Its good to be back!

Wow Mid-March already! Where is this year going?

February was a really positive month for me. Training has been consistent with only a brief interruption due to a dose of the deadly man flu which I managed to survive. Just.

The injury that has plagued my off season seems to have finally disappeared and this has been down to a combination of things.

  • Sensible training. Not rushing to get back up to speed and building gradually to protect the injury and not risk having any further setbacks.
  • Regular treatment from Luton Osteopathy. Ensuring I am fit and well and ready to put my body under the strains of pre-season training.
  • Finally daily stretching and using the foam roller. I used to think I hadn’t got time to do this daily, perhaps I even managed to convince myself I didn’t need to. Needless to say it is now part of my daily routine and my legs and back have certainly thanked me for it. I am a convert!

Things went so well I decided to enter the Winchester 10km held on the 26th Feb. Those of you that know me well will know my nerdy side involves Vikings and Norse mythology. So a visit to Winchester was a good excuse for a race. Winchester is where Alfred the great defended England (OR more specially Wessex) from the Vikings.

The race itself went well. A great course and a really well organised event saw me finish 38th out of 900+ entrants. The time was 40:15 which is over 3 minutes away from my PB but the important thing was that I raced pain free for the first time in two years. Brilliant T Shirt and Medal too! (Viking related of course)

 

The final week of February featured a visit to Alex @ Insight Nutrition. I had feared the worse but actually I was pleasantly surprised. I left feeling boosted by my visit and a nice finish to February.

Before I got injured I made plans for my 2017 season. My main focus is of course to qualify for and represent GB in Rotterdam in the World finals in September. My “B” goal is much the same but for the ETU Europeans next year. A sub goal was to qualify for GB ITU Duathlon.

My one shot at this sub goal was 12th March at the Bedford Duathlon. Based on not being 100% fit and not having the best preparation over Winter I was not overly hopeful at achieving this goal and certainly wasn’t looking forward to the event. I was put off even more when I woke up and saw the rain lashing down. However, I decided to pull my finger out and race, if nothing else it would act as a line in the sand to understand where I am in the road back to fitness. This would also be my first race in a draft legal race, so good practice for the rest of the season. One less thing to get disqualified for!

The weather didn’t improve much and transition was wet and grey, it was clear that the competition on the day would be fierce. I prepared my Transition area and retreated to the warmer pit lane buildings to keep warm and await the start of the race. After a brief warm up and race brief we were called to the start line.

Bedford Duathlon – Race review

Format: 5km run \ 20km Bike \ 2.5km run.

Organiser: NiceTri Events

The horn sounded and we were off. I followed my coaches’ advice and hit the first 5km run hard and came in just under 18 minutes (17:58). I was really happy with that considering my lack on running over the last few months!

With no wet suit to faff around with T1 was quick and I was out on the bike in around 30 seconds. I managed to chase down a decent group on the bike and working together managed to progress through the field and pick up additional riders. A group which started as 5 grew to over 15 and as usual we had 3 or 4 of us working on the front while some slackers sat and drafted happily for the entire 20km. The conditions were wet and slippery and the hairpins on the bike proved interesting as a few places were gained by some people sliding off onto the verges. There was some pretty impressive road rash on show after the race. Fortunately I stayed out of trouble and posted at 29:55 bike split.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

T2 was trouble free and I was quickly out onto the final 2.5km run. The legs were tired from the first run and a hard bike but I pushed on and did whatever I could to hold position.  The final 2.5km run was sluggish and something I need to work on as I came across the line in 10:15.  My overall time was 59:15. A good race and I am really pleased I took part, it gave me a boost in confidence and highlight areas I need to work on. In addition it gave me some practice in racing a draft legal event. Not only that but……

As I type I believe I have qualified as Q4. I am awaiting confirmation from the BTF but we are certain that my position and time was good enough to earn a spot on the GB AG Team. Not a bad day all in all, watch this space!

 

Up next – 10 days in Majorca J

January Blues

So it has been just over a month since I last wrote and I hope you are all well and  still keeping your resolutions?

