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Kamal2

Ten Questions with AJ

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Hey, AJ, quiet holiday today, let's throw this thread up and have it ready for tomorrow. Ten Q's hard and fast.

 

1. AJ, how are you mate....AJ, pre-triathlon, what's your sports background?

 

2. Simon, you did in fact do an IM, NZ in 2002 or '03 I think, I'm going to call you a BOP guy, but actually you could have done better...what are the limiting factors?

 

3. Ok, mate, you also had the great privilege of doing some IM Live coverage with Nick Munting, IMOZ 2004, something I would like to do one day. I was kind of suprised that you didn't follow up on that...it did seem to go well. Why not?

 

4.AJ, which would you enjoy more....competing, or really getting involved in the coverage....I mean if you could go to near professional level in the media,would you do that?

 

5. AJ, some great athletes must of come out of the 'Gong....give us few names if you will....any personal involvement with any of them?

 

6. Simon, the last couple of years must have been unsettling moving between the ACT & Woolongong, do you feel more settled now? Why did you choose the ''Gong

 

7. Mate, I know it's hard with a young family, but anyway,what training are you doing at this time? I heard you talking about bike crits a few years back...still doing those? How about another IM?

 

8. AJ, you a refereeing a local Rugby League game....you send a player off for a blood bin, but team has no replacement player. Player gets attended to on the sideline without actually leaving the playing field..... bleeding stopped, a few minutes later he rejoins play....and straight away he scores a try. Opposition skipper complains...what's your call?

 

9. AJ, drugs in sport, mate there is new evidence from the States...guy from baseball busted a few days ago...things like HGH, Human Growth Hormone very prevalent all sports....the question....the current ban in cycling & triathlon is 2 years...your opinion, is that appropriate?

 

10. Mate, I know you have a fantastic wife and kids, forgot to mention it earlier, what would you like to say about them?

 

11. The Bonus....AJ, you spent time as a house husband...which is preferable assuming wife has a good income...stay home or go out to work in the rat race?

 

12. Who is Hilly? If you would actually like to know more, tune in Tuesday AM.

 

Thanks AJ, if Bernie doesn't pin it, would anyone please bumpthis up to the top.

Edited by kamalarrowsmith

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1. AJ, how are you mate....AJ, pre-triathlon, what's your sports background?

 

Lets see. In my pre-triathlon days I've been competatively involved in Tennis, Speed Roller Skating, Basketball, Beach Volleyball, Ten Pin Bowling, Touch football and Squash. Not a champion at anything, although I was probably unlucky not to be selected for the Queensland Speed skating team in '89. Also do some MTBing and golf when time permits.

 

I'm lucky enough that I've got the general co-ordination and hand-eye co-ordination to be reasonably good at whatever sport I try. Brief glimpses tell me I could have been better than I was but probably lacked that determination and killer instinct necessary to move up to the next level.

 

Even winning the age-group at for the Illawarra tri-club race series this year was more of a case of "Last man Standing" than any real ability on my part.

 

2. Simon, you did in fact do an IM, NZ in 2002 or '03 I think, I'm going to call you a BOP guy, but actually you could have done better...what are the limiting factors?

 

Time to update the dossier. IMNZ was in 2001. Was going to do 2002 but work issues cut that short before it even started.

 

Mostly the limiting factor was me. For various reasons I didn't get the training in that I would have liked and arrived in NZ with a shoulder/neck injury which occured a week before. But even taking that into the consderation, my goal was never any more serious than to finish inside 17 hours. I would have been happy doing a 16:59:59. You've got to realise that till I'd finished IMNZ I'd never done anything longer than an Oly distence (and only 1 of those - Noosa in '98). Even today I suspect that I'm still in the fairly unique position (in Australia) of having completed an IM but never having completed a long course or HIM.

