She’s feeling stronger at 45!

19 Sep, 2021 - 00:09 0 Views
She’s feeling  stronger at 45! Greer Wynn

The Sunday News

Mehluli Sibanda, Senior Sports Reporter
ONLY one Zimbabwean looks set to take part in this year’s Bonaqua Africa Triathlon Cup Troutbeck to be held in Nyanga on Saturday with Greer Wynn entering the women’s elite race.

Wynn is competing in the women’s elite race where the other confirmed competitors are the South African duo of Bridget Theunissen and Hannah Newman. It is the second time that Wynn is entering the elite race at Troutbeck after doing so for the first time in 2006.

The 45-year-old Zimbabwean has been hard at work preparing for Troutbeck and since hers is an individual sport, she was able to continue with her preparations even during the coronavirus induced lockdowns in Zimbabwe.

“Preparations so far for Troutbeck, absolutely fantastic, Covid-19 hasn’t stopped me, it has actually made me stronger, even during the lockdown I trained alone, given that I train alone I was allowed to train, that means bike and run, I was always on my own,’’ Wynn said.

For Wynn, training alone has proven advantageous than doing so in groups since she does self-mentoring.

“I find training alone more beneficial than training with a group because I coach myself on a scientific level with my experience, I know exactly what I need to do and what I don’t need to do so training alone is absolute ideal preparation for triathlon,’’ she said.

Since this year’s Troutbeck event was postponed from February, Wynn feels that this has given her even more time to do her training.

“Troutbeck was cancelled in February, I was ready to race in February so I had to reset my sights again. I continued training and here we are in September with a few days away. I am very ready, in fact I am more mentally ready than ever.”

In 2020, Wynn decided that she was not mentally fit to compete in the elite race and decided to contest in the age groups races.

“Last year I competed age group, I didn’t go elite because I wasn’t mentally strong enough to believe in myself to have that self-belief to race elite. Watching that race and the times of the ladies I would have come third, I would have gotten a podium finish that alone gave me the determination. It’s been more a year and a half where I’ve maintained my desire and my passion to go for the elite race,’’ said Wynn.

At the age of 45, Wynn feels that she is at her peak and feels actually stronger than she was last year.

“I am going out there to do my absolute best with the preparation I’ve done. I am 45 years old but that’s a feather on my cap because women endurance athletes mature at a later date than men, men peak around 30-32 years then they are done.

Women peak at 45-47, it’s just the physiology of our bodies. I am actually feeling stronger than last year when I was 44, age to me is not an issue, ability is where it lies. I don’t even look at the ages of the other athletes,’’ she reckoned.

As part of her preparations, Wynn has taken part in races held at Mount Pleasant in Harare as well as Penhalonga. It is Penhalonga that she feels has prepared her for the challenging task that lies ahead at Troutbeck.

“Last year, I had the most amazing season, I raced every single race at Mount Pleasant and Penhalonga and Penhalonga is a fantastic race to prepare for Troutbeck and I had fantastic times on each event. I just got stronger and stronger throughout the season.

“I had a race last Sunday that went absolutely amazing, I did a really good time, everything went to plan, so that’s given me more confidence to go to Troutbeck with what I had on Sunday. If I can carry that through to Troutbeck, I would be happy,’’ said Wynn.

The mother of one is has in her build up to the Troutbeck trying to strike a balance between her training routines and looking after he daughter.

“I have one child, a girl, I juggle my time between being a mother and training, training takes up a lot of my time and my energy because it’s not only a training session, sometimes I train twice a day, morning and afternoon.”

Wynn’s biggest strength is cycling as she for years competed as a semi-professional cyclist in South Africa. It is in cycling where she is looking to really get the most out of since she is not as good with swimming and running.

“My biggest strength is cycling, I was doing semi-professional cycling in Johannesburg, I was on a circuit for a good six years, I actually rose to the top, I beat the two South African champions, that was three years ago.

“I was doing very well so I am hoping to capitalise on the bike and make up some ground. The swim I know I will probably get out middle of the field, it’s not my strength, I know the South Africans can swim very fast so I will do my absolute best in the swim,’’ Wynn said.

Wynn I dreading the course at Troutbeck, which she described one of the toughest in the world because of the high altitude and hills.

“The course at Troutbeck is extremely testing, it’s probably one of the most difficult triathlon courses in Africa because it involves high altitude and hills, there are no flats on the bike and run,’’ she said.

Come Saturday, Wynn is hoping to fly Zimbabwe’s flag high by winning the women’s elite race at the Bonaqua Africa Triathlon Cup Troutbeck where foreigners have dominated for years.

Follow on Twitter @Mdawini_29

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