Race Recap // Monster Racing - Revitaflex Monster Olympic Triathlon


You might want to grab a cuppa before reading this race recap - It's a long one given everything that was involved in the day and I wanted to give as much detail as possible about the event!

Monster Racing staged their third Olympic Distance Triathlon around Ely this Sunday(16th August). There is a great mix of athletes that take part from newcomers(like me!) to Pros and GB age groupers. The olympic distance promised an iconic river swim in the River Ouse, a fast, scenic bike leg and a fast city run course. The swim was just under a mile long, a 26 mile bike leg and 7.5 mile run leg.

I've never taken part in a triathlon before, neither have I spectated in one, so I got to do a bit of both! Let me tell you about more my day and the race!

The morning of..
It was an early start the morning of the event. Me, Phillip and Jane(Phillips mum) were up at 5:30 am in order to have breakfast and ready to leave the house to head out to the event. I wasn't sure on an exact plan for breakfast - I was just winging it - I knew there would be quite a while until I would be running and wasn't sure if breakfast would be enough to fuel me. I had porridge and PB before I left.

On arrival - Everything was very well organised and sign posted - there was no confusion on where we needed to go at any point. In order to get into the transition area, you had to be wearing some sort of race number to get in - so there was security and safety for all the bikes and belongings inside the area.
This was taken after the race - it was a lot busier and packed pre-race!
There were two teams of us competing(amongst the 450 other competitors!) - Me, Phillip and a friend of Jane were in one team called Organised Chaos - The other team was Jane, Annie(Jane's colleague) and Annie's friend(Dave) for the Tesco team called Every Little Helps. We met up with the other team - minus 1 person from my team who seemed to be running late. Bikes had to be racked by 6:45am but he still had time to get down to the transition area and have his bike racked before Phillip finished his swimming leg(closing of transition area was more for security purposes).

Swimmers needed to be at the starting point for a race briefing at 7:15 am and it was a fair walk to the start point! Phillip and Jane got into their wet suits as they were doing the swimming leg of the tri - afterwards, we walked down to the starting area.

Race briefing didn't take long -  it was just re-iterating the rules/instructions we'd already been told for clarification. Afterwards - swimmers were instructed to get into the water and get warmed up for a 7:30 am start!

The Race
The race started dead on 7:30 am! It was fantastic sight to see all the swimmers starting off on their mile swim down the River Ouse.

After  snapping a couple of pictures -  it was time for me, Annie and Dave to head back to transition - it was a 15 minute walk back. I was hoping that the cyclist for our team might have turned up whilst we were seeing off the swimmers, but he never turned up! :/

Phillip finished his swim and was back into transition in 27.51 mins! Jane arrived back into transition after 33.13 mins. There was a short run from the river exit to the transition area which was mostly carpeted since swimmers would be running back barefoot.

There was a certain order in which the bike transition had to take place or a time penalty would be given. The rule was that the timing chip went on first, then the cyclists helmet(fastened) and then the bike could be un-racked(and in reverse order when they came back). They'd then have to run with the bikes to the transition exit before mounting their bikes for the cycle.

Transition from swim to bike went smoothly for Jane's Team - obviously, we didn't have a cyclist for our team so the chip ended up being placed on the bike racks and I waited until Dave came back before setting off for my running leg.

Jane agreed in advance that she would run round with me for support -  I was a tad nervous about the course as there were a lot of hills that I hadn't trained for. Dave arrived back for Jane's team in 1:25:32 and I set off at the same time as Annie, I took off too fast as per usual and had to eye my Garmin and slow my pace down to something more manageable.

The course consisted of an 'out' which joined onto the loop that would be the remainder of the course. The loop went into the city center past the cathedral - downhill and round back into Cherry Hill Park - which took us back up hill to the Cathedral - at the top of the hill -  we picked up rubber bands which would be our lap counters - once we had two bands, we were allowed to cross the finish line.
Basically, this - Courtesy of my Garmin ;)
After picking up a band at the top of the hill, you run round the Cathedral, which is incredibly beautiful - back out onto the high street -  downhill and round to get back to the start of the loop. There were plenty of locals and spectators out on the course to cheer people on which I was SO grateful for - they  made me push on forward when I felt like giving up! 

There were 3 hills on each lap of the course, all of them(at least to me) were killer! Especially the park hill. Jane ran slightly ahead of me and I basically just tried to keep up - I slowed down on the hills and tried to catch my breath after I'd finished them. It was a struggle, I'm not gonna lie but I was running faster than I usually would.

I ended up getting a stitch at around mile 5-6 after picking up an electrolyte water at one of the stations - ouch! If I was on my own running at this point, I for sure would have stopped - instead - Jane encouraged me to run through it. I hated her right there. I did manage to push through it though!

The last mile was my fastest - and I pushed as much as I could to get the best time I could. I passed the finish line in 1.11.10 - probably one of my best times - and probably something I wouldn't have been able to do had I not had Jane there to push me and encourage me round!

Here are my splits for anyone interested:
As you'll probably already know from Sundays post - I got a little emotional after crossing the finish line - I pushed myself so hard that I just got overwhelmed. I was asked if I needed first aid! xD 

There was a  table after the finish line which had crisps, sweets, cookies and water for people to eat and drink as well as Medals for people to pick up - the sweets were definitely appreciated!
The medals are pretty cool! I would have loved it if the name of the event/distances for the event were engraved on the back of the medal(as its just plain on the back) but it's fab none the less and will look great on my medal holder!

Just before we left, we took a group photo of us all with our medals! :)
Overall Thoughts
Overall, it was a great experience even if there were a few hiccups on our side -  Monster Racing did a fantastic job of making sure everything was organised and ran smoothly and on time which was great! The route was fab and well marshaled/sign posted the whole way round - I couldn't fault them!

It's definitely something I would do again next year and it's totally inspired me to get my ass into gear and maybe do a triathlon next year! I just need to get the swimming down - and buy a road bike.. ;) OKAY.. maybe the year after! We'll see!

I'd like to say a massive thank you to G's who paid for our two teams to enter the race! It was a pleasure to meet those from G's who also took part in the event! NOTE: They did not ask me to write this recap -  they don't even know I'm doing it. 

An awesome experience all round!
The Silvah Lining
Leave me a comment below: Have you ever taken part in a Triathlon? What is your favourite part about it?

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  1. Such a shame your cyclist never turned up. Love the medal though and your t-shirt (think I saw it on Instagram?) I hadn't considered entering a tri as part of a team before, but this would eliminate my fear of getting into the open water!
    Well done! Great running times out there. :)

  2. I've never done a tri! I'm really not a swimmer. What a great effort! Congrats!

    Thanks for linking up!

  3. I adore that medal! Nice job with your race. And I had to smile at your mention of trying to get ready for a triathlon next year (or the year after)! :)

  4. @AHealthierMoo Yeah, the t-shirt I put on my IG, the logo is so funky! They do races around the East Anglia area - you're in Peterborough if I remember correctly? so it wouldn't be too far for you to travel if you wanted to do a team tri! They do a sprint version too which is a much shorter version - perfect for beginners - they do half marathons and marathons too - it's worth a look :)

  5. @Taking the Long Way Home Thanks! I'm not a swimmer either, thats why I left it to someone better! I'm in swim lessons at the moment to help become stronger and get a better technique to maybe I'll do it on my own at some point! :)

  6. @Lara Ryan Thanks! The medal is probably the main reason I did it! I love funky medals - I hope to do a tri next year! just got to see how I progress with swimming over the rest of the year :)


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