After running my marathon two years ago, I kept a reasonable base level of fitness but slacked off this year. I got very busy with running my business, and basically dropped the cycling to work and dropped back to running twice a week or so.

But I have a personal goal of doing an Olympic-distance triathlon (and maybe even an Ironman) by the time I’m 50, and I’ve been inspired by all the Olympic activity of the past two weeks and have decided to get back to peak fitness again.

After packing my running gear into a bag this morning and looking forward to a lunchtime run today – really looking forward to it after looking out the window late in the morning and seeing an absolutely beautiful August day, I went to get changed and realised I had left the bag at home.


But every cloud has a silver lining and I remembered that (about six months ago!) I had brought a towel, goggles and boardshorts to work and left them in a drawer, as a contingency for when it was raining and I couldn’t go for a run. Swimming is pretty important for a triathlon – you’re not going to get far without completing the first leg!

So off I went to Richmond pool for my first swimming session for about three years. I managed 10 laps of the 50m pool (with a short rest at the end of each lap). It might not seem like much, but to put it in perspective, when I started getting back into lap swimming a year or so before my marathon, I was hopeless and could barely manage 50m in one go. I was trying to swim too fast, getting out of breath, and basically had no idea. But with a bit of coaching from my friend John Bethell, I got some technique and worked out how to pace myself.

But boy, do I have a lot of work to do. My arms are really tired, and I suspect I will have a bit of difficulty lifting them tomorrow! But it feels really good to have made a start on the track to another big life goal.

Oh, and I’m back on the bike too…