NOWRA-CULBURRA product Kirsty Higgison is determined to produce a bounce-back performance on Sunday when round three of the Nutri-Grain ironperson series at Bulli gets underway.
"My body pulled up sore after the two opening rounds, especially after the physically taxing Gold," Higgison said.
"There's just such a huge volume of training that goes into it - not to mention I hadn't done the race in years.
"Following the Gold, my quad - which I've had trouble with in the past - flared up.
"So between the opening two rounds, I really tried to limit my running and rest it, as I didn't want to risk injuring it further.
"This saw me go into Burleigh Heads a little underdone, especially as there was so much running in that event with the transitions.
"Although I was disappointed with the result, I was happy with my effort and how I raced considering the circumstances."
With only two weeks between each round, the St Johns alumna has once again been monitoring her training ahead of round three at Bulli, which she considers her 'home race'.
"I was stoked when I found out Bulli had one of the six events this year," she said.
"It's really important regional areas like Wollongong get stages and it's not just dominated by places like the Gold Coast and Sydney.
"I've done a lot of racing at Bulli, especially during my time with Warilla-Barrack Point in the Sydney Water carnivals - it'll be great to go back there and compete in front of friends and family from the South Coast.
"It'll also be great to give the aspiring Nippers a chance to witness top quality racing first hand - that's what originally I got me hooked on the sport all those years ago."
Sunday's race day at Bulli will be in the super sprint format; three separate, 10-minute races with five minutes rest between each race - which starts as soon as the winner crosses the line.
Equal points are allocated for races one and two with double points being awarded for the final race.
"I'm carrying in plenty of confidence into round three, despite never actually racing in this format," Higgison, who trains with the Northcliffe SLSC, said.
"Obviously the goal is to finish back on the podium but there's a lot of strategy that has to go into this week's racing.
"You've got to be smart and finish as close to the winner as possible - firstly to get your points up, because we saw how close the series end up last season, but secondly to give yourself plenty of break between races.
"During the small breaks, it'll be key to get in the water, turn the arms over, get fluids in and chat to your coach.
"And with the changing over of the three legs, it'll be crucial to use the right surf alleys, especially if the conditions are big.
"If I can stick to my plan on the day, I'm confident in my ability to produce a bounce-back performance."
Heading into round three, Higgison sits in 10th on 20 points, with Lana Rogers in first with 40 points.
Racing kicks-off at 2pm Sunday.