6th February 2011 at QE2 Christchurch
It was the third event of the Physiomed series, the biggest of the three, with a 250m swim 20km bike and a 5km run. Not a huge event with too many people but for me it was going to be a huge challenge. I had been training over the Christmas break while everyone was relaxing and getting in the Christmas spirit, I would be hitting the pavements or splashing in the sea to keep up my level of fitness while away on holiday and not too many wines or Christmas treats.
The morning arrived gear was packed and nerves had hit as well as heat wave of 29 degrees at 7am. Arrived at QE2 with the men getting ready for their race which started at 8am, already complaining about the heat, so off to transition to set up the bike etc, I was already sweating and hadn’t even raced yet! Lots of nervous women hanging around fighting to find shade until 9.30am start time, temperature rising now 32 degrees!
Lined up at the pool thinking we are the lucky ones going to have a dip to cool off unlike our duathlon counterparts who had to 1.5 km run in the heat. The hooter went and we were off swimming 5 lengths of the pool, trying to remember all the techniques from bootcamp Craig had taught me in the pool, (slow arms, strongkick, relax the shoulders, bilateral breathing), well it all went out the window but I managed to make it to the end.
I checked my watch and to my surprise only 5.15 minutes had past and I was out of the pool and running to transition, WHAM straight into the heat of 37 degrees! Into transition; found my bike, rushed to put shoes on, quick sip of water and don’t forget the helmet. Approx 2 minutes later (very slow in Craig’s standards) I was out of transition and on the 20 km bike ride and flying down marine parade, yippee tail wind not looking forward to head wind back and the HEAT did I mention the HEAT? I must be mad. Before I knew I was at the turn around point and slogging it back in the head wind, mouth dry passing people giving as much encouragement as you can thinking when will this end.
Approximately 45 minutes later I was back into transition thinking another one down I am alive and still standing but how am I going to run 5 km in this heat, not much left in the reserve. But as you do off come the bike shoes and on went the runners and don’t forget to take your helmet off. People cheering you on so I knew I could finish it. Out of transition legs like lead and running like I was going nowhere, I set off to finish the race. It was getter hotter and hotter people were walking and stopping, the water at each drink station would just melt off you like an egg frying in a pan. One lap down saw my hubby and said got nothing left,
he said you can do it, you are doing awesome, you haven’t done all this training to quit now! So I dug it in and determined to finish I made it to the finish line with heaps of cheers and a shower of water waiting to cool avery dehydrated body.
With a big smile on my face I finished in a time of 1.24.02 I completed the series and in extreme conditions. All I can say it is very character building. If asked would I do it again YOU BET I have the tri bug.
Natasha Marshall (Boot Camp Graduate)