Month: June 2015

Fritton Lake Super Sprint Triathlon – 20th June 2015

I cannot believe it has been one year already since I did my first Triathlon. What an incredible 12 months.

As said previously, I do want to start doing longer distances, however I decided to sign up to the super sprint distance again to see how much I have (hopefully) progressed.

Come race day I was actually feeling pretty nervous, even though I love Fritton and was really looking forward to the event. I was worried that I wouldn’t get the time I wanted (a sub 1 hour) and that I would make a mistake or do something embarrassing, as I had a few friends and family coming along to watch me.

Registration was very fast and easy. Transition was nice and roomy with only 3 bikes to a rack which was great.

There was live music, The Beach radio and a BBQ which gave a really nice fun, festival feel to the event.

My previous time last year was 1 hour, 5 minutes and 46 seconds (See previous post if you want more details).

This year due to road works the bike course was 2k shorter, so I did take that into consideration. I worked out that I would have completed the 12k version of the bike ride last year in 31:50. Taking the time to compare down to 1:00:26.

I was braver in the lake this time round. I started much closer to the front, still a little bit back but not right at the back. I came out of the water feeling strong and fairly high up the field.

Transition went ok, however I must practice putting on my race belt. I put it on the wrong way and lost a few seconds trying to do it up.

I found the bike a bit tough, my legs felt dead. Not sure if it was down to only doing Pinewoods the Sunday before or the fact I didn’t do much training during the week.

Second transition felt good and no mistakes.

Onto the run, and again my breathing let me down. It was so difficult to catch a breath and settle into my stride. I was trying to push and catch the lady in front of me. I was gaining on her, but with less than 1k to the finish I was over taken by someone I knew was in my age group. There was no way I was going to keep up with her, I did managed to catch the lady I was originally chasing however I knew the chance to win an age group trophy had just slipped out of reach.

I finished the race in 49 mins. Which I was absolutely over the moon about. A whole 11 mins faster, which is incredible. I was gutted to have missed the age group win by such a small margin though (17 seconds). I was pleased with who did win it though as I know the lady and she is great. I just would loved to have won for everyone who came down to watch especially my Uncle from America and for Beccles Tri Club.

It was still a fantastic day and was so pleased to have given it everything. No regrets at all. 2nd in my age group and 9th out of 32 women (47/190 overall). Like Pinewood’s I managed to improve at all sections of the race.

Full set of results are here 

Review

Location – Fritton Lake and surrounding area. Great Yarmouth, Norfolk NR31 9HA

Type – Open Water Swim (1 lap), cycle on public roads (1 lap) and a run on trails around the park (2 laps)

Entry Fee – £40 (£35 with BTF* membership)

Medal – Yes and age group trophies.

Goody bag – Free swim hat

Event facilities  – Free on-site parking, cafe, showers, toilets, massage tent, live music, Beach radio, BBQ, Lucozade stall and Swans stall.

Chip timed – Yes

Start Type – Mass start

Would I do this event again? – Yes

Overall Score – 10/10

Summary Again this race was brilliant. Scott and the team make this a really friendly event. It is perfect for newcomers and experienced Triathletes. It is also a great event for spectators. Roll on next year.

Pinewoods Spring Triathlon – 14th June 2015 Review

Signed up to this event as I really enjoyed it when I took part last September.

It was lovely on race day as I wasn’t my usual nervous wreck, don’t get me wrong. I did still have pre-race jitters. However there was no pressure on this race, I just wanted to beat my previous time. (Results can be found here – 1:07:32)

Registration was offered the night before. Which is great for those local. I registered on the morning and there was only one person in the queue.

I collected my race number and goody bag.

Transition was really nice as they let you pick where you wanted to rack up. It was also only 4 bikes to a section which was great.

My race number was 26 in the Yellow wave. The swim order was females first, slowest to fastest swimmers in waves of 4. There was a 3 minute gap between each wave, some of the lanes early on did get a little bit congested. However I was really lucky in my lane. I only had one other swimmer and we didn’t get in each others way.

The 300m swim was 12 lengths in one lane. There were marshals counting your lengths and warned when you had 2 left to go.

Transition was outside right next to the pool. So it wasn’t far to go. I put on my kit, grabbed my bike and headed off on the 17k ride. It was a 1 lap route, which included one monster hill. It was a lovely (mostly) countryside route. Easy to follow, but slightly challenging to ride as the road was wet and it wasn’t very flat. It was enjoyable though as there were plenty of competitors to chase down. I was only over taken by two people. One was Vicki who is a fantastic cyclist and the other was a GB age grouper, so overall was really pleased. However I did feel slow over some of the route, just didn’t have the power in my legs today. More bike work needed.

After racking my bike it was onto the 3k run. The 1 lap route went through a caravan park with a gravel road and then into the forest for an off road section. The run was tough as there was no hard surface, but I managed to push fairly hard and although it hurt I felt much more comfortable than Beccles. Was really pleased when I finished and no one had over taken me as I did have quite a few ladies on my heels. The run was really enjoyable as it was out and back which meant I got to see Vicki on the way out and Karle, Eirrin and Sean on the way back. Was a great morale boost and took away the pain for a few seconds!

I sprinted a few meters to the finish and crossed the line in 1:03:20. Was so chuffed. A difference of 4 mins and 12 seconds faster. What is more, I managed to improve in all areas. Swim, T1, Bike, T2 and the run.

I finished 2nd in my age group (the official results say 3rd but Vicki G was 3rd overall, which made me second) and was 7 out of 29 women overall.

