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Mon 16th Sep 2019
Penny Comins: Nervous in Norway
Posted by: Penny Comins
Posted on: Thursday 31st July 2014

Tags  Kona 2014  |  Norway  |  Penny Comins

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While Kona may be the ultimate goal, I think you'll forgive Penny Comins for having that as the last thing on her mind right now. 'Dig Me' beach will come certainly in October, but right now, everything is focussed on the small task of conquering the Norseman this weekend. "Nervous in Norway" just about sums it up.

This is her first update from the weekend, having a chance to reflect on what lies ahead and the people that inspire her while relaxing on the flight...

No more counting down the weeks to go. It is days until Norseman now and despite some serious packing covering every weather eventuality, I am still nervous to a level I have never been before.

The pressure to be in the first 160 people at the final check point to be allowed to finish on the mountain top is a new dynamic that I haven't encountered in a normal Ironman race. Not only will I be racing the clock but I have to keep higher in the ranks throughout the event. Basically, I can't rely so heavily on my weapon, the run, and especially being strong in the last 10 kilometres where most start to fade.

I am not alone though and am very lucky to have amazing friends to support me; some being professional triathletes. Taking insights from these inspirational girls has helped me in my path to this point and eventually Kona. Early on I got to train and be coached by Joanna Lawn and her husband Armando. She gave me loads of little tips to make the day for comfortable for a woman, along with mental strength. They now run their own training company SansEgo and share their inside knowledge on what it takes.

Closer to home in the UK I get to rub shoulders with Parys Edwards (@parysedwardstri) and Tamsin Lewis (@sportiedoc). These two are amazing in their quest to perfect their training. This solos approach is a privileged environment for me to be in. Gleaning tips and insights from them in a casual environment is invaluable. While I can't keep up in sessions it is great to meet and start off together or to chat after training. I remind myself how lucky I am. And it is these files of knowledge that I have to draw on when the nerves creep up and the atrium of butterflies fill my stomach. I need to keep reminding myself of the training sessions I have done and just believe.

I am super excited to have Tamsin as my support person at Norseman. Plainly, without her I couldn't even be on the start line. Her generosity in time and commitment to me is a testament to her character and passion for the sport. It will be an adventure on the way to the top and one that will stay with me forever. These thoughts still don't stop me shaking at the thought of what lays ahead.

Stay tuned – number 54 and a few butterflies.

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