It started gradually. I was running with a group of friends in the woods, enjoying the fresh air and challenging myself to keep up, when I noticed a slight stiffness in my right knee. Slightly annoying – not serious.
The next time I ran, it was there again. Not immediately, but after about 2km, the same niggling feeling. Again I kept running…
A few weeks later I set off to do my regular 5km Park Run one Saturday at 9am – a timed run in a nearby park which I was running almost five minutes faster than when I’d first started.
Until a few months ago I wasn’t sure what exactly a triathlon was and the idea of ever taking part in one was about as likely as winning the X-factor.
As a 43-year-old mum of three, I’d resigned myself to slowing down, getting even softer around the edges and giving up on unmet dreams, of which there are many. I was doing Pilates, sporadic runs and the odd Zumba class – which had more to do with escaping domestic chaos and getting away from my home office desk than getting fit. I was as fit as I was ever going to get.
Then one of my friends started telling me about a local triathlon class she’d joined. I wasn’t interested, but as her shape and fitness levels started changing, I noticed a niggling little voice: “If she can do it…” Although I was terrified, I joined Jo’s tri-team for a few friendly sessions at first and loved it! Jo Lewis, in her fifties and a triathlon athlete in her own right who has represented GB, was a huge inspiration. Here was someone more than 10 years older than me, who clearly had no intention of slowing down, looked great and is still competing and inspiring men and women of all ages to get fit.