When things don’t go to plan, there is always other options.

Getting an injury can be devastating and unfortunately this happened to me whilst running a half marathon. I felt great and wanted to go for decent time and just enjoy the day with a few friends.  I had a tight calf a few miles from the finish but nothing too serious, unfortunately a few days later during a recovery run I realised that the damage was done! The verdict was a small tear in my Soleus muscle. 

With just two weeks until my first race of the year this was not the news I wanted to hear. I was entered into the Cotswold 113 Middle distance so running was out of the question and I needed to come up with a plan.

Aquabike?  After advice from my physio and coach Richard Hughes it was decided that I could change my entry to the Aquabike as my injury would allow me to cycle and swim without causing any further issues.

Game on!  With a new enthusiasm I worked solely for the next two weeks on my swimming and cycling, Rich planned lots of Zwift workouts to increase my FTP and strength together with some extra swims.

I felt great on race morning and was looking forward to this new format.  The swim was one lap of 1900m and I found this a bit of a challenge as my goggles kept steaming up and the sun was blinding, I swam well but not necessarily in a straight line! T1 was well rehearsed and I was out fairly quickly and on to the 2 lap 90km bike leg.  The course was more or less flat so full gas the whole way round, I have a road bike with clip on tri bars and took great pleasure in overtaking a fair amount of TT bikes.  Lap one was just under one and a half hours so I had the sub three hours in my mind.  I crossed the dismount line and timing mat with a bike leg of 2 hours 54 mins. I racked my bike and jogged over the finish line. 

My family had been watching me on the tracker and told me that I had won my age group by a massive 20 minutes! I was absolutely delighted.  I think I quite like this Aquabike!

The morel of this story is don’t let an injury get you down, work with what you have and get advice from the professionals. I love Triathlon but there are so many other opportunities in the multi sport world.