Ben's Cyclopark Duathlon race report, 16th of April:
Awesome morning for a race with next to no breeze and nice temps. I wasn't feeling 100% but a few warm-up laps helped. My Tri bike is out of action (rear brake issue) so ended up on my road bike with clip-on aero bars.
Unfortunately the usual run route wasn't possible due to it being flooded so it was an out-and-back and about 0.5mi shorter. First run was decent by my standards and the transition was under a min. Don't think I lost anything overall being on the road bike - lost top end speed but probably gained it into and round the corners.
Second transition was also sub-1min but run was horrible over the first km. Eventually got into it and sped up a bit. Came in at 1hr 14min.
Waited for Hannah to cross the line who wasn't too far behind me 🙂
As ever, a good, cheap event. Shame there's no medal 😕
And this was especially true for two members, Ian West and Jeni Smith, having only started swimming in October last year with the Club beginners course. “We swam in the same pool as the superstars of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. To take on this challenge, in this iconic arena was an opportunity not to be missed. A year ago we could not have swam one length of a 25m pool, but thanks to the Club and our coach Mimi Charlery, today we swam 5K!”
Founder of Marathon Swims, Diccon Loy stated, “We wanted to create the ‘London Marathon’ of swimming in a pool. We felt the levels of innovation and development seen in other sports have not yet surfaced in the sport of swimming. Our aim was to create an innovative mass participation experience and challenge in the pool. Marathon Swims is unlike anything ever staged in a pool before.”
So then, a little later than usual but let's have a round up of last week!!!
On Wednesday evening we had the final session of our latest beginners running course and then on Saturday the graudation run at Sittingbourne parkrun. Another brilliantly organised park run and congratulations to Katherine Thornton on her run. We also had one of our Tristars running in that race and she knocked nearly two minutes off her PB. Awesome work and a very proud mum moment for Louisa-Jayne Viccars.
Also over the weekend we had a fair few members head up to the London Tri Show at ExCel. We ate enough protein bar samples to feed the 5000, checked out some beautiful bikes and tried on wetsuits. The general consensus was "good, but not great". It seems the manufacturers and retailers can't beat the online prices at the minute but it was still good to get up close and personal with the kit.
Then on Sunday we had a half-marathon runner! Thom is building up to a couple of marathons this year and looks to be in good shape. In his words, "Really happy with Tunbridge. 1:39:11. Smashed it. Even got a 10k PB in the middle. That big old hill was killer but just fast feet all the way and passed everyone. Had a wicked time!"
Onwards to this week! We have Tuesday night club swim, Wednesday night club run and then on Saturday it's Sittingbourne Park Run anniversary so they'll probably be a few of us there. Of course you're all welcome to come join us.
And keep an eye out for more event announcements, we have a busy year coming up!
Wow! So, where to start? It's not even race season proper yet and things are getting too much to contain in a weekly update.
I guess first things first, things we forgot to mention last week...
On January 22nd two of our members ran in the Parker Tools Caterbury 10 mile organised by the Invicta East Kent Athletics Club. Ominously Ian was wearing the race number 666! Both cruised round completing it in 1:18:29 and 1:21:27. I'll leave you guys to guess who finished first out of the two. With Thom well through his marathon training plan it's looking like a very good year for him.
On 29th January one of our members, Gary, headed to Charlton Lido for the Snowflake Swim (https://www.demelza.org.uk/…/challeng…/detail/snowflake-swim) in support of Demezla. The plan was to swim 1km but in the end he put in a sterling effort and cracked on with a 2.5km swim despite the heavy rain and exceeding his charity donation expectations. The event was extremely well organised and is definitely on the list of potentials for next year. If you would like to donate to add to Gary's donation total then head to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Gary-Fissenden1 , he'll very much appreciate it.
Now, on to this week...
I'm going to "skip" over the usual courses and just say:
- Our Tuesday night club swim was great fun, tough on the shoulders and with a few drills that got us some strange looks as we clambered out of the pool and walked back down the side.
- Our Wednesday night club run saw the guys cruching the hill sprints again. We even got a video this time round!
- Our Thursday night beginners run session got going with some endurance work and we talked a lot about recovery and the benfits of foam rollers. The guys on the course are doing really well and it's always great to see them making superb strides (pun intended) in their training.
- The Friday night swim beginners swim sessions are also going great. I need to pop along at some point to see the guys but all I hear is stories of them crushing their drills and making big strokes in their abilities so I'm a little scared.
- The social ride on Saturday was another Ride-Run-Ride over at the Whitstable parkrun. The weather was miserable but the spirits we're high. It was a great ride along to Whitstable, wind-free making it even better! Then it was the lollipop route for the run, muddy good fun, one member just missing a PB by a second, another member (me, Daniel, woohoo) smashing his 5km PB by just under a minute and everyone having very cold hands! Of course the ride back involved a stop for coffee and cake/bacon.
So, what else have we been doing?
Our friendly competition started in our Garmin group. 6 days in and there's a clear leader in the swim and the run disciplines (the target on her back is getting a lot bigger!) but the bike is a lot closer, pretty much neck and neck.
We've had a couple of brithdays, please stand up Jeni and Peter.
We had our first Swale Tri Club International Competitor!! David is off on his jollies (working in the US) and took part in the Interlaken Icicle Dash in Seattle (I'm not jealous at all). [RACE REPORT]: Interlaken Icicle Dash. A 10k trail run in Seattle. Little bit of everything; out and back along a paved road, then climbing into the woods with a mixture of stairs and muddy slopes (although nothing as bad as the 666 in Kings Wood!), then descending back to the road for the finish. A 2.5k loop covered four times. Unfortunately I went over on my ankle at the dead turn on the second lap (slipped on a tree root.) I ran through it, but it's sore now. Getting some RICE on it now. So a slightly challenging morning. [END REPORT] Well done fella!
We're also starting to settle on races for the year. Our club championship is at the front of the queue with the first race being the Maidstone Standard Duathlon. Some of the guys are coming back from injury or just starting out on their duathlon/triathlon journey so they'll be picking up the Sprint distance. For the rest of the year there's a big fat mix of events ranging from Super Sprints to Marathons to Adventure Tris (MTB and Trail) to Adventure Races (Coast to Coast) to half-ironmans so you're likely to see a lot of us out and about at various events.
All in all a great week that included new members joining the club, people smashing their goals and just so much fun it's rediculous.
Onwards to next week!
Another great week and weekend for the club! Tuesday we had the regular club swim session at Faversham Swimming Pool where we focussed on kicking and body position. Then Wednesday was the regular club running session which was set aside for hill repeats to focus on proper form, driving power from the correct muscles and a little increased intensity. Thursday was the beginners run session which saw the runners get to the half way point and onwards to their 5km challenge at the end. Then Friday was back in the pool again for the beginners swim course who are all doing really great.
If that wasn't enough, after a few recent cancellations, we managed to get out on a small but perfectly formed social ride over to The Bow Window in Lenham. A great ride and a great stop. We took the route up over the downs so it was steady climbing on the way there which was rewarded by some great easy downhill and sunshine on the way back.
To finish it off it was a Sunday morning of transition training and basic bike maintenance. We ran through set up of the transition area, some of the rules and regulations, some hints and tips for getting in and out of transition efficiently and a few other things. We also covered basic bike checks (brakes, gears, frame etc) and did some much needed puncture practice which is surprisingly informative as it turns out no matter how many punctures you've had there's always another cheat to learn.
Now... it's time to relax before doing it again next week!
Here at Swale Tri Towers we hope Santa has been generous and you all get to share the day with the ones you love. The only thing we have planned is a 90 second plank at some point during the day in our ongoing club plank challenge. Well, I say that’s the only thing we have planned but we’ll also be eating way too much and not feeling one iota of guilt about it! We might even have a sherry! Maybe we should do the plank soon, before the mince pies and After Eights come out!
Today also marks the start of the Twelve Days of Christmas and on the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me… a triathlete ready to swim, bike and run!
For the next 12 days we’ll be posing some little teaser questions for you guys. They’re mainly fun but answer them correctly and you could be in with a chance to win some BIG BIG prizes.
Please visit our Facebook page to take part in our Christmas giveaway!
WOW, what an amazing day we had today at the first ever Swale Tri Club multisport event.
OK, so the weather wasn't as AMAZING as what was promised but what we lacked in early morning sunshine we made up in great racing and a great atmosphere. For all the results head over to our Go Tri page.
The first race up was the hotly contested Tristars 1 race and it was brilliant to watch these 9 and 10 year olds laying down some serious pace and determination. In total they covered 1.1km run followed by a 2.7km ride and a final 550m run. As well as the amazing athletic ability all the Tristars displayed we also had some excellent Olympic style water drinking/over the head pouring and an amazing feed station run from one of the parents to make sure their star got the sugar boost they needed (he'd missed the bowl of sweets heading onto his second lap).
Second up were the Tristars 2 with a thrilling head to head. After a crazy start that involved a little bit of gun-jumping and some stumbling the competitors settled into their 1.6km run, 4.5km bike and 550m run. The end of the race saw the sister of the Tristar 1 winner coming home and making the Benson household a very proud one!
Now, it takes some bravery to enter this kind of multisport event and it takes a special kind of bravery if you're the only contender in your class and you decide to pit yourself against the clock in front of the crowd. For Tristars 3 we had Tilly versus the clock! If you've ever done a race like this, you'll know it's a little easier to do with others than doing it solo so this speaks volumes to the resolve all these Tristars are capable of.
Last up for the morning was the adults race. We had a superb mix of abilities from the seasoned to the first timers. In the group we had: a hotly contested race for first, a brave soul negotiating the gravel and grass course on a road bike and someone who took a tumble but got patched up and soldiered on to finish. It was great to see everyone enjoying themselves whether they were in it for a quick time or for a sense of achievement and they entrants deserved their medals!
There were plenty of cameras being used and you can see them on this gallery or on our Facebook page.
Of course, we didn't do this without the help of others so we need to say a big thank you to a few organisations. Firstly to Swale Borough Council for letting us use Milton Creek. It's a great venue and perfect for this kind of event. Then the Sittingbourne Parkrun guys. They normally use the location on a Saturday morning but they helped us out by donating the signs for us to use. Another thank you goes out to Maidstone Sweatshop who donated the bib numbers and lastly a big thank you to our Sponsor, The Bike Warehouse who helped with the medals!
Lastly, a massive thank you to all the competitors and to all the volunteer marshals who made our first event so enjoyable. It was great to see so many smiles and such high spirits.