It’s been a mixed month personally. Having found some run fitness I went and destroyed any progress I had made by pushing myself too hard whilst on my Level 2 coaching course. Stupidity and male ego took over and something that was meant to be a simple drill turned into the biggest race on the planet. Detect the massive undertone of sarcasm as I say “Hoorah, I won”. The cost of this “win” was another 21 days of not running. Let’s just say my Osteopath and Coach were less than impressed. Lesson learned!

So it’s been a month of further frustration on the run front but again I have found myself pushing the bike, Swim and Strength and conditioning so all is not lost.

The last two weeks have seen me running again and completely pain free which is fantastic. I made the decision to pull out of the Ashridge Duathlon as I don’t think I would do myself justice and that is not the biggest focus of the season.

On the 24th January I also turned another year older! However, I had a great birthday and got some great gifts which is always nice.

So now I am fit it’s time to buckle down. I am a little behind where I would prefer to be in training but the important aspect to remember is that I still have 3 months until the first Humanrace ITU qualifier at Eton. So that’s the target fixed firmly in sight now. I need to ditch a few KG, regain some run speed and continue to work on the top end of my cycling which seems to be coming along nicely.

It’s a recurrent theme but I’d like to thank Carly @ Luton Osteopathy (https://luton-osteopathy.co.uk/ ) for her patience and knowledge to continue to “fix” me and get me back on the path to Rotterdam.

The next few months are critical for the success of the season.

 

Oh and…. keep an eye out for this – Spring 2017!

 

 

 

Happy new year

Firstly, Happy new year to you all. I trust you all had a good Christmas and enjoyed your new year celebrations.

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To say that I am looking forward to 2017 is a huge understatement. As I said in previous posts, 2016 was an experimental year with a disappointing end spending 3 months on the injury bench. However, I don’t believe in dwelling on the past and there was certainly my fair share of good that also took place in 2016. As I have said to one or two people recently, I now know that everything happens for a reason, you just may not know or appreciate it at the time.

The past month has seen me get back some much needed base mileage in the run which in turn has given back some fitness whilst fighting off the inevitable Christmas calories. I have also managed to clock a couple of sub 20 minute Parkruns which I can’t really complain at having been off for so long and I even managed to represent the run club at a local cross country race which was as pleasant as ever. I still think back to the days in upper school when the very mention of cross country simply meant having to run to the local railway bridge, hide underneath it, extract the cigarette and lighter from ones sock and wait patiently for the rest to return and join on the back. Job done. How times change!

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My swimming has remained constant throughout winter and over the festive period which I know will pay dividends when the season comes knocking. For that I have to thank Putteridge swim club for being such an awesome club, not just the coaches but the other members who make getting up at 5:15 worthwhile.

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The bike has been fairly static, as most are this time of yeah. Ice on the roads and freezing conditions making it a little too dangerous to venture outside, so plenty of sessions spent on the Turbo trainer trawling through episodes of Vikings, The grand tour, The walking dead and anything else I can find on Amazon.

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Another mention has to go out to Carly @ Luton Osteopathy. Without her dedication and knowledge (not to mention patience) I don’t think I would now be running pain free, so a huge thank you to her for getting me back out there. However, I am still getting nagged to stretch and foam roll on a daily basis. My only question is, does foam rolling ever become pain free?

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Looking forward to January there are no specific race plans but the plan is to shift the winter weight and get back down to what I consider to be the racing weight. This is a weight that I have felt I have raced best at in the past. Since working with Alex @ Insight Nutrition I have learned that it is key not to focus on numbers too much but focus more on how strong you feel come race day.

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I will continue to build up the race pace on the run. I need to find 2 minutes over the 5km distance before the first race day lands in May. However, I trust my coach and my training so I don’t see that as an issue, it will come. I just have to believe… always.

All the key races are now booked, hotels reserved and plans are firmly in place, so it’s truly time to hit 2017 with full force and make it a year to remember. Watch this space!