 

3. Ok, mate, you also had the great privilege of doing some IM Live coverage with Nick Munting, IMOZ 2004, something I would like to do one day. I was kind of suprised that you didn't follow up on that...it did seem to go well. Why not?

 

It did go well and I had a great time and would absolutely love to do more. Met some great people and saw just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the organisation involved in producing the IMLive coverage. Unfortunately the constant changing of jobs has meant that getting time off work has been a little difficult. But hopefully its something I'll be able to do again.

4.AJ, which would you enjoy more....competing, or really getting involved in the coverage....I mean if you could go to near professional level in the media,would you do that?

 

Funny you should ask this because I've had a similar question thats been at the back of my mind for a couple of weeks now.

 

Actually I absolutely enjoy both competing and doing media committments and given the right time and the right opportunity I'd seriously consider doing media full-time. But I'm also mindful that when I do it as a hobby I pretty much do it for my enjoyment and therefore I can walk away at anytime should I choose to do so and it would impact nobody. Should I venture into the media in a semi-professional or professional level then that ability to walk away may not be there.

 

5. AJ, some great athletes must of come out of the 'Gong....give us few names if you will....any personal involvement with any of them?

 

I tend not to have a lot of involvement with great athletes mostly because they're at a totally different level to me. Occassionally I get to tag along but not very often and besides I'm not the sort of person that goes up to a famous star and asks for an autograph either.

 

Just for the record, Michellie Jones spent her early triathlon career here in Wollongong while she was a student at the uni. And somewhere I've got photos to prove it.

Others a bit more current: Jono Hall (former world duathlon champion and sometime pro cyclist) hails from just up the road. Brett and Shane Lee (Aussie Cricketers) are both from Shellharbour. And on that note Ricky Ponting married a local Wollongong girl and has a unit down at the North Beach. Kerryn McCann who recently won Back to Back Golds at the Commonwealth Games marathon. Ben Kerstan (who I had the opportunity to have a yarn with a few weeks ago at a charity dinner) who also won gold at the games. Tristan Knowles, a member of the Aussie wheelchair basketballteam that won Silver at the last Para Olympics and now alternates between playing professionally in Italy and semi-professionally here in Australia. I do know Tristan fairly well because I do a lot of work with/for his dad. On the motorsports front Wayne Gardner and Troy Corser both hail from the Gong and in the V8Brutes Damian "Ice" White is the local Wollongong boy (also works partime for the same financial institutation I do - The IMB. Hes downstairs in Marketing and I'm in IT so we'll probably never meet)

 

Wollongong has a fairly proud sporting heritage. We have a wall down near City beach with the names of every olympian engraven on it.

 

6. Simon, the last couple of years must have been unsettling moving between the ACT & Wollongong, do you feel more settled now? Why did you choose the ''Gong

 

Yeah it was a bit unfortunate that things turned out that way. We're a little more settled now. A few major issues on the employment front need to be sorted out but apart from that things are good.

 

FWIW I didn't decide Wollongong....Mrs AJ did. I was rather enjoying Canberra and certainly appreciating the better training and racing environment but with 2 young boys to care for and no family or friends nearby Mrs AJ was finding it harder to settle down and in the end we decided that it would be better for all concerned to move back to Wollongong.

 

7. Mate, I know it's hard with a young family, but anyway,what training are you doing at this time? I heard you talking about bike crits a few years back...still doing those? How about another IM?

 

At the moment virtually nothing. Still recovering from a hamstring strain. I can run slowly on the treadmill and jump on the stationary bike but it hard to be motivated to train when thats all you've got to look forward too. Did my first real "run" this arvo and it wasn't pretty. I think I walked less during the IM marathon. Running downhills doesn't feel that good and when you life on the highside of town, everything is downhill.

 

Also I'm a bit gun shy about riding around Wollongong at the moment (and have been for a couple of years now). Hell, I'm getting scared to drive on the roads around here. The stupidity I see most mornings on the way to work is astounding.

