Rory Duckworth – Getting to Kona

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Date Posted:

May 11, 2018

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Key Points & Takeaways

Rory Duckworth is without doubt the funnest guy to be around inside the triathlon scene. About 3 years ago him and I connected and 2 months later he had be racing the St George 70.3. What a jerk! ;)

Wanted to sit down with him and have him share a few thoughts surrounding our training together in both mental and physical aspects. Here is what came out of the conversation.

Rory said that he was really never close to quitting outside of when he was hurt or sick or injured. He said that the really close races where he felt like he had a great race and still did not make the cut, it motivated him and actually pushed him harder.

He ended up going to Kona in 2017 after an amazing race in Ironman 140.6 Colorado.

  • Stay focused and believe in the process.
  • Watch other people who are achieving the same thing you want to achieve.

Rory said this is one of his big strengths!
He says he just likes to have fun, smile, and laugh because it always helps him stay calm and be in that state of ‘ready’!

Note from Nate:

I think Rory said something really impactful here that I would like to point out. He said, ‘the best races I have ever had, I didn’t really expect anything. I just went out and raced.’ This idea if managing not only his emotions through fun, smiling, and laughing but also his own expectations about the race. At Mental Grit we have come to find a lot of athletes sabotaging their performance because they have all of these expectations running through their minds when they should be focused on the process of performing. I would ask the audience at this point, what can you do to not only manage your emotions prior to a race but also manage those expectations of outcomes so you can stay focused?

Rory also mentions this idea of focusing on the controllable during especially Ironman distance races in minute ~11:30. SO IMPORTANT!

This is a cool little technique that Rory mentions regarding how to handle negative thinking out on the course, especially when bad thing happen. Some of his examples of using this technique are:

Reframing 101-

  • You get a flat – > you can think, well I get a little rest there.

“I have had friends who were not feeling all that hot at the beginning of the race and they just change their attitude and they end up winning it.”

A Note From Nate:

One of the best ways to push through pain is find the top 3 MOST IMPORTANT techniques that you can focus on to help you go fast! When you find yourself in the hurt locker, thats ok! Just bring your attention back to those three items you chose and keep going. 

How Rory pushes through pain:

Embracing the pain while I am in it. Associate with the pain and welcome it. The more it hurts the more I am doing it right. I kind of just say things like that the more I go.

A Note From Nate:

This is awesome because this is integrating a most important tactic! DEFINE YOUR SUCCESS and then go find that definition! 

The one thing that I notice from people is that people take things WAY to serious. If this is not fun then we should not be doing it. Find the fun and remind yourself why you do this! Thank volunteers and give back and you will find real enjoyment!

I personally love to be able to support the triathlon coaches and athletes at the Salt Lake Tri club. I want to take a moment to say thank you to Rory, Courtney, and Adam at the tri club for their unyielding support through the years!

If you would like to bring performance psychology to your program/club or would like to work 1 on 1 towards your performance goals, get in touch!

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