For the first 4 months I didn’t run at all due to a complete lack of motivation and drive. The main reason I got back into training was due to boredom as I was only working a few hours a week as a translator, struggling to find work and I decided that I needed something to aim for to get me out of bed in the morning. I decided to take part in another triathlon but this time at a distance I hadn’t yet competed at.

I found a half ironman triathlon taking place not too far from my parents’ place where I was living. I had about 7 weeks to train for it which is a stupidly short amount of time to prepare for an event which comprises of a 1.1 mile swim, 56 miles bike ride and 13.1 mile run at the end. Ironically I actually became quite busy during that time with job interviews which meant very little training actually took place.

Being someone who hates to spend money wastefully I decided stubbornly that I would still take part even though I hadn’t done anything near the amount of training required (sound familiar to the 2011 marathon?). Needless to say it was all a bit painful as by the end of the swim I was right at the back of the field and it remained that way for the whole race. I walked/slow trotted around the half marathon in 2 hrs 35 minutes (close to 12 minute miling pace – eek!) as my leg had locked up (very similarly to how it did in the 2011 marathon) which made painful viewing for my Dad.

My form wasn’t good all summer really as  I just hadn’t put any training in prior. I took part in the Warsaw Triathlon Club – Club Challenge a 10km race against Warsaw’s other running clubs. It was a tough race off not much training and I struggled round in 39 minutes.

On moving to London in the summer I joined an athletics club called Herne Hill Harriers, based in Tooting – South London. I started doing weekly sessions on the track which helped me no end in getting fitter.

By September I’d done a half marathon in 1 hour 26 minutes and in November I did the Leeds Abbey Dash 10km in 37:50. Something must have changed in me as I even took part in my first cross country race for 10 years at the South of Thames 7.5 mile cross country championships at Wimbledon Common. From memory I’d even entered a 5mile road race over the Christmas period organised by Coventry Godiva Harriers. However the night prior to the race i’d enjoyed a big night out with old friends and was in no condition to compete the following morning. It reminded me of the challenges of trying to compete again once i’d hit late teens as alcohol and hard training really don’t mix.


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