2016 – year of Health & Happiness / Snakes & Ladders

It’s that time of year when the race reports, statistic, highlight, lows, memories, STRAVA &  Garmin data is revived and analysed with one eye on plans for the future. 

2016 my review in a nutshell – it’s been a game of snakes and ladders, two steps forward / fall back four. Just as I was getting some momentum such as smashing Sa Colabra ride in Mallorca I’d then slip back into bed with bronchitis 😷🤒


2016 has yielded just one cup for me and that wasn’t in triathlon but shooting with the C&W Lady Gun club. Not a single PB in sight, not even a near miss. Initially I blamed old age, bronchitis, sore throats, doubting my training & Brexit (work).

A big asthma attack in Outlaw (initial one was post Exmoor 70.3) and wheezing walking the dog took me to the doctors to be diagnosed with Exercise Induced Asthma, which was allowed into my lungs from 2 lots of bronchitis that left their mark and scarred my lungs this year. Plus many years of dodgy lungs previously – poor family genetics. This background weakness seemed to have been lurking throughout the year and explains my lack of PB’s, energy & mojo at times.

From September I’d had blood & lung tests, X-rays, scans and an asthma nurse checking up on me in the evenings, along with a bag full of steroids & inhalers. The first 6 weeks were rough on the body while it adjusted to the medication. Gradually I came back to training completing three 10km runs which saw progress.

Speed hasn’t yet returned but fitness creeping back to pre asthma levels. I’m not there yet but that’s what 2017 is about utilising my training and getting it to shine on race day. 

My statistics for the year instead of mileage & number of rides, runs & swims are:

Sick days = x40 days/ nights

Training camp = Mallorca & Gower

Races completed = x12 From 10km running to long distance triathlon 140.6miles.

Races DNS = ten 

Doctors / nurses appointments = eleven (thank you NHS).

Mileage & activities = 2,400 miles & 278 ( 2015 3,003 miles & 320).

Training Peaks is a great visual on seeing how training matches up to the plan. Green is good with the session met in full, amber has fallen short on time or distance and red usually means I feel dead ! Looking back over the three months I’ve used TP the red & green squares remind me so much of the snakes & ladders board game.


On 22nd February Mike & I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary. We repeated a trip we did ten years ago but with slightly different locations. We headed to Canada 🇨🇦 for skiing in the Rockies 😊  in a cozy log cabin, then town & city life in Banff & Calgary.

A six hour flight from Canada to Hawaii we landed in Maui for two weeks of sunshine, sandy beaches, bamboo forests, waterfalls, fresh fruit, hula, whales, paddle boarding, surfing, pineapples, snorkelling it was shear heaven 😀

Many races whilst not getting the results on the clock I wanted or reflected what I had trained for gave me many great memories and laughs with friends and club mates in races and training camps. New challenges in Dragon ride, Velothon Wales and Equinox 24 hour team took me to new places to race. 

In September Mike & I took our young cocker spaniel puppy on holiday to Dartmoor. First time we’ve taken a dog on holiday and we all loved walking over the moors and up the Tors.

Remember first rule of 2017 – don’t mention 2016 ! 

So a quick peek into 2107, I’m limiting number of events entered and focusing on ironman Hamburg in August as my A race. But the main event is my 50th birthday which will be celebrated in Maui, Hawaii with a half marathon on the eve. 

A few highlights & memories form 2016 to look back on. It wasn’t all bad, and I feel as if I’ll make the top of the snakes & ladders board by the end of the year.


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