A New Tri Suit

after the swim

After seeing the photos of myself dressed like a blue sausage running around the Bribie Island foreshore on the day of my first ever triathlon, I had to let my burning eyes heal for a few weeks.

And once I could see properly again, it was clear that it was time to consider a new tri suit.

This purchase had been on the horizon for a while, especially since I discovered that I can’t go to the toilet in my beautiful blue tri suit without dislocating my shoulders and elbows to allow them to contort around and grab the zip, located on the back.

Plus, the suit was just slightly too see-through for my liking.

A not-very-interesting fact about me – I hate belly buttons.  Even typing the words makes me want to gag.  Often in the middle of a heated argument, Shane will taunt me with the threat of sticking his finger in my belly button unless I concede defeat.  It generally works.

When I realised I could see where my belly button is through my blue tri suit (there’s a dark shadow there basically) I wanted out.  Immediately. Continue reading

Moving On and Lessons Learned

should have known better

About 20 minutes before the start of the race, mum took some pictures of me warming up

We all know that I am a bit of a baby.  I put my brave face on for Saturday’s Mooloolaba Ocean Swim failure as much as possible, but at about 3am on Sunday morning (the day after my big DNF) I woke up and cried.  It finally dawned on me how scared I had felt and how much danger I’d been in.

I suppose when you need to talk yourself into doing something scary, you turn off the voice of logic and reason in your head.  Then at 3am the next day when it turns itself back on again, you have to go through the emotions of what happened.

pre-race

The pre-race photo.  Brave face enabled.

After tears and fears (and rocking back and forth in the corner for a little while) I managed to pull myself together and had a good day on Sunday not thinking about swimming too much.  The things I feel now are 1) a pride at having had a roll of the dice and maintaining my composure – not panicking! 2) an eagerness to improve and 3) a quiet confidence that the swim in my upcoming Straddie or Noosa races can’t be as bad as Saturday’s was, because they only require a ‘once out and back’ swim rather than the M-shaped course I tackled at Mooloolaba.

Granted, there will be further to swim (once I get out past the waves) in those races, but my experience on Saturday was that I could have kept swimming quite happily in the deep blue ocean – it was the breaker waves that got me.  Even faced with the same rough conditions, if I only have to go once out and once back then I should be alright.

This coming Saturday, I am going to do a short 500 metre swimming race in the passage at Bribie (the same slice of ocean in which I did my first triathlon).  And I’ve signed up for the next Grimsey’s Adult Swimfit, on Easter Sunday.  Yep, I’m getting ‘back on the horse’ so to speak.  And yep, I feel a bit apprehensive (deep down) which is why I knew I absolutely had to do these things. Continue reading

A Half Marathon, or She Does A Stupid Thing

Don't panic

Don’t panic until you have actually read the post, mum.

When I commenced this journey of triathetising myself and my life, I felt confident that the running portion would be my favourite part of the sport. Dare I say it? Ok yes, I thought that running was the easy bit.

Regular readers may remember the reality check the Triathlon Gods cast down upon me, which helped me to realise that I could not run for sh*t.  Really, I look back on those early days and marvel at my naivety; back then I never expected that simple cockiness could earn spiteful lesson-learning from the now-dreaded Triathlon Gods.  Imagine how much easier this sport would be without an ego!

Anyway, even though I should have known better, I clung to the notion that once Jake the Physio had fixed me up and made me pain-free, I would be a running machine. My lesson would be learned: I would not be cocky.  I would be able to run again.

Even in my baby Triathlon (aka my first triathlon, aka the tester) when the run truly sucked and I briefly experienced a truth – that physically being able to run might not be enough, I felt sure that I would eventually emerge to be a natural runner.

Because my mum was a fantastic runner. Surely that counts for something? I basically grew up thinking I was from a family of running people.  And once upon a time, years ago, I did a 10km run with my sister. Granted, I couldn’t walk for three days afterwards, but I did it!

And let’s not forget of course the fundamental, underlying, omnipresent reason that I thought the running side of triathlon training would turn out to be alright, which is that I am actually a complete moron. Continue reading

Welcome, 2016

hungover

This is how I awoke to 2016. Hungover and makeup everywhere.

Here we are, the Year Of The Triathlon. It is upon me.

There is something exciting but also very scary about being able to say ‘This year, I am going to do a triathlon’.  Technically, I can say that I will be doing my first triathlon next month. Next month.