 

Might have mentioned Bike Crits but never got organised enough to actually do any. Ironman probably won't happen again (at least not in the foreseeable future) - I just don't have the time to put even a half-arsed effort into it and I appreciate the challenge enough to know that a half-arsed effort is only not going to cut it.

 

Bit I am considering doing some Xterra style racing and/or MTBing. At least the hard, solid objects that'll hurt/kill me arn't moving.

 

8. AJ, you a refereeing a local Rugby League game....you send a player off for a blood bin, but team has no replacement player. Player gets attended to on the sideline without actually leaving the playing field..... bleeding stopped, a few minutes later he rejoins play....and straight away he scores a try. Opposition skipper complains...what's your call?

 

Thats in the rules. Its happened plenty of times. Player gets attended to on the field because he's taken a knock and then get up and scores. Opposition skipper is unlikely to complain.

 

9. AJ, drugs in sport, mate there is new evidence from the States...guy from baseball busted a few days ago...things like HGH, Human Growth Hormone very prevalent all sports....the question....the current ban in cycling & triathlon is 2 years...your opinion, is that appropriate?

 

Look, I'm the hang-em-high type. I have no time for cheats that can't follow the laws and resort to HGH, EPO and other performance enhancing drugs. If guilty, they should be banned for life.

 

But on the other hand we have footballers taking illegal drugs (so called "recreational drugs") which are probably performance degrading. Should they get a life ban? Probably not. I reckon 2 years is probably excessive.

 

And then theres the legal drugs (alcohol, prescription medicines). Another minefield in its own right. Fines, Bans, slaps on the wrist?

 

If I can take the time to ask my GP about whether a specific drug is on the banned list then surely a highly paid professional sportsperson with access to top level medical people can do the same.

 

10. Mate, I know you have a fantastic wife and kids, forgot to mention it earlier, what would you like to say about them?

 

Yep fantastic wife and 2 wonderful boys that are growing up fast. What can I say? Any woman who puts up with me is worth twice her weight in Gold. And considering she just brought down a large Bundy and Coke while I was working on this...she's a special woman indeed.

 

And I'm one pretty lucky guy.

 

11. The Bonus....AJ, you spent time as a house husband...which is preferable assuming wife has a good income...stay home or go out to work in the rat race?

 

House Husband???? Not likely. Daytime TV is terrible.

No I was a contracted IT professional who was lucky enough to be able to work from my office at home.

 

Stay home or go out to work? This is an absolute no-brainer. Its neither. Given the choice I'd rather be working from home. No commute time. Work pretty much whatever hours I want to. Decent coffee. Be here when the kids get home from school. And if I'm here at home it leaves Mrs AJ free to work whatever days she want to. At the moment she works Saurdays and Sundays partly because they pay better money and partly because she knows I'm available to look after the kids.

 

Actually I'm working on getting back to this situation but a couple more things need to fall into place before it'll happen.

 

12. Who is Hilly? If you would actually like to know more, tune in Tuesday AM.

I have absolutely no idea. Looks like I'll have to tune in.

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Good answer AJ, you are one lucky dude for sure with a wife that brings you bundy & coke while typing away. I do recall sometime ago you were an MtbBoy as well, hopefully some Xterra/off road races are in the making again mate.

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Guest Gimili

5. Don't leave out one of the Sth Coast's favourite sons, The Crowe. Still remember the ball pointin towards the sticks in 86 tellin him it was time was to go home.

Edited by gimili9

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Good stuff AJ.

 

Keep working towards that working from home! Wolfman has been home based for the last 18 months (when he's not in Sydney!) and it has been fantastic. (You should hear him whinge aboubt peak hour traffic if he has a meeting in the city now) Being able to go out for a coffee break together during the day etc is a bonus and for you, being around more with your kids is something a lot of people miss out on with their commute times eating into their life. Hope the injuries heal and summer finds you highly motivated. :lol:

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