Monday, 28 May 2012

Race Report - Triathlon Challenge OLY tri

So yesterday saw me attempt my first standard distance triathlon (also known as Olympic distance). After still not having my shiny red planet X I called upon my trusty road bike to do the job!. We arrived at the venue around 10.30am for a sceduled start at 12.30pm. On arrival it was bedlam, the car park was completely rammed and we seemed to have an endless walk to the registration tent. There was around 10 different events on throughout the day from kids races to 10k swims, We queued for around 30mins to get to the registration tent and I received my race pack and timing chip and was good to go. I left kay and went over to transition to do my setup and get prepped for the race. The transition area was very busy with so many events on there were people running past mid race as I was setting up, All setup and ready to go. We were advised that the start had been put back 30mins so it would be a 1pm start now, the tempereture was rising fast and must have been around 26-27 degrees by the time I started, a few guys opted for no wetsuit being brave (or stupid) I sure felt the heat once mine was on my back.

The swim -

As the swim was 1500meters (60lengths of a pool) it was a good gauge as to my ironman 70.3 distance (1900m) to see where I was and how I felt. The water was nice and warm and once the hooter sounded we were off! we had 2 laps around a 750meter course and again I made the mistake of doubting my ability and starting towards the back! I ended up just powering past people and jossling for position and trying to overtake, In open water its quite tough to overtake people as they swim so close width ways which is nice for drafting but terrible for overtaking. I was swimming a nice relaxed pace trying not to exhaust myself to much. Target time was 30mins.

Overall swim time - 0.26.21

T1 - very relaxed, just took my time, had a chat with the guy next to me, got dried off and set off

Overall Time - 0.03.04

The Bike -

scheduled for 40km but was actually 42k odd becuase of the olympic rowing seating being built the course was changed. A nice uneventful bike sector but my heartrate was pretty high (175) when first getting on it, I had to ease off and not let adrenaline take over and got it down to around 160bpm which is a good working rate for me. 8 laps of the course, way up was smooth flat with the wind and was getting up to around 26mph, the way back was rough road into the wind and generally horrid. Target time - 01.30.00

Overall Bike Time - 01.19.49

The Run -

Now I havent ran for around 3/4 weeks becuase of my knee problems but that was to be the least of my worries today, I had been in the sun close to 2 hours already and now had 10km to run on possibly the most will crushing course ever. The course was a 4 lap run up the side of the lake, although flat there are no vantage points so it feels like your just running to nowhere and cannot see any finish line ever, at the end of every lap you go back up the course but not without seeing the finish line on every single turn and then running away from it! The course was hot, very hot, the water station and an emergency bottle from kay got my though the race drenching my head at any given opportunity to avoid dehydration and stay cool, everyone was suffering, some walking some stopped, quite possibly the toughest run ive ever done. Target time - 55mins

Overall Run Time - 01.04.35

Overall Time - Target - 3 hours, Actual - 02.55.05 (very happy)

I learnt alot from this triathlon, to race in heat and to ensure I stay hydrated and suncreamed up to avoid burning, I also learned about pacing myself and not getting carried away with the moment.

The ironman 70.3 is now less than 3 weeks away so I am soley concentrating on my swimming and biking, I think if I can have a decent swim (around 30mins) then get out early on the bike and have a decent ride 3.30 - 4 hours then I can walk / run the run section knowing that I will finish without completely ruining my knee!

1 weeks of training follwoed by tapering! Next update I best have my bike.....

Friday, 25 May 2012

New knee please

So after 3 weeks off from running I remain adament that new trainers will cure my knee issues and will guide me to the finish line in just over 3 weeks.

I am venturing out tomorrow to get videoed on the treadmill and purchase a pair that I will use on Sunday for my first Olympic distance race at dorney lake in Windsor again.

I still do not have my new bike which is such a shame as with 3 weeks to go I need as much saddle time as possible on it to get used to the aero position and the areo gearing. I have been told that it is being built on Tuesday so with my by wednesday... now where have I heard that before.... I must say that Planet X are possibly the worst company I have ever dealt with and that includes BT / virgin and even Sky who are all in my bad books.

Ive kept the open water swimming going and am comfortably swimming around 2k in about 35-40mins. This weekend I am planning to blaze the swim to see where I am over 1500meters I am hoping for a sub 30minute.

Ive been spinning twice a week and doing long rides at the weekends with as many hills as I can find to go up, down and then power up again. It is getting easier!

So everything is almost in place for the event in just over 3 weeks, I plan to do one more week of intensive training and then Taper correctly for the weeks running upto race day. I am watching my nutrition very carefully and avoiding all types of "Junk Food" and Alcohol to be in the best condition possible on race day.

