I had an epic battle during the marathon with Andreas Raelert in 2011, and the NBC crew captured it all and sent me the footage after. There are some high highs, and some low lows, and shows many physical and mental changes I used to finish ahead of him.
2012 obviously was a great highlight too, not as interesting, but still pretty good to see the emotion of winning the Ironman World Championship .
The key point of this video is what I did to beat Andreas Raelert. My quads shattered, I was in pain, he caught back up and passed me… but I did more. I used the aid station to “reset” by walking, and using as many neural triggers as I could – ice, cold water, sponges, tasting coke, electrolyte.
Then I started running again. When he passed me I was able to trigger my body to improve my mental and physical state – I leaned forward. I “leaned into” the pain in my quads. Mentally and physically (both are always connected) I leaned into it. I got deep into the zone, being so present that nothing existed except my control of my body sans distraction from my brain and doubts/pain/fear. I believed I had more, I found more.
See Raelerts body language when I pass him. I was not able to find the next level of control, he gave in to his thoughts, the pain, the doubts. And he let his body influence his mind by literally leaning back. Bad run efficiency, and bad mental strategy. Self belief is everything. Be present, get in the zone, and have confidence from deep within that you have built in training, through visualising, through doing. In training, you have to get in the zone, block thoughts, be present, be in control, and have self belief while doing it, so on race day, just like any muscle you have trained, you can use it. The “reset” is key. Practice this. Use triggers – Words. Feelings. Tastes. Actions.