To round off my busy weekend, we headed to Cambridgeshire at 5:30 am for my first open water swimming competition.
I was quite nervous for this race because I have never competed in one before, and to jump straight into a 1500m swim was quite a difference from my normal 750m race in Triathlons.
This race was an 'Australian style race', as you had to run into the swim from the beach and dive in, then on your second lap you had to get out of the lake, run around the pontoon and into the water again.
There were hundreds of men & women on the beach waiting for the horn, but I managed to get to the front and as soon as that horn went I ran for my life (I had visions of being trampled by the hords). I managed to get into a good rhythm early on and was around 10th place when turning at the first buoy. It was so choppy that it made my arms ache like hell but my rhythm was good and I managed to sight really well and never went off course.
I had such a good sprint start that I managed to avoid the big cluster of people swimming over each other.
Coming into the end of my first lap, as I clambered out it took a few seconds for my land legs to get their bearings but I soon sprinted round and run in the other side before diving in. I managed to overtake a few more people with my dive and run on the second lap. I got into my rhythm again and overtook a few more people, although I now couldnt tell who I was lapping or who was in front of me.
I felt good coming out on my second lap and my coach Perry told me he thought I'd got 1st AG female - but I had actually got first overall (male & female of all age groups).
.... but my racing weekend was not over. We had bought the bikes with us and were cycling home!
Perry had planned the route on his Garmin and it calculated around 6 hours. Mum was going to head home but I could phone her when I had enough and she would come & pick me up.
But I refused to give up. I wanted to make it home.
Although it nearly killed me - I got home - 7 1/2 hours after we started out and after a 1500 meter open water race.
I am aching from head to toe today but my parents and coach Perry are very proud of me - and I am proud of myself.
I'd like to thank Kelly Bullis for the massage today. She had an extremely hard job and did a head to toe massage, spending nearly 1 1/2 hours on me. I feel a lot more flexible and aching a lot less now, although I do expect the DOMs to set in tomorrow.
UPDATE FROM THE BIKE RIDE HOME: PERRY HAS CHECKED HIS GARMIN & i DID THE 90 MILE BIKE RIDE IN 6hrs 31min.
COMPARED TO A RECENT 100MILE RACE, THE 16YR OLD MALE JUNIOR DID IT IN 8hrs 6mins... SO NOT A BAD TIME CONSIDERING I'D JUST DONE A SWIM & IM FEMALE! :)