After some inspiration? David Wilkin's Outlaw half blog is a great read.
After an aborted effort at Ironman Barcelona last year, it’s been quite a journey mentally and physically to pull myself together and get on the start line this year for the Holkham Half 70.3 distance race.
Training has been going well, supported by Aycliffe Tri club, so I felt reasonably confident as I sat at the start line waiting for starting gun. Even at 6:30 in the morning (after getting up at 3:15) the day was heating up nicely. The start of the swim was tough, lots of pushing and a few bashes, but it’s something you get used to. I quickly found my rhythm and a bit of clear air to swim and the rest of the swim was pretty uneventful, albeit a little slower than I was hoping.
Out of the swim, find the bike and head off for the 56 mile bike ride, the first couple of miles were uphill, but that was only the start of the rolling hills. In North Norfolk (Alan Partridge country), I was expecting a nice flat ride, but clocked over 2000ft of elevation for the ride (which is nothing compared to County Durham, but still lumpier than I hoped for), I pushed hard on the bike and averaged 20.5mph for the distance and a bit quicker than I hoped.
By the end of the ride, the day was getting seriously hot so I knew the run would be hard, especially as there was very little shade. The run starts up the same hill as the bike and consists of 3 laps for the half marathon distance. I started steady, worked my pace pretty well, and dug deep building the run to finish with my fastest mile.
These longer distance races take their toll with the hours of training you have to put in, but well worth it, while in the car I’m reminiscing with my wife where I’ve come from being overweight and lazy to finishing this distance in a PB of 5:20:31, to say triathlon has changed my life would be an understatement, it’s the sport I love and training with the club just makes all those hours all the more bearable to ultimately work to achieve these goals.
If you are local to Newton Aycliffe and are looking to train for a race and need some help from a great club, then check out Aycliffe Tri Club.
Well Done David Wilkin, what an inspiration!