Awarded to Hillingdon Triathletes
I'm not sure I would've entered so many races if the registration details weren't thrust my way so regularly, but the members of my triathlon club are pretty convincing. In fact Hillingdon Triathletes are responsible for seven of my race entries this year! They, just like ambitious parents, push you off the high-dive into the deepest of waters but with an encouraging cheer and a proud smile when you finally emerge.
Awarded to Men's Health Survival of the Fittest
Throwing yourself over, under and occasionally into obstacles at night unsurprisingly seems to be a recipe for bruises. And these weren't your average speckling of black and blue, these were the type of bruises that your colleagues gasp at as you take your jumper off and your husband begs you cover up in public for fear of being accused of wife beating. But these were my war wounds – a souvenir of my bad-assery in completing the course – and I was rather proud of them.
Awarded to my husband Andrew
Most cheerleaders occupy the sidelines, shouting encouragement and whooping competitors over the finish line. This cheerleader, though, chose to support me on whilst doing the race himself! My exercise-shy husband don his trunks, cycle helmet and running shoes to support me in my first triathlon. My hero!
Awarded to the Wholefoods Women Only Race goodie bag
What more could you ask for after running a hilly 15k than a bag full of delicious snacks? Maybe stands offering an arm-full of free yoghurt and crisps? But of course, a race sponsored by the retailer of all things tasty awards finishers with a goodie bag to satisfy any case of 'runger'.
Awarded to Write This Run
Liz and Laura, together with the incredible group of speakers at their Autumn conference, have not only inspired me to put pen to paper (hopefully) more effectively but to lace up and put rubber to road for more challenges in 2014. They're already responsible for me taking on my first half marathon in March as part of Team Write This Run. I'm not quite ready to match their challenges, though – an ironman and a run across America!
Awarded to Wiggle Portsmouth Triathlon
The nauseous panic about this race was completely unnecessary – I partied in Portsmouth! The amazingly welcoming and fun atmosphere meant I was so relaxed at this event, I even chatted whilst trotting to transition. Not the way to get a speedy time but it was the perfect introduction to sprint triathlons.
Here's to an even faster and longer, fitter and sweatier, scarier and more fun 2014!