I entered Eton sprints so I could do a race against a strong field to push me and see what my current baseline is. I’ve found training in lockdown has made it hard to push the limits with no ‘real’ racing.
Having suffered post viral fatigue for nearly 3 years (getting glandular fever as a 40 something new mum wasn’t my best moment!) and prior to that a couple years off limited training to move house, change career and start a family, this last 4 months is the best block of training I have completed since 2016 so I was feeling strong and optimistic of a decent race in me.
Knowing I had 4 months solid training under my belt was reassuring, but turning up on race morning to see everyone looking really fit and race ready was daunting, especially when someone mentioned that ex-Olympian Michelle Dillon was racing in our Age group.
I don’t get nervous before races normally, but I’m not ashamed to say I was bricking it, probably even more so than my first ever triathlon all those years ago.
Racking was fine apart from the ‘Covid police’ keep shouting at everyone to put masks on and put phones away!
I was soon lined up for the swim start, everyone was going off one at a time in 10sec intervals. I got in, swam a lap and got out – very uneventful, I actually missed the mass start element but it did make for a calmer relaxed swim, maybe too relaxed as my time was rubbish, 14:59.
T1 – very uneventful, and out onto the bike!
Bike course is very fast and flat and I was a little nervous of the fact I hadn’t had a chance to test my TT bike out this year especially being as I had a bike fit done 2 days prior and it had rained ever since so hadn’t got chance to ride. I need not have been worried though as it was really comfy, and I got a sprint bike PB (based on average speed as course is slightly long) and a new FTP score (of 1 watt haha!). I think this goes to show how aero my new position must be in comparison, as I used to be a lot stronger on the bike with a much higher FTP (like about 40+ watts more!) yet I still got a sprint PB for it. Go figure that one?
T2 – very uneventful again, off on the run!
So I would say my running has improved more than anything recently as during the last couple years I’ve done a lot of buggy running and in the last 4 months my weekly track sessions have shown some good stats and I very nearly smashed my half Mara PB on a training run a month ago. However, I was a bit disappointed with my run time, I know its hard to compare as a tri run time isn’t the same as a standalone run time anyway but I thought I had more in me. I was really pleased, with the effort I put in though, I always set myself more than one goal and a process goal can be so much rewarding than a time constrained goal – I nearly puked on the run so I know I gave it all I had on the day, and that I am proud off!
Overall, awesome event, and I scored 112% of my age group winner (the ex pro lol) so i may be in with a shot of World champs next year, but I wont hold my breath.
Thanks to coach Billy for helping me so much this last 4 months, I wouldn’t have stuck to training anywhere near as much as I do knowing someone else is checking up on me!