Week 2 of my 28 week campaign and I’ve done all my training days as per scheduled and building nicely. Weather is always an issue for the bike at this time of year but if I’m out others aren’t so I’m getting better and they’re not (Not that I’m competing against anyone other than myself of course).
I already feel stronger in week two than I did the whole of last year, thanks to the base training I was doing before Xmas, but I’m concerned that I’ll burn out. Fortunately by being involved in a club, Zoom Tri, there is always a motivation to continue.
Although my first goal is the London Marathon I must not forget that my primary goal is Challenge Roth. London is merely a stepping stone to get the running distance done though I do want to break 3 hrs 30. Since my last blog I’ve completed an 11 mile run and a 12 mile run. My long runs are being done with negative splits. The first half I’m aiming at averaging out 8’30 per mile and then the second half upping to race pace 8’ miles. So far so good and I’m finishing off at sub 8’s. I realise that these are the easy ones though. Time will tell if I can keep this up when the distances get longer.
I’m very conscious that the bike is where time is made and races are lost or won. Doing more on the bike will also give me good base endurance and I believe this cross training has been beneficial to my run. I’m certainly keeping a turbo session in and a longish club ride in per week. After the club ride I have now started to do a brick session and getting a 4 miler in.
On Saturday I ended up doing 2K swim, 40 mile bike in the pissing cold rain and then a 4 mile run. I recall when I started doing Olympic distance how daunted I was by it. Now I’m pretty much doing one every Saturday. I’ve entered the ballot for the London Tri which is two weeks after Roth. Will it be a walk in the park? Will I achieve my 2hr 30? Will I even want to get in?
On yer bike son…
Training on the road bike at this time of year does have its perils!!!
6/1/13 - Strong bike, but I was dropped whilst having a gel. (Does the benefit of having a gel outweigh the loss of time being dropped?) I’m not good at opening food or gels with gloves on and I’m crap at riding with no hands. When I was a teenager I used to BMX a lot. I could do one handed one footed cross ups on the trick ramp, I raced and I could do frame stands travelling along standing on the cross bar with my arms outstretched. But now, as an adult, I can’t go ‘no handed’ on a racer!!! WTF – I need to sort this out for my nutrition intake!
Joe Public is dangerous - on the way back from the New Forest an old man walking his dog with one of those mega long leads would not share the footpath/cycle lane. The perils of urban cycling. He actually pushed my friend into oncoming traffic! So now we have to contend with the possibility of injury through training, accidents and fools.
12/1/13 – Riding in groups
The triathlete is usually relatively new to cycling and it’s so obvious when riding in groups. If you go out with cyclists their bike skills show a mini peloton moving as one vehicle (almost). When the triathlete group goes out, it’s far from it. On this occasion the weather was horrendous, wet and cold. An oncoming car wasn’t being terribly friendly and came at us through a ‘traffic calming’ chicane in the New Forest. How ironic, there was nothing calm about it. It meant that a rider up front, on the outside, slammed his breaks on and we had a pile up. Luckily no one was injured badly (although I was sent a rather disturbing picture of my friends bruised and tattered butt cheek the following morning) but it did bring home the importance of group etiquette; communication and riding as one.
It’s probably safer to be dropped and chase from behind!
The weather was awful and I was reminded of the 2012 London Tri. Really wet and very windy. It totally psyched me out. I was cold and rode at about 75%, too scared to go flat out in the cross winds. You don’t know what the conditions are going to be like on race day, you’ve spent money on entry, you’ve put a lot of hours in, so I said to myself that when it’s wet and windy I shouldn’t back out of a training ride, I should embrace it. On race day I’ll be having it, and the others like my London Tri self, will be dropping off or out.
Again, I’m not racing anyone other than myself of course
First week 8.5 hrs
Second Week 9 hrs
I often hear about Ironman athletes at amateur level training for 12 hrs plus per week. I’ve never seen how that is possible when working and balancing family life. I’ve set a time budget per week with my wife and eternally grateful of her understanding through this. If I’m doing this amount in weeks one and two it’s quite easy to see how I’ll be up to 12 hrs plus when the distances build up.
Clubs – learning from others – reinventing the wheel – camaraderie – comparing – competition.
I’ve realised that part of the balance of work, rest and play means that family, work and training have a similar priority. Obviously when push comes to shove family always comes first. I’ve got to pay the bills so work is next and training is now my playtime, even though at times its hard work. This means that my social life of going to the pub and fine dining etc gets pushed to the back burner. By being a member of a tri club I have replaced this. I get my pub banter out on the road on a bike session, I get it having a coffee and a cake after swimming before going out on the club ride and I’m meeting new friends all the time. There is also a friendly competition at club training sessions that pushes you further with advice from people that have been in your position before.
It’s not a case of replacing my old friends but merely relying on them to be supportive of my crusade. My best friends will be, the others, well they clearly aren’t that close so I’ll do a real world Facebook Cull. But I will be an Ironman – sort of – Challenge Boy or what do we call ourselves after completion? I never really wanted a stupid IM tattoo anyway…..
Two weeks in and weighing it at 82Kgs and 17.9% Body Fat.
Onwards and upwards, its getting cold for the next few weeks so a whole new set of challenges and motivations…..