Kona spot, I’m so proud of him for believing in himself enough to go after his goals, and in the process smashing his previous bike run records.
Well done Jason. Let’s go after 2017!