So you thought work was hard, try this; Ciara pushes on in Ironman New Zealand

A broken spoke couldn’t stop one of the Oceans Group team in the recent Ironman New Zealand, with Ciara Lui making us all proud.

After a 16 week training programme, reaching up to 18-20 hours per week, Ciara took part in her second Ironman (the first one was Ironman Australia in Port Macquarie last year).

“I approached this race with a specific race plan and time in mind. I had seen some really good results and improvements in training and I had made it to the start line injury-free” said Ciara.

Unfortunately, after a great swim leg, one of the spokes on the bike’s front wheel snapped around the 50km mark, which Ciara says “inevitably made for a slow and tough ride.”

Ciara says “the wheel wobbled for 130km which is a very inefficient way for a bike to operate, and is also an inefficient use of energy for the body operating it! I exerted a lot more energy than I usually would need to, just to try to maintain some sort of pace. It felt a bit like having the brakes on the whole way”. 

The difficult ride also meant a challenging run for Ciara – she was “so bloody happy” to cross the finish line and really proud to have completed such a hard race. 

“The reactions I’ve had to keep going when the spoke broke have been quite mixed. To be honest, I didn’t even think about stopping – I’d done a lot of work (and paid a lot of money!) to get there, and I had friends and family at the race and in Sydney supporting me” said Ciara.

In terms of how this experience applies to business, Ciara says “regardless of whether your goals are in sport or business, when things don’t go to plan or obstacles arise, there’s a decision to be made - to throw it all in or to keep going”.

When Ciara joined Oceans Group, most of the team knew she was into triathlon. Ciara says she has had great support and she’s not the only one reaching fitness goals in the office, with Sean and Andrew and a couple of the other guys cycling, taking part in Tough Mudder and training for a marathon.

Ciara refers to the OG team as her kind of people. “He probably won’t remember, but the first thing Andrew Wood said to me when we met was “So you’ve done an Ironman - for me that says so much about who you are and how you work”. It was great to know that he had an understanding about setting big goals and taking steps to achieve them. It’s great to be part of an environment that is so supportive”.

And yes, Ciara will sign up for another one!


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