Back to reality with a bang after our time in Lanzarote. A head cold and busy work schedule meant that training was disrupted these last two weeks, including missing the Time Trial at swimming. In fact, thinking about it, I blame Coach Adam for my cold as every time he schedules a TT I seem to get ill! I usually dread doing the TT but was actually looking forward to it this time to review where my swimming is currently at.
I had decided to enter the NiceTri Duathlon at the Bedford Autodrome as firstly I was looking for one of their events to enter to use my voucher which I received last year for winning their standard Aquathlon and secondly as I thought it would be good fun to cycle round the motor racing circuit. So I entered the sprint distance race which was 5k run, 20k bike, 5k run.
Turns out that the night before the race was when the clocks went forward, so the 8am race start ended up being a 7am race start according to my body clock. Luckily this didn’t affect me too much as I am used to getting up early to train before work. It was also good that the start was early as the weather worsened thoughout the morning. Talking of weather, wow it was windy up at the race circuit and together with the rain and cold it was like racing in winter.
This is only the 3rd duathlon that I have ever done and I have found the start of the race to be far less stressful than the ‘fight’ you get at the start of a triathlon swim. I was conscious of pacing the first 5k so as not to go out too fast. There was a strong head wind for about 2/3 of the lap (it was a 2 lap run), turning the corner with the wind behind us for the other 3rd was like running In a different season and was a real relief. I recognised the lady that had beat me to win the Vet category in the race at Eton Dorney in February just ahead of me on the run, she was racked next to my bike in transition and I had the opportunity to get ahead of her as she had put her helmet on back to front and the race marshals made her change it. The bike was 4 laps of the race circuit and again turned out to be mainly into a head wind! It was also raining heavily by now so what could have been a fast circuit was slowed down by taking the corners steadily. The last 5k run was really tough, battling the usual jelly legs is bad enough without the head wind, but hey, at least it was the same for everyone!
I finished feeling strong and given that I had been ill all week prior the race, was really pleased with my performance and was delighted to win the Vet 40-50 age category- and another voucher for a NiceTri event. I guess I’ll have to go back for race 2 in November now!