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2016 Season review

If I had to summarise my 2016 season in a single sentence it would go something along the lines of…

“2016 has been an experimental year with a lack of an end goal, with many challenges and a change in focus which on reflection I haven’t enjoyed as much as previous seasons”.

Reading that sounds rather negative I have to admit, but, it isn’t entirely and that is certainly not the case.

After the ITU world championships in Chicago and having represented GB at both the European and World championships I made a conscious decision to step up a distance and have a year where I would try Middle distance triathlons. For those readers that are not aware that is a 1.9km swim, 56 miles on the bike and a half marathon thrown on the end for good measure. A total of 70.3 miles. Don’t get me wrong 2015 and in particular the grand final in Chicago was a fantastic season. The best yet, but I just fancied doing something a little different.

Having made that decision I realised that my season didn’t really have any goals to aim for. No qualifying races, no world finals…. So alongside my longer races I decided I would attempt to do my bit for charity and race 500 miles in 2016. In addition I would attempt to break the 3 hour mark for the marathon.

With these targets in place I started the hunt for suitable races. I needed a flat (preferably downhill) marathon and enough races to keep me busy all season and get me to the magical 500 mark.

After much deliberation I decided to sign up for Manchester marathon, where better to get my sub 3 hour marathon than in the shadow of Old Trafford.

I decided to sign up to the Grafman middle distance triathlon as that was nice and local to me and also the wonderful Brian Adcock donated a place at each of the Hever castle “Gauntlet” triathlons to assist me on my way to 500 miles. Hever Castle would be a return to my childhood as I grew up in that area between the ages of 9 and 12. That would do for a start and I would find other races as the season progressed.

So I am going to go through my races and key points in chronological order at a fairly high level in an attempt to keep this review as brief as possible.

Milton Keynes 20 – As part of the training preparation for my sub 3 hour attempt I entered the MK 20 in early march as a final check that my pacing and training was where it should be. In short it was. 20 miles completed in 2:14:44 which meant and average pacing of 6:45 per mile which essentially meant I was on for a sub 3.

Manchester Marathon – 16 weeks of training, 700+ training miles, Travel costs, Hotel costs, all for one event. Imagine that one event going truly tits up after 18 miles. Well, I don’t have to imagine. I started the race feeling good and ready to crack the 3 hour mark, I paced well until about 18.5 miles and then things just fell apart, cramping and sickness took over and I eventually crossed the line in 3:27:27.

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MK Marathon – With the disappointment of Manchester I felt I owed it to myself to have another shot at the Marathon sub 3 before my triathlon training kicked in. Unfortunately it was like de ja vu, the 18 mile mark came and went and I was comfortable then bang, just before the 19 mile mark the wheels came off again the same way as in Manchester, the time was worse at 3:42:04.

It was later discovered that I have a “defect” in my body’s ability to retain or create its own salt. Therefore, at the pace I was pushing myself over 2 (ish) hours my body was simply reduced of the salts it needed to continue. Causing cramps and sickness. This helps now but at the time my love for running disappeared completely.

Grafman – Time to forget about my marathon disasters and focus on what I love. Triathlon. The first event of the season was the Grafman, based at Grafham water in Cambridgeshire. A great event and perfectly organised by the guys and gals at Nice Tri. I can safely say that I enjoyed the first tri of the year and was reasonably happy with the splits considering my focus had been marathon training until 3 weeks prior to the event. Swim 33:54. Bike 2:40:34. Run 1:34:35.

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Southwark 10km – I entered this race last minute as my training plan suggested a 10km pace test. The only way to get me to push hard is to get me into an event. It worked! I nailed a 10km PB in a time of 37:38 and second place overall.

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Hever Gauntlet (Round 1) – Excited to return to a place I spent many happy years growing up I neglected one very important aspect of racing. ALWAYS read the race information. I learnt a valuable lesson during this race as I attacked the hilly bike course on a TT bike and the toughest off road hilly half marathon in a pair of very light race shoes. Having said that, despite the tough course and the cold wet conditions I did enjoy myself.  My Swim time had improved since the Grafman but the bike and run was significantly slower due to the dramatic profile of the courses. Swim 31:54. Bike 3:20:12. Run 1:44:43.

