EPiC Disappointment

Posted: April 13, 2016 in In Transition, The Plan
Tags: ,

I received a bit of a shock the other evening when I opened my email and there was a message from the organizers of the EPiC Dartmouth Triathlon.  Usually, by this point before a major event I start to receive information about the event such as reminders about starting times, transition set up, etc., and this typically makes the event suddenly begin to feel “real”.  So it was with a bit of excitement that I opened the email to see what they had to say.

Unfortunately, it was not one of these types of “exciting” emails.  Instead, it was a message indicating to participants that the event had been canceled.


My expression was probably something like this:


I just sat there dumbfounded.


Here’s the primary issue as stated in the email:

“Two large sections of our bike route, comprising in total 28 kilometres of race distance, will undergo major construction this year, leaving us unable to guarantee a safe and secure competitive environment for our July 2nd event. Over the last two months, the EPIC team has worked continually with City Staff, NS Dept of Highways, the HPD & RCMP to identify an alternate route we could use for our 2016 event. In the last few days we exhausted the last of those possibilities.”

Now, first, let me just say that I have no issue whatsoever with the event organizers at all for making this decision.  They made the call they felt was necessary after doing what appears to be their very best to remedy an unfortunate and untimely situation.  The organizers have graciously provided participants the option to either a) receive a full 100% refund, or b) transfer their registration to next year’s event at the locked in price for 2016.

The fact still remains though, that I have already put three months of hard effort into training for this particular event including my having hired a coach and, suddenly, it’s all off the table.  So, needless to say, this announcement has therefore left me feeling very disappointed and discouraged and, ultimately, trying to figure out the answer to the immediate question:

What next?

So what it really comes down to is that my options are twofold:

  1. Find another event
  2. Agree to transfer my registration to 2017

My first instinct was to try and recoup the training by finding another event to switch focus to.  The problem being is that I have made other commitments to continuing my involvement with the SunRype Tri-KiDs series of races which I am very fond of being a part of.  That means then that just about every weekend throughout the rest of the summer from July onward will be dedicated to helping them run their amazing series of kids triathlons and my word is my bond so canceling on them now is not an option.  So if I choose another Ironman event later in the summer it will inevitably mean having to train without the benefit of most weekends to accomplish my long runs and bikes…not to mention having to do all this peak training during the hottest part of the year which was also something I was trying to avoid.




So, how about other July Ironman event’s right?  And there are a few.  My issue with this, however, is that if I am going to fork out the big bucks to do a major event I want it to be something that I am really looking forward to; something that not only myself but my family can get excited about…together.

After all, I’m not in this alone.

The EPiC Darmouth Triathlon (which is currently on my “Bucket List” of races, by the way) was going to give us  the opportunity to travel out to the east coast together and, as HRH  is particularly excited to do…eat cake by the ocean (click HERE).

And, seriously, who can’t get behind a plan like that?

So simply doing an Ironman for the sake of doing an Ironman is not really a favorable option for me either.  What I ultimately decided then was to accept the offer to transfer my registration to the 2017 event instead.  This gives me the benefit of another year focused on the right things to get even stronger and, hopefully, giving me a better shot at actually feeling like I can actually toe the line at this thing as a serious competitor and not just someone hoping to make it to the finishing line (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

So, yeah, I admit it:  I had the secret goal of being able to place well at this event. And looking at the finishing times from last year, it is definitely in my wheelhouse to do that.  My chances of this happening at any official “Ironman” branded race is pretty slim to none at this point.

I mean, some day, sure…but now?

Not likely.

The next big question is:

Then what?

And this took a bit more time to contemplate.  I just don’t want to nothing this summer as far as competition goes so the dilemma I’m having now is basically, if I wasn’t doing this Ironman, what would I have been doing instead?

The answer I kept coming back to was this:

Having fun!


The truth of the matter is that I don’t think I’d necessarily be competing, like, at all.  No, it’s more likely I would be doing different altogether; something that still enabled me to be active and healthy and continue on with my training, while still offering me a unique challenge to overcome.  “Competition” doesn’t necessarily have to be part of that formula.

Now so I’m considering other goals to accomplish; goals that perhaps I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish had Ironman still been on my plate.  Among these things I’m now considering include a single day Summer Solstice “Double Century” bike ride on June 21st from Barrie, Ontario to St. Catharines and participate in some local open water swim events at the 5k and 10k distances.  These would keep me both on the bike and in the water while will later transfer nicely into next season’s Ironman training program.

I also plan to keep up with my running as well, specifically focused on perfecting this whole “cadence” thing.  I’d like to keep with the shorter more intense runs like my prescribed fartleks and progression workouts, but there is not real need to keep “going long”…well, not “stupid long” anyway.  The plan would be to keep this strong base I’ve established through these past three months so that I can launch myself headfirst back into the plan next February feeling strong, speedy and capable.

Basically, something like this:


So that’s it I guess.

It’s on for 2017.

The other thing that helps me with this decision is that in 2017, it will be exactly five years since Ironman Wales and, being the obsessive-compulsive guy I secretly am, I like prime numbers.  Taking another swing at the cat exactly five years later seems almost…cathartic.

What can I say?

It just feels  right.

So, sports fans, I guess there isn’t much else to say aside from the fact that I’m still moving forward, I’m still working hard and, hopefully, there will still be lots more fun adventures to journal about in the near future even though they likely won’t be Ironman specific…

…well, for a few more months anyway.

So am I disappointed?

Sure…of course.

However, will I carry on and come out stronger on the other side?


  1. Saskia Holditch says:

    Strange. No mention of New Zealand events at all!!!

  2. I’m sticking with the 2018 plan. 😉

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