In an action packed weekend that saw Tri-ers competing across Wales, Amman Valley Pool sprint triathlon saw two Caerphilly Tri-ers complete their first ever triathlon. We decided to catch up with Lisa and Helen once they had got their breath back.
Before joining the Tri-ers Helen was a runner who never entered anything that was easy. After getting bored of half marathons – her words, she competed in the 2017 Vale of Glamorgan Coastal Ultra 32 miler and Man V Horse and Race the Train in 2018. Lisa was focused on pull ups, lifting weights and working on her guns in the gym.
Why did you sign up for Amman Valley Pool Sprint Triathlon?
Lisa – I was encouraged to sign up by members of the club (peer pressure – good job team) as it was described as being the perfect “first tri”.
Helen – It was in Sept 2018 I had dinner (and far too much wine but might be better to omit that fact)* and I was telling a friend that I had done more challenging running races and I didn’t know if there was anything left to challenge me other than going further in an ultra – like 50 or 100 miles but I wasn’t sure I wanted to go down that route. Then Vicky suggested I challenge myself to do a triathlon. I couldn’t swim properly, I could do breast stroke but only without getting my hair wet as I didn’t like my face in the water and I’m scared/have a fear of drowning. But after the 2nd bottle of prosecco she had talked me into it and I agreed so we went home and entered.**
*I’m a lazy copy writer so left it in.
** As a club we encourage you to enjoy alcohol responsibly.
How did training with the Tri-ers help you prepare?
Helen – Well I couldn’t swim so I got taught to swim by Amy and Karl who were amazing, patient, encouraging and kind. They moved at my pace, pushed me when I needed to be pushed and backed off when I struggled.
Lisa – When I joined the club last July I couldn’t breathe under water and had never heard of cleats?!! Swimming sessions on a Thursday has become a mandatory part of my week and without the support of Amy and Karl I could never have taken part in a triathlon. Their encouragement has been amazing and I can’t wait to start open water training with them for my next triathlon. I was given cleats for Christmas and in January I was taken for my first ride with members of the tri club on my new road bike (always had mountain bikes). The advice from that first ride has stayed with me and I’ve only fallen once off my bike since!
Amy & Karl insist they didn’t pay for these compliments.
What would you say to someone thinking taking up the sport?
Helen – Do it. With the belief and the support of a good club you can do anything you set your mind to!
Lisa – I’ve loved every minute of being part of the tri club. I’ve made so many new friends and I love the new outdoors training. I would recommend entering a triathlon to anyone who wants a fun, new challenge and to not be afraid of wearing the tri suit (it’s surprisingly flattering!) And more than anything from all the cardio I now have the best night sleeps!
A big well done to the Tri-ers support team who went on to cheer everyone on and to Phil, Marc, Carl, Sarah, Emma, Helen and Lisa who represented the #BeastsInBlack