Triathlon changed my Life ?>

Triathlon changed my Life

When I entered (and completed) my first triathlon back in 2016 it was meant to be a one-off. Something to tick off the bucket list. A challenge I could feel proud of achieving.

Over 3 years on and it has utterly transformed my life.

Days of the week now revolve around exercise. Saturday – Parkrun and swimming. Sunday – long bike ride. Wednesday – running track. I’m now exercising 5 days a week and often twice a day. It’s far from the days when I thought a walk to the shops meant I was fit and active.

Now I really am fit and active and I feel so much healthier. I no longer creak and ache when I get up in the morning. I’ve lost those stubborn few pounds I failed to shift. I’ve much more energy. Most importantly, after nearly 5 years, I’m still cancer free (despite a scare last year).

Triathlon has also given me purpose and I feel like I’ve finally found my passion in life.

Posing with my finishers medal at the Sandman Triathlon

Over the last 3 years I’ve done lots of brilliant events. As well as several Sprints, I’ve completed 2 Olympic distance triathlons. I’ve also done a few swims and a 10k run. To pick just a few, Blenheim Palace triathlon has the most amazing setting with transition in the courtyard. Swims in Lake Windermere and Loch Lomond are surrounded by stunning scenery. (The Lakes were hard to spot under all the rain clouds, but happily the sun shone in Scotland.) And I even tackled The Sandman Triathlon – a tough sprint tri on beautiful Anglesey with a sea swim and a notorious run finishing across the sand dunes and beach.

setting up transition at Blenheim Palace Triathlon
Setting up transition at Blenheim Palace Triathlon

Some things haven’t changed much – I’m still slow and very much a “back of the pack athlete”. I’ve learned that building fitness when you’re over 50 is hard work and takes time. There have been many frustrating moments when my aging body just won’t do what I want.

But I’m making progress – after over a year of weekly sessions I’ve moved out of the beginners lane at my Triathlon Club swim! And it took a LOT of courage just to go to the club swim.

I’ve graduated from riding a hybrid bike in trainers to a road bike with clip-in pedals. I’ve gone out on group cycle rides. I can even change a puncture.

Me and my beloved road bike at Ripon Triathlon

And I’ve discovered the Galloway run/walk/run method which has enabled me to build up my run speeds and distance while staying injury free.

Events are at the centre of my Summer. Planning starts in October and usually by January I’ve got the next 9 months mapped out. Setting my goals, finding competitions I want to enter and then working out what I can do and when. There are so many amazing events and places to compete. My bucket list is a mile long and growing all the time.

Fingers crossed I can stay fit and healthy for many years.

4 thoughts on “Triathlon changed my Life

  1. Nice post Alison. It’s great to hear how far you’ve come since your first tri in 2016.

    Tri also got me to be a bit more active too. I’m not as good as you at planning events.
    I’m doing Deva tri (middle distance) this year but first I have Manchester marathon for the second time and hoping for sub 3hrs.

    Will you be at Manchester marathon again this year? If so I’ll see you there!

  2. Thanks Rich. I love following your updates and events. Deva is supposed to be brilliant – I was tempted by the Standard, but I’m doing Cholmondely Castle instead. Will let you know if I’m marshalling at the Marathon. Sub 3 hours would be awesome x

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