Monster Middle (half ironman) – 16th August 2015

by Anna 


  • 1.2 mile swim/00:49:01
  • T1 – 00:04:13
  • 56 mile bike/03:08:19
  • T2 – 00:01:18
  • 1/2 marathon/01:53:23

I’ve trained the whole year for this event and it was worth every slogging mile!

This triathlon club has been a wealth of support, advice and encouragement throughout this year. Thank you ALL so much!

So a run down…

Swim was not good. I was fed up with always being out of the water last, so this time I started (bravely) in the middle near the back, foolishly believing my swimming had improved enough to be able to hold my own. WRONG. I got pretty battered, swallowed water, pushed down, kicked and hit. Left bobbing like a yellow bath duck, I then stalled and went into the familiar panic mode which I experienced so many times in the past 19 months, couldn’t breathe, couldn’t swim, was sinking, goggles fogged up, didn’t know where I was, people all spinning off leaving me in chop and swell. Awful, just awful.

At this point I knew I really, REALLY had to pull it together, it was either that or have to quit right there at that moment.
But NO WAY was I going to let this beat me.

ReeeeeLAX, RELAX, slow your breathing down, I’m not sinking, I can do this, I will do this, calm, breathe, slow, now stop thinking about swimming, think about another problem.

So, my get out of jail card for not thinking about swimming, is to immediately think about something else, a horse issue that needs dealing with at home, a recent falling out between two friends that I was made aware of, ahh – that’ll do…
So for the next 700m or so I did just that. Forgot swimming, just thought about another problem..

Finally the bridges came in to sight, the end was approaching. I was still a long way off but I had calmed myself enough to swim again!
Then the Olympic distance wave began to overtake me, it was a bit demoralising as once again I knew I was at the back. Oh well, keep swimming.

I think I was last out (again)… All bikes in Middle Distance racking area were gone. Apart from one or two. Depressing. Angrily I took 4 mins in T1 to eat a banana and stuff some fruit loaf into my face, whilst trying to pick the stupid pieces of foil that had got stuck to it and batting away a wasp..grrrr 😡

Bike next. Lovely fast route through fenland. I used the bike to rest and eat loads. Drinking every 30 like Kevin Stigwood and Alice Barnes advised.

Then got my self in gear a bit and belted on as fast as I could. There were two laps to complete. Because I was almost last out of the water, again, I had some work to do to catch up. Every one was well spread out too. Nevertheless I managed to overtake 8 riders in total, with 9 & 10 in my sights…

Leading male whirred past me towards the end of lap one, effortlessly, like Joshua White always does 😠…… Couldn’t believe they were a lap ahead already.
Then got demoralised as Lead female (Lucy Gossage?) did the same, about three miles after. What are these people made of – steel?

T2 was better. I had a good fast ride down to the end. Stacks of supporters, (really great race for tonnes of support btw)

I get awful Raynauds Phenomenon in my feet after the swim, then the wind exposure on the bike does not assist it. Determined not to have it as bad this time for the run, I kept clenching and squeezing my toes the last mile on the bike, and despite the pains, it worked, and it was better to suffer the pains whilst sitting on the bike, rather than trying to start the run on painful stumps and be hobbling for the first three miles..

So then the run at last, my happy-chappy-flowers-sunshine and ponies comfort zone…
I enjoyed this, and this time I pushed it. Four times round the beautiful city of Ely, all through the beautiful cathedral gardens and right round through the high street, the pedestrian areas and the shops. Huge support from spectators and tourists aghast at this event. There were several short sharp hills, which brought many of the greats to their knees 😉, with a fell running history, these were my strengths and saving grace.

Finally over the finishing line, to see my three best boys calling out Mummy! to me.

Great race!
Great distance!
My favourite triathlon to date.

More swim training me thinks…😊

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