Monday marks the beginning of my official training program for Ironman Regensburg with new coach Andy Stewart. I know he'll expect a lot from me, but I feel ready for the challenge - physically and mentally.
I've enlisted German pro cyclist Jens Voigt to motivate me when things get tough. I'll admit that the inspiration came from some devoted Jens fans at the Tour Down Under, who had printed up shirts with "WHAT WOULD JENS DO?" I've decided that when things get hard to get out of bed in the morning, or during training, this is what I'll ask myself.
The answer of course is straightforward. Jens would train, he would hurt, he would accept the suffering that comes from hours on the bike. And would probably ask for more. If you need to see how tough Jens Voigt is, take a look at this crash in the Tour de France last year; and his video response to all his well wishers on YouTube.
Of course, Jens doesn't know that he's my motivator, but if he did, I'm guessing he'd accept the position with equal parts of humility and humour.
And so it begins. I hope you'll share my journey to Ironman number four.