SYDNEY — Even in retirement, following an 18-year career with the Australian Army, Australian Hearing client Trent Forbes continues to fill our hearts with national pride.
Mr Forbes, who attends the Australian Hearing Mitchelton centre in Queensland, recently represented Team Australia in the Men’s Road Cycling event at the Invictus Games Sydney 2018
The months of training leading up to the competition held at the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney 21 October 2018 paid off. Mr Forbes, who describes himself as an avid recreational cyclist, finished among the Top 10 competitors in the first race, coming in sixth place in the Men’s Road Cycling IRB3 Criterium Heat 1 with a time of 14:43:00. In the two races that followed, he was among the Top 20 cyclists to cross the finish line, ranking 15th in the Men’s Road Cycling IRB3 Criterium Final and 16th place for the Men’s Road Cycling IRB3 Time Trial Final.
Mr Forbes said cycling has served as a healthy means of tackling the physical and mental injuries he sustained following three tours of duty in Afghanistan and one in East Timor.
“It was just a way of pushing forward my own recovery through the platform of cycling,” the 40-year-old said. “There have been things through the Invictus Games that I’ve done that I wouldn’t have done prior to having this opportunity.”
The competition has also helped him start a new chapter in his life focused on self-improvement and overcoming adversity, he said.
“It’s been a really good learning experience in pushing myself further forward socially and moving on from my military career,” said Mr Forbes. “I sort of closed my chapter in my book for my military stuff. Moving forward I can’t change what’s happened, but I can change what I’m going to do in the future. That’s the chapter in my book that I’m opening up now – the next part of my life.”
The Games has helped him focus on the progress he has made over the years and not dwell so much on the setbacks, he said.
“I try to think about how much I’ve improved from where I was and move forward from where I am now, so it’s all about trying to push those boundaries and push myself forward,” said Mr Forbes. “So, that’s what I’m trying to do. I’m trying to be a better person, a better husband and a better father and tie cycling into that somehow.”
Mr Forbes credits his wife, Shelley, and daughters, Ella and Matilda, for supporting his commitment to the military life and cheering him on as a competitor in the Invictus Games.
“Without that support, I wouldn’t be here where I am right now,” said Mr Forbes. “It’s the same when people go away, when people are deployed. It’s a massive commitment to reach this sort of level and to do that job. It’s a big time commitment that sometimes places family and everything else comes second. After you get past that, it’s good to try and put family first.”
Photo courtesy: Invictus Games Sydney 2018