Ironman Matt Poole's Fitness Tip To Look Almost, Sort Of, A Tiny Bit Like Him

Matt Poole may claim the Nutri-Grain Ironman series this weekend. But even if he doesn't, this season will still be a massive win for him.

Poole, who has won the series once before -- in addition to numerous endurance events around the globe -- had pneumonia earlier this season.

The 30-year-old spoke to 10 daily ahead of the final event at Wanda Beach in Sydney, to tell us just how he got through the toughest year of his illustrious career.

ANT: Hey Matt, I'm outraged on your behalf. When I read a preview of the series earlier this season, the names mentioned were Shannon Eckstein, current Nutri-Grain Ironman Series Champion Matt Bevilacqua and several others. But no mention of you. What the?

MATT: I don’t know, but in my own eyes I never lost the ability to win races and the series overall. I guess that made me all the more hungry and motivated to show everyone what I can do.

ANT: And here you are in second place before the final race. What exactly has to happen for you to win the series?

MATT: I'm 24 points behind Ali Day. If I win and he finishes 4th or worse, then I win overall. If I finish 2nd then he has to finish 6th or worse. If I finish 3rd, he has to finish tenth or worse.

ANT: Have you trained some special biting fish or anything to sabotage him? Sorry, I can't believe I asked that question.

MATT: Ha! There are lot of different moving parts and variables in these races, the surf being the main one. The surf can take really good strong competitors out of the race, anything can happen.

ANT: Well whatever happens, it's amazing you're here at all isn't it, after being so sick earlier in the season. How did you get pneumonia?

MATTWhen you’re working your body at this intensity, it's like you’re redlining in a car. While we are probably in the top one percent of athletes in the world in terms of fitness,  we’re susceptible to sickness and injury.

ANT: Do you think you maybe pushed your body too hard at some point?

MATT: As an athlete you've got a very high pain threshold for blocking out everything, but yeah, I probably pushed my body too hard. I should have rested and taken time off, and sure enough, when you burn the candle at both ends, something's going to give. It started with a chest infection and then moved into a form of pneumonia. It was pretty scary not knowing when I could race again.

ANT: Coming into the final round now, how are you feeling?

MATT: I’m getting to around 100 percent now. I'm feeling a lot better.

ANT: I want to ask you about fitness in general. Chris Hemsworth came out recently and said everyone should be able to fit 30 minutes of exercise into their day. Do you agree?

MATT: I think 30 minutes is definitely realistic. Even for people who are extremely busy and caught up in their lifestyle, as a matter of general health both mentally and physically you need to find those 30 minutes -- whether it's in your lunch break or setting that alarm clock 30 mins earlier. I guarantee overall you'll live a healthier,  happier lifestyle.

ANT: Is that enough time for the average suburban slob like me to look like you or Thor?

MATT: You're not going to look like Thor or myself on 30 minutes a day, but as I said, as an overall holistic measure for your health and happiness, it's very important to find time in your day.

ANT: Good advice. Win or lose this weekend, what's next?

MATT: I've got a busy international season coming up with several trips overseas including to Malaysia, Hawaii, New Zealand and Tahiti.

ANT: When's the last time you took a trip to somewhere not on the coast? Been inland lately? Or ever?

MATT: I couldn’t tell you last time I traveled anywhere inland. I went to the Swiss Alps once but that was a long time ago!

ANT: Well we reckon you're doing just fine on the coast. Good luck this in the final race of the Nutri-Grain series this weekend.

MATT: Thanks Ant.