I want to start off with thanking Her Spirit for this amazing opportunity. I never would have thought of entering the London Triathlon otherwise

By Lara Drewes

Once I received the email, I got to training right away and what a journey it has been.

I hadn’t swum properly since I was about 8, so getting back into the pool was definitely a shock to the system. I was slow and weak. But spending hours in the pool got my confidence up and I actually started to enjoy it. Running and cycling I was used to, albeit not together and not racing. The first brick session was weird; jelly legs but they were warmed up so you ended up running a decent pace? I couldn’t quite comprehend it. Through it all, the training was hard and long but mostly actually enjoyable. Its so rewarding when you see the speed sessions in the rain starting to pay off. Cycling in the hail, did not enjoy that, but in the end it made me stronger, faster and fitter.

The London Triathlon, what an event. As soon as I packed the bike up to head into London Saturday, the nerves set in. Especially once I saw all the people who were going to be there. On the day, my alarm was set for 5am as I started the race at 7. The swim was long, I had never swum that distance in open water before and it is definitely my weakest discipline. Then a long run to transition, weirdly had to strip the wetsuit before going into the excel? Caught me completely off guard so a long transition time.

Then onto the bike.. lots of TT bikes whizzing round but managed to hold my own some of the way. The views were definitely the highlight! And the random man on an electric scooter commuting on the race course. Did get lost to transition.. the arrow was small in my defence or at least it looked small. In hindsight, it was bigger than a human.

The run was hot and quite slow, definitely could’ve pushed more but didn’t want to burn out on my first one. Comes with experience I guess.

So first oly tri.. 2:46 and 5th in my age group. Definitely wasn’t expecting that! Excited to get to proper training with a triathlon club and see where I go. If you want go follow my journey, follow my Instagram @laradrewes_tri

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