Darrin Norwood was surprised to win 11 medals at the national masters titles in Melbourne.
Darrin Norwood was surprised to win 11 medals at the national masters titles in Melbourne. Rob Williams

Master class

IPSWICH'S athletics iron man Darrin Norwood was planning to compete in 23 events at the Australian Masters Championships over Easter.

He completed 17 in Melbourne, before returning home due to work commitments.

However, the head personal trainer at Lifestyle Health Club was still satisfied with his remarkable medal haul of five gold, five silver and one bronze.

It was a massive performance that would leave most athletes shaking their head in disbelief.

Last year, the super-fit all-rounder won an incredible 13 gold medals from 22 energy-sapping events at his first national masters competition in Brisbane. That was over four days.

At his second Australian masters - this time over three days - he was most pleased with two personal bests.

In throwing 13.39m, he reduced his shot put PB by 5cm. His other personal best was in the 60m (7.88s), which came running into a headwind.

Norwood won national silver medals in both events.

"I was pretty surprised," the modest achiever said.

"I medalled in every event except for one basically.

"I wasn't really expecting my times and distances to be that good because of the program. It was just so big.

"I was very happy with everything."

Norwood, 32, was competing in 30-34 years competition.

After lining up in events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, he came home a day early.

"The competition was probably a little bit more stiffer this year," the Raceview-based all-rounder said.

"The fact it was in Victoria, the ACT and NSW all travelled for it so there was a lot more people in the events.

"It was good for the competition and I prepared myself a little bit better this time leading up to the event."

In the pentathlon round, the Ipswich and District Athletics Club competitor totalled 2366 points to finish second overall.

After last year's remarkable debut performance, Norwood planned to contest next year's world masters indoor event in Finland.

However, with doubt over whether competition for 30-34 year athletes will be offered because they are "too young", Norwood is looking further ahead.

He's hoping to compete at the 2016 World Masters Championships in Perth, when he'll be eligible for an older age group.

"It's fantastic. I love it," he said of masters competition.

His national success follows his bronze medal in triple jump at the recent Queensland open titles.

Norwood is planning a break before lining up in the annual Ipswich Winter Carnival in August and preparing for the Pan Pacific Games at the Gold Coast in October.

Being a personal trainer, Norwood knows how his body works and recovers. That was especially helpful after a serious right knee injury in 2009 and tearing his hamstring and injuring his left knee last year.

"All it is now is just weary muscles and sore muscles left over," he said.

"I'll just rest for the next few days and slowly get back into it."



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