This is the first of a series of interviews with our club members, this time it’s with James.
Tell us a little bit about yourself…
Hi, I’m James, I’ve been part of the club for over 3 years, I’m married with 3 chickens and 2 dogs. I work in the city, and have always tried to stay active.
What motivated you to sign up for your first triathlon and how did it go?
When I moved to London, I got sucked into the city life, I wanted to join a sports club to keep active, but also meet likeminded people. I had swam, biked, and ran, as separate activities (ran to the office, cycled at the weekend etc). So triathlon seemed like sensible sport to get into to try and aim for something. I was also really bored of to the gym, and found the variety of training suited me well!
What’s your favourite discipline (swim, bike, run) to train for and why? Least favourite?
When I first started, my favourite disciplines were cycling and swimming. Although the swimming was very difficult, the club sessions were achievable, and much more interesting than going to the gym! Now (3 years on) I have found more love for running, and the club run on Saturday mornings really helped this. The Forest is a great place to run, and ELT put on different coached sessions every Saturday.
How do you balance training and what tips do you have for others?
When I first started, I just did the club swim sessions. I worked cycling and running around work. The club put on a number of sessions, but it is important you do what works for you. My tip would be try and do one swim session a week, and one other session, perhaps your least enjoyable discipline. Training in a group helps to make it more enjoyable!
What is the best triathlon experience you have had?
Every year the club enter the “Vitruvian” triathlon, which is a 1.9K swim, 85Km bike, and 21km run. This distance can be quite scary for some, so we organised relay teams where one person does one discipline. We had 7 relay teams enter the event, and many first timers. It was a fantastic way for people in the club to experience “part” of long distance race! We also camped over that weekend, so as well as the racing, there was a lot of beer flowing that evening!
What was your worst race and why?
I was lucky enough to represent Team GB as an age group competitor a couple of years ago, I competed in Challenge Walchsee which was a half iron distance race. The bike section was very hilly, and I misjudged my nutrition. I run out of energy on the bike, with 5 km to go and really struggled on the half marathon!
What is the next big race you’re training for?
This year I have decided to focus on the Olympic and Sprint distance races, The first big race this season is the Nottingham Sprint Qualifiers in May.
What are your goals for the year?
Try and keep up with the youngsters that keep joining the club!
What’s your favourite part of the triathlon lifestyle?
The people! We are all very social, we just like doing some kind of exercise first!
What advice would you offer first-timers based on your experience?
My advice would be to come down and get involved. We all started somewhere, and with the wrong equipment! It really is a complete mix of abilities and people, all brought together by some unique desire to do something active