10 things a partner can do to help an Ironchick out

ten things Ironman hawaii racing

Ironchicks are strong. They’re usually extremely determined women who have a goal in mind and will do everything possible to achieve it.   Often “we” are very independent and focused, but with all that in mind, sometimes I love (and need) a helping hand and a little extra support.

Call me high needs, or a little old school, but if there is one thing I’ve learned over the last nine Ironman races, it’s that when I’m in a full block of training, it’s ok to put your hand up, out or sideways to get a little support.

Screw “keeping it together”; with the added pressure of training, do what you can to get a little assistance.   It might be from your husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, sister, family or the damn neighbor.    Anywhere.  Except my #3 suggestion might get a little freaky if it’s the neighbour 😐

Supporters, these TEN suggestions are for you.  Embrace it…..

WARNING: If you do all of these suggestions at once, we will probably get suss.  Pace yourself, it’s a long journey 🙂


#1 Please cook

Now many of you supporters probably already cook – thank you!  But if you don’t, please do.  The occasional prepared healthy meal is heavenly.  Notice the emphasis on the word healthy.  If it can have some green included it would be favorable.

im sorry for what i said when i was hungry

#2 Listen to me talk about training

It might be your world, it might not be, but if I start rambling on about training, please just listen with the occasional nod so I know you’re still awake.  Offering an opinion every now and then might also let me know you are actually listening, but remember, if I’m tired, I’m probably a bit fragile so be gentle with me.  Listening about my chafing or my 2 hour run might not be that important to you at the moment, but I’m totally consumed in the Iron-world so get onboard.

hugh 2

#3 Massages

How much and where you massage is obviously indicative to the relationship you have with the Ironchick.  Although blokes, a massage without nookie CAN happen (I know, I know, boo hiss).  My muscles will be tired and sore and if you want to gently massage my feet while we watch re-runs of Ironman DVD’s, Rocky and anything with Channing Tatum in it, then OK.  Please do!

channing tatum
In case you didn’t know what Channing Tatum looked like 🙂

#4 Let me nap

Naps are the BEST.  A Saturday or Sunday nap will be worth it for you.  I promise you – I will be happier, chirpier and much more pleasant if I get a sneaky little nap in whenever possible.  If you choose to wash up, unload the dish-washer, hang the clothes on the line or prepare a healthy lunch for me while I nap, your stocks will skyrocket.

ironchick shirt for Ironman training
READ IT….. tired, sore, hungry and likely to take a nap at anytime. SO TRUE

#5  The pop up – a surprise visit

If I’m doing a long ride or a long run and you’re just finishing work or out and about, do a surprise pop up visit.  It’s the BEST.  If you know where I am training, pop up to wave, say hi and give a little cheer.  Not only will it give me a boost, I’ve probably missed seeing you around so the pop up visit makes me even more appreciative.  If you have a treat with you then you will be even more popular….. Gatorade, PowerAde, coke, mini-chocolate, lollies; anything.  Even if I don’t eat/drink it, the thought will be worth 12 dozen red roses!  If you want to be even MORE loved, tell me I’m doing well and look strong (even if I look like shit).

#6 Help me love my equipment

We love our gear.  Our bikes, shoes, gus and all the other crap.  Get onboard.  If you hear me complain about the creak in my bike, offer to take it to the bike shop for me.  I know it sounds needy, but when we are tired and busy, even the smallest jobs like taking your bike down to the bike shop for a service sounds like hard work.

#7 VERY politely flag when we look like shit or we are on the verge of a breakdown

Friends and family know us probably better than we know ourselves.  If we are looking a bit “gaunt” or we are on the verge of getting sick or having a break down, gently suggest a sleep in, rest day or a break.  Be warned, we might attack you because we are committed and dedicated.  Like a “get out of jail” card you only want to do this once or twice a training block otherwise we’ll think you’re conspiring to have us around more often.  Say it with me – FRAG / ILE.

#8 Remind us not to compare

As we train, we might start looking at others or comparing ourselves with the people.  Feel free to refocus us onto our own goals and ourselves.  It can be easy for Ironchicks to compare or benchmark themselves based on others.  “She looks fitter. She ran further.  She is faster”.   Blah blah.  Feel free to put an end to it.  Remind us to stay focused intrinsically on our own personal goals.

#9 Learn to love the Ironman spirit

We love this sport.  Seriously.  If we see you loving it, then you will love you even more.  Get into the sport and you will see what we go on about – make signs, come and watch us race, get shirts made up for the family and take lots of photos (and please ensure you have our bike in a few of the pictures).   You will see it. You will see it in the athlete’s eyes while they’re racing, you’ll see it in our eyes when we see you after the finish.  BUT, do be warned, it’s addictive.  You might even find yourself pressing the REGISTER HERE button soon.

#10 Did I mention cook?

Most of our crankiness comes from hunger.  That’s my theory.  Hunger and fatigue.  Did I mention cook?  Healthy stuff?  And let us nap?  Yes, good.  Well do that and you’ll be #1.

four words an ironchick

Now, I know that’s a lot and I sound like a princess.  Far from it.  But if you have someone asking if you would like some help or maybe someone needs a little prompting, maybe you could suggest one of the above.

{Thank god for inconspicuous tagging on social media – make it public and they will definitely help out}


Happy training everyone

Anyone need me to cook them a healthy dinner?  🙂




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2 thoughts on “10 things a partner can do to help an Ironchick out”

  1. Love it! I have to give my husband a massive high 5, he has been absolute gold to me while training for my first 70.3. But, when it comes to bike maintenance, yesterday I took his bike up to the bike shop because I rode it to pick up my daughter from school and it was impossible to steer! Needed a new headset. Yup, I’m the ‘bike carer’ in this house lol

    1. Nice one Mr Pinky. Pinky, I’m glad your 70.3 training is going well. Not long now. When asking for a little help we need to give it back too AND who doesn’t love a bike shop trip?!?!?! Anyone? 🙂 Thanks Pinky