04 Jul Face your fear, and do it anyway.
I had my first feel at tri today when I signed up for Fitness First’s Tri class at the Capitol Tower. This was after my tri-weekly squat session where I did 5sets of 3reps of deep squats with 87.5kg today. This was also my first freestyle swim after the shoulder dislocation which happened 5 months ago. Yup, first swim after 5 months. I know what you’re thinking- I’m crazy. But you need to be a certain level of crazy to do tri. So I’m halfway there.
The unlucky shit that happened to my shoulder did put everything to a halt. I just finished my freestyle swimming lessons in Sydney, I was just learning how to do a handstand and I was getting better in boxing. Picking up these new sports was my way to reset and refresh my mind which I believe is of utmost importance especially when you have to do or have been doing the same sport almost every single day for 13 years of your life. You need that reset button. This was my reset button.
The shoulder dislocation was really uncalled for and very unfortunate. But it happened and I had to deal with it. No point dwelling over it. Now, thankfully it’s almost as good as new. Except that I can’t do a single chin up…yet. But I’ll get there. Like the day I managed to put on my bra the normal way where you contort and twist your elbow in the weirdest manner to be able to put the clasps together on your back- it felt like the biggest success ever.
I’ve always wanted to try my hands at tri because I want to know what is so fun about doing a multi-sport event. I wonder why people do it, why others live and breathe it. But I think, all that aside, I probably just want to know what my body is capable of doing- especially after a shoulder dislocation. I want to know how far I can push my body and mind. I crave for challenges. I guess this is what I live for.
The hardest part of this attempt is going to be the swim because I cannot swim. At this point, I can’t even finish a 25m lap swimming freestyle without stopping. Today, I took 15mins to complete 8 laps. That is slower than my breaststroke. The instructor at Fitness First said that her first tri ever, she swam it breaststroke. That actually gave me a glimpse of hope. I could settle and improve my breaststroke or just freaking get better at my freestyle. I chose the latter.
With absolutely heavy legs because my technique in swimming is so atrocious, I jumped on the stationary bike for 15mins and then threadmill for another 15. To be honest, these two legs of the race are going to be my saving grace. The bike part may scare me a bit because me and bikes just don’t get along – according to history of how many bike accidents I have been involved in. But I’m definitely more confident for that than swimming in the freaking open sea.
The session consisted of 15mins x3 time trial. I’m now struggling to keep awake while writing this.
I have to say it was super challenging but my desire to want to complete a triathlon is so strong I can’t find an excuse not to do it. (Just as I wrote this sentence, my “Motivational” app appeared with this quote: “The starting point of all achievement is desire.” -Napolean Hill
I’m already looking forward to the next session in water to improve my freestyle. I’m open to any training partners willing to pace me or help me improve my technique, whether on land or especially in water. I would be more than happy if you want to share your training schedule with me and I believe I could be a good running pacer for you (and motivator too!). And I would be ever so grateful if you have an extra road bike that I could train and race with because I had to leave my bike in Australia :'(
If you are wondering if I’m switching sports, I’m not. Even if I do, I’ll stick to one sport, not three. HAHA. I just thought that this would be a good opportunity for me to use that reset button. And it’s always good to experience what athletes from another sport goes through because there’s always something to learn. Joseph Schooling was sitting on the rowing machine after Rio and this is what he said, “This year, I’m doing rowing (for dryland exercises). It’s a new thing. It’s hard, but it’s one of the key things that will take me to the next level.” No athlete trying out another sport for cross-training will be frowned upon.
And maybe, just maybe, if my willingness to put myself out there and face my biggest fear of swimming in the open sea (because I broke my nose once in there) and doing something that I’ve never done before would make you try something that scares you, then why the hell not? x