My lack of updates to the blog recently tells a story of its own. I quite like to try and keep a fairly regular log of what has been going on but with the work/training/life balancing act it has been pretty difficult recently.
With 5 weeks to go until Busselton, the training is now well and truly into the ‘money’ sessions! I’ve had a bit of a reminder over past weeks that Ironman is hard (I know that is stating the obvious).
Having three finisher medals under my belt, the fear of not knowing if I can make it to the finish line is not there anymore, so whilst I don’t think I am complacent, sometimes you do forget the scale of the task at hand. This was made quite clear about 125k into a 195km ride the other week when the wheels somewhat fell off!
That knocked the confidence a little and I am still really waiting to feel my bike legs properly arrive but on the plus side, the running and swimming seem to be going pretty well.
In terms of volume of training I’m doing similar amounts to what I have done before, but feel like the quality of the sessions is probably a little higher and more focussed, particularly on the bike.
Sessions at the velodrome help this, no cars, trucks or junctions to worry about, and whilst riding around in 300m circles for an hour at a time is not all that exciting, you can safely have some music in your ears and hammer your way around the track, whilst giving and receiving plenty of friendly banter on the way.
Here’s an example, a session at the track last Wednesday, you can see how riding on the velodrome allows me to control the HR and hit a really specific target workout (this ride includes the ride to the velodrome and then into work)
Swimming is continuing to go well, since joining the squad I have gone from essentially non-swimming (had swum less than 50km in the first 5 months of the year) to over 200km in the last 5 months. I have definitely got faster but I think the real gains will come from the level of effort required to get through the 3.8k swim on race day.
Running is going ok, due to the training volume at the moment I always have to be careful not to push too far and blow myself to pieces yet know how important the key run sessions are. The biggest milestone recently was my ‘over-distance’ run. 3 hours scheduled (after a 1 hour ride) and relatively speaking this went without too much incident, 36.7km covered on a slightly undulating course (in the pouring rain) – nutrition seemed to work well. I was briefly tempted to knock over another 5.5km to clock up a training marathon but didn’t think that was going to help in the long term!!
In other news, after trying yet again to nail down my bike fit, I decided to take relatively drastic action and change bike frames. A slightly calculated gamble this close to the race but one that I hope will pay off. Initial signs are good, still need to find my ideal saddle but so far I feel much more solid on the bike. It looks pretty cool too, although have already established that a white bike instantly looks dirty whenever you ride it!!
Finally amongst all that I also managed to take my Level 1 triathlon coaching course last weekend, had some interesting sessions over the two days, and definitely something I’m keen on doing a little more of.
A quick summary of this week’s training, have been on the brink of some serious fatigue all week but after a nice afternoon sleep today, feeling a bit better and ready to attack next week!:
Swim – 12.9km
Bike – 272km
Run – 73km
Total time – 20 hours 4 mins