On a beautiful morning, we made our way to Tanjong Beach, Sentosa. When we arrived, the music was already playing, lots of people were getting ready for the race and warming up, many people had their friends and family with them – it made for a great atmosphere!
We found some shade not too far away from the water, emptied the bag of toys out onto the sand and set up camp for the morning.
Last year in this race I think I was about 20th in 1h04m33s. Swimming is my weakest of the three sports in a triathlon, but I feel like I have improved a bit over the last year or so. On the other hand, this would be my first swim since Putrajaya (a month ago!) so the plan was to enjoy and not push too hard…
I went down to the water to warm up, even up to my waist I could still see my feet! I went in a bit further; even all the way out – I’d guess the water was about three metres deep – I could see the bottom. It was the clearest I had ever seen the water on this beach! Such a lovely surprise. There were lots of people around to have a chat to while we were getting ready, people from work, some I’d met at other races, others from Journey Fitness Company – including our very own Coach Jon who was swimming the invitational 4.5km – and some friends from Yellowfish swim squad.
We went into the starting pen a few minutes before 8:25 – even more friends to say “good morning” to! Kathryn Haesner (who I expected to win) have me a hug, the guy with the microphone talked to a few people about Mother’s Day (today) and then we were off!
I had chosen to just wear a normal swimming costume, no speedsuit/ swimskin, I don’t think I am fast enough for it to make a difference, so may as well be comfortable! A few people did ask me just before the race if I was going to swim wearing “that”…? I was thinking, “Well yes. This is indeed what I am going to swim in - it’s a swimming costume…”
I was very glad to have my blueseventy open water goggles on though – comfy and great visibility all around, which I like to have in crowded open water races. I got kicked in the face at the start and later an elbow in the face when I was overtaking a guy on the third lap, but my goggles didn’t budge!
I got into a rhythm quite quickly, gliding as much as I could and keeping my hands and shoulders relaxed… and watched a whole bunch of women pull away further and further into the distance! The swim was enjoyable (apart from a couple of small nips from sea lice) and it was nice to get out, run a few metres, have a drink and stretch my back in between each lap. Apart from the initial feeling of being left behind by the faster women in my wave, it felt good to be overtaking the slower men from the earlier waves for the entire distance. I even recognised a few as I passed them!
Before I knew it I had finished. I collected the finisher medal and took it over to where my sons were playing on the beach. We spent another hour or so building sand castles and digging holes before showering, changing and calling a taxi to go to Mothers’ Day brunch with our friends.
Several people commented that this year’s course seemed to be longer than last year – estimates ranged from 300 to 700 metres extra! Kath said her time was about 3 minutes slower than last year, so I was expecting mine to also be slower. I was super chuffed when the results were published to see that I was more than 2 minutes faster and about 10 places better!
I was also delighted to see that overall the first and third places went to women! Kath didn’t win as I had expected but she did beat all but one of the men. New to Singapore, Jacqui Foley beat them all! How appropriate on Mother’s Day!
I think this one was probably the best Mothers’ Day I have had – such a lovely day will be hard to beat next year!