Antalya Swim-Run 2014

For this event I was still not sure I wanted to risk my knee on a 1 mile run, so I teamed up with Ondrej from Czech (fresh from the Turkish Peace Run) and signed up for just the swim.

It was 350-400m (vague, I know!) from the water's edge, diagonally out to sea, round a buoy and back to the pebble beach. The water was coldish at 17C, not fun for easy swimming but not a problem when warmed up by your race effort. The organiser Vasanti asked me, with a concerned look on her face, if I had been in the water and when I confirmed I'd survived 10 minutes, she seemed reassured. Well, I was a fair bit skinnier than some of the other swimmers. Surprisingly it wasn't all the big guys who were ahead of me - as we piled in to the calm, waveless (but cold!) sea, I found myself in a bunch that included Pataka and Abhinaba, both better known for their running prowess and certainly not blessed with the classic swimmer's build. Both guys are awesomely fit though!

It was a hard effort out to the buoy - I was sighting off a snow capped mountain just to the left of it, but with no waves at all on this sheltered bay I was soon able to pick out the buoy and head straight for it. Abhinaba proved impossible to catch and Pataka just beat me to the buoy, coming in from the right. On the way back I kept my head down apart from the occasional peek at the crew waiting on the beach to make sure I was taking the right line, and I pushed flat out.

When I hauled myself on to the pebbles and handed over to Ondrej I was pleased to see I had finished in the leading group - 4th out of 17 - behind the powerfully build Viharin and the aforementioned Pataka and Abhinaba. I'm well pleased with that :)

Ondrej went on to finish first, holding off a fast finish from Abhinaba, and so we were first overall and first of the 2 relay teams. We also had a dead heat with the winning pair from the women's relay, Shyamala and Abhejali.

Great fun, felt wonderful to be pushing myself hard in a race again, and by the time the Clevedon aquathlon comes around I hope to be fit enough to do the run as well :)

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