Friday, July 29, 2011

The small ones are always the hardest!!

As I get ready for a 5 hour journey along the Great Ocean Road with Fossil and a few others, and mind you am excited about it, I sit and ponder why the small sessions are always the hardest to get motivated for.

The small 30min run tonight took me forever to drag myself out the door as once I found all my running gear, it took me just about as long to get ready as what it did to get the run done. Once I finally got out the door and got running, it was fine, however just trying to mentally get excited about the small sessions feels tougher than the actual session itself. I find getting ready for a long session, whether be the swim, bike or run very easy and can really get excited about getting the session done, feeling the sense of accomplishment, ticking a big box on the checklist and knowing that I am making progress with my training/Kona preparation.

Getting through a 6 hr ride with efforts or running for 3 hrs in the hills or getting a 5k swimming lesson just gets me more motivation for the following session regardless of how I feel post session. I can get myself mentally prepared for these and get up and get going without much effort.

With the small sessions, I don't get that feeling. I understand the benefits of these sessions however a few years back I thought that they were a total waste of time and never gave them the due respect they deserved. Knocking over these little sessions just add value to the larger sessions and can be of great benefit to the overall training. This I the only thing that makes me drag myself out to complete them, whether on the treadmill or the mag trainer, I just make sure I tick that box.

I would be curious to hear the thoughts of others regarding this and if there are any little tips on how to make the short sessions easier.

For now...


Monday, July 25, 2011

The numbers keep growing, the weeks keep shrinking...

That's right, the weeks are, however my numbers in training are So I would say that things are heading the right way for both stats.

I am still a long way off peaking at my training numbers, however the body and mind are feeling as good as ever and the increases are more enjoyable rather than intimidating. I had a chat with Coach Andrew last week about where the numbers might get to if my body holds up....That is bloody scary. I am hoping that I can get to those numbers (will state them down the track) to see how mentally strong I am and how much improvements I still have left in me.
How motivating was it to see Cadel Evans win the Tour De France. I must admit, the late nights got to me and was unable to sustain the night in night out ritual like many of my friends did but the motivation that I have gained from it has been fantastic. Could not have come at a better time for me. Not that the motivation was dwindling, but to get a massive boost is always a help. I was going to blog mid week about motivation and what gets me going, however seeing Cadel take the Tour Victory is enough for now..(Maybe another topic for down the track)
Everything has been going according to plan, however I did learn one thing yesterday afternoon....I cannot eat a whole box of favourite chocolates and not be violently ill that night. Rookie mistake one would say.....I would say, I was just being a pig!! Lesson learnt, no harm done to training, this time!!

The swimming has been showing improvements and today I got the understanding of how Ben felt when he swam with me regulary. When you consistently swim with someone faster, you never actually feel like you are improving and it is not until you reflect on the times you are producing that you realize that you are making improvements. For me, swimming with Greg has been a great thing, someone who is just out of reach when the going gets tough. This has helped me greatly, however never making inroads into the distance between us started eating me up today.

The agreed set was 500m w/up, then 38 x 100m on a 1.30 cycle. This might mean a lot to many, however in triathlete terms, this is a big set for the average swimmer (that's me!!). The first 15 were "easy" (unsure how doing a 1.30m cycle can ever be "easy"), then following that the next 15 were "solid" (that's more like my intensity for these) and the final 8 at "tempo" (hmmm, this was always going to be a battle.

We agreed that we would come in on around the 1.25min for the first 15 then decrease the time after this. First 15 come and go.....average 1.22min, feeling ok, however knowing that when the set changes to "solid" (must be his solid not mine!!) I was going to hurt. I managed to knock off 25 x 100m on the 1.30min cycle before my arms said that was enough. Now I am no quitter, so I rested for 1 set, added some paddles and buoy and continued on my way. I got through another 8 on the 1.25 cycle before I rested again and then finished off the last 4 trying to hang onto Greg.

For me, this was a pass!! I was hoping to get to 20, 25 was more than acceptable first up. Next time around no less than 38 will be acceptable.

