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In late 2012, after her brave fight, I lost my Mum to cancer. In the months that followed I struggled to come to terms with losing her, everything you would want in a Mum that was mine.

CraigIn early 2013, seeing that I was not in a good place mentally a mate reminded me that I had once commented about doing a Triathlon and that if I signed up for one he would join me. We signed up there and then for London Tri (Olympic distance) which was in the July. A big challenge as no real exercise since leaving school all those years ago!

The training helped with the grief, running in particular felt positive as a great release of the emotions. By early April, I was struggling with my swimming and another mate (Nigel Hunt) suggested that I join him at Dunmow Tri’s club swim on a Monday night. I resisted at first as Hertford (where I live) to Dunmow and then back again seemed a long way for an hour’s swim. Anyway I took up the offer of a taster session and that was it, have been going ever since! Not sure I would have achieved half of what I have without this great club - very friendly, encouraging and supportive which is a credit to all of the members at all levels .

I completed London Triathlon and immediately started thinking about doing more but never believed where this journey would take me as during that first year someone said “you will take part an Iron Man one day” which I confidently dismissed as crazy talk. My events to date now tell a different story:-

2013 – London (Olympic) / Dunmow (Sprint)

2014 – Windsor (Olympic) / London (Olympic) / Hever Castle (Olympic)

2015 – Slateman Savage Llanberis - this involved Sprint on Saturday / 500m swim (shortened due to water temp) 50km Bike and 11km Run.

2016 – Iron Man UK 70.3 Exmoor, then 4 weeks later Outlaw Triathlon Nottingham (Full Iron Man Distance)

My Facebook comment on completing the Outlaw….Finished yesterday in a time of 13hrs 50mins and was completely spent. I had been searching for a challenge that would test me to not give up and this was it, really was doubting myself off the bike with a marathon to come.

When Mum was diagnosed with cancer it was prolong rather than cure but she had a steely determination not to give up, which was inspirational with the quiet grace that she always exuded.

Along with all the training & other events, yesterday was most definitely for my Mum x Woke up today Half an Ironman & A Full Outlaw, never thought I'd say that!

Rewind 4 years ago and I would not have believed that any of this was in me. Along the way I have raised in excess of £3,000 for the charities Cancer Research UK / Mind / Macmillan Cancer Support all of which are close to my heart.

I enjoy the training as much as the events, the feeling of not giving up is what inspires me as the only person to beat is me.

You will never know what you can achieve unless you try tri

Craig

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