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Boxend County club championships – So back to sprint distance in the name of the team. Stopsley striders fielded its first ever triathlon team for the county championships at Box end. I really enjoyed being part of the team and used this race as a hard training session the splits a fairly average 12:49, 32:32, 21:55.

Stewartby Sprint – Having returned from holiday I decided to enter my second sprint of the season. Again, using this as a hard training session. The event itself was run by Active Training World and fairly local to me. I was surprised to exit the water in second place and battled between 2nd and 3rd place until the end of the race. A slightly long 12:59 swim, 31:08 bike and a 15:46 (4km) run saw me finish in second place overall.

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St Albans Stampede – Back in March when I suggested to my team mates that we entered this race it sounded like a really good idea. At the start of September it seemed like much less of a great idea. That said, the team of four started the relay strongly and took our turns on the 4 mile loop. It was clear from the second loop that the course would test our legs before the 12 hours was up. The team was in high spirits throughout the day and with three teams from Striders there it made for a great event and a good day out despite the very best of British weather trying to dampen our spirits. Our team continued to run well and we quickly found ourselves challenging for second place. However, in the 11th hour (literally) they just beat us into second place and we had to settle for third. We had run a combined total of 104 miles in 123 hours and I personally had covered 27 miles.

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Unfortunately the hangover from the Stampede meant I had a common runner’s overuse injury. Initially thought to be bursitis of the hip eventually turned out to be damaged tendons in the hip\ glute meaning I would not run for two months. It was clear then that any running related races were not going to happen. That said, back to hever!

Hever Gauntlet (Round 2) – So back to Hever Castle again for the second time this year. My goals were to nail a sub 30 minute swim and beat the time I had completed in back in July. Well as mentioned above I knew I wouldn’t finish the race as I was unable to run. It is a strange feeling getting up at 4am on a Sunday morning, driving 2 hours to Kent to take part in a race you know you won’t finish. Regardless of that I decided to push hard on the swim and the bike and call it quits and grab a massage after T2. So, having left my trainers at home, that is exactly what I did. I swam harder than I have ever done before and way outside of my comfort zone, but that gamble paid off as I exited the water bang on 29:59. The official results pinched another 1 second off me but I’ll take that. 30:00 bang on for my swim was a huge PB for me and proof that the increased hours in the pool with PSC had paid off. Onto the bike and again I was conscious that my triathlon would end once I had finished the bike, with that in mind I pushed hard and managed to keep a decent average pace up over the two hilly loops. I knocked over ten minutes off the time in July. Finishing the bike split in 3:08:13. Into T2, packed up and headed to the massage tent. My triathlon season had ended.

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Nice to Cannes Marathon – Well I had planned to do the French Riviera marathon all year and I hoped it would yield the magical Sub 3 hour marathon and along with it sign off on my 500 mile charity challenge. Unfortunately, again due to the injury this would not happen.

Summary

In a year which has had a lot of change personally I think this season was as good as it could be in the situation.

I have moved house, struggled through the worst employment of my life and eventually been made redundant (thank god!). I found another job and have settled into that job nicely and then just when I thought I could finish the season on a strong note. I got injured.

As I alluded to at the start of this blog, it was an experimental year and I have had some good results. Some good memories and some good learning’s. I have forged a new partnership with my fellow GB athlete and friend who will coach me into 2017 and beyond and I am really looking forward to the time ahead. This was certainly not a wasted season, I tried something different and I didn’t enjoy it as much as previous seasons. That doesn’t make it a failure. Not trying is a failure. Never be left wondering “what if”.

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One thing it has done is fire me up for next season! The best version of me comes out in 2017. I can’t wait!

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For now, it’s a little bit of down time and a decent recovery block before the off season training starts. Thanks to everyone for the support throughout the year. My friends and family have been as wonderfully supportive as ever and I couldn’t have done it without you.

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I’ve had a blast!