What the bloody hell have I done? I am not a triathlete!

Note to self: swim+bike+run+me=triathlete. Fact. 

I am a triathlete, and in 2016 I will demonstrate this publicly on at least three occasions. Bribie, Straddie and Noosa had better watch out. Continue reading

Fun Facts on The Noosa Triathlon

There is a long time to wait until we set off for the Noosa Triathlon, but it’s so exciting I can’t help but do the odd Google search when I have a spare few minutes (IE when I have reports to do on a Friday afternoon but I am procrastinating as much as possible)

Of course, we know that the Noosa Tri consists of a 1.5km/0.93mile swim, 40km/25mile bike ride and 10km/6.2mile run.  But that information only helps me train for it – it doesn’t help me envisage the day and what it will be like to be there.

It’s surprisingly difficult to find good gossip; triathletes tend to discuss times and distances rather than the fun stuff I want to know about, such as what food they have at the aid stations.  Here are some things I have found out so far: Continue reading

Building a Bridge

Straddie Salute

Another triathlon registration!

I have never really trained for a specific event before, and since signing up for my first triathlon I have thoroughly enjoyed having something to aim for. It has been fun to know that getting out of bed each morning to go to the gym has an end goal attached to it, as well as the greater purpose of maintaining a healthy body.

Even though I haven’t done it before, setting up a training program to complete a race has mostly come naturally, because I am at such a basic level that my ‘training’ simply revolves around going further each time. As I improve, my training will hopefully one day encompass getting faster, getting more efficient, getting better and getting more technical.  But for now, simply increasing distance and not drowning/falling off the bike/developing knee pain is enough to keep this girl happy.

Now that I have signed up for a proper triathlon, it is clear that the baby Bribie Triathlon is really just part of my training for the Olympic Distance triathlon I will be doing in Noosa in October 2016.  I guess that was always the intention, but the popularity of the Noosa Tri meant I had to bite the bullet and sign up for it before I have even done Bribie.

I personally couldn’t and wouldn’t attempt Noosa without doing Bribie first. I have heard that some people do jump straight into a full triathlon but I don’t think I could mentally take that on; I need to know I can survive it. So Bribie is smaller (easier?) and  less significant than Noosa, but still an essential piece of training to ensure I can line up at the start of an Olympic Distance Triathlon.

I could do as much swimming, biking and running as I want, but only races can really prepare you for races. The nerves, the packing, the nutrition requirements, the transition between each leg in huge areas full of thousands of other athletes’ gear, the mass swim start, the crowds of other cyclists on the bike route, the chaos and adrenalin. These are things that could overwhelm me or intimidate me just thinking about them, if I haven’t had a few mini practice runs before Noosa.

Which got me thinking that I should look into other opportunities to incorporate ‘race training’ before next October, as well as Bribie.
Continue reading

The Camping Triathlete

my packing

Yes I am taking a suitcase camping

The only time I ever think to buy magazines is when we’re going on some kind of a holiday.  It has become a kind of tradition and these days, no matter how long or short, it just doesn’t feel like a holiday without a few magazines to flick idly through as I sip a beer and stretch out in the sun.

We’re taking the dog camping for a couple of days this weekend and as I walked into the newsagents last night to get my magazine haul, the one that caught my eye was, of course, Triathlon Magazine.  I’ve never read or bought this magazine before and I was quite excited to spot it in my local newsagent.  There is even a story about the Noosa Triathlon course!  I don’t know what secrets I may find out from this article but I am pretty sure it will make all the difference to my race, so thank you in advance, Triathlon Magazine. Continue reading

The Noosa Triathlon 2016

Triathlon problems

I am hooked on the silliness

Let’s recap: In September I put my name down for my first ever triathlon at Bribie Island, scheduled to take place in February and for which I need to be able to swim 300m in the ocean, bike 6km on crowded streets and then run 3km with wobbly legs.  Having trained for 7 weeks now, my progress towards being able to do any of these things is marginal, although I can at least confirm that I will look hideous while attempting it.

So when I heard that the tickets for the infamous 2016 Noosa Triathlon would be going on sale on the 19th November at 11am and you had to be online at THAT VERY MOMENT if you wanted any hope of securing one, I decided to clear my schedule and be ready. Don’t ask me what the exact thought process was; I simply don’t know. Continue reading