Aberfeldy Middle Distance Triathlon

Total time: 6:51:21
Swim (1.9km) 49:30 T1 00:04:38 Bike (90km) 03:50:52 T2 00:02:09 Run (21km) 2:04:11

I just didn’t know open water swimming could be so hellish.
After a year of swimming religiously 3 times a week, working on every part of my stroke and going out for long swims in Loch Lomond I thought that I had it and the swim was going to be ok. It was never going to be fast but at least ok. I’d even convinced myself I liked open water swimming so much I joined the open water facebook group!!

Anyone want to buy a wetsuit off me?

It took so long to get everyone in the water that I think a lot of people weren’t even close to the start line when the horn went off. I was still busy fixing my goggles and wondering why the buoys looked so far away. My swim was 49 minutes of continuous drowning. Felt like a lifetime. Every time I turned my head to breathe I got a slap in the face and a lungful of water. If I did manage to get my head up high enough to see where I was going above the waves I could spot people pulling themselves up on kayaks to get a breath. Occasionally there were tiny yellow pinpricks of swim hats visible but a lot of the time it felt like I was the only one out there, just struggling to swim (well, most of the time it was less swim and more vertical-in-the-water ‘granny breaststroke’) to get towards the far, far away buoy.


Eddie felt so seasick and dizzy that he eventually got taken to shore by a boat. Still managed a super-fast bike and run though, very impressive (and i'm grateful he didn't throw up in the water anywhere near me!)

In comparison to the swim, the bike was stunningly beautiful and the run fairly flat(ish) and fast. The sun even came out to help me up the hill on the bike and I loved the last 11miles of fast, lovely downhill towards Aberfeldy.

Got a fab t-shirt, which I’m going to wear next time I think I’m going to be running slowly (i.e. often). Loads of other goodies as well (waterbottle, food, swim cap) and the race was really well marshalled with lots of stops with energy drinks, water, bananas. Not that I had to drink anything on the bike as I was handily so full of water I’d drank during the swim (hydration strategy of champions!). These races always seem really expensive but you get a lot for your money and I really appreciated the marshalls being so friendly (particularly when there was only about another 5 people left out on the run course and they were probably desperate to go home).

Not sure I really had much of a race head on for Saturday so I probably went way too slowly on the bike - should've been less than 3hr30 but I just found it hard to care if I wasn't going fast. I suppose it worked out ok though as I still felt fine for the run and it was nice to be passing people at that stage. Lots of people had a run time well over 2hr and were probably in a lot of pain by then after going too hard on the bike.

Maybe triathlon just isn't really my sport. It felt like they'd brought me somewhere beautiful then bored me to tears with rules about drafting (7m), how tight your helmet has to be, when you have to put it on, how your trisuit has to be worn and loads of other boring stuff. I need to be inspired to want to race and saturday I just wasn't and it all turned into a bit of a plod. That's not to say I didn't still enjoy it, apart from the swim, but I feel like I could have gone faster.


Red Bike said…
I do hope you don't quit triathlons.
I've enjoyed reading this blog so much you've actually inspired me to start looking around for a short duathlon. (I don't fancy the drowning bit).
Elizabeth A said…
Yeah, without the drowning would be more fun! I'm starting to forget the bad bits though and actually caught myself thinking about entering another one...

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