Team Cycling Plus-Kay Bowen

Does Kay beat her personal best in the Salisbury triathlon?

Team Cycling Plus will be updating you each week with the highs and lows of their training as part of the team. Kay tackles the Salisbury Triathlon...

Team member: Kay Bowen

36 year old Kay from Southampton is a very active person. She overcame thyroid cancer last year which has inspired her to try a whole host of new activities, including sailing, tennis, skiing and triathlons. As a triathlete, she already does a lot of cycling, but is keen to work on this aspect of her training. Her goals are to sustain longer distances and to go on a cycling holiday.

Well, if it wasn’t for the fact that I did a triathlon today, Monday’s ride would be the highlight that I would be telling you all about – awesome views, great hill climb up Beacon Hill and sunny weather combined with solitary riding made it a perfect morning – exactly 30 miles, and took me 2 hr 45 mins which included snack and view stops.

But, I did do a triathlon today (Sunday), the Salisbury Fast Twitch to be precise, so I won’t tell you about Monday. I spent yesterday nervous and irritable and my body came out in sympathy, with sore throat, sneezes and real stabbing pains in my stomach. It always amazes me how our bodies are in tune with our emotions. My dream last night was more of a nightmare, my shoes had got lost in transition and I had to run through crowds of people in someone else’s trainers. Luckily for me, the dream was not one that came true. 

Having noticed the etiquette of more distinguished triathletes, I took all my stuff into transition in an IKEA tub and they were all still there at the end. I even put my Garmin 705 on the handlebars, and about a mile into the ride I remembered to press the easily labelled ‘Lap’ to start timing. I found it helpful to see my speeds and it gave me an incentive to not drop too much speed on the hills. It got me close to my ambition of breaking the 30 mile an hour limit on a bike, I got up to 29.3 mph going down a hill into Amebury village.

The bike route was very hilly and there was wind and rain to enjoy too. The bike leg was 20 very hilly miles, and a fair chunk of it along the A303, which is a major trunk road to the west country. I didn’t enjoy trying to overtake people whilst observing the ‘no drafting’ rules and avoiding the lorries that were fairly oblivious to the string of cyclists all along the road. I had two new pals in my swimming lane, they were both older guys and gentlemen, they both overtook me on the ride (I lapped one of them in the pool though!) and were waiting for me at the end to chat over the race and give me a rough time estimate based on their own times.

A nice atmosphere all over the event, and well organised with no problems, thanks to Concept Sport and Salisbury Tri club. My husband, Rob, did it too, and he got a time 8 minutes less than me. My friend Sarah did it, it was her first one, and she did 19 minutes more. So… drum roll, my time. I was publicly hoping for under 2hr 30, secretly hoping for under 2hr 15, and my time was 2hr 3 min 6 sec. Ta da!

Who are Team Cycling Plus?

Team Cycling Plus powered by Verenti are readers Andy Ward, Kay Bowen, Malcolm Ratcliffe and Sam Shaw. We’ll be following them in the magazine for the next few months as they train towards their personal cycling goals under the guidance of Team Wiggle’s Ben Simmons and we will be publishing their weekly trials and tribulations here too. For regular updates check our twitter page twitter.com/cyclingplus and the Team Cycling Plus facebook page

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