Our Race Buddy Helen is starting her season with team Race Force at Xtra Miles events Wilmslow triathlon on the 15th of May. Read her pre race blog to find out how's she's been preparing for the race.
The staff at Wilmslow Leisure Centre, where Xtra Mile Events base their Wilmslow triathlon, must be bored of seeing my sleepy face. I’ve been there a lot this year and I’m sure the lifeguards and receptionists have a nickname for me…I dread to think quite what, but if I worked there I’d probably be ‘pink cap woman’ or ‘the 0620 or 1240 woman’. Shifts dictate which, but I really am that predictable.
It may sound boring, but I think having a routine can be really helpful when you’re training for an event. It’s easy to stick to a plan if you have one, but it’s hard to get yourself out of bed in the morning if you have no purpose to your training. Similarly, having a training buddy can be hugely motivating. If you know your friend will be at the pool waiting for you at 0630, you feel pretty bad if you don’t turn up! I have a feeling being a Race force race buddy will be comparable and I'm really looking forward to racing with you on May 15th.
This will be my second triathlon of 2016 as I build towards Ironman UK in July. I did the Ayia Napa Olympic distance race whilst I was on holiday in Cyprus in April. Swimming in the sea, under clear blue skies was awesome. The Wilmslow weather might not be quite so pleasant, but I guarantee the event will be just as fun. It’s a super friendly, local race, with a really inclusive and relaxed atmosphere. I did it in 2014, had a bad swim, a better bike and a good run.
If you’re doing the race for the first time, I’d suggest making sure your tri-suit fits you well. Baggy lycra doesn't look great and as I found out two years ago, it tends to slow you down in the pool too. The bike course is fairly flat, but watch out for the short, sharp climbs around Ashley and the speed bumps and potholes near the Leisure Centre. The run also includes climbing onto the pedestrian foot bridge over the bypass, so save some energy for that.
As it’s a sprint race, I wouldn't bother with socks. You might get blisters but you’ll save yourself time in transition. Just make sure you've put plenty of talcum powder in your trainers and bike shoes if you’re using them. A spot of vaseline on the heel helps too. Otherwise, keep transition as simple as possible and just have what you need. If you aren't going to wear socks, don’t have them in transition, they just confuse you when you’re in a rush to get through! My final tip is to enjoy it. After all we are so lucky to be able to call this sport our hobby.
If you see me on race day come over, say hello and have a chat. I tend to smile a lot, but if you see me looking confused and lost, chances are I won’t have my glasses on, so you might need to wave too!
To find out more about Helen and our Race buddy scheme click here
If you would like to sign up for the Wilmslow sprint triathlon or find out moreclick here
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