Thursday 30 June 2011

European Junior Triathlon Championships, Pontevedra, Spain.

Well what can I say… basically, it was a bit of a disaster!

It is extremely frustrating, I worked so hard to get back from 8months off running to be ready for this and threw it away because of stupid mistakes.

On the swim I chose a bad starting position which could be the reason for what had to follow, in the lead up to the race I had been advised to go as far left on the pontoon as this was the shortest line. When I was called onto the pontoon I did just that I went as far left as I could only to look up and notice that there was a large lane rope straight ahead in my direct line to the 1st buoy. This was because it was shallow during the junior girls before hand and they were able to stand up. Unfortunately once I had choosen my position I had to stick with it. I should have checked this out during my swim warm up but it never crossed my mind, a lesson learnt the hard way.

I have been having problems with open water swimming and have put it down to not going out fast enough and then ending up in the fighting costing my vital time and coming out not doing my strong swimming any justice, for once I went out hard and it worked, I was pretty high up at the front of the pack, but then I hit the ropes I was forced to climb over, I had nowhere else to go. I was convinced I would get DSQ’ed but I had no choice, this cost me huge amounts of time, I lost even more time trying to get back across further up, by this stage I was well down and had lost so many positions.

Unfortunately in open water swim the positions going into the 1st buoy aren’t very different than the positions leaving the water.

T1 wasn’t great either I threw my hat and goggles and missed my box which I had to do unless I wanted a 15sec penalty, so sorting that out cost me more time. Due to the bad swim and T1 I missed the pack and it was a chasing game from there onwards.

I was basically the only person working in my group and I was even making time on the group by myself lossing my group on most of the couners, I was really cycling strong for the first 3 out of the 4laps and them BOOM, I was gone! 4th lap I couldn’t doing anything more, it was so frustraing I had basically pulled a group upto within under 10sec of the lead group for three laps and I had nothing left to bridge that final gap. In my efforts I was so busy chasing that I wasn’t drinking enough and in 38*C temperatures that is a major major mistake.

I went on to the run already zapped, but was determined to finish. I can truthfully only remember the 1st 800 meters of the 5km run, I was a goner, I was extremly dehydrated and had nothing left.

Aileen Morrison told me that I probably ran(stumbled) 10km due to the fact that I was swaying from one side of the road to the other, I still don’t know how I finished.

After the race I was rushed to the medical tent and received two IV drips, to get fluids and glucose into my system because I was in such a bad way. I was covered in bags of ice to try and get my core body temperature down. All this because I had a bad swim, forced to chase down the pack and most importantly of all I didn’t drink enough.

They say that everything happens for a reason and I supose that there are many lessons to be learnt from this experience. I need to respect my body and nutrition is vitally important, I also need to check everything before the race, and I also still have a lot to do if I want to make a career out of Triathlon. Even though this went very wrong it has gave me the hunger to get where I want.

In the words of … Yazz and the Plastic Population “THE ONLY WAY IS UP!”

Monday 13 June 2011

Strathclyde Park Triathlon.

It is strange to go into a race knowing that you don’t intend to finish, well this was the case with the Strathclyde Elite Men’s Triathlon at the end of May. I entered the race knowing that I wouldn’t do the run leg because I had not started back to running this year, the height of my running involved 15mins easy on grass to build up a little impact into my leg. This would have been a major jump if I was to go from that to a 5km max off a bike. Never the less I still did the swim and bike because I believed that I would gain invaluable experience, especially elite open water swimming.

I was very pleased with how my race went, my swim may not have been exactly how I would have like, this was because the way pontoon was positioned compared to the first buoy. There is an extreme disadvantage to someone with a name like ‘WHITE’ being at the end of the alphabet. The buoy was inline with left hand edge of the pontoon where as I was positioned on the far right meaning I had a good bit further to swim across. It just means that in the future I will have to be good enough to be seeded in the top ten because I can’t exactly change my name.

On top of this I have to admit I had missed a lot of swimming the week before resulting in losing a bit of an edge which all added up to be missing front pack on the bike. The bike leg was ok, the group wasn’t catching the leaders and wasn’t working overly fantastic, as I wasn’t doing the run I decided to do a lot of work on the bike to see what level my biking was at, so I did a lot of work on the front of the pack. Was very pleased with my new bike, very reactive looking forward to racing on it much more.

I ran out of transition, and was fighting with myself telling myself that I need to stop and not do any damage to the leg but with my competitive personality made this extremely difficult, I ended up stepping off because I have been so patient with the injury it would be such a waste to ruin it all now by doing something stupid.

A very enjoyable race, just would have loved to do the full thing. Not long now!

Dream Machine

Finally got myself a new bike. :)

So happy with it is very light, fast and extremely comfortable to ride, what more can I ask for.

Unfortunately I was unsuccessful in trying to get a sponsored bike which meant that I bought this bike myself, but hopefully it will be money well spent if it helps me to get some more good results and help me secure sponsors in the near future.