Partners in adventure
When Casie Meikle decided to get active and lose weight for her 2010 wedding, she didn’t bank on some unexpected gains: Falling in love with fitness so much that she’s gone on to complete multiple competitive events, and – tired of missing out on all the fun – last year, husband Troy opting to join her. Now a combined 38kg lighter, the couple train side-by-side and will do Magnetic Island Adventurethon together as an Enduro team, but then will turn against each other the next day as solo competitors in the shorter Taste event. Here they tell us about how training and events have become part of their new life.
“It’s actually good being so competitive because we always try to better each other”
Casie and Troy both did their first Adventurethon last year in July: It was the Taste event (1km paddle, 10km bike and 2.4km run) and Troy tackled it just six weeks after hauling himself off the couch after years of inactivity.
“The trainer I was with told me I was nuts and I wouldn’t be able to do it, so I wanted to prove her wrong and really pushed it,” he explains. “I particularly struggled with the running because I was so unfit, but I finished it. I was stuffed crossing that finish line, but it felt so good to finally complete something, especially having my folks coming down to watch me.”
He says his wake-up call came when Casie – who had already shed 20kg since pledging to lose weight for their 2010 wedding, then kept going – would be forever going out for bootcamps and bike rides and he was literally getting left behind.
“I got tired of sitting on the sidelines and not doing anything, and we hardly got to see each other. I basically wanted to do something and haven’t looked back,” says Troy.
Now nine months on and with Troy 18kg lighter, just try to stop the Meikles from moving. Troy and and Casie ride their bikes at least once a week, paddle a couple of times a week, take the dog for a run, attend the Free Radicals Family Triathlon Club training sessions, and go to the mixed bootcamp with 5 Star Fitness.The only problem is that they are so competitive that they are banned from partnering up in boxing sessions.
“They think we are going to kill each other,” says Casie, laughing.
“It’s actually good being so competitive because we always try to better each other,” adds Troy. “We did a triathlon last year and we actually crossed the line together. What annoyed me was that our times were two seconds out – she beat me by two seconds! So next time, at the Mackay Triathlon Festival, I actually made sure I beat her (laughs).”
So how will they go during the Taste event on Magnetic Island in March when the first North Queensland Adventurethon takes off at Picnic Bay?
“We’ll be trying to beat each other for sure!” says Casie. “Having Troy there will be great as it’s more of a push to both do the best we can. If you’re tired you don’t give up because you have someone with you to go those couple of extra kilometres.”
Having both done this event in the early stages of their fitness journeys, they are adamant that it’s possible for nearly anyone to take part and enjoy it.
“It’s about taking your time and finishing. I walked the entire run last time, so it’s possible for anyone to do it,” says Casie.
Adds Troy: “Give it a go. It doesn’t matter if you come last – as long as you’ve done it.
“In Mackay I watched a guy do an Olympic distance triathlon. A lot of the guys took a couple of hours [average 02:43:25], but he took four or five. He actually crossed the line with one of the spectators helping him, but he did it. And that’s what everyone was awed by – he did it and gave it a go.
“I just want people to give it a go – it’s a lot of fun and you meet so many new people.”
Adventurethon Magnetic Island is March 28 and 29, 2015.
The date for Adventurethon Townsville has just been confirmed: July 4 and 5, 2015.