Adapting to the world around me by Andrew Horsfall-Turner
15th November 2018
Since my last blog, so much has changed in a short period of time. One thing however, has not changed : my love for swimming and racing outside in seas, lakes, rivers or docks. Over the last 12 months I have begun to focus on the world of multisport events and more specifically triathlon.
Triathlons are traditionally an open water swim, followed by a bike course, and finished off with a run, with a range in distances that can have you racing for around 1-2 hours all the way up to 9-17 hours. And when you chuck a swimmer into that world, it takes some serious adapting!
My first race was one experience I won’t forget. In the build up to the race I had continued training in the pool and open water, I had added a few runs a week into my training too, however, I really hadn’t done any cycling. I borrowed my dad’s bike (previously my uncle’s bike) and thought ‘how hard can this be’. Well, it turns out the answer to that was : Very hard! I lead the 750 m seas swim by around a minute before cycling the wrong way onto the course and having to back track onto the course to complete the race! I didn’t have the race I wanted to, but it did spark a challenge within me!
Most often, long distance triathletes (such as Ironman athletes) come into the sport after competing as a runner or cyclist. I was coming into the sport as a water based athlete who was nowhere near adapted to land. And that’s why over the last year, I’ve really started to learn to adapt myself to the world I am attempting to compete in. My legs are slowly (very slowly) learning to take the impact of running on a regular basis without giving me too much in the way of backlash (niggles and injuries). I have big aspirations of racing a couple of half Ironman’s in 2019 and possibly a full distance event … And I now have my own bike! 😀
One thing will not change leading into 2019 however, my love for swimming and open water! I am still swim coaching for the City of Cardiff Swimming Club, and love helping people develop as a swimmer and seeing the progresses they make every day! I can’t wait for the spring to come to dust off the wetsuits and get back training outside in the great seas and lakes South Wales has to offer!