Endurance sports are home to some of the most loneliest athletes in the world.

Some days, I feel as though it is just me, myself and I. You only get as much out, as you put in, which is true in any sport but it’s much truer when you’re training by yourself every day.

Josh Amberger
Photo Credit: Yone Estivariz

I do have a squad back at home in Australia, but they’re actually all training in Switzerland at the current time, up at altitude in St. Moritz.

While I am currently in Spain with my partner and fellow triathlete, Ashleigh Gentle.

Having to get up, and not have to meet a squad or train with a coach, it’s difficult… simply getting out the house is a challenge in itself, before training even starts. But once I’m out there training, I love it.

I love the zero interruption of going for a solo swim, a bike or a run. I can ride my bike for 5-8 hours at a time, and not have any thoughts about stopping.

Josh Amberger
Photo Credit: Yone Estivariz

Having a squad makes training ten times easier though; you know set times, motivation is high and the environment demands elite standards. Nothing less.

So that’s kind of the challenge that I’ve set for myself leading into the next race.

Pioneer my own style of training, where I can centre the focus entirely on my own doing; from the way I train, prepare for endurance events and the competition itself.

This year I’ve had two second places and a win, and a top 5. I haven’t raced as much as normal this season as I’ve had some small injuries that have kept my sidelined in the last couple of months.

But nevertheless, I’m fit and willing, and my powder is dry. The willing part is the key. Triathlon is not a short event.

I race Ironman, and 8 hours flat is a good time. You can’t achieve in this sport unless you are willing.

Josh Amberger
Photo Credit: Yone Estivariz

You can’t even get the training done if you don’t love what you do.

Writing this gives me a good indication that I’m mentally tuned to perform in the biggest race of the year, the Ironman world championships in Kona, Hawaii, in a few weeks times.

As a professional, The World Championships is where you really want to get the results, but so far this year I have been able to perform really well and kind of improve on last year’s season which is obviously where you want to be as a developing athlete.

You know, you want to be getting better each year not only in your results but also kind of in your own personal assessments as how you perform as well so I think I’m definitely doing that at the moment, which is great.

I love the training, but I love the racing more. Going head to head against athletes from all over the world is a real gift.

It’s in these moments of adversity and sheer desperation that you find out who you are as a person, and what you really want in life. If you find yourself mentally wayward in a race, you know racing is not for you.

Josh Amberger
Photo Credit: Yone Estivariz

If every single millisecond is spent revelling in the pain, reconciling how you can squeeze more performance and resilience out of yourself in the moment, then you are a racer. If you don’t win, maybe you feel disappointment.

Mostly, if I’ve given everything I knew I could give in the race, then I feel satisfaction despite the result. But I do love to win, and ultimately, I train to race and I race to win.

I’m clocking around 34 hours of training a week. About 20 hours of this is on the bike, another 6 in the swim, and the remaining 8 on the run. Training for triathlon is extreme.

You punish yourself in the water, then head home for a feed. You put your cycling kit on, and punish yourself on two wheels. You take a nap.

You put your shoes on, then rinse yourself out on the trails. Hopefully you still have the energy required to cook at the end of the day, because the training never stops.

Josh Amberger
Photo Credit: Yone Estivariz

It’s most prudent to recover in between each session, so you can get the adaptation out of the prior, and have the freshness to adapt again to the next weekend.

Nutrition and recovery are just as important as the miles themselves. It’s day in, day out, 100% to the cause or don’t even bother.

But I know at the end of the each day I’m edging closer towards reaching the goals I have set for myself, and I’m living the life I want to live. Focussed of performance, yet still filled with enjoyment and bliss. Sport is an amazing thing.