Triathlons are officially it.
I had an amazing morning last Sunday racing my second triathlon. There were so many hills – so many hills. There were so many men in funny hats – so many coneheads. There were such a long transitions on my part – so much faffing around and drying of the feet.
I had to swim in an outdoor pool, which threw me straightaway. I am comfy swimming, it is prolly the thing that comes most naturally to me, but I’d not swum in weeks. I was also thrown by being pretty high up in the numbers (it was a staggered start based on predicted finish time) and was surrounded by men. That said, worse things could happen.
I went off far too slowly, as last time I’d whizzed off and died in the last 5 lengths. I kept a steady pace, but was disappointed with my time in the end. This is going to be my problem with triathlon… I am very over analytical and self critical. Giving me 3 disciplines to critique is not going to end well.
Hopping out and zipping off to the bike (I say zipping. I ran like Phoebe along the side of the pool. I was really disorientated.), I was ready, if not terrified, begin the 27.5km. This particular bike leg involves Ditchling Beacon, which is a giant of a hill, and takes around 10 minutes to get up. I’ve never cycled it. I’ve never really cycled a hill as giant as that in my whole life! Only in spinning have I even pedalled uphill for that amount of time.
Once I’d got my clothes back on, put my shoes and socks on, fixed up my Garmin, dried my hair (joking – just) and put my helmet on, I was OFF. As I left Falmer, I zoomed past Bez, but only heard him shout: “Go on, Drew!” as I went. Apparently, I looked very grumpy. It was mostly because I was hugely confused by having to negotiate a roundabout 5 minutes in… My brain can’t do that many things!
The bike leg, like last time, was ace. Loved it. Even getting over taken by numerous speedy men and having to climb what felt like EVERY SINGLE hill in Sussex didn’t ruin it. There was a downhill in the last 5km which you could fly down, and relax after the run. If you like that sort of thing… going downhill fast absolutely petrifies me. So I eased down, and didn’t die.
It was then back into transition, where I didn’t get too changed, you’ll be pleased to know. I just took off my gel belt and made sure my helmet was straight on Florence’s handle bars. That’s all.
The run was tough: really hilly and it was a pretty dull route. I saw my biggest fan (Bez) lots of times though, and even managed a star jump a couple of km in – which he didn’t capture on film, rubbish! I overtook quite a few people, which I always enjoy, but couldn’t wait to see the finish line. My quads had had enough and I was very much ready for a lie-down and a medal.
All in all, it was a top morning, and secured my new found love of multisports.
I ended up coming 8th female overall – a two place improvement on last time, and 2nd in my age group. My swim was shabby and needs work, and I think investing in some fancy pedals and shoes for Florence would make a big difference to my bike time. I also need to stop getting dressed and messing about in the
changing room transition.
In other news, I have a place at London! I got in on Good For Age, but my magazine arrived yesterday, so it’s official!
I’ll be racing to raise some money for Medic Malawi, so check out my JustGiving site if you’ve just been paid and can make a difference to someone’s life.