Woodlands Triathlon

This wouldn’t usually be here, but as every member of the club turned out who had registered (over a 16% DNS) and 3 club members won their age category (Jazz, Keith, Seb), I thought it was worth posting.

My First Triathlon

Leading up to the triathlon I was very lucky to have other club members help me with my training, including a recce of the route (not sure this was a good idea!) and answering the numerous questions that I had.

The night before the event, Mark and I registered, I’m so glad we did, as it enabled us to see our swim start times, to get our race numbers and to see the transition area being set up.  Once home, I got my bike and helmet labelled up and put into the car and worked out how to use the tri-belt.  With my kit ready, the alarm was set for 5:30am!!

Sunday morning arrived and the nerves had set in along with the rain!  I arrived at Woodlands at 6:50am where Mark had already got himself organised, he then proceeded to help me get my bike into the transition area.  The volunteers were great and helped along the way, ensuring that helmets were on when entering the transition area with your bike to make sure that they fitted correctly and advising how to rack your bike.  I took Mark’s advice and racked my bike near the swimming pool exit and near to the bike exit to make transition easier.  Talc was poured into my trainers and socks to (hopefully) make it easier to put them on with wet feet, a t-shirt ready as I was expecting it to be a chilly bike ride and the race belt on top of my bike with my helmet.  

Breakfast was eaten whilst watching others setting up and running through what was ahead of me, making sure that I knew what I was doing for each aspect of the race.

Other club members were starting to arrive; they were so supportive and full of smiles and advice as always, really putting me at ease.  I am so grateful to be part of such a friendly and supportive club.

The transition area shut at 8am and the race briefing commenced along with the rain again!  The event was ran so efficiently and smoothly, I did not encounter any problems along the way, in fact it did not matter that it was my first one as the volunteers were telling everyone what to do along the way.

Each person was given a swimming hat in their race pack, red, white or blue depending on what time your swim started.  My swim start time was 8:48am, so, hat, nose clip and goggles in hand I set off to the end of the pool 10 minutes before my start time.  Taking Libby’s advice I made sure that I got an end lane with steps next to the exit door.  Each swim start was set off 3 minutes apart.

I got into the pool ready to start, with a count down from 5 and the whistle blowing, off I went.  I was pleased with my swim time and managed to keep a steady pace.  12 laps completed (300m) and out of the pool to the transition area, hat, goggles and nose clip being taken off on route. 

“Hat on first” Ant had said, I didn’t forget this.  Feeling dizzy from the swim and trying to put my socks and trainers on was interesting, race belt on and off I went for a 17km bike ride in the rain.  It is a lovely route and as Kevin would say undulating until you get to Holgate Hill, which feels like a mountain!  Just keep peddling was the advice I had been given for this hill.  There were many Marshalls around the course smiling and pointing you in the right direction; it was not the best weather for them.

Arriving back at Woodlands making sure that you dismount at the correct point (Amanda was there to ensure this was done correctly).  Then back into the transition area to rack my bike, take off my helmet and head out for the 3km run.  I’m not sure how to describe the run – muddy and wet probably sums it up, it is a lovely route though (on a sunny day!).  It is an out and back route through the caravan park and woodland.  The finish line is such a welcome sight on the return, where a medal and bottle of water awaits you and a massive support crew of club members, friends and family cheering you over the finish line.

I would highly recommend giving a sprint triathlon a go.  It is a very supportive, friendly and great event.

Will I do another one, I’m not sure yet!!

Kerrie (No. 26)

Official Times:
Ant – 0:53:00
Mark – 1:04:48
Cat – 1:05:55
Seb – 1:07:28 – 1st in category
Jazz – 1:07:50 – 1st in category
Keith – 1:13:02 – 1st in category
Libby – 1:14:56
Kerri – 1:18:41
Hayley W – 1:20:06
Cammille – 1:24:57
Lynne – 1:26:17