Gil­lian Clay­ton Will Not De­fend Her Ironman Canada Ti­tle

Triathlon Magazine Canada - - Front Page -

Van­cou­ver’s Gil­lian Clay­ton has a good rea­son not to de­fend her Ironman Canada ti­tle: she and her hus­band Shawn Trim­ble are ex­pect­ing their first child right around the time that Ironman Canada will take place. We caught up with the ex­pec­tant mother to get a re­veal­ing look at her jour­ney through preg­nancy. it was to step away from such a won­der­ful rac­ing year, I knew there was some­thing else I re­ally wanted to do and that made my de­ci­sion eas­ier. TMC: How does one ad­just to be­ing in race shape, then quickly con­fronting the bod­ily changes of preg­nancy. GC: At first I re­ally felt like I was los­ing my fit­ness in a hard and fast way. But then I learned more about what was hap­pen­ing phys­i­o­log­i­cally and I re­al­ized I wasn’t as out of shape as I thought. I dis­cov­ered I was preg­nant when I kept train­ing and feel­ing less fit with each workout. I had noth­ing in the tank. I was se­ri­ously out of breath. I found out I was preg­nant and kept train­ing, I knew what my body needed to do. I also felt pretty sore from lig­a­ment loos­en­ing and mus­cle soft­en­ing, but I’m con­vinced that I’ve adapted to these changes and have be­come stronger through­out preg­nancy. TMC: What has been the tough­est part of be­ing preg­nant? GC: For me the first few months were the tough­est. I couldn’t un­der­stand be­fore when some Olympians said they were just dead tired in the first trimester. How could Olympians get tired? Now I know. It re­ally made Ironman train­ing and rac­ing seem much less tir­ing in ret­ro­spect. That, and your ap­petite is way off. As an ath­lete, I’ve learned to be very in tune with my body and con­trol­ling my in­ter­nal en­vi­ron­ment, but then all of a sud­den I didn’t feel like my­self any­more. That wasn’t a very nice feel­ing. TMC: Do you plan on con­tin­u­ing your pro ca­reer af­ter giv­ing birth? How are you pre­par­ing now for that even­tu­al­ity? GC: Ab­so­lutely. I can’t wait to come back. Be­ing out of sport this long has been a huge motivator. You think you go crazy miss­ing a cou­ple of months due to ill­ness or in­jury, try wait­ing for a year. I’m pre­par­ing for it by con­tin­u­ing to train through preg­nancy for a start. I may not be fast, but I’m car­ry­ing around a lot of resistance in ex­tra weight, and am run­ning on what feels like half of my lung ca­pac­ity. If I can still do two-a- day work­outs in my third trimester, I fig­ure I’m do­ing pretty well. Ironman train­ing is long and com­mit­ted, so I plan on be­ing f lex­i­ble with what I’m able to do and find­ing a bal­anced and healthy path back to rac­ing again.

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