So, I was looking over my past events last night and noticed something that I had forgotten. I noticed that I had less than one month between my first ever triathlon and my first half-Ironman race. WOW. That was pretty gutsy for me. I look back now and am not sure I would recommend such behaviour. It does however, make me think about just what is possible when one puts their mind to something.Maybe that Ironman race next year isn’t so bad afterall.

I did a “sortof” triathlon in training yesterday. Did a 1600m swim set, a 15mile bike ride and a 2mile run. Transistions were pretty slow (ok, a trip to buy groceries between the swim and bike) however. The 15 mile loop may become a time-trial course of sorts for me over the coming months. It’s got some decent stretches for TT aero-bar position and has a short-sharp hill at about 10miles. I look forward to reducing the time to complete the loop ūüôā

Well I did some simple statistics pulling from WKO+ for the past three seasons. I based a season from December through to end November of the following year.

date from       01/12/2010    01/12/2009   01/12/2008
date to         30/11/2011    30/11/2010   30/11/2009
run duration    45h47:02       82h01:12    65h07:36
run distance    527.126km      957.505km   727.656km
bike duration   15h28:04       115h46:42   158h04:18
bike distance   260.632km      2409.497km  4337.618km
swim duration   6h04:00        30h26:00    36h58:00
swim distance   18.45km        94.031km    104.613km

(Yes, I realise we’ve not quite got to 30/11/2011 yet… so will update the 2011 season once it completes)

The figures include treadmill and Computrainer sessions along with training sessions and races.

I hope that I manage to do more training over the 2012 season – probably slightly down on the 2009/2010 season due to less free time these days. Maybe I should set some training targets for the 2012 season?

The bike average speed varies somewhat due to extensive use of the Computrainer in the 2009 season Рdue to the ERG training I was doing at a relatively higher wheel speed than on the road the average speeds are inflated.  So the times are probably more useful to compare than pure distances.

 

 

 

Well it has been a while since my last blog post. Figured I had better write a quick few lines to let you know I’m still alive!

Firstly, here is a link to a great article by Joe Friel about recovery. Definitely worth a read: http://www.joefrielsblog.com/2010/09/how-to-recover.html

Since my last serious post I have completed a few races – Ironman Swiss 70.3, London Triathlon, and the National Club Relays. All good fun. Managed to PB in Swiss 70.3 and London Triathlon so am pleased with my recent performances.

My training leading up to the Windsor Half-Marathon and the New York Marathon is progressing well. Touch wood my legs are holding out with the increased running volume. This weekend I have the HSBC Standard Distance Triathlon at Dorney Lake. My main goal is sub-2h30 – with the secondary goal of beating my work colleagues who are doing a relay team race.

My swimming is holding steady and doesn’t appear to be improving significantly. I have increased my swim session duration, but have unfortunately reduced my swim frequency. Over the winter I hope to maintain my swimming and hopefully get a bit faster.

My cycling is going well Рmy last few weekly 10mile time-trials have definitely improved my 30minute (CP30) power output.  Over the winter I am looking at trying to not loose too much power while I rest up.

I will hopefully write up some brief race reports over the coming days.

Well today is a glorious sunny day. Great weather this morning after last night’s freaky thunderstorm and torrential rain. Great weather for an outdoor swim… but that’s not on the plan for today. Today calls for a hour cycle followed by a short transition run. Looking forward to that after work. The only minor concern is the residual fatigue from Sunday’s cycle. I’m surprised that the legs are still a little tired – I guess the ride was tougher than I thought. My guess is that due to the number of stops and mini-rest breaks my aerobic system had time to recover from the efforts but the leg muscles didn’t recover. So by the end of the ride my CV system was not fatigued but my legs were. Interesting to consider the difference.

Yesterday’s swim went well even though the arms were still a bit achy from Saturday’s long swim. With the taper beginning these muscle aches will pass fairly quickly now which is great! During the taper I intend to keep an eye on my CTL to ensure that it does not fall too much. My CTL has not been rising for a while, but rather keeping steady, so hopefully the taper won’t let it drop too much. Joe Friel, the guru, has a great blog entry Strong and Weak Form which discusses the art of taping to come into form while keeping an eye on CTL. I hope that my coach’s plan does not taper to fast causing my CTL to drop dramatically… if I start getting concerned I will discuss this with my coach and perhaps increase intensity/volume slightly to keep the CTL decreasing “optimally”. Yes, another plug for the great WKO+ software – it really is this great!

Nineteen days till race day… EEEEK!

Well three weeks till the big one! I am starting to get things ready and ensuring that I have enough of  everything that will be going with me.

Yesterday I did a 150km cycle – the Ride to the Horns cyclosportive around Aylesbury. Quite a tough course with multiple short sharp climbs. I’m sure I saw the gradient show 18% on my cycle computer a couple of times. The ride was enjoyable but seemed to drag on somewhat. I suspect that this was due to riding in a group, taking too long at the feed stations and most noticeably due to one of my fellow riders getting a puncture that took around 45 minutes to fix. Long story short, we got through three tubes, two CO2 canisters and a new tyre! I would recommend this ride to someone looking to get some hill climbing in. Apparently the route takes in most of the decent climbs in the area. My legs are feeling it today!