Regular readers of my blog will know that since July 22nd I have been on “Gardening leave” as I was made redundant in mid-June.  Fortunately I managed to find myself a job very quickly and agreed a start date of 22nd August! Therefore, I found myself with a month off… paid!

So of course as it is called “gardening leave” I decided that I would do no gardening whatsoever and immerse myself into training. A taste of what the pros do! The only exception was that I also had a week’s holiday in Mallorca, but more on that in a moment.

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Let’s just say, I have covered more metres in the pool, more miles on the bike and run than ever before and I have loved every minute of it. My hope is that it sets me up with a strong end to the season.

At the tail end of my last blog I told you that I had teamed up with my mate Fin who I raced with in Chicago to push me to my limits and he has certainly taken my training and given it a much needed shake up.

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So August continued very much the way June finished. Training anywhere between 2 and 5 hours a day. Most days hitting at least two of the three disciplines.

I enjoyed a holiday to Mallorca in the first week of August. It was my first visit to the Island and it will certainly not be the last. I took the opportunity to run and swim most days and hired a bike on two days to explore some of the awesome routes on the island and one or two of the climbs. I loved it and I will definitely be back. If anyone is heading to the north of the island and needs a hire bike I can fully recommend the “Pinerello Experience” which is based in Port de Pollensa. Great gear and superb service.

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Having retuned to the UK I raced the following weekend at a local Sprint Tri – my first Sprint of the season. A great race held by Active Training world in the old Brick works of Stewartby. Well worth looking out for next year.

I had a decent swim for probably the first time ever and came out of the wet stuff in second place! Which is pretty unheard of for me. I left T1 in first place and put my head down on the bike but unfortunately I lost a place early on to a strong athlete, this time round I just didn’t have the legs to stay with him. The legs felt a little heavy, I put this down to holiday \ mountainous bike routes \ excessive holiday food. I hoped he was a poor runner! In the final 200m of the bike I was overtaken again and so I finished the bike leg down in third place. T2 could have been better as my bike decided it didn’t want to stay on the rail but with that issue dealt with I gave chase to second place and took it back midway through the run. It was an out and back run leg so I saw first place come back the other way, he wasn’t a poor runner! Oh well! I hit cruise control and was happy to hold second as I knew I wasn’t going to catch first, he had done the damage on the bike. I crossed the line just over the hour and claimed a nice trophy – so a good days work.IMG_20160814_115401

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I thought I has deserved a rest day, apparently not. It was straight into another tough week of training but as it’s the last one before I return to a full time job, I don’t mind at all.

The next event lined up is the St Albans 12 hour Stampede – which will see me cover around 30 \ 35 miles in 12 hours and is done as a relay team. I then have two weekends of no racing before I travel to Hever again with the aim of beating my time set on the same course in June. A busy month ahead.

I am on the lookout for corporate sponsorship for the 2017 season. So if you or someone you know think you may be able to help then please do get in touch. It would be very much appreciated.

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It’s Christmas!!!

So it’s been a while since I last wrote, but to be honest I don’t have too much to say! Yes, I can hear you all now muttering “makes a bloody change!” In all honesty it’s been a fairly quite off-season so far.

After the excitement of Chicago it’s all been fairly… meh! I took a break from the regular triathlon training which meant I hardly touched the bike or the pool throughout November. I kept up my running with Stopsley Striders and I can say I am happy I did. The fitness has not died off completely and I have managed to get round four of the five league cross country fixtures that we all have a love hate relationship with every year. The truth be told, I really enjoy them. Of course we have local rivalries which adds to the competitive spirit and of course the inter club competition to drive us forward through the mud but there is something of a romance with cross country, it’s one of the rare times of the year the club can get together as a team and I think that’s what I enjoy more than anything. Last year I managed to race one before getting injured. This year I am hoping to complete all 5 league fixtures, the counties, the regionals and of course the nationals.

