Monday, October 25, 2010

Tyred of tyres....

I hate punctures...rain, wind, hail etc I can just about cope with but punctures pee me off...and the inner tube people know it too - £3-£4 each for a bit of rubber! I fixed all my old tubes yesterday about 6 repairs in all - this morning one of them gone down again and then one blew out on the turbo! Grrrr!

It's been pretty steady still since my last post - averaging about 7-8 hours a week at the moment - gradually increasing as we go - the miles are getting longer for running and swimming is always pretty standard but I am enjoying the less intense more relaxed workouts and the escapism of long runs!

A couple of hours on the bike at the weekends are enjoyable and not long enough to tire myself out for longer runs on sundays - this weekend I was enjoying my ride around the forest with Chris before I got a puncture (grrr) I thought my heavy cheaper tyres may have added protection but it was a monster stone wedged in there! Luckily they come on and off easy and with the CO2 pump it was a matter of 6 or 7 minutes to change and get back on my way - though we got caught in a proper hail storm - very funny at first but it soon got too painful so we hid under a tree till it eased off! The wind, thunder and lightening that occompained it was pretty awesome! One thing though....I was taught not to stand under tree when there is lightening about but don't really want to stand in the open with a shiny metal bike.....hmm catch 22!

My run yesterday was great - the weather was cold (5-6 degrees) but sunny and still so I headed up to the downs around whitsbury and ran around the hills - I had a long sleeved thermal top, gloves and shorts, the gloves came off after a couple of miles but on the turnaround in to the wind I properly felt the cold on my knees and they started to ache - note to self, wear run-leggings if under 8 degrees for long runs! Here are some photos: -
Photo uptowards Whitsbury Castle (old fort covered in trees) - which I ran up to and around :-
Far side of the fort - looking out over fields from under the trees - it was warm in the sun and felt like summer - awesome!
A tunnel of trees around the castle, it was the light at the end of the tunnel - looked pretty cool!
Just a photo....the block of trees in the far distance was were I had ran from and eventually back too....just can't see the valley and mud in the middle!

It ended up as 9.5 mile, 90 minute run which was pretty steady but really nice - I could feel a few beers in me from the night before but the sun and views made up for it - wanted to go further but it can wait till next weekend!
Continuing to build up to the deep, dark winter months and the big weekly miles of January, though I have my final exam between then and now so there will be a dip in late Nov and early Dec!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ticking along...

October is ticking along quite nicely as far as training goes - I am very busy with work and study etc so its been lots of short, sharp sessions, including hitting the turbo a couple of mornings too - I've got quite into it as well - just for 30 mins or 45 mins but you can really get going on the intervals and bust out some good work!

Last Saturday I helped out my old Rugby club who needed an extra man for the trip to London - this obviously put a dent in my training for the weekend but it was great fun and I do miss playing - once this is done - I will be back playing for sure! Took me a while to ease off my aching back and hamstrings but they seem to have gone and last night I had a nice fast 35 minute run for about 4.5 miles - stupid Garmin is hardly working now so I measure the distance after!

Supposed to me doing a half-marathon on sunday which will be good to do - not bothered about time but would be interesting - I have, however been feeling slight niggles in my knee where the old problem was! Therefore I am not sure what to do - I'll be cycling a long way on Saturday so I will see how I feel on sunday morning - if I'm not sure I can do it then I'll just run myself and see how that goes - no point wasting entry money on not finishing!

My weight is also starting to come back down which is good - I only put on a few pounds but it felt like a lot!

So things are looking positive - I am trying to focus on going long at the weekends rather than just short blasts - a bit slower but getting the endurance in at about 70% HR - its also good fun when on your own!

I figure I have effectively done one 'tri-season' now despite doing only two tri's so its a pretty good place to be in - I am confident about the big one next June - I could finish in 16 hours - the difference is I want to make it enjoyable and put something down I can be proud of!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


We've all met people that enhance the truth slightly, expand on the facts or just lie (a bit like Jay from the Inbetweeners..he he) and in fact most of us at one time or another do bend truth in what we say....when I started training and undertaking this idea I promised I would never lie about training or make up sessions.

This to the point where I don't round-up the half miles or the 5 seconds here or there, in fact the opposite - if I lose count when swimming, I swim the extra just to make sure...etc etc! I'm no golden boy but when it comes to training there is no point in lying to myself!

So it was bought to my attention that someone I looked up to for their training was in fact talking crap 40% of the time, I won't name names but if your reading this it probably isn't you! I thought about it for a bit and it gets on my nerves - it doesn't affect me and in all circumstances doesn't harm anyone but it gets on my nerves because they aren't being honest with themselves so what's the point! As soon as people realise you then lose all credibility...

So I thought a bit more and it occured to me that perhaps these people don't realise they are talking crap - they've got so used to it that it just seems normal, its not malicious, it's just deluded!

