Sophia’s Season

Beginning of 2021 – I had just had 6 weeks off due to inflammation in my hamstring tendon which was injected with a cortisone injection before I started with Synergie Coaching and then as I started with Di.

I  badly twisted my ankle on the 18th December and then we went into a 3 months of lockdown,with no pool, I hadn’t had chance to do any of the initial assessments and Di must have thought what has she got herself into accepting to coach me!

Di was able to rehabilitate me, adapt training to lock down with swimming band exercises and specific exercises for my various weak spots and previous injuries!

First race in a couple of years due to covid! 16th May Arundel Standard distance – none competitive due to no one being able to get into a pool and the swim was very short. I wasn’t sure how it would go after triathlons being a distant memory, however I loved it and it really rekindled my enthusiasm and reminded me of what I had been missing.

Nice to meet another female athlete that Di coaches who gave lovely feedback on Synergie Coaching and how much she loves it.

I was glad I did a good reccy for the bike so I knew where the poor road surfaces were to avoid the pot holes.  Run was really hilly but thoroughly enjoyed it.

Dorney Lake – Standard 13th June

1st in age group.

Great venue as always, lovely and flat, got a good feel for keeping at a consistent pace on the bike and run, found the open water swim with no wet suit a lot slower than my usual swim – Later in the year from the swim assessment we found this was likely due to my legs sitting a bit low in the water and creating some drag, especially when sighting!  Something to work on!
Swanage Triathlon Festival – Standard 4thJuly

2nd Female


If you don’t like hills – don’t do this one!

Bike was hilly which tired the legs out and there is a hill/steps on the run that I don’t think anyone has ever run up it.  And I thought Arundel was hilly….. Really learned to trust that you can recover off the hills and to just keep going no matter how wheezy and terrible your breathing sounds!!  Just as hard going down hill as footing was difficult.

Swashbuckler Standard – 18th July

2nd Female





I was a bit worried as had seen a lot of little jellyfish in the river the day before and was not looking forward to coping with them in my face when swimming.

Wetsuit was optional and it remained firmly on!

I realised from the last none wetsuit swim I do much better with it on due to the buoyancy and less drag!  I was leading all the way up until a couple of miles into the run when a very rangy, tall lady cruised passed me, the best woman definitely won!  I hadn’t realised that the run was 11k and got a bit worried I was stuck in some sort of torturous never ending track, where I was meant to see the finish line right ahead and it just kept going…… remember to check the distances so you know what to expect!

Eastleigh 10k – 1st August

5th in my age group, 36/591 women

Did a cracking run for me.

Di reminded me I need to have a goal so I aimed to start at the pace I aimed to run at and keep going at a consistent pace!

Ran it as planned and beat my personal best, I was over the moon!

New Forest Standard 29th August

1st in my age group, 2nd female.

It was my Triathlon Club’s Championships too.




First time I got to meet Di!

The swim was lovely, although towards the end the sun was really in my eyes and I didn’t have the reflective lenses on my goggles, they were just plain ones, decided after this I definitely needed to invest in some good goggles to beat the glare as had to slow down and sight more to see where to exit.

There were some interesting bits on the bike, where we had to jump off at the road works and run through, mount back up.

Ponies and Donkey’s were a lovely sight.

Romsey 5 Mile 19th September.

1st in my age group. 7th Female out of 279.

This was a really lovely flat run to boost my confidence ready for Valencia.

Again ran a personal best and met my goal of 7 min mile pace.  Great set up, easy parking and start, lovely and flat!

ETU Sprint Valencia 25.9.21 – 5th 😊

I had never raced abroad and did not have a clue what to expect!

Di was brilliant, obtaining information I needed, i.e. how to put the bike in the bike box, letting me know what to expect and briefing me on the course etc.

Di had set up a lot of training to mimic the same conditions/race course so I felt well prepared and Di’s reassurance of ‘you have done all the hard work, now just enjoy the experience’ made me feel a lot better and less pressure.

I booked the full package with Nirvana and stayed in the GB hotel as I was clueless and didn’t want any stress from travelling and things going wrong.  I found someone to bike round the course with the day before as I was a but nervous about all the traffic and it all being on the other side of the road!  I was really glad I prepared myself well with familiarisation of Swim, bike and run course as it alleviated most of my nerves.  I had the mechanic check I had put the bike back together which also reassured me!  It was a dive or jump off quite a high pontoon, I really wanted to dive but hadn’t done so in a while! So found some GB people practicing up the river off a similar pontoon and joined in.  I managed to get my goggles on tight enough to dive in without them falling off, I didn’t have the right technique but it seemed to work.

Race day Morning, left in plenty of time, got to bottom of the hotel and had a flat tire, had to change the inner tube quickly and pump it back up, was a little stressful, but lucky I had planned some extra time for things going wrong.

Bike surface was very slippery on the white lines and I saw a few athletes come off their bikes just riding down to the start so made a mental note to be careful.

Start of the race, some of the other competitors started to make me feel nervous and they were shaking and verbalising how worried they were.  But I just kept repeating to myself, you have been doing this all year, its just another race in a lovely location, hard work done…… enjoy!

Dive went fine, swim, transition, bike, transition & run all to plan.  Worried a bit about the non-drafting and may have played to cautious and lost a little time.

Didn’t expect to come 5th so really pleased.

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