Tri-me to train

It’s that time of year again. Every winter for the last three, I have made a sporadic decision–normally after a couple pints–to sign up for an athletic feat. The past two have been half marathons, but this year I have taken it about a million steps further: I am doing the London Triathlon in August.

Unfazed by my distinct lack of muscle and stamina, I opted for the Olympic distance: a 1,500m swim in the Thames, 40km cycle and 10km run. Days after I signed up, the news broke that everyone’s favourite Pop Idol, Darius Danesh, nearly died after accidentally drinking water from the river. Seriously.

Come August 4th, I will be attempting this mammoth race. Unlike past years, I can’t blag this one with a few 10km runs in the weeks beforehand. The aforementioned lack of physical fitness means that training actually has to begin… well, now. Summer bodies are made in winter, after all.

This is not, however, just a feat to boost my ego (and entertain spectators with my flailing doggy paddle). Three wonderful girls from my recently-departed NCTJ course suffer from diabetes (in a class of 28, that’s a pretty high proportion). Aside from their admirable openness about their disease, it became clear over our five months together that they were some of the most upbeat, positive people I’ve met, despite evident everyday difficulties in coping with diabetes. When choosing a charity to support, the girls recommended InDependent Diabetes Trust, which tends to the mental health side of the disease, both for sufferers and their families–

Diabetes is a disease for which the mental health impact is often overlooked. The Insulin Dependent Diabetes Trust (IDDT) is a registered charity and was formed in 1994. They are concerned with listening to the needs of people who live with diabetes, understanding those needs and doing their utmost to offer help and support. They not only want to help those who actually have diabetes but also their carers – the husbands, wives, partners and parents, indeed, all who ‘live with diabetes’. They recognise that when one person in a family has diabetes, all other family members are affected to a greater or lesser extent and they all have views and needs which may be different from the person with diabetes, but nevertheless are important.

I’ve set a target of a grand because this is a pretty grand challenge. Please chuck a few quid my way, and feel free to come down in August–I promise it’ll be worth it.

Link here: Feel free to share far and wide!



  1. You’ll be fine…Just try and swim, bike and run regularly. It’s a pretty easy course to navigate. Not sure where you are based but they offer weekly open water swimming in the dock where it takes place. Just wait for the weather to warm up!


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