I decided to dip my toe into the triathlon world with the Cheltenham Tri in the Park tipped to be a great event for first timers. This was a super sprint tri – 400m pool swim, 6 mile bike, and 2.5m run, set in the very sunny Pitville Park. I took along my friends and boyfriend for moral support and we had a fantastic day.
We arrived about an hour and a half early to check out the sports centre and for me to get my bearings of the course. I was ‘branded’ by the race organisers with a big black permanent marker on my arms and legs as number 5. My nerves were settled meeting several people beforehand who were also first timers. I was a little worried that my mountain bike would look a little out of place, but looking around setting up there were all sorts of different bikes!
When it came to my start time, I walked with the others in my start group into the pool where we had a supportive briefing. Luckily, I was in the first 5 so I go to start the swim with an entire lane to myself. The swim got off to a great start, but after a couple of lengths I had to take a few breathers to settle my nerves and get my breath back. From the pool, there was a short run outside to the transition area, where I got lots of cheers being the first lady out of the pool!