The morning of the race was full of nerves for me, honestly not knowing how it would all go. There's me looking small and frightened amongst the big boys at the race briefing:
And there's my brother looking more relaxed than anyone has a right to be before doing a triathlon - when you got in at 2am the night before.
|That's me in the yellow hat|
There were a couple of lessons I learned over the course of the course:
Some people are unbelievably fit. Never underestimate the amount of training you need to do. I am really shit at cycling.
After a fairly good swim I watched athlete after athlete passing me on the cycle, but I actually felt pretty chuffed with myself at the time. 'I beat him in the swim' I murmured under my breath. 'And him.' 'And her' as they passed me by. These are ripped and toned bodies on expensive bikes with aerodynamic handle bars and painted on tri-suits. They deserved to be ahead of me.
But then the bikes started getting older, as did the people on them. The tri-suits became flapping t-shirts around ever broadening bodies. And still they passed me. Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh. I swear one of them had a newspaper under his arm and was whistling as he went by.
But I made it back. Eventually. I dumped my stupid-new-bike-that-didn't-make-me-go-any-faster and set out on the run. Meeting half the competitors coming back the other way was almost as demoralising as the cycle, but once I settled into the run I actually managed to claim a few places back. And so what if they were one legged grannies?
Anyway, I'm happy to say that I managed to tick off both of my goals and finished the race in 1:34mins. Not the greatest time in the world but crucially with no.2 goal in mind - not the worst.
Next year I'm planning on being much more prepared. You never know - I might even beat newspaper man.
All images: Alan Rowlette Photography