Southwater Relay

Still waiting on times for this race, but what I can say is that it felt pretty damn good and I had a fantastic time.

Southwater Country Park bristled with friendly competition, as members from different clubs assembled and racked their bikes. By friendly competition, I mean something similar to that sibling rivalry, the type which surges with undercurrents of: “I know we’ve got a lot in common, but right now I really want to kick your ass”. Good times =D

This was my first open water swim. I would have felt nervous, but I was too busy giggling away with the blokes in front of me and to my left:
“I’d like everyone to be aware that i’m peeing right now”
“Damn, you beat me, I was just about to”
“Did it. Oooh, that’s better.”
A great start..

I felt a few waves of panic as the thrashing arms sped off, and I pictured the mass starts i’d seen on TV. I had a few moments of bewildered, slightly frantic water treading, and i’m sure that this was far from my best 400m swim time, but the sense of achievement I felt as I charged to transition was enough for me.

This was also another first: first race with clipped in shoes on the bike. Thankfully, the practice I had manage to get in (4 days, mainly commuting, and only one long ride..) seemed to have done the trick and I didn’t have any problems.

The run was two laps, starting with an uphill section. Unlike my previous races, I didn’t feel too tired from the bike leg, and I actually really enjoyed the run. Maybe because it was short, maybe because I was in a good mood, or maybe (as Harry likes to believe..) because I had been taken out for dinner the night before, and so woke up fueled and ready to go. Regardless, I handed my chip to my team mate, stumbled out of the final area, and joined the crowds to watch the next leg begin..

I am an NCTJ qualified journalist and copywriter with a year’s worth of experience as a local hack, and just under two years’ of experience working in the marketing department for a highstreet retailer. I currently work at Cycling Weekly, previous to this I was the editor at Total Women's Cycling. I do a little freelance writing alongside my job, and have written for Runner’s World, Triathlete’s World, Sussex Sport, Basingstoke Gazette newspaper, the Brighton Argus, Steve Hart Photography and 2LK Design. I blog to record the activities in my life which I don’t want to forget when I’m old and wrinkly (let’s hope the internet never melts down – but it seems safer than a notebook) – to let old friends and family know what I’m up to, and because I enjoy playing with words. I’m always looking for new projects – and you can email me should you ever need someone with an energetic passion for word doodling. Email: michelle.arthurs@gmail.com Twitter: @RideWriteRepeat Instagram: @RideWriteRepeat

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