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Letchworth Cross country – Event #4

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Wing and THAT puddle – Cross country event #3

Aside from that I have started to put races together for 2016. Before the triathlon season starts up in May my first focus will be a sub 3 hour marathon attempt. This will be attempted in Manchester on the 10th April. I say the word “attempt” because I appreciate just how hard that magical barrier of 180 minutes is. I know a lot of runners much better than me that are still waiting to break that magical 3 hour barrier so I know the training will be tough and the race will have to be one of the best races of my life in order to achieve it. Therefore I will be giving it the respect it deserves in my training. I will of course keep a number of swim, bike and strength session in my weekly training but the focus will be on the running until April.

Once the marathon is done I have lined up the following half iron distance races. The Grafman in May. The Gauntlet in July and another in September and the Nice to Cannes marathon in November.

One thing I have decided is that I will be raising money throughout 2016 for “Signposts start over” in Luton. (www.signpostsso.com) This is a local charity who helps homeless people “start over” – for that I have pledged not only to attempt a 3 hour marathon but also race a total of 500 miles next season. So I better put a few more races in the calendar!

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On that note, I must say a huge thank you to the wonderful people at Castle Triathlon Series for donating two race entries at Hever castle. I am looking forward to racing there as it holds great memories of growing up in the next village along.

 

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If you can please can you support me and donate anything you can to the cause. Please visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/Sub3500 .

I am really pleased that I can confirm that I will be once again working with Insight Nutrition throughout 2016 to help me achieve my goals. I’d like to take the opportunity to congratulate Alex and Keri on the birth of their daughter Madalyn. Wonderful news.

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That only leaves me to say one last thing.

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Getting close!

Following a very eventful March, April was comparatively quiet. Training was solid and consistent and has started to build nicely towards Austria in June.

I am trying to focus on training and not worry too much about the monumental race that lies in wait for me in just a few months. This is where my trust in my training and my coach kicks in.

As I said, training has been very consistent and building week by week. I am finally in a place where I am happy with my running form, although I am my own worst critic so I know I have more in me. Being part of Stopsley Striders and working hard in speed sessions have been instrumental in improving the run, this will continue throughout the summer as I am seeing real gains.

In the middle of the month I decided to revisit the Duathlon scene at Eton Dorney. The race went well last month so I figured why not! I wanted to improve on the times and if possible the position over the last race. A full race report is available on the “race report” tab above, but in short I managed to better both run splits and the bike split. Transitions were also better. It was good to get some early season transition practice in. This is something that is so important but often overlooked when compared with the other 3 disciplines.

 

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A good solid performance led me to second place overall and first in my age group, so another great outing at Dorney lake and of course another great confidence booster ahead of the forthcoming season.

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After the race I had a final build week in training before I took a scheduled rest and recovery week. This tied in nicely with a work trip to Bangalore in India.

Training in India would be seriously injurious to your health. I did not see one person jogging or cycling in my entire time out there. Although my hotel had a pool, it was unusable most of the time due to various hotel functions etc. So my training for the week was largely based in the hotel gym on the treadmill or working on my core. I thought briefly about trying a run outside, but quickly thought better of it. The medley of cows, monkeys and dust in 39 degree heat slightly put me off, not to mention the erratic drivers in tuck tucks, Lorries, cars, busses…. So the treadmill seemed the sensible and safe (yet a little dull) option.

So, back to the UK, rest week over and back on the training. The week started with a visit to my nutritionist. He was as always really helpful and the formula was put in place for the next 6/8 weeks and the all-important taper period before the big race. Overall I am in a good place and the all-important body fat percentage is sitting at 9.7%. I would ideally like to shift 1kg body fat and therefore lower this slightly but I am leaving that to good eating and hard training.

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So, looking forward to May, I have a 10k race lined up and a couple of early season triathlons. I suppose I will have to man up at some point and get in open water. I may leave it a week or so longer, a few degrees makes all the difference!

Don’t forget you all still need to sponsor me to take on Jenson in July! http://www.justgiving.com/trinathan

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Its all about the weather!

Ah Sh*t. That’s all I have to say! This weekend was supposed to be the start of the 2013 race season with an outing at Althrop Duathlon. I was really looking forward to getting a race under my belt and giving my first Duathlon a bash. But the weather gods decided to alter those plans dramatically and the race was postponed late on Thursday evening. Which threw my pre-race nutrition plans into turmoil, never mind – it was good practise for when race day does finally come around.

