Race season is officially underway! I’ve just finished my 2nd race in the space of 2 weeks, which has been a bit of a shock to the system. Saffron Walden Sprint Tri (pool based) was my first one last weekend and I also entered the St Neots Standard distance race today (in a river). I treated both of these as training races to get used to competing again. However, this meant that I had zero rest in the lead up to them, which included a very long bike ride on Saturday! This turned out to be incredibly tough as I was starting a race with already tired legs. From the outset I knew I’d have to swallow my pride and not be too bothered about my timings. In the end, I’m pretty pleased to come away with an age group win (2nd overall) at Walden Tri and 3rd in my age group (4th overall) at St Neots.
Last weekend at Walden Tri I got a PB on my 400m swim which is reassuring to know that my hard work throughout the winter has paid off.
As some of you might already know, this season I am transitioning to longer distance triathlons, half iron-mans. Due to my new training regime to prepare for this, I am constantly learning new things about my body. It has certainly given me a new found respect for long distance endurance athletes not only for being able to do the distance but also the speed with which they complete them in. Right now, both the distance and the speed seem to hurt as much as each-other…
So far, I’ve realised that the longer the distance gets, the more the power of the mind comes into consideration in completing it. So, today when I couldn’t get my shoes on or off for the bike, I couldn’t grip my gel because my hands were so cold and I didn’t seem to be going anywhere in the freezing headwinds I made sure to tuck it away as a learning experience and an obstacle to overcome. It’s at times like that when I wonder why I’m doing such a crazy sport but then after the first lap of the bike I warmed up and realised what a lovely bike route it was. I then changed my mind again when it took almost 5km for me to be able to feel my feet on the run. For anyone that’s not a nutty triathlete and not experienced this, imagine going for a run when you’ve got pins and needles in your feet but before the ‘needles’ bit kicks in. The last 5km of the run were almost enjoyable because the sun threatened to make a long overdue appearance…..
It was great to catch up with John Ovenden, the owner of Fenland Runner, who was sponsoring the race prizes. I love running in my Alphas and Ronhill clothing, I couldn’t recommend them enough.
The other saving grace today was my McCharlie Leod sports cloak. I put it in the car thinking I was being silly. But I got it out as soon as I arrived realising how cold it was. It was so cold in fact that my other half (aka chief supporter) was spotted wearing it whilst I was on the run! Unfortunately (or fortunately for him) there is no photographic evidence of this.
I now have just a couple of weeks before my first ever half Ironman triathlon at Grafman, which is rather daunting! So there’s plenty of training I need to get done between now and then.
Thank you again to my sponsors DP World London Gateway and Hireco, as without your financial support I couldn’t compete. Other thanks have to go to the Yonda racing team for my wetsuit, Tri suit and support, Fenland Runner for my trainers and running gear, TrueStartCoffee for my secret weapon Hero Bars and coffee, Ed Kirby Physiotherapy and Tackley Chiropractor for keeping me fit and able to train, Massage Tech UK and Copper 88 UK for speeding up my recovery process, Funkita for my swimwear, Akasha Wellness for Pilates and yoga, Everyone Active gym membership and lastly to Paddock Cycles for keeping my bike in good order .