Full set of results are here 

Review

Location – Pinewood Leisure Centre, Holt Road. Upper Sheringham. Norfolk NR26 8TU

Type – Pool Swim (12 laps), cycle on public roads (1 lap) and a run on public paths and off road (1 lap)

Entry Fee – £38 (£33 with BTF* membership)

Medal – Yes and age group trophies. They didn’t award many trophies, due to not many competitors.

Goody bag – Yes. Precision hand water bottle, SiS gel and a 15% discount voucher for Pilch Intersport. Free swim cap also.

Event facilities  – Showers, toilets, lockers, free parking, Pilch stall, bike maintenance, massage tent and coffee truck.

Chip timed – Yes

Start Type – Individual timed start, start time based on swim speed. Females first and then males.

Would I do this event again? – Yes

Overall Score – 9/10

Summary Nice friendly event, that really welcomes first timers. Was nice having the guy on loud speaker giving encouragement. Awesome medal.

Beccles Triathlon – 31st May 2015

Having joined Beccles Triathlon Club last year, this event was one I was really looking forward to. Our “home” event.

It is a sprint distance triathlon (540m swim in a 30m outdoor pool / 20.3km bike / 6.7km run)  which is longer than the distance I normally compete at, however I did Ely Sprint Triathlon last year and although it was slightly shorter I was feeling confident.

The information pack that was sent before the event was great, lots of detail which is ideal for newbies. We were emailed our swim waves and start times the Thursday before the race. To my horror, I was one of the last waves to swim. The competitors I was seeded with freaked me out!! They are all incredible and LOADS faster than me.

Confident I was in the wrong swim wave, I spent the whole of the next few days worrying, playing scenarios through my mind of everyone passing me and the marshals getting board of waiting for me to finish and going home! Will let you know how the swim went in a bit….

Another great bonus to this event was the ability to register the night before the race. So Saturday evening I went and picked up my race number and goodie bag. The goodie bag was fantastic, it included a Beccles Triathlon branded scarf, water bottle and temporary tattoo. A home made flap jack and some Big Skies Food Company brittle. A Beccles Triathlon swimming cap and last but not least a puncture repair kit.

Event day seemed to arrive so quickly and I couldn’t believe the weather, when I first looked out….it was raining…lots!!

In denial and pretending I wouldn’t have to cycle in the rain, I headed over the the Lido. It was so nice going straight to transition to set up having registered the night before. It made it very quick and easy. I decided to try and keep my cycling and running shoes as dry as possible and placed them in carrier bags to keep the worst of the rain off.

The Lido looked great, there was a massage tent offering massages before and after the race. A lovely stall selling event jewellery, Tri-harder and TORQ stalls. Very handy for those forgotten items.

The race began at 8:30 and I had until 9:30 before I was due to start. It was really difficult trying to keep warm and dry. So we all huddled under the shelter at the lido. I was getting more and more nervous as time ticked by. Me being me, had moved on slightly from my swimming woes to now panic about the bike ride. I have never ridden in the rain before on my road bike, and was really worried!

Finally it was time to get into the pool and get warm! I started the swim really strong but then soon caught up with Ginny who was in the lane in front of me. I tapped her feet to let her know I was there, but then realised I had never caught up to a swimmer before in a Tri and didn’t really know what to do….and I then realised who I just tapped the feet of and forgot how many lengths I had done and it really put me off my swim. Ginny then had to tap my feet and I felt terrible. I let her past but once I relaxed back into the swim I caught her again. I didn’t dare tap again so just swam a bit behind her for the rest of the distance.

I ran out to my bike after the swim, and felt good on the ride. It really wasn’t that bad cycling in the rain. It didn’t feel slippery and I took the corners a lot slower than normal but really enjoyed it. I was pleased with how I dealt with the hills. I finished the bike a lot quicker than I was hoping for.

After I racked the bike, I started heading out of transition onto the run and struggled badly with my breathing. I was trying to run up the hill, wave and smile to the crowd, take my inhaler all at the same time as getting my photo taken. It wasn’t a great start to the run. I will make sure at my next triathlon to take a few puffs of my inhaler before leaving transition.

I felt SO slow on the run, and as a lot of the people I knew from the swim waves had passed me on the bike I was convinced I was the only one left out on the course.

However finally the finish line was in sight and the cheer from everyone supporting was fantastic. What a well supported event it was. Everyone from the marshals who stood in the rain for hours to the people who were just watching,we just absolutely fantastic.

I collected my medal to the biggest cheer I have ever had and that made me feel very proud.

My final times were –

Swim – 11:59

Bike – 45:21

Run – 40:13

total time of 1:39:56.

Full set of results here

My target before the race was 1:40:00 so was really chuffed. I also learnt a lot from this race and will be much more confident going forward.

Despite the rain it was an amazing day.

Review

Location – Beccles Lido, Puddingmoor, Beccles NR34 9PL

Type – Pool Swim (18 laps), cycle on public roads (1 lap) and a run on public paths and off road (1 lap)

Entry Fee – £40 (£35 with BTF* membership)

Medal – Yes and age group trophies

Goody bag – Yes. Beccles Triathlon branded scarf, water bottle and temporary tattoo. A home made flap jack and some Big Skies Food Company brittle. A Beccles Triathlon swimming cap and last but not least a puncture repair kit.

Event facilities  – Showers, toilets, lockers, free parking, Food and drink. Tri-harder, TORQ and Charming Rewards stalls. Massage tent

Chip timed – Yes

Start Type – Swim waves of 8 people, based on time. Slowest to fastest time. Females and males competing at same time.

Would I do this event again? – Yes

Overall Score – 10/10

Summary Registration was fantastic, amazing spectators, great goody bag and medal. Very friendly event.