Tri Training - 9 Weeks To Blenheim
In 9 weeks time I'll be taking the plunge (pun intended) and doing my first Triathlon!
Over the next few weeks I'll be writing about my training; in part to keep me accountable but also to show that a triathlon is not an intimidating spectacle reserved for the fittest athletes, but that anyone at any level can do it.
Prior to signing up to Blenheim I hadn't swum properly since I was in school, I'd been on a bike once in the past year and hadn't run any real distance for over a year. Needless to say, all 3 disciplines were going to need a bit of working on!
To get a taste of what I was in for, I signed up to a duathlon at Green Park. This involved running 2km, biking for 8km and a final 2km run.
This was my second time riding this bike!
It was a beautifully sunny but chilly morning, perfect for running in. It was a great way to get an idea of what a large scale triathlon would be like and to talk with people who have done them many times before, without the pressure of running in a "real" race. The atmosphere was fun, everyone was very supportive and as there were only 30 of us taking part it wasn't a battle to try and get around the course. I fully recommend giving it a go even if you've no interest in doing a triathlon as it's such a lovely experience. The homemade chocolate brownie at the end was pretty delicious too!
Tilsley Park ,one of the locations for the training day.
When going into anything I like to feel as prepared as possible so my next step was to sign up to a Triathlon Training Day. It was an interesting day, focusing on different drills and techniques to help improve all 3 skills and was a brilliant opportunity to have my questions answered (like, what do you wear under the wet suit?!). Personally I was nervous thinking it was going to be a tough physical day surrounded by hardcore athletes but I shouldn't have worried. We were a small group of women, each with completely different fitness levels and triathlon experiences. And they were all so lovely and friendly, we even set up a Whatsapp group to encourage each other and we'll all be participating in a small Tri at the end of April.
Now feeling more comfortable in how the race day would run and what I'd need to do, bring and wear, my next step was to actually start training! I've started swimming weekly with a good friend and we've taken a couple of lessons together - we're competent swimmers but there's a huge margin between competent and efficient. Currently I'm working on swimming 32 lengths without pausing or touching the sides/ floor. Which is surprisingly difficult to avoid doing when you can hit the floor at both ends! I'll be starting open water swimming in May so I'm really getting conditioned for that.
I've also been out running; I went on my first park run in almost 2 years and achieved my third fastest time which I'm very pleased about. I wasn't able to run the entire 5km (I managed 4km) but I ran more than I have done previously so the next goal is to forget the speed and run the whole route.
So with just under 9 weeks to go, I'm feeling confident that I know how the day will go and I won't be wandering around like a lost lamb.
My goal for Blenheim is largely just to finish it! But ideally I'd like to finish it in a sub 2 hour time. I'm in the 2 - 2.5hr women only wave, but from the training I've done so far I feel like I could reasonably finish in 1hr 45.
On with the training then! Should you fancy joining me for a bike/ run/ swim session at any point, get in touch as I would LOVE the company.
And I would love to hear about your experiences and if you too are training for your first triathlon! So please leave me a comment or shoot me an email.
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