I first started triathlon at university when one of my housemates dragged me along to swim training in second year. I was really involved in cross country club at that point but I used to swim competitively when I was really young so it was nice to get back to the pool! My first Olympic distance triathlon was this year however after a slight incident involving a bike and a broken elbow put me out of last seasons racing.
I now love triathlon because of the variety of training you get to do. 3 disciplines to train for guarantee you’ll never get bored. The races are always different as well, sea or lake swim, hilly or flat bike and hot or cold run.
This year was my first season competitively racing with the main aim of qualifying for the World Championships in Mexico. I shocked myself by qualifying in my first ever Olympic distance triathlon (1.5km swim, 40km bike, 10km run) in June at the St Neots Triathlon.
On the way to Worlds I also won the London Triathlon and picked up a Silver medal at the World Duathlon Championships (10k run/40k bike/5km run). By the time the Championships came around in September I was feeling really strong and the fastest I had ever been. I still had no idea how I would do because I’d never ‘raced the world’ before! I finished 5th in my age category (18-24) and I’m so happy with that result. It was one on the hardest races I’ve ever done with 35 degree heat and strong currents in the sea swim to deal with. Lots of people struggled in the heat including Jonny Brownlee (who made international headlines when his brother carried him over the line, inspirational.)
Next up was the Laguna Phuket Triathlon, which is the one everyone is talking about in the office. My coach lives out there so it was an excuse for a training ‘holiday’. Beautiful beaches, sea and hills were amazing to train and relax on! The race was towards the end of the trip giving me time to acclimatise to the humidity and hills. This race was a little longer than I’m used to with a sea/lagoon swim of 1.8km, hilly bike course of 50km and a 12km run around the Laguna resort. I knew I wanted to win my age category, mainly because I had heard about the trophies but I also wanted to finish as high up in the overall women’s field. The race did not disappoint, the swim was so fun especially since the jellyfish had decided to stay away for the day, I had lots of space and finished high up in my start wave. The bike was hard with some 20% inclines and the run was hot and long! I was so happy to win my Elephant and finish second female overall, a great way to end the season!
What’s up next? I’m taking a bit of a rest (still training but less hours) until just before Christmas when I will start my training plan again ready for the World and European standard distance championships next year and a half Ironman distance in Vichy next August.