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Aberdeen King's Aquathlon
At about quarter past 8, we left for Aberdeen in the university minibus which was being driven by Ali. Despite the uncomfortable seats, Tom “the man” (self-proclaimed) was able to go to a soundless sleep soon after we got on and was asleep pretty much throughout the trip amidst all the chatter. We arrived in Aberdeen University at around 11 and went to register. After the race briefing, we headed for the changing rooms next to the pool where our race was going to start. The transition area was laid just before the exit from the pool premises. We donned our trisuits, and gathered for a couple of group snapshots taken by the poolside, courtesy of Erin who was not racing but came all the way to cheer for us with the Eutri banner. Our Eutri wonder women started off their 800m swim in the first wave. After all the female participants finished their swim leg, wave 2 started with the male participants. I was in wave 2 while the rest of my mates were in wave 3 and 4. I’m not used to being in any race without having the coach around, so, was a bit more nervous than usual but the cheer from the rest of my team(after 2 warm-up laps) helped me calm down and get my game-face on.
Then before you know it, you are off the wall. It was an 18-metre pool so my first 10 or so laps flashed by without much effort and in this time I had forgotten my own lap count. Midway through the swim leg I felt my right shoulder was not responding very well and became very sore, nevertheless, I tried to focus and use all that I’d been taught in training. Being a weak swimmer, I was pleased to see myself get out of the pool before several swimmers from other lanes, who emerged just after me. However, I lost my lead to one or two of them in my age-long transition. My right shoulder was busted, I could hardly raise it, and on top of that I had to struggle to wear my jacket because my wet hands were getting stuck midway through the sleeves. After that was sorted, I quickly wore my race belt, put on my trainers and was out onto the run.
The 10k run course comprised 6 laps around the campus. Coming out of the swim and onto the run it felt like my lungs were going to explode as I was gasping for air. The first lap was hard and slow for me but I stepped up the pace a wee bit in the 2nd lap. By the time I finished my 2nd lap, I got the momentum going and found myself going much faster. However, it was not until in my 4th lap when I got the adrenaline suddenly charging through me. The girls after having finished their races, cheered me on in some of the laps, while Erin was there supporting after every lap and through to the finish line. I thoroughly enjoyed the run leg although I ended up with a bad leg injury from it; I barely felt it until my race finished.
Soon after me, the rest of the chaps finished the race. After a nice warm shower and a change of clothes we all went back to hear the race results. Eutri did not come home empty-handed. Tamsin won the 3rd prize for female seniors, which was amazing!! The boys also finished strongly considering it was our first aquathlon experience. We made our way back singing victory songs and tuning in to Harriet’s mix CD.