10. All the cakes are yours
Easter eggs, Christmas chocolates, birthday cakes, those pretend After-Eight mints you get after a curry; they're all yours because your triathlete date will shun them all for fear that one mouthful will cause them to put on a stone and wreck all their PBs for the season. The only exception is immediately after a race when all the cakes are theirs, plus all the pies, pizzas, fruit, sweets, veg, cashew nuts you’ve had in the draw since last Christmas, and any other food they can find.
9. See into the future
If you want a looker-for-life and are concerned about what effect the ravages of time will have on the attractive athletic god or goddess you are dating, simply take a look at them immediately after early morning swim training to see exactly what they will look like in ten years’ time.
8. Win any argument with a light grip of thigh
I am to romance what soap-on-a-rope was to the 1970s, so occasionally the course of true love does not run smooth and Mrs B and I descend into crossed-words. On these occasions she is guaranteed to win any disagreement with the light grip of my thigh, or calf, or shoulder, or frankly any post-training muscle in my leg or shoulder area. Should you wish to press your point with any triathlete you’ll find even the gentlest squeeze of a tender quad will have the same effect as Mr Spock’s Vulcan death-pinch in Star Trek, and your paramour will thus agree to anything to be released.
7. Dream physique
If it’s buns of iron and guns of steel that flick your switch, you’ll find a tri date will oblige because all that sport inevitably has an effect on the typical triathlete body. Indeed the moment the sun is out you’ll find multi-sporters prepared to show off their physique more readily than a scaffolder. This is of course true of ALL triathletes and the fact that some of us appear to subsequently resemble a haunted hatstand needn’t concern you.
6. Energy to burn
When it comes to moments of intimacy, all that training gives triathletes energy to burn so prepare yourself for passion. And during those private moments ignore any beeping you hear, it’ll just be our Garmins recording our heart-rate so we can log it in our training diaries. Again, the fact that I am currently writing an erotic novel set in the world of triathlon called “Not Tonight Love I’ve Got Swim Training in the Morning” needn’t concern you.
5. Gifts galore
Not long ago my wife accused me of being “difficult to buy for”, to which I replied “I’m very easy to buy for, you just haven’t spent enough money.” Despite her subsequent light grip of my thigh I had at least been honest, and once you start dating a triathlete you need never worry about what you are going to buy them for birthdays again. Happiness in present-buying can be guaranteed by the purchase of absolutely anything made of carbon, anything that promises to use “new technology”, and any gadget that records more information than their current gadget, no matter how useless that information may be.
4. Seek and ye shall find
If you date a triathlete there’ll never be any worries about where your beloved might be for you. While your friends may fret about what their other half might be up to when they are out of sight, you have a range of resources to call on to tell you not only precisely where they are down to a specific grid-reference but also how fast they are going and in what direction. Thanks to Strava and a hundred other training apps you can geo-locate your loved faster than a CIA surveillance team, and best of all they are keeping this cyber-game of “Where’s Wally” going themselves by sharing all their training data on Garmin Connect and Facebook.
3. Absence makes the heart grow fonder
If absence does indeed make the heart grow fonder, then you should be very fond indeed of your triathlete-of-choice by the time they return from their training rides. When I return from a 70 mile cycle looking like a partially sentient kneecap and walking strangely because I’ve spent four hours with a saddle wedged up my hoop I’m always struck by how fondly Nicky looks at me. And my “looks” I mean “glares”. And by “fondly” I mean “coldly”.
I bought my first house from a DIY enthusiast and as he proudly showed me round his bodgery all I can remember is the haunted look on his wife’s face, exhausted by years of having this meddling berk creating booby traps all around her feet all day long.
If you date a triathlete this will never be you because tri-ers simply don’t have enough time for home-improvements that might consume valuable training hours. Imagine the serenity and peace-of-mind that will be yours knowing that you are dating someone who will Never-Do-It-Yourself. No noisy drilling, no ham-fisted hammering, no shelves that might fall down (because they haven’t been put up), just the occasional wonky picture-hanging of medals and finish-line photos.
1. Guilt gifts
On occasion I’ve blithely done something which was so inconsiderate it has caused me to almost break my own toes curling them up like a pair of Ali Baba’s shoes with embarrassment. Usually this involves entering overseas races without due care and attention, and on these occasions I do what any self-respecting triathlete does, and that’s spend my way out of trouble with guilt purchases. These have included a holiday to Canada, a new kitchen, and a horse - *oh yes, and a luxury weekend trip to Stockholm. If you date a triathlete you will find yourself richly rewarded by your occasionally guilt-ridden loved-one when they realise that they might have taken you for granted. However please note that guilt-gifts are not just for sins already committed, but also for future misdemeanours….
*A few years ago I took my wife to Stockholm for a lavish weekend-break to celebrate her birthday and to witness the Swedish Royal Wedding and subsequent huge “Love Stockholm” festival. This extravagant attention on my part was greeted with delight, and not inconsiderable surprise, by Nicky because I am not generally noted for my sweeping romantic gestures. I therefore felt it best not to mention that it was also the Stockholm Marathon that weekend which I had already entered having forgotten it was her birthday...
I must say that Nicky showed a remarkable lack of gratitude for what turned out to be an excellent weekend (glorious weather, a five-star hotel and a 2 hours 56 minutes finishing time) and her various revenges included listing my occupation on the in-flight immigration form as “Jihadist” in a bid to see me carried away in an orange jumpsuit. All in all though I think this story is an excellent example of why triathletes make absolutely ideal people to become romantically attached to, demonstrating as it does that heady mixture of surprise, guilt, excitement, athletic obsession, tension and exotic travel that keeps life with triathletes endlessly interesting.
It seems appropriate to now include a link to...
And Martyn will be available for his own brand of marriage guidance soon...
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Martyn has a monthly column in the monthly magazine 220 Triathlon and you can subscribe here
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