I'm afraid it's a long one as so much as happened this month, after last months steady build up I was looking forward to hitting it hard this month and I most certainly did! It started strongly and built right through to the New Forest Rattler before a bit of a rest to see the month out!
Swim - 12 miles - 7.8 hours
Bike - 425 miles - 24.1 hours
Run - 38 miles - 6.7 hours
Total 475 miles - 38.7 hours
All those total to give my biggest month to date in terms of hours - averaging around 10 hours per week for the bigger weeks so its been really good! Oddly I have put on weight, only a few pounds but its made a difference from the continuous weight loss I have seen so far! Its mostly because I don't eat enough decent food during the day and end up snacking on chocolate and sweets in the evening to make up for lost calories - more discipline required for September I feel!
During my two biggest weeks I used a lot of energy and recovery products which really made a big difference - unfortunately they are too expensive to use all the time but I'm holding out for some sort of deal on them...! (Hint...everyone go and buy ZipVit products)
Nothing ground breaking to report on, just lots of it! I've been doing plenty of sessions in the hour or so that I go two/three times a week before work, varying it between speed and then just plain endurance sessions - I've been enjoying it though which is a good thing and though I've not been breaking any records my consistency as increased a lot! On my biggest training day of the month I went to one of the coached sessions at the gym - I was happily motoring up and down doing the drills but got pulled out of the middle lane and dumped in the 2nd fastest lane - flattering but not what I needed! Still I held my own against all the fast young whippets, despite plenty of cramping! The guys in the fast lane where super quick - it was just plain scary!
Great month on the bike, the plan was to build up to the New Forest Rattler (79 miles around the forest) on the 22nd - although the distance isn't a problem for me I wanted to do it as fast I could maintain for the entire distance - ideally 20 mph average!
So I started the month getting lots of sessions in on the tri-bike just getting used to sitting in the position and maintaining a good cadence - it was very positive actually and felt easier than I expected! I also intermingled this with lots of longer rides on my road-bike taking in plenty of hills and generally getting out and about!
As previously mentioned my biggest day involved a really good 50 miles up over the hills around shaftsbury followed by 2400m of swimming - I was so tired after this ride but it shows how far I have come that I was still strong at the end and able to have a big swim!
So that all led to the Rattler!! I wrote a detailed report here...
but essentially I held my average at 19.9 mph until 64 miles when I was just exhausted - at that point I managed the hills and brought it home in 4 hours and 7 minutes having averaged 19.5 mph - I was shattered but very happy with it! Just got a lot more work to do!!
So I have only been running once a week really - the odd smaller 3-4 mile run and a few bigger 7.5 mile runs which have been good - no knee pain but I am struggling with pace and fitness - no real surprise given the last few months so I am pleased! From now I am going out slightly more often and trying to get the distances up, I walk when I am tired for a maximum of 30 seconds at a time and just try to maintain a solid pace throughout! Easier said than done mind you!
All that has left me feeling pretty rubbish - unless I am on a bike or in the pool - then I tend to feel pretty good! The triathlon season is running down now so I won't be able to fit in anymore races - I can't justify the entry fee for the one-last-tri so I will sit that out - I may enter a half-marathon in October and should know by then if I have made the cut for the London Marathon in April which will be good training?!
So what's the outlook now - I would really like to concentrate on my running and get that back on track (forgive the pun) so for September I am going to focus on more of that whilst just maintaining the cycling and swimming - so cycling will be restricted to more weekend rides whilst swimming should remain consistent!
I am not going to increase the hours as I have been because I don't want to burn out and this will give me a chance to focus on the quality of my running rather than having to keep the quantity high! I have had a few moments in the last week or so where I have doubted if I could see out the next 10 months of training and get to Forestman and it really has been up and down - but it wouldn't be a challenge if it wasn't hard - it doesn't help that the rugby season is kicking off and seeing the boys running out can be tough - however I know this is the right thing to be doing and looking at the charity work and the donations that have come in really strengthens my resolve!
We're off to Cornwall next week which will be good so I will be taking my trainers and wetsuit to get some sea swimming in hopefully! The rest of the week will be good ol' sitting down time!
This month I am not taking a break from donation begging - a few more and we can hit £1,000 - so please, please, give what you can before Christmas rears it expensive head!! (I am aware its only September!!)
Anyway here comes September and it starts with a run tonight - going for a solid 9 or so but won't be pushing it! Fingers crossed!!