Dare to Tri
Updated: Mar 19
“There is not enough money in the world to persuade me to do that ever again!!”
These were not the words I had hoped to hear when one of my caving clients emerged from the regular haunt, Swildons Hole cave, high up on the Mendip Hills.
Usually people are tired, but exhilarated. I was surprised that an Olympic triathlete hadn’t taken to her first time caving as I’d hoped. Physically she had no issues at all, but mentally – the underground world just wasn’t for her.
Having previously spent many years at ungodly hours of the morning, up before
the sparrows to present BBC breakfast from the red sofa, Louise Minchin was used to putting on a brave face and a front – even when things were going horribly wrong.
Nothing went wrong on this trip and we had a fantastic day – but nothing would encourage her to try it again.
My exploits in caving and cave diving had inspired her to include me in her new book, due out May 2023 – called ‘Fearless’ – Adventures with Extraordinary Women.
I had no idea how she found me – but I’m so pleased she did.
Louise and her new book, due out May 2023.
Louise in Swildons Hole, Mendips. Image: Christine Grosart.
Not so much that I had featured in her book, don’t get me wrong, which was super lovely – but I had met a GB triathlete…and my mind started whirring.
Newly single and in need of finding my real self again, plus my never-ending battle to be smaller, lighter and faster, I started to consider the idea that I might be able to do a triathlon.
I had always wanted to – after all, as my good friend and iron man veteran Darren Morley says;
“Why be shit at one sport when you can be shit at three?!”
The only thing that always held me back was the inability to ride a bike.
Over the last 18 months I had somewhat fixed that – so I had no more excuses really.
Then I read Louise's book; 'Dare to Tri' and I was hooked. I just had to do this!
Another friend suggested the Langport triathlon. A friendly, local event, the super sprint looked perfectly doable. Only 200m swim, 15km bike ride and a 3km run. How hard could it be?
About the author
Christine Grosart is a Paramedic, working offshore mainly on diving vessels.
She started beach cleans around 2011 and has gone on to be a trustee, secretary, instructor and underwater photographer for the charity Ghost Fishing UK.
She wrote the first training course for scuba divers to remove lost ghost nets, in the world.
In 2009 she visited the far reaches of Wookey Hole cave and still holds the British female cave diving depth record.
In 2020 she became a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society for her work with Ghost Fishing UK as well as her cave diving exploration. She holds the end of the line in several caves in Croatia and France.
In the same year she was included in the BBC Radio 4 Women's Hour Power List.