Q&A with triathlete Brianne Mayne

We interviewed Queensland triathlete Brianne Mayne (@queen.bee.triathlete) who, despite learning to swim only two years ago, recent completed a Half Ironman. We have loved following her training journey and her always beaming smile!

What are your triathlon career highlights & what is the longest distance event you have competed in?

The longest distance I have completed is the Half Ironman 70.3 which is 1900m Swim, 90km bike ride and 21.1km run. The highlight has been overcoming the moments of panic and hyperventilating in the swim leg. This has happened a number of times and unfortunately once, on my journey to my first half ironman, the panic was so bad that I had to call for help and pull out of the race.

My next race was Noosa Triathlon, the world's largest triathlon festival. I panicked again but I was determined to finish. It was the most amazing feeling and when I got to the swim at Geelong Half Ironman - I had a great race without any panic or anxiety at all.

What inspires you to compete in triathlons, given the months of training it involves?

I truly enjoy the training and although it is an individual sport, the triathlon community are all supportive of one another. The finish line is the inspiration. There is no greater feeling than stubbling over that line having given it everything you've got.

What is your favourite leg of the triathlon?

The run is my favourite and strongest in triathlon training. I started running first and it has been the most amazing stress reliever in my life. Each race you finish you have a different favourite leg from the day. Nothing ever goes as planned and that's part of the fun!

How do you stay motivated when training in the pool alone?

Swimming is my weakest leg which means it is an opportunity for the most improvement. I'm motivated by seeing my average time per 100m coming down and keep in the back of my mind how much better it will be to be strong on race day. I have a waterproof mp3 player that I use when I'm not training for a specific event - it's not so great to use when doing dedicated swim sets.

What open water skills have you had to master for events?

I only learned to swim two years ago at the age of 32 - yes my very first swimming lesson was as an adult! Coming from Tasmania, I always splashed around in the water, but I never learned to swim. Open water swimming was very daunting for me. I joined a beginners course in triathlon and a lot of that was training to run in and out of the water and drills for getting through any waves. The feeling of swimming away from land has been the hardest to master for me - that's where the panic starts. I've worked with self-hypnosis and practicing at Noosa Beach to gain confidence.

What’s your go-to meal or snack before a swim?

Rice cakes with peanut butter and jam or a banana are my favourites. If it is a post work evening swim I like to have an Endura Performance Bar.

How do you reward yourself after an event?

A vanilla almond milk latte and chocolate froyo loaded with nuts, choc chips, coconut and ice magic! Then a few days later I'll reward myself with signing up for another race.