TIMEX WOMEN ONLY RACE – 400m Swim, 20k Bike, 5k Run
Before I knew it my first race was upon me at Dorney Lake. So the night before I made sure I had a good carbohydrate dinner and nothing that would upset my stomach, then another good carbohydrate breakfast in the morning, as this was all stuff I’d read. (Now I’d be doing an all round dinner & breakfast of good slow absorbing carbohydrates, protein and good fats). I’d also done myself a list of all the things I needed to take so as not to forget anything.
Off I went to Dorney Lake absolutely crapping myself!!! 😬
When I arrived, parking was quite a way from the transition and I hadn’t learnt how to push your bike with one hand by the seat and steer!! So with all my bags on my shoulders and trying to push my bike I nervously made my way to registration. Once registered I racked my bike and started setting up transition, working out where the stickers of race number went on helmet and bike, setting up order I wanted my bike & run shoes in – this is how it went – run shoes at the back (I had elastic laces put in them so I could get them on easy), bike shoes at the front (not told you the story of first time using clipless pedals, will add it in at the end**) with my socks in each shoe, race belt on top, helmet on bike with sunglasses. My plan was wetsuit off, race belt on, socks on, shoes on, helmet on, sunglasses then grab bike. Happy with my transition I went off to look at the course…..
OMG! How far did 400m look 😱 now I am really nervous! A few trips to the portaloos and it was time to put my wetsuit on. Got it on over my Trisuit and it was time to race. Well……. the swim was horrendous!!!! OMG it was just one mass fight, like being in a washing machine, thought I was going to drown!! But I managed to survive and actually came out middle of pack when I thought I was going to be last! I clambered out & started to get my wetsuit down to my waist while running to transition…….how dizzy did I feel, I was wobbling all over the place! Getting my wetsuit off was interesting but eventually got it off without falling over & followed my T1 race plan grabbed my bike & off I went.
The bike was great fun, laps round the lake that I really enjoyed & overtook a fair few atheletes also saw my mate Jo cheering me on. It was over to quick as now run time!
What’s happened to my legs?? They felt like they were taking off and leaving my body behind, weird feeling but they did eventually settle down. I got into a rhythm, then about 3/4 of the way I got bad stomach cramps, I couldn’t stop though I just had to control my breathing with big breaths and run through it, was hard but I did it and crossed the finish line!! I was absolutely knackered but elated! I survived my first triathlon! Whoop whoop.
THE BANANAMAN TRIATHLON – 800m Swim, 30k Bike, 7.5k Run
My first triathlon done and dusted I was now onto my second, slightly longer distance and a 2 lap swim (so you have to get out half way and dive back in). I got myself registered and transition all set up. I was loving the free t-shirts you got with these races 😀
So I had been using a nose clip when I swim as I found it really helped with the breathing and stopped water going up my nose. When we were getting into the lake for the swim I realised I’d forgotten mine, OMG panic set it, will I have enough time to run back to transition and get it, I can’t swim without it!!! I spoke to a marshal and he told me to go and get it. So I’m back in the water, nose clip on dreading another bum fight swim, also I’d used de-fogging spray on my goggles this time instead of spit, big mistake. The race started and off we went, well guess what? Yes my goggles steamed up really bad, I couldn’t see a thing, had to follow the woman in front and just hoped she was swimming straight, luckily she was. It was time to get out, run round and dive back in! Dive pah I had to jump back in as was worried I’d lose my nose clip! Another lap of not seeing a thing and it was time for the bike again, yay my favourite part.
Bike went well, into transition, bike racked, helmet off, bike shoes off and trainers on grabbed my hat and off on the run! Again I had the stomach cramps, was doubled over at one point but managed to keep going. Another race in the bag!
THE OLYMPIC DISTANCE RACE – 1.5k Swim, 40k Bike, 10k Run
My final race for the year was the Olympic distance race, the guy that gave me the incentive to have a go at triathlon was doing it as well. We are all bunched up in the queue to get into the lake, as he & I looked down, all around me guys feet, and there were my lovely painted toes in bright red, it was the standing joke around us 😆. This race was all men & women starting together, the Jaws music came on to get us in the mood, REALLY? and in the lake we all piled! A scary big mass start – off we went with the fear of the Great White Shark behind us!
1.5k looks a long way, almost all the way down the lake and back but I survived and was relieved to get onto the bike.
It was quite a windy bike ride this time and at some parts it nearly blew me off the bike and it was a lot of laps round the lake I thought I was going to forget how many I’d done, but my supporters kept me going and I was onto the run in no time.
It was hard going this time though, the longer distance run and the cramps again, I did struggle but I’m not one to ever give up and I made it to the finish line. Was so relieved and was lovely to be greeted by my friends at the end too.
With all my triathlon goals completed this year was I going to continue with this triathlon hobby? Next blog year 2
** So I decided to go clipless on my bike, I knew I needed to practise this so I had a go in-between a door frame clipping in and out and that seemed ok. So I got the bike outside and went to get on it and I just went sideways into my neighbours fence 😂 luckily no-one was around to see me! Phew! I practised riding around the close and thinking I’ve just got to remember to unclip well in advance of junctions and traffic lights and I should be ok 🤞🏻🙏🏻