A late addition to the plan ended up being a tough weekend. Luckily I toned down my training on Thursday and Friday of last week to try and give myself a chance to be a bit fresher for the challenges that were to lie ahead. All I knew was the format was expecting to be something like 150km ride + 20 km run each day.
Things I actually learnt were as follows:
1. The Otway ‘rainforest’ is called that for a very good reason
2. It’s not just magpies that attack cyclists
3. The wind is not my friend
For anyone not living or from Australia I need to clarify point 2, some of you will think “attacked by a little bird, don’t be soft” – please refer to link below and see what we have to put up with. This is one of those things that when you see someone else getting hit, side splittingly funny, when it is you, not so much!!
However, the little bugger that decided to attack me did it after 20km into a roaring headwind and by all accounts from those behind me I did not even flinch, such was my pain and suffering due to hatred of the headwind!!
Anyway; a brief summary of each day:
Tried to start easy but felt rubbish, first hill was ok, slow but nothing too bad, long headwind section nearly destroyed me, was in an unhappy place at the time! Thankfully the Coke doctor was able to help me out and I managed to get through the long undulating climb through Forest and enjoyed the descent into Skenes creek.
Here’s a map of the ride, wind was from the southwest so no surprise that the second half was tough
A quick change into some clean and dry clothes and then out for a run, it felt very easy for the first few k’s until I remembered that I had a massive tail wind behind me, reality struck on the way back but I got through it ok, was back in town with 18.5km on the clock and decided that was enough.
Then legs in ocean, and an hour laying down before destroying a parma in the pub for dinner and then into bed by about 9.30.
More of the same, although this time up the first climb I felt a little fresher caught everyone in front of me to the top of the second climb, Lavers Hill. Nice work by Ollie riding the whole day in the big chain ring, I think my knees would have exploded! Unsure of the turnaround point, Ollie and I decided to call it after 69km at the top of yet another hill! The weather for the ride back to Lavers Hill was miserable and everytime I thought I was nearly at the top, another hill popped up. The Pepsi doctor was in surgery today and he brought his friend Mr Snickers to help re-fuel at the top before a cold but fast descent and just one more hill until Apollo Bay.
We also took on Wild Dog Creek Road, sections at the top nearly 20% in gradients were tough but the views were stunning, had to stop when the road ran out. Here’s the profile of the ride:
Another change and out for the final run, felt terrible this time but just tried to tick off each km, was in my own little world and managed to get through it, another 18km done.
Another trip into the ocean to cool the legs then a hot shower and a red-bull fuelled drive home.
Totals for the weekend were 320km of riding including 5,100m of vertical climbing (12 hours 30 mins) and 36km running (3 hours 5 mins). Fair to say that I slept pretty well last night, not too sore today but have had a day off completely to help the recovery. I’m pleased with the way that I ran off the bike, getting that Ironman marathon time down under the 4 hour mark doesn’t seem quite such a long way away now, just need to make sure I deal with the heat well come race time, because this weekend gave me no practice with that!