Neuff Red has a team of pro-triathletes, top coaches and others, but most triathletes are normal people enjoying swim-bike-run: The Age-Groupers. These athletes hold down a day job, manage their family life and still manage to dedicate time for training and racing. This series is a celebration of the age-groupers!
We pleased to share with you Peter Lloyd's triathlon journey. Peter has been racing triathlons for 25 years and is also a full-time triathlon coach based in Wales. See more at his website www.peterlloydcoaching.co.uk
The Early Days
Sitting on a beach in Pembrokeshire with friends during the summer of 1995, I came out with the statement “I’d love to do a triathlon, but I can’t swim very well!” Six weeks later I was on a beach in the Gower with my best mate lining up for my first triathlon; 98 triathletes in black triathlon wetsuits and us two in bright yellow surfing wetsuits! The journey was about to begin!
Over the next few years, I entered lots of Sprint and Olympic races and even one Half IM, but I had recurring calf injuries which led me to focus on cycling. I started winning a few local Time Trials (TTs) and entered some road races, even picking up a few quid here and there!
Being a frequent visitor to Lanzarote, the IM race there started to really occupy my thoughts, and having missed the 2011 Welsh 10 mile TT age group title by a couple of seconds I made myself a promise - win it next year, and you can do Lanza! The rest is history!
My Ironman journey and transition to coaching
It was only going to be the one IM, but by the time I crossed the line in Lanzarote May 2013, I was hooked! Ironman Wales quickly followed in the September with a big chunk of time taken off coming in at 13:01, not bad for a cyclist! Three weeks later, disaster struck. I was hit off my bike by a white van and was off work for 20 weeks; life was about to change! A near-death experience made me change my priorities and I wanted to race and travel more.
I was fortunate that I had no long-lasting injuries, and my rehab included watered-down training. I regained form, completed the 70.3 Mallorca in 2014, did the Lanza/Wales double again in 2015 and in middle-distance was finishing in the top 10, even qualifying for the inaugural Challenge world champs in Samorin 2017.
Over the next few years, I started to make the transition from full-time teacher to full-time coach! After taking a few exams and courses I now coach athletes, run turbo classes and take training camps to Lanzarote - always focusing on building base endurance and only adding the hard work when it is really needed, with the primary emphasis on enjoyment. I love listening to podcasts to expand my knowledge, especially ones with Joe Beer and Stephen Seiler. Two leading experts with the philosophy I share - that there are no short cuts to success!
As an athlete, I’d like to race for a few more years and travel to a few more places.
As a coach, I’d like to continue to evolve and develop by embracing new technologies such as Zwift and the Stryd running power meter, allowing athletes to focus more and enjoy their time with me!
Favourite things about triathlon!
Triathlon really does offer some great opportunities. I have been lucky enough to race in lots of different countries and be on the start line or train alongside some of the all-time greats! Jan Frodeno, Daniela Ryf, Lucy Charles, Alistair Brownlee, Lionel Sanders, Lucy Gossage, Sebastian Kienle and Javier Gomez to name just a few!
I take a great amount of pleasure in coaching - from seeing a person cross the line and qualify to Kona to the first-timer running down the red carpet with tears in their eye in front of their friends and family! Triathlon really is a special sport