Bala Middle Distance Triathlon

At the start of the month I took part in the Bala Middle Distance Triathlon near Snowdon in North Wales. It is a 2km lake swim, 81 km cycle ride and a 20km run to finish with.

The day before the race the view down the lake was looking quite nice, what a difference a day makes.

Bala 2011

The next day it was wet, windy and only 8c!!

It actually felt warmer to be in the lake which the surface temperature was reported as 10c, so once I got my face used to the cold water I felt a lot better. The swim was ok until the far turn point which there was some waves to swim in to. I quite enjoyed this but it did slow my swim time down.

When I was in T1 I knew times were out of the window as the person next to me was putting his run shoes on as he was quitting already. After a few minutes putting a few layers of winter cycle kit on I left on the cycle.

There was lots of people cycling back within the first few miles, lots just going out in the poor weather conditions in a tri suit, they were not going to get far. Then the wind and hills started, at least I got to improve my bike handling skills. You know its bad conditions when there is a person waiting in a phone box to try keep warm. After finally making the turn point I stopped to fill up my drinks bottle at the only one on the cycle course and then headed back up the hills. It seemed to be head wind on the way back as well, which is not good going up a 10% incline at 4 mph!!

I finally made it back to T2 and there was yet more people quitting, I was even asked if I wanted to continue, I had got this far so I was not going to quit. So after a few minutes changing in to some dryish running gear I headed out.

The run the first and last half a mile was flat then the rest is undulating with the highest point being the turnaround point. There was a lot less people on the run than previous years but I was still going. After 3 miles my legs muscles had become a fatigued due to the cycle effort and the fast run start, so I had to walk any incline from then.

I made it around in over 7 hours which was 70 minutes longer than the previous year but over 33% of entrants did not complete the race.

My full race report is available on my blog, including some more pre race photos.