Well I guess the title of this blog says it all… I should’ve been doing a triathlon today! In fact, I should’ve been doing my ONLY triathlon of the year today. But unfortunately, like so many things, this too was canceled due to COVID-19. And sure, it sucks, since I’ve been focusing on my training more serious recently, but you know what? I’m not gonna let it get to me! Next year I’m gonna be stronger than before!
So… a triathlon. You know, the sport where you start with swimming 🏊🏼♂️, come out of the water to jump onto the bike 🚴🏽♂️ only to finish it off with a nice run 🏃🏼♂️. A few years ago I was taken with the triathlon virus. I had been doing various runs and mud/obstacle runs already, but I wanted to take it a step further. I love running, I love swimming (or at least, I love being in the water) and even though I didn’t have a proper road bike at the time, I also loved cycling. So I figured, why not try and combine the three into 1 sport. Which I did and on Juli 2nd 2017 ran my first ever triathlon. It was a 1/8th, meaning it’s a 500 meter swim, 20 kilometer bike ride and 5 kilometer run. I finished it, not with a great time or with great ease, but I finished it! And man did I love it.
This year because of all the things happening I haven’t been able to participate in any sports events (or any events in general). But a few months back I saw a post online about a triathlon happening in MY CITY! Because of newly announced less strict government regulations at the time they felt that they could let the event continue, albeit with several changes to make it “corona-proof”. So I signed up and started focusing more on my training. Especially my swim has always been my weakest discipline. Even though I had a wetsuit to add a little bit of buoyancy, I still didn’t feel very confident in the water. Luckily I found a group of people who also swam in the same lake as I always did, so that gave me a bit more motivation. The last few months I’ve been going pretty regularly and improved my swimming quite a bit. Before I was happy to go for roughly 200 meters without gasping for air, now I slowly started doing 1 kilometer and still felt good. I was excited to take this new energy into the triathlon this weekend!
My bike had also been a bit of an issue in previous tris that I did. Since I only had a mountainbike, I wasn’t as fast as others. Mountainbikes are made for off road terrain, not asphalt. Earlier this year I got a proper road bike from my parents and have been making quite a few kilometers on it since then, so I felt a lot more confident about that part of the triathlon as well.
And as for the run… well my running has been so-so for the last year, so while it wouldn’t be great, I wasn’t worried I wouldn’t make that.
But unfortunately, the event organization couldn’t get it done. They couldn’t get all their affairs in order to make it a safe and successful event, so late last month they had to cancel. I was obviously very bummed out. While I respect the decision that has been made and know it was probably for the best, I was really looking forward to it. I miss racing and competing in these events. Not to get a win, but just to challenge myself and have somewhat of a goal to work towards. And just the fun and thrill of competing.
But ultimately, it did give me a bit of extra motivation. With fall and winter approaching, open water swimming season will probably end soon (sorry, I just don’t like cold water 😅), but hopefully somehow I can keep up my swimming, while working on the other disciplines too. I got a bike trainer to ride indoors and running… well I can do that year-round. Just need to get a kick in the butt sometimes when the weather’s bad. My goal is to keep training, so that next year, perhaps I can start my triathlon season with a longer tri. Perhaps a 1/4th for a first time? We’ll see!
Ooh by the way, I’ve made a video of me participating in my very first triathlon. You can watch it below. And for those of you who don’t speak Dutch, be sure to enable subtitles (as they are available!). Also, if you like to keep up with my sporty adventures, be sure to check out my Instagram, where I usually share pictures of my training.