Over the past ten weeks, I have undergone the shift from runner to triathlete. I’ve swapped running six times a week for twelve sessions in three sports instead… swapped my trainers for bike shoes and have been making friends with the early morning staff at the Prince Regent swimming pool.
Training for a triathlon is tiring, there’s no doubt about that: even more tiring than marathon training, if you can imagine it! I’m up even earlier on more mornings that I used to be whilst training for London and home later after work. I’m hungrier than I thought it possible to be, and I usually smell like chlorine. I’ve pretty much given up on washing my hair unless it’s after a swim session and I more often than not I have chain grease on my right calf.
– views like this are why cycling makes me happy as Larry.
But I’m so happy, and love training. Love it. When I’m training for marathons, I often have weeks where I hate running. Hate it. Wake up and the last thing I want to do is go for a run and then drag my tired legs round routes I really don’t want to be on.
Training over the past ten weeks has been different though. I’ve really enjoyed myself. Really! Of course there have still been bike sessions I’ve been useless in, runs in which my legs have refused to partake and many 6am swim alarms that I would rather ignore, but once I get going, 99% of the time, I’m OK and I’m very happy. I get do all three sports that I love: cycling to work is training; an easy hour in the pool is training; parkrun is training. Different muscles hurt at different times – which makes the aches easier to handle!
– swimselfies are also that bit more entertaining
I will be surprised if I go back to being ‘just’ a runner. I’m doing Dublin in October with Team Rainbow, but after that, the next marathon I do will be in practise for an ironman distance triathlon. I do love running, but I also love the freedom cycling brings – how you can go for miles, and miles, hours and hours, and how you can have snacks constantly. I love swimming, full stop. In the water is probably where I am happiest, and I know I can, and really want to, improve my swim times. The best thing for me about triathlon though, is how much I look forward to running now. Hansons restored my love of running (I need to blog about that…) but training for Marlow has just boosted this love even more.
– bloody love running, I do.
Running, it’s been fun. But I’m a triathlete now.