And that led me back to I deluded?, do I think I am able to do an Ironman by doing what I am and going about it my own way? Have I got so used to thinking about Ironman, talking about it and visualising that finishline that I think it will just happen! Well yes in a way I am slightly deluded currently - I have a hell of a long way to go yet, miles to put in and kg's to lose....and I know I need to ramp it up a whole lot but deluded or not I will be crossing that line in June and I sure as well won't bullshit about it!

So if your not being honest with yourself perhaps you should at the very least be honest with others and don't portray yourself as something that you are not yet...portray what you are and then when you reach your goals portray yourself as you are then! For instance... I'm not an Ironman yet in anyway shape or form (technically I won't ever be - I will be an Iron-distance-man) and please don't think that I am, I have done two sprint triathlons and I am improving.......but I am not there yet and I don't pretend to be!

Friday, October 1, 2010

September Round-Up

Ironman Update #9 - September 2010

September has been a transitional month - its the half way point between the birth of this idea and the culmination, both in time and mentally. It also marks the end of Summer when training becomes a lot harder to fit in with the weather and the darkness! Mentally its been very difficult, motivation to get out and exercise has been easy - I love exercising its no problem, but as I alluded to in my earlier blogs focusing on Ironman has been tough because I have come so far and yet have so far to go!

Anyway the month has looked like this: -

Swim - 6.3 Miles - 4 Hours

Bike - 0.0 Miles - 0 Hours

Run - 83.4 Miles - 12.4 Hours

Cross-Training - 26.2 miles - 5.2 Hours

Total - 116 miles - 21.6 Hours

Swim -
An average month on this front, nothing special just ticking over! Swimming is an odd sport, whilst you obviously do improve the more you train, it only takes one 'off' session to suddenly feel like your sinking and flapping around in the water! So I've just been putting in the time and the miles in the pool and that's fine - a few good coached sessions and the most amazing open water swim!

It was a couple of Saturdays ago and when I left to drive to the lake at 6am it was 2 degrees Celsius - yes you are right that is very cold! It was also dark and foggy, however I stuck at it - on arrival there were a few others waiting around till the fog had cleared over the lake. It soon became apparent this wasn't going to happen so we agreed to swim up and down the near shore in vague sight of the jetty! Thankfully the water was a warm 17-18 degrees so it was fine once in! I set off with another lad and we did four 400m ish out and back routes - it was amazing though because for the majority of the laps the fog was so thick you couldn't see any land, trees or anything around you - every now and again another swim would slide out of the fog and disappear in another direction! Being in water and surrounded by fog (like a horror movie) is an eerie but incredibly stunning experience (just don't mention sharks)! Thankfully I don't get scared being in water very easily and enjoy the feeling of being completely immersed - but I wouldn't recommend it if your not a confident swimmer!

Bike -
Not done any! 2 reasons - first I've haven't felt like it, after the 80 mile TT I wasn't ready to hop back on the road for the first few weeks, secondly - once I found I could run again I didn't wish to harm my progres through cycling so soon! I have been doing some mountain biking though so which is what the cross training is so the pedals have been turning - albeit slower and with more messing around

Brilliant, super, smashing wonderful! I am back up and running and September was the biggest since I started in January with plenty left in the tank so really pleased - I am also running faster for longer so I have no complaints here at all! Not gone for more than a steady ten so far but there is plenty in the tank and the half marathon on the 17th should be fine providing my hamstring issue clears up! As for the 1/2 I'm going slow and steady so anything around the 2 hour mark is fine for me - not the fastest I know but its all in the build up!

Unfortunately I didn't make the cut for the 2011 London Marathon which is a shame, not because of any long standing dream to do it, but its one of those things that would be fun! I'll be doing a low key local one instead for training!

Cross-training -
I've been doing some mountain biking just to keep my eye in - its estimated mostly because I tend to go on my own and stop start quite a lot but its made a nice change to be off the tarmac!

So overall its been a very quiet and steady month, I wouldn't say I am yet fully ready to go 100% hard because I haven't yet hit that 6 month barrier when I will get scared but I will continue to up the running and get back on the bike and build the base fitness. Its all about building that endurance now over the winter, working within certain heart rate zones and staying injury free! I feel more refreshed mentally than I have since the end of August but I'll be happy when I hit that startline!

Its definitely all about the charities and raising money for EdUkaid and See Saw but when its you and your body going through it, its very easy to get wrapped up in the here and now, thankfully a great run or a great swim snaps it all back into reality that I am pretty lucky just to be able to do this, so I should stop whinging and get on with it!

As I mentioned in a previous blog - the only way to justify the steady months like this one is to make the most of the months to come - this is ever present in my mind so there are some big sessions to come!

I wouldn't say I am looking forward to getting back to the heavy training but I am certainly ready for it...that has to be a good start!

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