Hurry up Planet X!

Friday, 18 May 2012

Training Day

So last weekend I ventured down to wimbleball lake for the Ironman 70.3 Training day hosted by a variety of coaches and serious athletes. This weekend also gave me a chance to see the accomadation that ill be staying at race weekend.

The accomadation was very nice and I look forward to spending abit of time there in a few weeks rather than arriving post 8pm and leaving 5.45am the next day, brief to say the least...

So Up at 5.15am and out the door 30 minutes later, around 20-30 drive down to the lake and wanted to be there early to get setup and ready. At around 6.30-7 lots of people started to arrive and by 7am we were ready to go, a quick day overview and then into wetsuits and down to the water. They had mapped out a similar shaped route to race day just a shorter distance, we did a good warmup running up from transition and doing some stretches.

Getting into the water I found to be lovely and warm as the lake in Snowdon would make the polar icecaps seem warm! We were shown the course and then practised a mass start which for me was great, within 4 / 5 strokes I was at the front of the pack (although not at all a race) I was swimming a comfortable pace and finished the course second place, I think in the race I will aim to be somewhere near the front so I can get a clear run.

We then did some swimming drills with the coaches concentrating on breathing techniques and drafting tips which were all very helpful.

Out of tthe water and a quick shower we got geared up for the bike leg and ventured out, very lesuirely pace and chatting to the coaches about certain areas on the route (dangerous corners etc) I found the course to be very nice rolling hills with only 2 major hills which take abit of effort to get up. 1 lap done with a few stops at a very lesiurely 2hours which I am very happy with as 4 hours on race day was my initial target.

We then had a Q+A session with the coaches and race directors where they answered everything that you could possibly want to know on race day so I now feel very prepared.

I sat out of the run lap after the Q+A as my knee is still recovering, after chatting to some coaches regarding my knee it was discussed that my trainers could be the issue (ive had them over a year now_ so that is probably it, new pair will be on the way shortly.

Nice 3 hour drive home feeling confident that I can finish the race with a few main pointers I picked up.

1 - Dont push to hard on the bike
2 - Dont push to hard on the bike
3 - Dont push to hard on the bike

5 weeks from this day till race day!

Thursday, 10 May 2012


So went to snowdon last weekend and diet kind of went out the window, few beers and generally rubbish food all weekend. I did however swim in the lake that is at the foot of the mountain for around 55mins, this was exceptionally cold and quite intimidating as I was the only person in the lake for the last 30mins or so.

Climbed snowdon on the Sunday, overall felt fine and legs didnt hurt to much which is good for 6 hours of hiking.

I have my winbleball recce this saturday where I get a chance to go down to wimbleball lake in exmoor and try the course for the day in groups with instructors. Quite looking forward to this although as I havent done anything since Sunday Im feeling quite lethargic so might go a for brief fast run tonight to shock my body into exercise again ahead of the weekend.

Day starts at 7am and need to drive down there after work Friday although am popping to a triathlon shop to see about a new bike (again). Quite annoyed that I have to do this weekend on my old road bike but hey.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012


Been a few weeks since ive updated my blog and looking back on my training plans I havent actually done lots and lots as things keep coming up be it, stag do`s / birthdays / events, its quite difficult to cancel that day with mates watching rugby just to go out and cycle for 4 hours in the pouring rain which would probabl result in some kind of cold anyway.

So last week I did a 12.5 mile hilly run around the area which seemed to really hit me knees hard, I may need to look at strenghtening exercises to supprt the joint better during longer runs, I managed it in 1 hour 53mins but did walk / limp the last 2 miles or so. Hopefully the next few weeks will help to up the running distances abit more. I went spinning a few times also last week which is now part of my weekly routine.

On Monday this week I went down to the lake for a swim, had quite a good session (around 40 minutes) and probably covered around 1.5k ish but was concentrating on stroke and form rather than pace.

Last night I went to a double spin class which was tough, Last week I attempted it but didnt take any food along and burned out after 90mins.

Last night I arrived 15mins early to the first class which was a real tough one, lots of speed work on the flat aero position, then I span for the 30mins between classes and then did the next class at 7.45pm, This class is a very hill / climb based class with large gears, slow cadence very very tough on the legs considering I had already done 90mins before it even started, I stayed after for around 30mins totalling in around 2 hour 45 mins of spinning. Good endurance training.

I plan to do a double class again Thursday and now my weekly training scedule looks something like this.

Monday - Evening Open water swim
Tuesday - Double Spin
Wednesday - Run 8-12 miles
Thursday - Double Spin
Friday - Rest
Saturday - AM open water swim
Sunday - Long Bike Ride (50+Miles)