Background bio, Triathlons, being proud & growing up

It’s not often I blog about non architectural topics but hey, I’ve got a platform and why shouldn’t I use it! And this blog post gives a little bit of personal background & why we should feel proud over what we have done rather than what we didn’t:

Well, in the ’80’s I was big into doing triathlons and my ‘career’ culminated in me doing the Nice International Triathlon in 1990. I did my first triathlon in 1983 (inspired by Julie Moss who crawled over the finish line of the Hawaii Ironman the previous year, where I came 2nd in my age group in the Tanner’s Hatch Triathlon. It was always my dream to complete the Hawaii Ironman but alas it was not to be; the 2nd place was by best performance and over the years I secumbed to fast competitors and injuries. I tried to qualify in 1989 in Roth, Germany but the sheer pace of speed was something I could not match (won incidentally by Jurgen Zack a huge (and fast) German 19 year old). You’ll find me in 806th place!:

1989 Roth Ironman Results

I know it’s said by a lot of people but time does pass incredibly quickly, it only seems a few years ago that I was doing triathlons but what truly brought it home was Nick Holmes website where the triathlons I did were in the (ancient) History section.

Nick has some great triathlon images of the time that we can have a good laugh at now; blingless triathlete on bike and low-key, scaffolding based finishing line of typical triathlon at the time (Kings Lynn) together with copies of the posters advertising the race.

1989 Triathlon Bike

1989 Triathlon Bike

1989 Triathlon Finish

1989 Triathlon Finish

Anyway, I’d always felt a tinge of sadness that I never got to do Hawaii and over the years I’d harboured thoughts that I’d return to the sport, my knees would magically get better and I’d be crossing the finishing line at Hawaii at some stage.

Well, after a quick chat with Stephen Allerton at Allmed Healthcare whose company advises and fits orthopaedic bracing and footwear (I was still thinking maybe some form of brace would fix my knee problems), the conclusion was that the only resort left was surgical intervention . I then got to thinking about the races that I had done and began to feel prouder of the achievements that I’d done rather than the things that I hadn’t finished. Maybe it’s called growing up? Especially when I found the Nice Triathlon on YouTube described as an Ironman (it was the 2nd hardest race to Hawaii at the time) and was also the official long course world championships (again at the time).

Anyway, what’s the moral to this tale?

* If you’re a sportsman, be careful of your knees

* Be proud of what you’ve done rather than things you didn’t

Couple of pics below : me coming out of water at Welsh National Championships (not sure what bulge is in wetsuit!) and certificate from Nice.

Here’s part 1 of the Nice video (copyright Nice Television 1990), well I’m in the swim somewhere ! (there’s a long black bit at the beginning, bear with it):

Here’s the second installment:

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