by Anna Rowan
My objective was three fold. 1: Do not die, 2. Do not get disqualified 3. Do not get penalised. I firstly collected my brand new bike and continued to Athy.
I arrived too early and muddled about when and what to eat and when to get changed. I eventually decided on a banana and some yogurt before stuffing myself into Jenny’s tri suit and my wet suit – I have to shed a few!
15 minutes to kick off, I just couldn’t get the adrenalin going, I knew I should be a bit nervous but wasn’t. Others said the nerves would kick in on the bag pipe river march- they didn’t. I was first into the water and got my spot on the LHS. The race began, I was happily breathing on every four and getting into my stride until I was bumped and tossled all over the place by faster swimmers - I must have been a bit cocky to have positioned myself in front of them. I found it hard to regain my composure and couldn’t get back to breathing on every four.
If I was going to die it was going to be on the cycle. It started well. I felt like the Brownlee brothers running (no cleats) with my shiney bike to the line and enjoyed the cheer from the crowd – (I was the only one there so they must have been cheering for me!). About 160 other cyclists passed me out - hmmmm, I didn’t think I was going that slow?? I did pass out one person on a mountain bike. I despaired on the last 5K of the cycle - this was the length I now had to run. I reminded myself to take my helmet off before the run!!
I parked up the bike and took off. “Whose legs were these?” After my first cycle in about 6 years the legs were not feeling good and the men’s saddle didn’t help the arse either. I had a little walk at 2.5K before being caught by Zoe saying “come on Anna”. By 3K the legs were beginning to respond. I made it over the finish line.
I hr 42 mins I think
Never, ever ever again were my initial thoughts. However the ‘game, set and match’ of a triathlon is the party afterwards and you don’t get that in tennis,