A triumph indeed !! Yes I’m still buzzing after having successfully completed my first duathlon at the weekend. It was hosted by Naas Triathlon Club in Punchestown racecourse and comprised a 3.5km run, followed by a 20 km cycle and topped off with another 3.5km run.
Now as you’ll know I had been suffering recently with a chest infection and a gammy calf muscle so my preparation wasn’t exactly ideal in the run up to Sunday last. I had managed a 7km run on grass, my first in 3 weeks and some time on the bike but that was about it. I had decided that just getting round the course would be sufficient given my preparation and the fact it was my first.
So I put the bike in the car, dressed in my excellent new gear from Triathlon gear from Lidl. I hadn’t used Triathlon gear before but this was perfectly light and airy with enough pockets if needed and just the right amount of padding in the essential places, you can see in the photos and I drove to Punchestown. On arrival all the competitors had to register and have their bike’s road worthiness checked out and I picked a spot to leave my helmet and bike in the all important transition area.
The first leg of the duathlon started bang on 12.30pm. It was a 3.5km run around the periphery of the race course. The ground undulated as the competitors including myself jockeyed for position. I decided it was best to start slowly from the centre of the pack rather than regret a blistering start and the inevitable accompanying lactic acid build up 5 minutes in.
I managed the first 3.5km in 12 minutes and transitioned to the bike. The bike leg itself was an experience. The gardai had temporarily closed the roads around the racecourse to allow the competitors to get onto the route without worrying about cars initially. The ground was damp which aided my pursuit of the front runners, but to be fair I would have needed more than that to gain on them. Some of the triathlon bikes that were on display would have set you back the price of a small car and it showed in their performance on the road as a few of them whirred past me as they sliced through the air.
Although my back was hurting from pushing so hard I managed a personal best on the 20km route, getting around in just under 38 minutes before completing the second 3.5 km run circuit. Delighted to say I managed a creditable 76th position out of 200 competitors in a time of 1 hour 6 minutes, having recorded a personal best on the first run and the cycle legs. I have to say I did enjoy the whole event, there was a sense of camaradarie and the buzz you get from physical exertion in a competitive context is almost euphoric, so I’m definitely looking forward to my next one.
I have decided to due the Dublin duathlon in the Phoenix PArk in april and have already registered for the triathlon in Athy in June which will be my first, all I need now is to get a wetsuit and I may look at buying a set of aero bars for the bike to help make my body position a little more aerodynamic on the bike, god knows it’ll be a hell of a lot cheaper than forking out a few grand for a full on triathlon bike.
On to the next race 🙂