Well the training has started again. I have to confess I did enjoy the two months of no training. I also have to confess that I am battling to get motivated again.

My sessions so far:

  • Tue 04/11 (56RHR) AM: 20 minute treadmill and 30 mins weights
  • Wed 05/11 PM: 40 minute swim session (1200m but more like 960m, due to kids lessons)
  • Fri 07/11 (58RHR) AM: 45 minute indoor bike (Thur’s session)
  • Sat 08/11: SKIPPED – 1hr swim
  • Sun 09/11: 1 hour indoor bike with 25 minute run
  • Mon 10/11: SKIPPED – 1 hour swim
  • Tue 11/11 (53RHR) AM: 10 minute treadmill and 30 mins weights

So I have skipped two swim sessions. The swim session I completed on Wed was tough. I can tell my technique has deteriorated and I don’t have correct timing of glide-pull/breath-recover.

My first weights session was, well, tough. I ended up cutting it a bit short as I was knackered. I think I hit back too hard! I ached for a good few days following the session.

Well I was away last week for four days in Spain for some intense hill training. Covered about 220km in the four days along with some swimming and running thrown in. Much of the cycling was up and down hills with around 6% gradient at a less-than-race-pace pace. From the training I figure I’ll aim for a HR of around 170 on the climbs at Monaco 70.3 and then try to belt along the flats at around 160-165.

I practised some swim starts and got into the swing of things after actually trying to get going rather than simply dawdling. My plan at the moment for the Monaco start is to start at the left of the field and then head diagonally to the first buoy. Hopefully I won’t get swum over by the “seriously fast” swimmers who will go for the shorter and tighter line starting on the right. Of course, all this will probably change on race morning.

This weekend will see me getting some long cycling training in along with some running. Additionally, I will make a final kit check and ensure that I have everything (and that it’s working!!) that I will need to take with me.

Well Saturday saw the National Club Relays take place up at Holme Pierrepont in Nottingham. I woke up to find that there was raining pouring down and the sky was very grey. I did not like the thought of competing, especially cycling, in the rain. Had it not been a team event I would have gone back to bed and laughed the event off. However, it was a team event so off I set. When I arrived the rain had pretty much stopped so things were looking somewhat better although still very wet.

The event consists of teams of 4 people doing the three legs of an almost super-sprint distance (actually 500m swim, 15km cycle and 5km run) race consecutively. The first person sets off on the swim, completes the swim and hands the baton (rubber band) to the second person who sets off and completes the swim and hands the baton to the third person. This continues for the bike and run legs too. Watching it looks like organised chaos with the competitors all fighting for the space to hand over the baton.

My swim went OK. The time was about 10 minutes (forgot to start my stopwatch) based on the clock time. I think I could have pushed slightly more but I was trying to pace myself for the Olympic and half-Ironman races I have coming up. The bike went well – round the rowing lake 3 times which meant a flat course. The down leg was with the wind so some impressive speeds were possible but the return leg was tougher as we were going into the wind. The run was only slightly more undulating than the bike course but for the most part flat. I pushed quite hard on the run and am convinced I couldn’t have pushed much harder. In hind sight I figure I should perhaps have eased off slightly as this is realistically only a C race for me this season.

So the swim was 500m and took roughly 10 minutes. The bike was 15km but I measured it at 14.2km. I took 26:29 for the bike giving an average speed of 32.1km/h. Average cadence was 92 with average HR of 184. The run was 5km and I took 22:25 with a average HR of 188 (94% of Max HR!!).

All in all a fabulous day with the sun coming out at around 10h30 or so. The afternoon was spent watching the second wave of races and chilling in the sun.

On Sunday a group of us then went on to cycle the Vitruvian bike course as some of the group are racing in the Vitruvian (a 70.3 distance race) in a few weeks. We knocked out the 82km in a touch under 3 hours giving an average speed of 27.4km/h. I had average HR of 150 with average cadence of 87.5. We did a 20 minute run off the bike to get those legs turning over. It was a good day out too with the sun out for much of it.

All said it was a good weekend of training ūüôā

Since my last post my training has been a little hit and miss when compared to the plan from my coach.¬† I have not managed to fit in all the sessions that were scheduled. Admittedly I didn’t feel up to some of the sessions and some of the others were missed/delayed due to work.¬† I have commented on this before (work interfering) and have stopped doing on-call which has helped with the training so that is positive.

On the training front, I was away for a few days in early May in Spain for a training “topup”. Got some good hill work done along with a PB swim of 31:14 (give or take a couple of seconds) for 1500m. Did a “almost” Olympic while I was there – 1500m swim followed by 56km (ish) cycle and a 9km run. Did not time the whole thing and did not feel too knackered afterwards which was positive.

So on the whole I am happy with the training I’ve been doing which is a positive thing!

Well I completed my first triathlon on Sunday. Hurray. It was a short sprint in Hyde Park (400m/15km/5km) which I completed in 1h09:52 according to the official times.

