Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Making the Team - Tricurious Triathlon

I was so excited when I received the email from Laura and Katie, asking me if I wanted to do a triathlon with Team Tricurious. I’d applied for the team on a bit of a whim: after taking on two marathons last year, I had vowed to lay off running the full distance in 2015 and was in need of a new and different challenge. I forgot to think about the reality of swimming in open water at (attempted) speed with other people, followed by cycling further than I’d ever cycled before, and topping that off with a run.  I was just excited at the prospect of something new and experiencing it as a team; the help from Laura and Katie was the icing on the cake.

Then I was asked to select my triathlon distance and the doubts began to creep in. How far is a 750m swim, really? I know how far that is in running terms but swimming is a whole other world, as I’m learning. Despite my idea of a swim being a couple of lengths of breaststroke before hitting the pool side bar on holiday, I genuinely considered taking on the Olympic triathlon distance, including a 1.5 km swim. Having now hit the pool a couple of times in a bid to re-teach myself the front crawl, I am ever thankful that my boyfriend pointed out that, whilst I might be able to comfortably run a 5k in under 23 mins, I might not find it so enjoyable after an hour and a half of swimming and biking of which my current experience level is, well, low to say the least. Senses restored (almost), the Sprint distance was thankfully chosen. As it turns out, 750m is quite a distance to swim.
So I’ve got a long way to go on the swimming front, before I even think about tackling a wetsuit and the open water of Salford Quays. But I’ve covered the distance I need to do on the day in my swimming sessions, which has reassured me a little bit. Now I just need to stop having a rest every few lengths.
On to the bike. My current ride is this very beautiful little yellow number.

Now, whilst the other competitors would certainly agree that she is very pretty, I think we might get laughed out of the cycling leg and I’m pretty sure the wicker basket is not an aerodynamic feature. Although it would be very handy for storing all my food, which would be an added bonus. So I seem to be finding myself unwittingly thrown into a scary world of road bikes, of which I know nothing, and trying to break it to my boyfriend that our flat might have to house another bike.
I cycle commute to work every day and pride myself on being an ‘all weather’ cyclist, but I realise I need to start upping the mileage from 5 miles a day pretty sharpish. I plan on roping in my keen cyclist friend and undertaking some scenic cycling routes, which just so happen to end at a country pub that serves a nice lunch.
With the real possibility of having to be rescued from the open water and a rather dashing but unsuitable bike, you might think my decision to take on a triathlon is a little foolhardy. But as I’ve found before, sometimes it’s good to not think about these things too much, and just knuckle down and get on with it. Being out of your comfort zone can be frustrating but there is also the constant opportunity to achieve new milestones.
On that note, I’m off to buy some goggles and attempt to swim four lengths without stopping.
This post first appeared on the Tricurious Blog - check it out to meet my team mates and follow our journey as we venture into the world of triathlon.


  1. Ah, this is so exciting! I got a road bike for my birthday last year and would love to do a triathlon one day. This year has been taken up with marathon training though so I haven't had chance to focus on cycling much just yet. I'll look forward to following your progress!

    1. Thanks Helen - maybe you could give me some much needed advice on a road bike! Yes, I'm triathlon training in place of a marathon this year, back to the full marathon distance next Spring.