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Musician. Triathlete. Almost.
Musician. Triathlete. Almost.

Introduction to Me

Bishmanby BishmanApr 12th 2012
Hello TriBlog Readers!

I am a 23 year old guy with two passions in my life. The first, as you will have guessed, is triathlon. I am already hooked and I am yet to even do my first race. I have two coming up in July and I am absolutely buzzing for them.

How did I get into this whole thing? Well perhaps I should explain to you about my other love... Music.

I have played the piano since I was 7 and later took up the violin and guitar. In 2008 I moved to Bristol to study for a BA in Music which I completed last summer. I decided that I loved the city so much that I would stay here rather than moving back to Southend, Essex from whence I came. There was a great music scene, cultural activities to engage this arty graduate type, I had a great group of friends, and what with it being a major city there were more jobs... so I thought.

After finishing my degree I found that trying to actually get a 'proper' job was very difficult - pesky useless arts degree! I have been working non-stop since I was 15 - kitchen porter, shelf stacker, kitchen porter again - but was looking for something which would actually use my qualifications and challenge me a little bit.

I had been teaching music since the start of my third year at university, and still do. I have a collection of about 15 pupils that gives me enough money to survive, but was not covering my rent. So the hunt was on to find more work!

I spent ages and ages and ages inside every day filling out job application forms, tweaking my CV and writing cover letters. I found that I was spending so much time inside, in front of the computer that I was desperately looking for ways to get out of the house - I'll go to sainsburys! I'll go to the library/art gallery/charity shops. And then one day I signed upto the Bristol half marathon. I don't quite remember the reason I did that.

It was 6 weeks away and I didn't own running shoes or trainers. I am a musician! I drink beer and spent hours sitting down at a piano. I am not fat and therefore considered myself to be in good health. A quick google search of average finishing times for healthy people led me to sign up with the misguided belief that 1hr 40mins was an average time for a beginner. So that was the target. I went out for a run that day (still without proper running shoes) and failed miserably on my first 4 mile run. I stopped about 5 times, my legs hurt, my feet hurt, I was sweaty and horrible and I wondered why I had signed up for it.

Long story short - I bought running shoes, I read running books, I watched running YouTube videos and committed myself to a running training plan that I found online and tweaked somewhat. I completed my first half marathon in 1:39:39 and was so happy that I signed up for a load more races including two full marathons for the following year.

In the meantime my 'career' of sorts had started and I was working an internship (unpaid - but an opportunity!) at a music school, Jackdaws, in Frome and was washing plates at Tyntesfield National trust site to pay the bills. The 50 mile round car journey to Frome twice a week was evidently too much for my poor old Saxo, and it completely died sometime around October. I had the option of paying £700 to get it fixed, but I didn't have £700. My dad offered to pay for it but I felt a bit funny about someone else paying for what was essentially my stupidity. I didn't know how to properly look after a car and it died just like every plant I'd ever tried to grow.

Since I had to get to work, instead of fixing the car I bought a road bike with the intention of getting the train and cycling the 3 miles at the other end. This worked for a while but because I don't own a piano, I wanted to get to work early to do some practice. Having a car allowed me to get to work at whatever time I wanted, but Frome train station is not very often served with trains, so in order to get to work early I would have to get a much earlier train to Westbury and cycle the 10 miles from Westbury to Jackdaws. This gave me about an hour on the piano before work started. Yippee!

Doing lots of running and cycling, it was suggested to me by a pupil's parent that I do a triathlon. Needless to say, I am well on the way to completing my first triathlon and am loving it. I even cycle the 25 miles to Jackdaws now that the weather is getting better.

So that's where I am in my life at the moment. I've been forced into exercising through boredom and need to get to work, I'm kind of surviving financially and trying to kill myself physically. I put as much time and effort into my training, and researching my training, as I did into my music when I was a teenager. I have discovered that I love it. If you ask for my definition of happiness, I'd say that it was spending a long time doing one thing over and over again, just to do it right once when it most matters. Whether that means practising the piano 7 hours a day to prepare for a recital or training for 10 hours a week to prepare for a triathlon. Happiness is a process of preparation and completion.
sarahleonardby member: sarahleonard, Apr 12th 2012 14:53
Like! *imagine button inserted here facebook style :o)
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