That time was roughly what I was expecting. The bike and the run both went well. The swim was a slightly different matter. My navigation needs work… trying to go straight in the murky water was a bit of a challenge.¬†My wetsuit wasnt fitting quite right so I wasnt breathing properly and ended up somewhat unexpectedly out of breath. I took things easy and got to the end feeling a bit deflated.¬† Yet more work is needed on the swim.

On that note I have a couple of swim lessons scheduled in a couple of weeks time to try and get some more swim technique pointers!

My training in general has not been totally up to scratch but it is progressing… but is it progressing fast enough? I certainly hope so!

Well spring is approaching, the days are getting warmer and daylight is getting more plentiful. This all amounts to better training weather!

Yesterday I completed a 90km cycle in 3h39. Didn’t feel too bad afterwards which was a good sign.¬† My legs were not totally jelly like and felt like they were up to a reasonable length run.¬†In the end we only did a 25min run off the bike which was enough to get the legs turning over and the heart rate up again.

This week is meant to be a heavy training week according to my training plan. Wish me luck! Hopefully I will get in some good swim sessions and continue to improve!

Well since the last post the training regime has been OK. I have done some hour long roller sessions, some 30-ish minute runs and some productive swim sessions.

The swim has seen the most progress. Over the last two weeks I have progressed up to 1000m and last night I managed a 1500m swim in 33 minutes. WOW! I am incredibly chuffed with myself. Before anyone points out that its not a brilliant time I will admit I know that – however for someone who was not managing more than a couple of lengths a month ago I think it is great progress! I am very happy with the progress. My arms definitely felt like they had done a work out last night!

The bike sessions… well rollers are boring, very boring.¬† But it’s good time spent on the bike. I did a 3 hour ride outside¬†last weekend at a low to moderate heart rate. The bad news was that the seat post clamp (or is that “seatpost clamp” or “seat-post clamp”¬†??) snapped on my B2 during the ride. So for a large part of the ride I was sitting much lower than I usually do – my quads did not like me for that!¬† Anyway, I have got a new clamp on the way and should be in the saddle again soon.

The seat post is aero shaped so it’s an unusual clamp style. The bit that snapped is a very thin piece of metal that just doesn’t seem to like being over tightened at all. Anyway,¬†I think it might be a bit of a design flaw with the seat post clamp – but at least it is a replaceable component on the bike.

The run… well the few runs I have done are all around 30 minutes or so.¬† My calves still feel sore the next day even with serious amounts of stretching. I do hope the sort themselves out soon. The knee twinges every so often which I hope isn’t the sign of anything going wrong.

On the whole training is going well and I’m very happy with the swimming progress!

Well since being back my training hasn’t been nearly as plentiful as I’d have hoped.¬† The long and the short of it is that there isn’t enough time in the day.¬† Last week was a nightmare due to issues at work which ate into my training time, kept me up late so was too tired to train or just made me feel like not training.

 I have managed to get some swimming and cycling on the rollers in over the last couple of weeks which keeps things ticking over nicely.

I am trying out forefoot running after my running “layoff” and so far its not looking too bad.¬† I have just done a run with a new pair of Newtons and I have to admit that I’m not 100% convinced I can feel the spring and bounce that the brochures claim. That said, they are comfortable and the fit is good – I chose 1 size up (for US¬†rather than UK size)¬†from my usual Brooks. They do help you run on the forefoot and you tend to notice when the odd heel-strike happens.¬† I think I need a few more runs to decide if they live up to their claims. That said, the bright orange does stand out and takes some getting used to.¬† All in all, nothing to complain about relating to the Newton’s yet… maybe they are my running saviours!

Well, was the trip worth it?  Most definitely YES! Would I do it again? YES again!  The cycling conditions are superb, good hilly sections, immaculate roads with very little traffic.  The traffic that is there is courteous and patient with the cyclists. It makes cycling a pleasure.  And whats more, NO PUNCTURES!! Woo hoo!!

Met some great people too!¬† Apart from the “coaches” met some great people… and boy can the cycle and swim!¬† Something to aim for I guess! Although Xavi and his Zipps on some of the rugged roads couldn’t have been too comfortable.

Banyoles is a town near Girona and that’s were we were based. A great lake for swimming in or running around.¬† Nice scenery too!

All in all a great time.¬† Try them out – Girona Cycling…

Well today was the last day in Girona… We started off with a very brief swim in the lake… the water must have literally been around¬†4 degrees. The air temperature¬†was 7 and it felt warm compared¬†to the water temperature.¬† Thank goodness for the wetsuit and neopreen hat. The swim didnt last that long but a couple of swims to a bouy and back were enough for us to get out and hit warm showers.¬† We did get some puzzled looks and some “are you insane” looks from the rowers….

We then did a 70km cycle including a total of 800m climbing and then did a prompt T2 followed by a 28min run. 28 minute run I hear you asking… well yes, I just added a bit on to the planned 20 minutes as I was feeling pretty good on the run so made the most of it!

Got back to the UK to be greeted with rainy weather… great!