The bike went well. New wheels are a treat. The gearing seems to be good, apart from dropping the chain twice while shifting back onto the small chain-ring, so I might have to tweak that. The rear brake still rubs a touch so I may try and tweak that too.

My on going seat post creak seems to be resolved – for the moment at least as I suspect it will return. My Felt B2’s seat post has been creaking for a while. The bike shop thought it was the saddle clamps which got some oil and attention but this failed to remedy the squeak. I then used carbon paste on the post and a drop of oil on the seat post clamp screws which helped for a bit – but the creak returned. I have now put some electrical tape around the lip of the seat post opening on the frame which means that the seat post clamp doesn’t rub on the frame. This seems to have resolved the creak for the moment. I may undo the clamp and see the state of the tape – it’s possible that it will need attention regularly which will be fine if it keeps the squeak at bay!

I managed to get a 3900m swim in on Saturday in the 50m outdoor pool. Lovely and clear water at a decent temperature too. Not a bad swiming venue, if a little bit far to goto regularly.

Anyway a slightly easier week for me this week – Hurray!

Here are some links to video clips from the Half Challenge Barcelona Race 2009:

Firstly, some daft twit breaking the rules by drafting and cycling in a peloton and then struggling with some handheld camera. It’s idiots like this who should be banned for the rest of the season: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j__l2zHiQLg

Here is a clip of the start. The waves don’t look too bad but the clip doesn’t show how small the turn around buoys were which made it difficult to sight correctly! I was in the forth wave to start with orange or purple caps (meant to be purple but another organisational glitch resulted in some of us in the wrong wave and having the wrong colour caps) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNMOEbOLBpI

And a clip of the bike leg, T2 and run. Note the groups of riders all breaking the no drafting rule and all the while on their aero bars. (times in the clip of drafting examples 1min37 / 1min53 /3min39 / 4min00)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25Vgg4NZyOs

Another clip of the swim start, giving a view of the swells. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joLkAz0ZLx8

Clip of T2 and the run leg http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23SDJ4P0ccs

YouTube gives some related links too which might be of interest. It still surprises me just how much drafting was taking place on the race!

Enjoy the videos.

Well today I went on a brief trip to checkout the challenge Barcelona bike course.

The course starts in Calella and heads south west along the N-II to Mataro before heading North inland and climbing to Dosrius. The course turns around at Dosrius and heads back to the beach front along pretty much the same road. Once back to the coast, the route continues south west along the N-II to the turn around point at El Masnou. From El Masnou the route returns to Calella along the N-II.

The N-II road surface is pretty good for most of the way. There is a section approximately between Canet de Mar and Sant Pol de Mar where the surface is more bumpy with the road surface being more patch-work quilt like. The section of road between the N-II and the Dosrius turn around is not too bad either with only a few rough sections of road.

The N-II section south of around Canet de Mar is pretty much flat and runs along the beach front with a railway track between the beach and the road. There are certainly some false flats with subtle elevation changes of a couple of meters. North of Canet de Mar is slightly more undulating with a few climbs of 10-20m over a few hundred metres- meaning gradients of I guess roughly 2-4% for short sections. Nothing too taxing at all. Dosrius sits around 150m above sea level, based on my watch’s altimeter. There are some undulations in the climb to Dosrius, so the total ascent to Dosrius is probably closer to 200-250m. The climb to Dosrius is not too steep and did not seem to have any particularly large gradients – I’m guessing nothing more than 5-6%. Of course, going down a hill in a car makes is fairly difficult to accurately judge gradients.

I don’t recall the Dosrius loop being part of the original Challenge Barcelona route which would otherwise be very flat. The N-II section of the course is fairly boring: sea and railway track on one side and buildings on the other – no real scenery to appreciate apart from the first/last few kilometres around Calella.

I will try and find some accurate gradients and elevations for various points along the route and will update this post if I find any.

I have added a route to mapmyride.com for this course and is available at http://preview.tinyurl.com/chalbarc

A graph of the profile, from the MapMyRide site is shown below:

Challenge Barcelona 2009 Triathlon Cycle Route Profile
Challenge Barcelona 2009 Triathlon Cycle Route Profile

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 today was the first day of the weeklong training camp at Girona Cycling.¬† What a day! It started off with a pool session in the morning at around 0930.¬† The pool I normally swim in is much shorter than I thought. Not good for the training I’ve been doing. Secondly, I am seriously in need to time in the pool. Thank goodness for more drills starting soon!

¬†After the swimming we went for about a 3 hour cycle. We covered around 65km. No exact figures as my Polar decided to stop along the way.¬† It did record the ascent up “timetrial hill”, a 10.4km (according to my cycle computer) climb up 380m (again, according to the cycle computer). I managed it in 35 mins.¬† The hill in question was allegedly used by Lance Armstrong during some of his training rides and would apparently do it in around 20 minutes.

The afternoon consisted of lunch an a nap – a great way to spend afternoons!