Tag Archives: Primera Tri Expo

I managed a sprint tri in the space of a week

13 Nov Fitness instructor course materials

I really thought that I was going to get back into a routine of work, training and blogging with M starting nursery… but three weeks in and her attendance is 25% 😦 The poor thing has picked up every illness going and shared it with the household, so I’ve not had a lot of free time.

One thing I have been doing is getting out on my bike. I’m really enjoying my cycle commute – I had forgotten how much I love my quick trip to work, although it’s definitely more challenging with a trailer – and the logistics of adding it on and removing it have taken a bit of getting used to.

I’ve got back to doing a bit of swimming, starting off with a lunchtime swimming session with Liz and then a week later, I did a 1 hour swim set on my own. I really need to plan my swimming sessions more carefully (and ideally swim more than once a week). Hopefully, I’ll soon be able to swim at the weekend as Stu and I are planning to take M to the pool on Sundays. It would be good to also schedule a midweek swim session.

Last week we went to Southampton parkrun, where I had a steady run. I spoke to a few people on the way around and was pleased that my time wasn’t terrible.

parkrun 04 Nov 2017

This week it was my turn to run with the buggy, so I joined Rachel, Phil and Felix. We started off at a slow pace because of the congestion, but definitely picked it up by the end of the run. I’m not as fit as I was, so it felt really difficult.

parkrun results 11 Nov 2017

I love the chance to talk to so many friends at parkrun. I had a quick catch up with my friend, Teri, and we agreed that we need to schedule in some social runs. We discussed perhaps going for a run on Sunday morning, but I decided to have a lie in instead. It was the right decision as I felt shattered.

On Saturday afternoon, we drove down to Bournemouth to go to the Primera Cycle Expo at the BIC. I’ve been a couple of times before and have picked up some real bargains. This time, there was a lot of Sugoi kit for sale at bargain prices (£5 per cycle jersey and £10 for shorts!)… but everything was in enormous sizes, which was disappointing. Maybe we needed to go earlier in the day. After checking out the reduced kit, Stu, M and I walked around and had a look at the bikes. I still really like the look of Kuota bikes and the paintwork on some of the Specialized bikes was gorgeous… but what really caught my eye were the adorable Cannondale Lefty balance bikes. A sales assistant kindly got out an Allen key and put the saddle down so that M could have a go. She is still a tiny bit short, but I think by Easter, it may be possible for her to have a balance bike. (However, I can’t afford to fork out £200, so it’s more likely to be a bike from Decathlon than a new Cannondale!)

Cannondale Lefty balance bike

One of the most exciting parts of my weekend was visiting Bournemouth University to pick up some course materials. Next weekend, I  take the first step on a new career path (although I love my job as a learning designer and can’t see me quitting that any time soon!) I’m going to be doing a course to become a Fitness Instructor, so I’ve been busy studying anatomy and physiology in preparation for the course. It’s a bit challenging as I haven’t studied any biology since the age of 13, but I’m really motivated and excited to be learning.

Fitness instructor course materials

On Sunday afternoon, Reena and Mike came over to collect the Mountain Buggy running buggy that we took to Australia. I hope they enjoy running with it as much as we did. Like me, Reena has a place in London Landmarks Half.

Afterwards, we went and watched some of the cyclocross at Southampton Outdoor Sports Centre. I had planned to watch the event a year ago, but ended up back in hospital that afternoon instead, so I was pleased that I got to see some of the action as well as meeting friends.

In the evening, I read that there will be a new route for Southampton 10k, half marathon and marathon in 2018, which sounds exciting. I loved running the marathon this year, but I think I’ll drop back to the half in 2018 as I’ll be running a marathon in July and don’t want to have to sustain the training for that long.

Hopefully, things will settle down a bit for me in the new few weeks and I’ll be able to get into the swing of regular swimming, cycling and running with a yoga class thrown in for good measure. It’s not going to be easy fitting in blogging and studying, but I’m sure I’ll find a way!


Because of baby M’s illness, I’ve not been online much this week, so I was late to visit Rafflecopter to draw the winners of Haseeb Ahmad’s book From Blind Man to Ironman – apologies! The lucky winners who will each receive a copy of the book are:

Sarah Wakely

Michelle Dorrington

Congratulations, ladies! The books will be in the post to you very soon 🙂

 

Primera Tri Expo and a lovely bike ride

27 Oct

I’ve finally had the chance to start getting back to some semblance of normality this weekend. My original plan was to go down to Bournemouth early to do a ride before the Primera Tri Expo, but Stu has been unwell and I was still feeling quite tired, so we decided to have a bit of a lie in before heading down to Bournemouth. We went to the Tri Expo last year and quite enjoyed it, so we were looking forward to picking up some bargains this year as well as finding out about new products and races.

