When most of us are only just discovering triathlon in our mid 20s, Marton already has 10 years of experience under his belt at 24! With a full Ironman distance PB of 8:56 and already winning his age group in other distances he is one to watch..
What brought you to triathlon? Do you think that a sporting background as a child is important in order to be competitive in age group racing?
When I was 12, I finished a 3km long local running competition and finished 64th out of 800 and one year later I did it again and finished 72nd. Then I heard about a local triathlon club, and training with them seemed a good opportunity to get faster, but I didn’t want to swim, so for a couple of years I was doing duathlons and running only.
When I was 14 I heard that one of my coaches had finished an Ironman race, what was just incredible, and I wanted to do an Ironman too… So I started swimming as well, and became addicted, and it was over 10 years ago now.
I think sporting background as a child helps, but it all depends on how fast the person or athlete can change. Those who change faster gain more success in life and will be hungry for even more.
Where do you live now and what benefits and/or limitations does your area have for training?
I live in Havering (East London). Because it is right at the edge of London, it is easy to leave the city and ride in relatively light traffic, but still have many of the of the necessary facilities (e.g. pool, and gym) nearby.
Limitations?... It would be nice to have 25 degrees and sunshine 24/7.
How many hours do you train per week? Do you also work fulltime/student? How do you manage to balance everything together?
Because I don’t have family yet, it is not very difficult to manage my training times around the rest of my life… Actually this is my life so even easier. I train an average 14 hours a week and I work full time. Usually I have the longer training sessions on my day offs.
Do you feel that triathlon eats into your social life? How do you feel about that?
No I don’t feel that. Actually triathlon helps to meet new people, make friends and build relationships and you can’t blame the sport if you don’t spend enough time with your family and friends as long as you train 14 hours, but work 48 hours and sleep 56 hours per week?
Was there ever a time when you were close to quitting? What keeps you going through the tough times? (injuries/bad performances etc).
Fortunately I never had any major injuries. – Perhaps because I spent 7 years to prepare myself to my first Ironman. – Although in the past 10 years I had times when the training and races didn’t go well, and I struggled to stay motivated. Those times I often asked myself ‘Why does it worth doing this?’, but I have plenty of reason not to give up. The only thing would make me quit if I proved that I’m the best, or if I would have a better idea how to use my time.
Do you have a visualization/race specific meditation routine?
Nothing special, I always walk around the transition just to make sure all my equipment ok and I know where I’m going on the race. Before the start I like to stay alone for a while if I get chance and go through the race from start to finish in mind.
How do you spend your off-season? Are there sports that you enjoy doing that you feel compliment triathlon
During off-season normally I just have more rest and get done more non sport related things in my extra free time. If the weather is nice, I like to go blading or playing basketball, or even just go for a walk in a park with no particular reason.
What is your favourite race and why?
Ask me again when I’ve done Kona… ;)
What are your next goals?
I’d like to do my best on The Outlaw (long distance triathlon) - 23 July, and the Ironman 70.3 World Championship - 10 September.
Anything else you'd like to mention before we wrap up?
A big thanks to my club – Havering Tri, www.haveringtri.co.uk
My coach – Mark Pearce, www.intelligent-triathlon-training.com
My sponsor – Danny Gearing, www.sanderssolicitors.co.uk
And everyone who supports me in any form.
Major race achievements in the past
2016 - Ironman Lanzarote Age_group: 2nd
- English Standard Distance Championship: Age-group 1st
2017 – London Marathon: 2:36:21
- Ironman 70.3 UK Wimbleball: overall 1st
You can follow Marton on Twitter @martoncseik and Instagram @martoncseik