Sunday, 18 July 2010

Oh lordy, lordy, lordy

Okay - so you would think after the last triathlon I might had put this misplaced enthusiasm to 'try something different' to bed, yes?

Err, no. Spurred on by the thrashing that my Brazilian Babe training partner and my former rowing crew girlfriend, the lovely Wine Writer, imparted on me, I have now enrolled in another event - the West Wight triathlon on September 19th.

Not to be outdone (or overtaken, I am sure), WW has also taken up the challenge, and I am now nagging BB to do the same. This included a hefty pep talk as to why she should join us whilst we pootled round Richmond Park on our road bikes this morning.

I think she took the hint as she went on to do another lap whilst I headed home...

Anyway. After the sense of humour failure in the pool at the Henley triathlon, I figured I needed to get my swimming back in to gear. Considering it was the one discipline I (foolishly) was not concerned about, it actually ended up being my Achilles heel. So, what to do?

Aha! I thought, I will get a wetsuit and practice open-water swimming whilst on holiday. Since I am not taking my bike with us, nor am I likely to go running in 35C degrees heat on open roads with cars, dust and melting tarmac to contend with, this will be the best option to stay focused.

So my mad Geordie Girlfriend - who has been doing triathlons for some time now - lent me her wetsuit.

"Don't buy one," she said, "I have two - take this one." And she gave me this:

Very nice.

Note the measuring tape detail: GG is a good head shorter than me.

I did look at her when pointing this out and say in disbelief, "And how exactly do you expect me to get this on?" She proceeded to show me - complete with very articulate commentary "you yank your hands down here, and you hoik it up here, and you heave it over here..." - what the process was to get this item of *cough* clothing on, adding that it would take "at least fifteen minutes to get into it".

Fifteen bloody minutes? Squirming on a beach entertaining the masses as I try to envelop myself in a full body wetsuit that looks like it was made for a twelve year old? You're joking, right?

"If' it's too easy, it's too big," she said.

Only GG could say that and keep a straight face, I kid you not.

So - a case of 'try before you buy'.

The squirming into the bottom half (ten minutes):

Squishing my arms in (like pulling on a woollen sweater that has been through the tumble dryer and shrunk, lots) and trying to yank the zip up (don't kid yourself, this actually took 5 minutes and I developed a third boob in the process):

And finally - ta dah! Note how the wetsuit legs are a good ten centimetres too short. Like I said.

I felt like I had jumped into a vat of expandable cling-wrapping plastic and had my lungs shoved up my nostrils.

So I stayed like this until the children agreed to help me take the damn thing off. I bribed them. They are now allowed to drive my vespa on weekends, go to bed after the adults do and eat chocolate cake for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

You think I am joking? I had to take this photo whilst they wrestled with the alien item.

Guess what? The next triathlon's swim is in a pool as well. Makes me wonder why I am bothering with all this rubber.

Yadda yadda yadda...