We all know that I love triathlon. Without a second thought for my dwindling bank balance I am a fully paid up, card carrying, spandex wearing member of this amazing club of athletes. That being said, I still consider myself a complete beginner and every race I have entered and completed so far has been a total baptism of fire and more of an amazing learning curve rather than an amazing success, this of course depends on your definition of success but I’m sure you all know what I’m getting at. I would love to be ‘good’ at it, I do possess some teeny smidgen of talent (meaning – I can swim without drowning, ride my bike without falling off and move forwards in a fashion some would associate with running!) but more than anything, it’s just great fun!
My triathlon journey thus far has been a great exercise in letting go… letting go of that illusion of control. I have always been someone that feels if I can’t do something really well, then I don’t want to do it. In the case of triathlon I have finally accepted that a) I can’t actually get good without first spending some time totally sucking at it and b) that despite not being very good, I still absolutely love it! What a revelation!
It can be hard sometimes with people so focused on times, ‘how fast did you go?’ and ‘where did you place?’ etc etc but on the whole they mean well when asking these questions and I find that if you respond with something positive about the race, even if that something is non quantifiable in the eyes of others, they soon tend to forget all about times and celebrate your achievements with you, no judgement. For example, did you feel confident getting right up in the thick of it during the mass swim start? Did you totally nail your nutrition? Or more simply, and perhaps more importantly, did you enjoy it? The ever-awesome Bangs posted something about this topic a little while ago and I feel she got the point across super well so I’ll let you go there and have a read in more detail!
But, back to the point of this here post… Triathlon is awesome and I just wanted to give a well-meaning nudge in the right direction to those of you that are thinking of giving it a go! You won’t regret it, seriously! Grab your mates and sign up as part of a relay, find a sprint, a super sprint, whatever you feel comfortable with. For all the ladies out there, thanks to Human Race and Shock Absorber there is even a women-only race taking place at Eton Dorney on Sunday 12th July. Eton Dorney is one of the best places to start your triathlon adventure, in my opinion! (I did my first ever ‘race’ here, a 5km swim and let me tell you, there was a fair amount of anxiety going on but when I finally got my act together and got moving I realised that it was a great place to start with lovely water to swim in, great marshals and volunteers and brilliant support.)