Attempting to chase from the water in Staffordshire

Away from pottery and oatcakes, here are my ten things to take away from Staffordshire after racing the first ever Ironman 70.3 Staffordshire. 1. I'm bad at seeing at the best of times. Sighting buoys which are miles apart in very choppy conditions provides a whole new challenge.

2. I'm still bad at seeing my bike sans specs when it's surrounded by 2,499 others in transition. ( See above.)

3. Last minute tweaks to bikes can be a godsend. Thanks to Mike at Bridgtown Cycles who quite literally saved my butt.

Happy butt on bike!

Happy butt on bike!

4. Waiting around in the cold for 90 mins between transition closing and your wave starting isn't wise.

5. Spending that time chilling out in the car a ten minute walk away is.

Chasewater

Chasewater

6. It's stressful and tiring trying to fit in: registration, swim practice, race briefing and racking in two locations a thirty minute drive apart the day before the race. Save the hassle, prioritize!

7. Shugborough is a pain for parking but awesome for running, with an incredible atmosphere.

8. Getting splits is amazing... but trying to chase down a 45s gap to the girl ahead of you in your age group on the last lap is bloomin' knackering.

9. Getting to within 8s of said girl half way through the final lap, before having nothing left and fading back to 40s in the last mile is agonising.

10. Coming 4th in your age group always leaves you hungry for more!