1 - Zac, you’re obviously mad. Why all this running around, when there are perfectly good couches to sit on, and pastries to eat?
Good question; on a long ride or run I sometimes ask myself that very thing. I’m always up for a challenge and the sport of triathlon provides me with a lot of variety in training, along with much self-satisfaction when hitting goals. But most importantly, it allows me to have long guilt-free sessions on the couch, eating pastries.
2 - You recently spent some time over in Tasmania on various projects. Where are the best places to spend outdoors there, running or cycling?
Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to bring the bike over, so it’s usually a mix of running and swimming whilst travelling for work. I’m a regular at the Hobart aquatic center, and also the St. Michelle’s school who open their pool to the public in the mornings. Running wise, in Hobart there is a great 15km loop, starting off at Macquarie St in the city heading out towards Mt. Wellington past the Cascade Brewery winding your way uphill. Take a hard left down Huon Rd for a fast descent back into town and swing past Sash Café for the best coffee in Hobart. Also Wellington Park is endless, and a demanding trek to the top of Cathedral Rock makes for a great unwind after work and a 360 degree view. Most beautiful is in Launceston for a trail run through the First Basin Gorge which is stunning. Amazing to think all of this is on peoples door step in Tasmania.
3 - What is the most difficult event you’ve competed in, and why?
The Ironman Melbourne Triathlon (3.8km swim, 180km bike, 42.2km run) in March this year. I trained so hard for this event, and it was all consuming with up to 25hrs of training per week. You become a master of managing time whilst trying to balance a demanding job, family and friends, as well as the load and fatigue which comes with the training. Getting to the start line is a big part of it and I was so proud of myself to be lining up with a thousand other athletes race morning. The day didn’t go as planned though, and after a good swim and ride, my knee decided it had enough during the marathon, and reduced my pace to a slow run/walk. I had to dig deep just to keep going and block out the pain and disappointment of what was happening. Breaking things down into the most vital and smallest pieces became a fundamental tool, whether that be to make it to the next telephone pole, ensure to eat and hydrate, or to make my wife proud that I made it through adversity. It was the both the toughest and most rewarding day of my life.
4 - If you had all the time in the world, what would you do?
Lots of R&R: Riding and Running.
5 - What is the key to maintaining a healthy work/life balance?
The key is to enjoy what you do. When life gets super busy, time management is everything and spending a few minutes each day planning on how your going to stitch it all together, is a good practice to master. Having said that I must admit to rarely feeling as though everything is in balance at one given time, I just do my best make it all work as well as I can.
6 - Who inspires you the most?
I have a few, but first and foremost is my wife, Amanda. She inspired me to get off the
couch (and pastries) and find positive actions in my life, such as triathlons. This year Amanda ran North Face 100km, Australia’s toughest 100km run through the Blue Mountains, and 4 months later ran another 100km race at Angelsea coming in at 12hrs 25mins and 3rd in her category. How can I not be inspired by that?
7 - What is the most rewarding thing about working at Tridant?
Being amongst the most talented people in our industry. I’m surrounded by a large group of individuals who naturally live and breathe what we do, and there is no problem which is unsolvable or challenge which can’t be mastered. I learnt very early on in my career that you must surround yourself with people who are as driven as you, and smarter than yourself. By doing so you can constantly learn, grow, and become better at your work than if you were alone.