The event will now take place on Saturday 2nd March. A date I cannot make. Never mind, suck it up and assume it was never meant to be.

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Ironically the sun shone instead and allowed a good 40k pedal with the Ridgemont gang in the early morning winter sun followed by some smaller 5k loops with effort. Of course this was followed by the obligatory visit to the café, which is by far the best bit 😉

The long run is now a solid weekly feature and I am hitting 20 miles for a long run and around 40 miles per week in total in the run up to Paris in April. Good to be getting some mileage in my legs but still struggling with the pace that I want to achieve in Paris. Have I aimed too high? Who knows, it’s early days, we shall see. The good news was that the sun was still shining as I made my way out of Luton on the “Upper Lea Valley Way” and into Harpenden; I was surprised at the level of activity in and around such a small town for a Sunday morning. I turned for home and headed back up the main road back into Luton and through the grounds of Luton Hoo. Lovely run all be it a little lonely, sob!

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This week saw the return to the swimming pool as my tattoo has finally reached a point where I can safely immerse it in water and I have to admit it was really tough. Not really sure what I expected having been out of the pool for the best part of two months but it was like someone was hanging onto my feet. Hopefully this will improve over the next few weeks, it was great to be back in the pool, I have to admit, I’ve missed it.

The next few weeks sees me leave easyJet and start my new role with Tesco.com. Save the horse jokes – trust me, I have heard them all!

There is no doubt this change will cause some disruption in training but that is to be expected as I settle in. Really looking forward to the challenge of the new role and being the chance to develop my career.

To check out the route of my long run (Luton to Harpenden) please see Sustrans site.

http://www.sustrans.org.uk/what-we-do/connect2/schemes/east-of-england/upper-lea-valley-way

 

2013 – Here we go!

So it’s a new year, I have a new training plan, a new mentor, a new race sponsor, a new attitude towards food and lots of new kit (thanks Inframon!) not to mention a new job!, so it’s time to stop all the preparation and talk and put the plan into action!

The year started with a nutritional review with Alex which was really very interesting and a little shocking, but since then Alex has sent through my revised meal plans and nutrition strategy which I am three days into at the time of writing. So far so good, I have never eaten so much! However, I am feeling good and Alex has been in constant contact to ensure the changes are working for me. I can’t express how useful this process has been and anyone thinking of upping their game in 2013 and beyond should seriously contemplate investing in yourself and having a session with Alex and Insight Nutrition.  I sound like I’m advertising but I really am not, as triathletes we would not bat an eyelid at spending a few hundred quid on tech to make us faster by a few seconds or fitter, so why not use that money to invest in you. (www.insight-nutrition.com)

Insight

 

 

Yesterday (Monday) I received my race kit back from the printers which is very exciting, come on… you know what it’s like when new toys come through…. So I now have all my race kit ready and printed with my race sponsors details.

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A massive thank you to Inframon for their investment in me, thanks to them I have managed to get the kit I required and enter 15 races so far in 2013. Thanks to Sean, Gordon, Clive and Di at Inframon for making this happen. I look forward to racing at my best and being a positive advert for Inframon. For anyone that doesn’t know who and what Inframon are please visit their website to find out. (www.Inframon.com)

inframon

 

 

 

I met with my mentor on Sunday to discuss my training and race plan going forward and he was really helpful. I can’t help but feel boosted by having such a network of friends and training partners around me and I really am genuinely looking forward to racing this season.

So with the Paris marathon now firmly in my sights this month will see a build of long endurance runs to build the mileage for April. This will include various races along the way just to make sure I am hitting my targets. Swimming is probably ruled out until February due to the on-going tattoo work I am having completed.

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And finally ……….. New Year’s Eve saw the delivery of a certain email from the Sea Captain confirming the date of the channel crossing in 2014. Not something I need to worry about this year but it certainly makes it real! 2014 will be time to put the sea demons to bed!