The Woodhall Spa Sprint Tri was held on the Queens Diamond Jubilee in 2012. Along with many other organised events on the Sunday, sunshine was expected. As always, the British weather let us down, so it wasn't just wet, it was cold, 9 Degrees Celsius, after a week of heatwave temperatures, so what do you do as a True Grit Triathlete, not turn up? turn up and decide it's too cold, wet, difficult. No. You grit your teeth, roll up your preverbal sleeves, and embrace it….Sod it, its cold, it's wet, but your arms still work, your wheels still go round, and your legs still do that back and forward motion. Well, Woodhall pool is unique, although it's outside, it's warm and lovely, and when you get in, it gives you a sense of security that you immediately embrace. You've prepared for your swim so it's great, my experience was that I immediately enjoyed it, and set off in great gusto, 12 laps in 25 Degrees, awesome….
Okay, that was the best bit, getting out wasn't that bad, running to the bike wasn't that bad, as you start putting on your bike shoes, you become aware of the driving rain, then the cold hits you. Rainproof Jacket on, gloves on, Helmet on, Glasses on, off you go…Glasses off, can't see a bloody thing, Clip in, get comfortable, ok, not too bad, get into your stride and then start drinking.
Well it is wet and cold, but come on, just get your head down and grind it out, 15 miles of burning your thighs and it's all over. You soon got used to the head wind, you've done it in training, keep going, think nice things but concentrate, watch out for pot-holes, and keep your rpm going. Eventually, it gets cold, hands get numb, as well as feet, but on the way back the wind turns, it's behind you and slightly downhill, time to burn…..
Transition 2, hands are so bloody cold, can't get my helmet off. Was thinking of running in the damn thing and looking a right T**t, but suddenly, my brain seems to coordinate, and my fingers deftly remove it. Phew.
Ok, now the running thing. Actually getting going is, erm, hard, legs are cold and numb, so just keep going, they will loosen up eventually, well they didn't, not until I finished and get back to the car to change.
On the whole, it was a harsh days racing, looking back it was a great day.
As they keep saying….
"Pain is temporary, failure is forever"