With an impressive 15 year long career in IronMan competitions, recently retired Matt Poole sat down to talk with us about how he managed to succeed for so long.
Make sure you tune in on Instagram during the month of July, where we dive deeper into the topics that made Matt Poole a true authority in the area of sports and fitness longevity + stay tuned as we continue to add to this article!
Ironman Matt Poole: 15 years sports success
How old is Matt Poole?
Matt Poole is 33 years of age.
What sets Matt Poole apart from the rest?
15 years and never missed one round of IronMan!
Matt Poole IronMan Training:
What does a regular week of IronMan training look like?
- 20-30 hours of training per week
- 4 morning sessions in the pool
- 2 x gym sessions midday
- 3 running sessions
- Board or surf ski work at the surf club - of an afternoon
- 2 key ironman sessions
Gym sessions are structured around strength and conditioning
The goal is not to build size (being 6'4 and 90kg, Matt is more solid than the average IronMan!), but instead, strength. As the 'speed and explosive style of racing' suits him better, his gym sessions are structured to nurtutre those strenghts. It's not always about going at 100%, though. There is plenty of mobility and activation to prevent injury.
Whether you're looking to have a longer sporting career or simply wanting to be fit for life, you need to balance your tough trianing sessions with plenty of rest and recovery (including active recovery). Not only will you perform better, but your body will thank you for it over the long term!
What does Matt Poole eat for performance?
Unlike some other athletes, Matt doesn't prescribe to a particular diet regimen. Prioritising clean, healthy foods with the added flexibility of eating what he feels in moderation, has proved to be a winning combination for his sporting achievements.
Rather than count every calorie or macro, Matt simply makes sure he has enough food to fuel him in his physical activiites. With such intense training, a higher volume of food in general (fats, carbohydrates and protein all-round) becomes important.
Overcoming injuries and setbacks with a strong mindset
Dealing with injuries is something that is naturally part of an elite athlete's career. Your ability to bounce back, both mentally and physically, is a key determinant of your overall success.
Matt chatted to us about a couple of his most memorable injuries that set him back, but in the end, he had the power to overcome them.
The cost of stopping at nothing:
Leading a series after 2 rounds, Matt was going to stop at nothing to secure his win. However, dealing with a knee infection that resulted in surgery, 28 stitches and a race 48 hours later, Matt ended up falling apart in the final race. Feeling like he was about to win the series and then having it ripped away from him, was painful.
If he had of pulled it off, it would've been a highlight of his career.
Matt says "as an athlete, you pride yourself on being the best and performing at the highest level. When you have that taken away from you, you lose so much confidence."
How did he manage to bounce back?
1. A strong support crew - family, friends, physios and rehab specialists
2. Building up a drive to come back stronger - he found a stronger motivation to win and get back to racing at his best
"Mentally, there’s obviously something different that defines the people that win, the champions.."
The biggest blessing came in the form of that mental strength that he needed to get to the next level, which was more powerful than the physical setbacks.
In the end, it made him a stronger racer. With competitors doing similar levels of training, what is the only way to win and keep winning? “You can only put that down to the mental strength”, he asserts.
What are Matt's top tips for getting yourself back on track?
Stay positive and keep in believing yourself, otherwise you stay in a dark place
No one will have sympathy for you, so you have to do it (take action) yourself!
Remember small victories add up and your motivation will be stronger
Why does Matt love Athletic Sport?
Usually the supplement company is the one to reach out to the athlete for collabs, but in this case, it was Matt himself who reached out to the Athletic Sport team, because he knew they would help him achieve his goals.
"At 33, you don't have the body of a 25 year-old anymore", he says,"..Recovery almost became as important as the hard training sessions"
Being 33 at the time and "still wanting to compete at that top level", a focus on repair and recovery was imperative. Knowing that the team at Athletic Sport are passionate and sports-focused, he felt confident knowing that they could help him reach his sporting goals and perform at an elite level on race day.
Top Mindset Insights:
Matt's Athletic Sport Supplement Recommendations:
Where can you find Matt Poole on Instagram?
Find him here (with the new addition to the family with Tammy Hembrow!)
How to eat like an Ironman:
Find Athletic Sport on Instagram: