Triathlon is a hobby, for me and many others who will never make a career out of it. A leisure-time pursuit undertaken for pleasure. Some people think that our hobby doesn’t sound very pleasurable. During this year’s Aberfeldy Middle Distance tri I started to see their point. It was an unpleasant struggle and made me question continuously what I was doing it for. Why was I continuing to cycle when I was whole-body shivering and couldn’t work out whether my fingers were frozen solid or just stuck together with energy gel? Why was I continuing to run towards the turnaround point knowing that every step took me further from Aberfeldy – the nearest cuppa and hot shower – while my Achilles ached, my feet were prickling with pins and needles and my spirits flagged? Why was I doing this ‘for fun’ in my spare time? I had no answers. Continue reading “My most unpleasant race to date: Aberfeldy 2015”
In the week before the race I intended to write a short blog post about how I thought I could have prepared differently for the event, without the benefit of post-race hindsight. Then I’d reassess after the race and see if I was correct, or was worrying about nothing or about the wrong things. It would have been so neat, but I never got round to it (such an amateur blogger).
This week I competed in a 10K race with 4349 other people, even though I was running alone, and could pick my own route and start time. Most of my competitors weren’t even in the same country as me. This was a new experience for me, and a good one. Before explaining how it worked I need to introduce you to my favourite bit of running/cycling geekery: the mobile phone app Strava. It’s not an exaggeration: this app has revolutionised my training, and has really motivated me. The app uses the phone’s GPS to record speed and distance during my runs and cycles: while there are other apps that do this I’ve never found one that works as well as Strava.
So why is it so good? Continue reading “Week Eleven: virtual 10K”