When you live with an Ironman, it is pretty hard not to get influenced at some point. Jinella Chua did a sprint triathlon in her early 20s and thought that anyone who would do a full Ironman is crazy.
Then her husband asked her to sign up for an Ironman 70.3 this year and on the spur of the moment, she did. They went for the Ironman 70.3 Bangsaen in February and it was their first trip overseas in over 10 years.
The 43-year-old sports and adventure manager at SMU ended up doing four Ironman 70.3 races this year (one was a relay) and the year isn’t even over yet.
I guess ‘crazy’ runs in the family as Jinella’s sister, Jeri, was the first Singaporean woman to qualify for the Ironman World Championship in Kona in 1997 and is now an ultra-marathoner.
“I regard the Bangsaen 70.3 as my first triathlon, as the sprint tri was done another lifetime ago (pre-kids, pre-knee operation, pre-ballooning to 78kg). So this will go down as my most memorable race ever, because you never forget your first. We looked for our names on the board, spent too much time at the expo, made so many friends, and I had my sister there. It was also the start of many #racedate trips with my husband.
“You can say my sister is my biggest inspiration and my kids inspire me to better myself. Each training session I do shows them that prep is needed for every competition. Each race I finish is a testament that you can do what you once thought was impossible; plus I wanted some of my own trophies on the shelf alongside theirs,” she said.
Not surprising, it was Jinella’s husband who introduced her to PURPOSE. He was already a customer and he bought her a trisuit from PURPOSE when it was time for her to race.
“I wore the trisuit for the first time the day before the race for the test swim and it saw me through my first 70.3 relatively unscathed. My first PURPOSE suit was a bright luminous yellow one and it looked good in photos but the comfort especially from bike to run was fantastic – that was what sold me on the suit.
“They got the bike padding right, the pockets are amazing and it works well during the race. Material is soft, light and breathable; colours are amazing.
“I used it a week later at Powerman and later at the Metasprint races, and it ws super comfortable! I’ve since bought several more (standing joke is I get a new one for every 70.3) and have no complaints.
“Also, even before I knew it was created by a Singaporean, I thought the designs were cool – enough colour to stand out, well thought through design, accurate sizing. Then the icing on the cake was that it’s a local brand!”