I chose the blog name She Can Try because I’m hoping that trying one thing may lead to others, and I will keep you updated on all of them over time.
First things first, I want to try doing my first triathlon. I am starting with a baby triathlon at Bribie Island in Queensland, which consists of a 300m swim, a 6km bike ride and a 3km run. Not too scary… in fact, I think I could complete it (although poorly, using breast stroke and someone’s borrowed bike) tomorrow if I had to. The goal really is to see if I can get a feel for a triathlon – what happens in transition? how wobbly will I be getting off the bike trying to run? how frightened will I be swimming in open water with sharks?
Obviously once I have the answer to these questions, then hopefully I can make a decision about doing a ‘proper’ triathlon.
[UPDATE: I have now signed up for a ‘proper’ triathlon as well. Read about it here]
Why a triathlon though?
A few people have said ‘they were shocked’ to hear I am going to attempt a triathlon. I think I was shocked too because it was such a sudden decision, although I also think that some of those who’ve expressed their ‘shock’ are trying to find a nice way of saying ‘I think you’re going to be terrible at this’. You know who you are.
The impossibility is actually part of the appeal, but I also love the idea that I don’t have to excel at any of the three sports in order to be ‘decent’ in a triathlon. I mean if I had set my mind to doing a marathon [UPDATE: I’ve signed up for a half marathon as well anyway!] all my eggs would be in one basket and I would have to get pretty good at running just to be in the middle of the pack. That’s a big commitment to running that I am not prepared to make right now.
On a more emotional level, there is something about triathlons that is awe-inspiring because it isn’t an everyday activity. No one blinks an eyelid if you say ‘I’m going to go for a quick run’. But if I yelled out to Shane that I was about to ‘go for a quick swim, bike and run’ he’d… well he’d ignore me as usual but I’m sure Matilda’s ears would prick up and you’d see the confusion in her eyes.
With a triathlon, your training has to be very organised – you can’t just go for a run as much as possible. You have to plan your weeks and months to incorporate everything, not just swimming, biking and running but even things called bricks, and other weird stuff. There is strategy involved in learning how to fuel your body and reserve your strength for different sections of the race. It can be quite complicated even for a beginner like me.
Very few people have a natural talent for triathlons. I’ve heard it said somewhere that only aliens find triathlons easy (presumably, aliens who have come to Earth specifically to do triathlons, because such a stupid sport doesn’t exist on any other planet in the universe). So everybody on the field has had to work hard, beyond their limits, beyond their comfort zone, to get there. That is amazing.
I guess for me, a triathlon is like a marathon – an amazing feat, a tick on the bucket list, a test of endurance.
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