Unfortunately, there weren’t as many exhibitors there as last year, which was a little disappointing. There appeared to be one nutrition stand where there were electrolyte drinks, but as I’m quite happy with the nuun that I’ve got (and my stash of high-5 stuff gathered at cycling events), I didn’t bother trying it. Zoom Tri Club were there, but I was surprised that Bustinskins didn’t have a stand and there was no information about Challenge Weymouth either. Race New Forest were also not participating, so it seemed like a much more low-key event. Having said that, I managed to do plenty of shopping:

  • Castelli jersey – £70 reduced to £20
My new Castelli jersey

My new Castelli jersey

  • Assos base layer – I haven’t bothered to take a photo as it’s just a plain black unisex short-sleeved t-shirt – £68.99 reduced to £20
  • Gore jersey – £84.99 reduced to £10
Gore jersey

Gore jersey

  • Specialized women’s trail top reduced to £5 (I suspect that this item has been sitting in storage for a while as it smells a little musty and definitely needs to go through the laundry before I’ll wear it!)
  • Two pairs of socks – a pair of white Specialized socks with pale blue polka dots on them and some DeFeet World Champion socks (I’m dreaming big!) – reduced to £1 a pair from about £9
DeFeet World Champion socks

DeFeet World Champion socks

  • A pair of Xtenex blue and white laces – reduced from £9.99 to £5

xtenex blue and white

  • A pair of Orca hydro booties – reduced from £34.99 to £5
Orca hydro booties

Orca hydro booties

So, all-in-all, I did pretty well. Stuart also managed to bag himself some bargains, as there were various jerseys that he wanted which had great reductions (such as men’s Castelli jerseys reduced from £90 to £15!)

After the Expo, we had lunch in Bournemouth, before heading to the Primera store. We had been given 15% off vouchers that were valid for one day only, and Stuart wanted to buy some new pedals.

When we went into the store, I decided to have a look at the bike helmets. I bought my road bike helmet in this shop a year ago, but I’ve never been perfectly happy with it, as the straps don’t adjust as much as I need them to. The helmet that I’ve got is a Specialized S30, and the sales person recommended buying a more expensive Specialized helmet. I tried on the superior model and it did fit better, but I’m not sure that I can afford to spend that much on a new helmet right now, and I want to have a look at a few other brands before I make my decision. (Before any queries my judgement about buying other stuff ahead of my safety, I’d like to comment that I have two cycling helmets that fit me adequately, but I think I could get an even better fit!)

Stuart found that he couldn’t buy just a pair of speedplay pedals, so he bought a set with cleats included. With the 15% discount, they were about the same price as the ones he had seen online that were just pedals.

I then made my final purchase of the day – a pump. I’ve got CO2 in my bike bag, but I think it’s sensible to carry a pump as well.

On Sunday, Teri and I agreed to go for a bike ride. We’ve not had the chance to have a chat for ages, and I’ve not done any training since I got back from my running/tri holiday, so I was desperate to get out and do something. I’ve also been quite stressed with work, so I thought some fresh air and exercise would do me good.

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The essentials for my bike ride: some flapjack, a bottle of nuun, my tools and my inhaler.

I cycled to Teri’s house, but when I got there, I realised that I had forgotten my cycling glasses, so we agreed to cycle back to my house to collect them (<3 minutes by bike). I also realised that it was colder than I had thought, so I popped in to put on my new base-layer… to go with my new jersey and socks and a pair of super-comfortable SOAS shorts. I also put on some black arm warmers.

Teri then realised that she felt a little cold, so we cycled back to her house to collect a jacket.

I had a vague idea of the route that we should take and Teri also had some thoughts, so we headed off towards Romsey. I wanted to cycle up Cow Drove Hill and Teri was keen just to go out for a spin. One of the things that Teri finds amusing is that when we go out running, I always see someone who I know. I think it’s the combination of having been in Lordshill Road Runners for a couple of years as well as my involvement with parkrun. As we got towards Romsey a couple of cyclists passed and one shouted hello to me – it took a second before I recognised him, but I realised that it was Garth from Vankru (bikes and bikefitting). Teri thought it was really funny.

After we’d ridden about 40k, Teri realised that she was getting ‘hangry’, so we stopped at Lillie’s in Stockbridge for some hot chocolate and cake. We decided to have a slice of toffee cake and a slice of carrot cake to share. They were both delicious, but the toffee cake was the clear winner.

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It felt quite cold when we’d stopped, so we realised that we had to get moving again, so we headed back towards Kings Somborne. Fortunately, we got onto a route that I recognised – it led us to the top of Cow Drove Hill. At the bottom, I persuaded Teri that we should cycle up it, just because we could. I’m not sure that Teri thought it was such a good plan, but she humoured me and agreed to it anyway. I felt really pleased that a hill which had seemed like an enormous struggle in the past was now much easier.

After our feat of mountain climbing, we headed back towards Southampton. I failed to capture everything on my garmin, but think we did about 65 leisurely km. Thanks, Teri 🙂

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To round off a great day, Stuart cooked some ‘pasta di triathlon’ for tea!

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