TRIATHLETES are generally, as a breed, sticklers for punishment, but few possess the mental grit Tinbeerwah's Julie Moore has exhibited to get back on a bike.
The 46-year-old will line up in the 45-49 age group at the Noosa Triathlon on Sunday, 13 months after losing part of a finger as she prepared for last year's race.
In a grisly training accident, Moore suffered a laundry list of injuries when she was thrown from her bike.
In the incident, which occurred at the turnaround point at Noosa Cooroy Road, Moore skinned the right side of her body, including her face; badly damaged her shoulder; skinned the knuckles on her right hand and badly mangled her right hand, including losing half of the ring finger.
She has no recollection of how the accident occurred and her best guess is she put her hand through the front wheel while attempting to put her water bottle down.
"By all accounts it would appear I had a drink from my bottle and I was going to put it back in the cage, but when I went to do so, I put my hand through the front wheel and I've gone hurtling over the handle bars," she said.
"It was quite beautiful.
"I landed on my head and shoulder, my hand has gone through the wheel and it has sliced and diced it - I presume anyway.
"I came to on the floor. I have no idea - I don't have any recollection of the moment it happened.
"My first recollection is my hand was in front of me and part of it was missing."
Despite the accident requiring her to undergo intense physiotherapy for six months, and the fact she still feels some lingering effects, she has vowed to cross the finish line on Sunday.
She openly admits to being a rank amateur when it comes to swimming, cycling and running, but refuses to let her damaging experience defeat her.