Subic Bay ASTC Asian Cup Champ Hilda Choi, HK’s Rising Tri Star
Hilda Choi Yan Yin, 23 years old, of Hong Kong, was the recent women’s elite champion of the Subic Bay ASTC Triathlon Asian Cup, held two weeks ago in Subic Bay, Philippines. At the time this interview was set, she was deep into competition in the Chengdu ITU Triathlon World Cup. When Hilda replied back, she shared with AsiaTRI that she did well in the race and made some personal breakthroughs. Read more on the AsiaTRI interview with Hilda Choi.
AsiaTRI: Congratulations on your win in the 2017 Subic Bay ASTC Triathlon Asian Cup last April 30, can you tell us, how was the race for you?
Hilda: The race went well. I didn’t expect much but I just focus on every details and boxes to tick at each leg. I swam pretty nice and came up with 3 girls out of the water. We worked smoothly and Claire worked very hard to maintain good pace throughout the ride. Credits to her effort and team work, we had 2.5 minutes gap between us and the chase pack. On the run, I just focus on stride, breathing. Not thinking too much about the outcome.
AsiaTRI: We’ve been told that it is not your first win in Subic Bay, can you share those victorious moments with us?
Hilda: I was lucky to race in Subic for my 5th time here. I always enjoyed racing here as people are very nice, friendly, helpful and passionate here. My first win was in 2009 racing duathlon youth championships. I also won bronze medal in 2014 ITU Asian Cup race.
AsiaTRI: How exactly did you start in the sport?
Hilda: I started doing triathlons when I was 12 years old. I used to be a swimmer before that. I had my first aquathlon race when I was 12 and to my surprise, I won the overall championship. That was the turning point for me to switch to triathlon. Seriously that time, I didn’t even know there was bike event in a triathlon race.
AsiaTRI: Can you share with us a typical training week?
Hilda: I trained 2 disciplines on weekdays and 3 disciplines on weekends. As I am still a university student, I could spread my training one before school and one after. Each week I targeted at training 20 hours. Swimming 6 times per week, biking 4 times and running 5 times. My hardest session is swimming at 5:30am every Tuesdays and Thursdays. It is a mental test and to keep it consistently, it requires tremendous motivation and will power. Gratefully I have my squad team to make the session.
AsiaTRI: Can you share a training tip for the age-groupers out there?
Hilda: To be a triathlete is not easy, especially it requires so much time and effort to complete a session. Heads up to every age grouper who do triathlon. My only advice is “Listen to your body”. The signals from your body, whether it is energetic, fatigue, light, heavy, tight do reflect the actual physical state of yourself. Yes we need to be hard working but working smart is more important. Respect the signals of your body and train accordingly. If we push too hard, it might lead to sickness or injury. Rest a day or two won’t take away our fitness but a prolonged injury will. So my recommendation will be always ask yourself few questions before exercise and do your best!
AsiaTRI: What are the goals for this year?
Hilda: For 2017 I wish to compete in more world cup races and perhaps some WTS events. I always love racing as it tells me what I need to improve and what I am capable of. Note down the good and bad things and it is very important to not make the same mistakes twice.
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