Tracey's Triathlon Success

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Olympic Triathlon 2017, Leeds
 
After the stressful beginning of not getting to the venue due to the roads being closed, I finally arrived. I was put into a later wave so I could get my bag unpacked ready for the transitions.  Starting off the swim wasn’t too bad until I turned the corner and the wind and waves were against me.  I found I was hardly making any distance.  One canoeist stayed with me and I am so glad she did, every so often I held on and managed to get my breath back.  The final leg was the hardest and didn’t help I got cramp, but I finished and was helped out of the water, sorted the cramp out and went to the first transition.  I got stuck in the wet suit and of course fell over, all I can say is I am glad it was grass to have a soft landing, it didn’t help I couldn’t stop laughing.  A very nice man came over to give help and finally I got on the way on my bike.
 
At this point I was the only one on the outgoing course, with being put in a later wave everyone else had gone.  The first lap, I didn’t find that bad, apart from the wind in certain places.  The hill wasn’t that bad either, I got off when I couldn’t pedal any further, but soon got on and continued.  It was the second time round I began to struggle, I knew I was getting short on time which worried me.  It didn’t help my back locked up and it was so uncomfortable.  All I kept thinking was I have to get to the end, I can’t give up.  A motorbiker from the events team stuck by me and kept updating me what they were going to do for the run side.  It was touch and going if they would even let me on the running course.  People at the side of the roads and the marshals kept me going, shouting ‘Go on love you can do this’ and ‘Go Wakey’ as I had me Wakefield Triathlon shorts on.  
 
Finally, I got to transition area, the marshals shouted to the crowd to keep me going I was the last one.  I managed to get onto the running course with 4 minutes before the cut off time.  The run side was the part I was most worried about.  A lovely lady started off with me and got me to do exercises whilst walking to try and release my back and side.  I did say at one point I didn’t think I could continue but she kept me going.  Gave me some chocolate and water which did help.  I knew I hadn’t drunk hardly any water on my bike and I had only had one gel pack, which I knew wouldn’t be helping.  Once on the route Dion from the events team cycled alongside and said he would stay with me until I got into Leeds. He said he didn’t think I would be able to finish due to the cut off time for the Elites but he would get me as far as he could.  Dion was amazing, it was like having a personal trainer with me encouraging me to run between certain parts and walk some uphill bits and making me drink.  The support again along the route to keep me going was amazing.  Half way along the course the same motorbiker man joined and then another cyclist who had finished his race came back for me. I wish I had got his name because he was so lovely too.  They all said we are going to make sure we will get you to the Headrow and then you have to finish.  Dion went ahead and it was agreed that I only would do one lap of the Headrow and not two, which made it 7k instead of 10k. I was happy with that because all I wanted to do was finish.  The cyclist who stayed with me put himself in front of me to buffer the wind with it being head on.  He took up where Dion left off telling me to run and between certain point and so did the man on the motorbike.  I really wouldn’t have done it without them.  I didn’t find the breathing bad running, it was my back and side, my body had had enough.  Getting into Leeds centre was the best sight ever, even a better sight was seeing and hearing all from Wakefield Triathlon Club, including Laura, Charlie, Zoe and Helen who waiting for me even though I took such a long time to get there.  I got told they never heard that much support and encouragement and were envious.  Hearing them just made me keep going, I couldn’t stop now.  Well I didn’t think I would until I turned on the final part, I saw the grandstand and the finish line and freaked out.  I told the cyclists I can’t do it, there are too many people and don’t want to run in front of them.  Dion and the other rider said you can’t stop now go for it.  After a bit of persuasion, I went for it and went through the finish line.
 
Sunday was the hardest challenge I have ever set.  You can do so much training but never prepare yourself for actually doing it.  So much had changed on the run up to the event but I knew I still had to do it.  I have learnt so much about myself, the main thing is to never doubt myself, I can do it.  I know without the support and encouragement I had not only on the run up to it but during the triathlon as well I couldn’t have finished.  The events team were amazing, I can’t thank them all enough and letting me get through to the finish line.  I was also so proud to be part of the Wakefield Triathlon Club and wear their kit, I haven’t met a club like it, whether you are a super speedy fast or like me just starting out, you support us whatever, you are amazing.  Also, everyone for the lovely messages before and after.  To Richard, Luke and Oliver who have encouraged me whilst training and coming to cheer me on.  To my sponsors Riverside Signs and Designs Ltd, Castleford, Total Fitness and Pro-Fit and finally to Jonny, my personal trainer who kept me going through the sweat and tears.  Thank you so much. 
 
Finally, would I do it again? Oh yes, I have registered my interest already for 2018.

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