Having completed the Challenge Weymouth Middle Distance Triathlon a couple of weeks ago, my season is coming to an end. However, I’ve still got a few events to go this year. These are:
HOWSC 100 Sprint
Gosport half marathon
Since the middle distance event, I’ve not really done much training and with the last aquathlon looming this week, I decided that I’d definitely commit to doing it. However, that didn’t stop me from trying to find several excuses to not go during the day. Fortunately, I chose to not too listen to the ‘devil on my shoulder’, packed my kit and headed down to Lakeside along with Denise and the boys and dog who had decided to come and watch.
We left home at 5:30pm and arrived shortly before 6pm.
I was one of the first to arrive and spoke to Michael Akers about the Weymouth Half tri before lots of regular started to arrive. I was a little torn between spending time with the family and socialising so apologies to anyone I didn’t say hello to.
Once I’d register, I headed down to transition and put my wetsuit on. I’ve put on about 3/4 of a stone on recently due to bad diet so it didn’t slip on as easily as it had mid-season. Must get back in control of what I’m eating.
I then turned on my Garmin to find that the battery was dead. Grrrrr!
Ben delivered the race briefing as Chris arrived (due to the darker evenings, the races was starting half an hour earlier than advertised) and we headed to swim start.
The water was quite cold as we got in but not quite as cold as I was expecting which was a pleasant surprise. The slow swim to the start area gave me chance to say hello to Liz, Jenny and Katherine. It was also good to see Steve from STC at the event.
I found myself a little closer to the front than I’d have liked and tried to move back a bit. This was unsuccessful but given the fairly small number of participants it wasn’t too much of an issue.
We waved while Ben took a photo whilst we tried not to sink and then we were off.
Within 200m, the lead pack were swimming away and I felt I was being left behind. The weight gain and less visits to the pool are definitely taking their toll. The swim was 2.5 laps as I was doing the long distance event. It was unclear whether there was anyone behind me but I hoped I wasn’t last.
On my last lap I overtook someone. It was a first at any lake swim as far as I could remember. They may well have subsequently overtaken me later of course. The swim to the exit always seems to take an age even though it’s only a short distance. Ben gave some words of encouragement and took a photo as I emerged from the lake and I started to peel off my wetsuit as I ran to transition. I won’t share the photo as I look awful!
My transition was very slow. I’d bought my wrong running shoes and has to do up the laces rather than just slip them on (thanks to elastic laces). I sat down to do this and decided to not put socks on which could have been a mistake given I still have the blisters from 2 weeks ago.
As I started the 2-lap course. I couldn’t see anyone ahead of me. I had some catching up to do. My aim was to try and not get overtaken.
As I got to the start of their tree tunnel, I could make out two runners at the far end. Was there a chance I could catch them up?
Over the 2 laps, I slowly got closer and worked out that it was Steve from STC ahead with Katherine ahead of him. As I got to the bowl, I was getting fairly close with Steve less than 50m ahead. It took me most of the 2nd lap to get to Steve’s shoulder and as we got to the last 100m or so, I ‘opened up the throttle’ and ‘sprinted’ for the line overtaking Steve in the process. Unfortunately, my speedy arrival at the finish wasn’t captured on camera. Maybe I was just too quick or the photo was too blurry.
Without my Garmin I had no ideas how well I’d done. I congratulated Steve and then headed down to the transition area with Connor to collect my kit. It was good to catch up with Chris on the way down.
I was happy with my effort although I didn’t know how well I’d done. Shortly after getting home, Chris Sees left me know my result. 43:29. A little sedate and a minute or so slower than the last aquathlon I did in August.
Next up – HOWSC 100 Sprint Tri