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TriHardAlan - Tales of an Age Grouper
TriHardAlan - Tales of an Age Grouper

Ups and Downs

TriHardAlanby TriHardAlanAug 18th 2017
Not for the first time I have written a Blog and not got round to posting it and then finding it's out of date and needs rewriting. Which is what I am doing now. The first version went like this:

Did Arundel qualifier for worlds, swam well, average cycle, decent run, didn't qualify
Collapsed in High Street that evening (I'll get back to that)
Got a roll down spot for the world champs

The new version goes like this:

Did Arundel qualifier for worlds, swam well, average cycle, decent run, didn't qualify
Collapsed in High Street that evening (again, I'll get back to that)
Got a roll down spot for the world champs
Took part in Anglian Water qualifier for next years Euro champs, swam OK, decent bike, good run, didn't qualify
Checked the roll down list, should have been a decent 5th, not on it, had registered on wrong event, cant go to last qualifier, cant go to Euros
Did an evening Tri at Eton Dorney and broke 20 minutes for 5k for the first time since Hip operation

As ever in Triathlon, with so many variables and uncontrollable factors you need to keep a sense of perspective. My initial reaction to qualifying for the world champs was a bit flat. I was 12th on the rolldown list and with the event being in Rotterdam and travel relatively cheap there is no way I should have got a spot or indeed would have done in previous years. But thanks to the greed of the ITU and their ridiculous £330 entry fee lots of people, especially those that have done the GB thing a few times, said enough is enough. And who can blame them? So after originally feeling a little unworthy I quickly changed to joy as this was a significant milestone on what has been at times a painful journey and a milestone and experience I want to share with my partner Marcia who without her support none of this would have been possible.

And talking of perspective we come back to the collapse later in the day of the Arundel Triathlon. I could write pages of stuff on the detail and aftermath of this. The short version is that after two such incidents in 7 (yes seven) years where on both occasions I had stressed my body extremely (not only the Tri's but lack of sleep and bad hydration/nutrition) 2 separate consultants think I have epilepsy and should be on a 2 year course of a fit represent drug that has a list of possible side effects, literally, as long as my arm. In very small print. And I have long arms, believe me. Whilst we seek alternative opinions and solutions, the perspective it has given is to treat my body with more respect by sleeping more, using more electrolytes and better hydration/nutrition generally.

And finally, to that last point, that first sub 20 min 5k. My last Sprint, just last month, the run, at the same venue was over 21 minutes. Is it the increased sleep and other improvements that have taken over a minute of that time? Was it more simply the accumulation or regular training since the end of May? Or the regular strength training including a British Military Fitness like boot camp that I have been doing that has made me stronger? I suspect its a combination of all of these. But ultimately it doesn't matter as that rather harsh lesson/experience of collapsing in the High Street and the damage that could have caused has taught me a valuable lesson that we have to respect ourselves and our bodies.

And this will have value far beyond this years world champs and next years European champs which I won't be going to because I registered for the Duathlon instead of the Triathlon!

Maybe in that first collapase 7 years ago I bumped my head a bit harder than I thought :-)
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