The riding is also improving and I am feeling my riding legs returning, finally. A few hills on the weekend was enough to return some waining confidence about my cycle legs. And the running is the running. It comes around 8-10 times a week and then it returns the next week. My legs are getting stronger with both the riding and running, however it is always hard to gauge these without racing. One would say that I am really looking forward to Yeppoon in 3 1/2 weeks!!

For Now...


PS. On a different note, I would like to send my condolences out to all that knew the late John Cornish who was unfortunately hit by a vehicle on Friday evening whilst out training and passed away due to the injuries suffered. I didn't know John that well myself, however I certainly know many people who were close to John and my heart felt wishes go out to all of you. John was a Pro-triathlete in his day and then switched across to Pro-cycling and was well respected by his peers. John also was a Triathlon coach at Tri-Alliance.
This gives a reminder that whilst we are training, we have to keep alert at all times, some things cannot be avoided, this for example, however please take care out there and stay safe. This is news that as a fellow triathlete and cyclist I wish I didn't have to hear/read about especially when it touches people around you.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The countdown is on...

Yes, I am counting down. Counting down to the biggest race of my life. Counting down until I jump on the plane to head across to Kona and even counting down until I get on the plane to head to Yeppoon 1/2 in 4 weeks.

I am also counting down to get out of the weather here, yes the sun has been shining, however it has been freezing. Hence I write this blog at 9am instead of being out on the bike. That's what my afternoon plan is.....riding in the sun. With the weather getting below 0 deg, I decided that I am no super hero, nor am I trying to get used to the cold conditions, so waiting until the afternoon is my decision!

Now, as far as training is going, it is going well. After suffering the potentially disease "man flu" I had to have an easy week, which coincided with my recovery week and managed 12 hrs of training, I am now back into the full swing of things getting back up to my comfort zone around the 20hrs per week. I know that I will be going up a level soon and hitting 25+hrs per week, but let's wait until that comes around. I learnt my lesson about wanting more, refer to this blog. So patience is my motto and getting every session ticked off along the way is my goal.

Training is still fun (apart from trying to get out is 0 degrees), swimming is going well and it was good to see Matty Lewis at the pool yesterday. We had a bit of fun trying to tame the swimming beast Greg Farrell which also coincided with Matty and I both swimming pb's for the distance we relayed in!!

Greg had been a great help to me in the pool, getting my to well and truly step out of my comfort zone and I am learning my boundaries and limits for respective distances. Pushing me until I can't be pushed any more.
Sometimes I get out of the pool feeling and looking like this. (notice how red this swimmers back is = fatigued)

Often the comment, "Is your back sun burnt?" gets asked, my usual response is, "No, just been swimming with Greg!"

I have enjoyed the sessions, and am seeing improvements week after week. We both have set a plan in place and are working towards it and I am very sure that it will be anther box that I will tick off.

It has been great getting back on the bike also. I am currently mixing up the riding between my trusty TT bike and my roadie. Breaking up the rides by doing this is making it so much easier to get out and enjoy the sessions. But soon the roadie will be having a spell and the TT bike will be out in force.

Getting back out on the bike for 10+ hours per week makes me comfortable, however I know that I am a fair way off from having my riding legs.

At Mag trainer Thursday night my legs exploded a few times. My mind still thinks that I have cycling legs, however the body does no better....for now!! My legs will be "all rounders" with both cycling and running heavily implanted in them.

The running is still going well, putting the recovery week behind me where I felt like my legs gained 10kg's each as I could not reach the speed/efforts that I could previously. My running legs are coming back and my intensities are back to where I like.

Overall everything is on track and I am really looking forward to the increased volume, I am just hoping for some moreand less.

For now...


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Here we go...

Tonight is the official start of my Ironman Hawaii preparation. So far I have been running like no tomorrow, following the black line over and over again in the pool and with the occasional pedal around the streets to prepare myself for a massive 12 weeks.

With the actual race 94 days and with me leaving 3 odd weeks prior, no stone will be left unturned from now until then.

I actually looked over my training for June and worked out that I ran over 450k's for the month and swam just under 70k's also. This puts me in a good position as these were the 2 disciplines that needed attention and with having focused on those I know that with the introduction of riding back into the program consistently, I will still be heading in the direction that I want to get to.

When I look back at my running, to get the volume completed and the consistency in the legs really compliments the program that I have undertaken. This I can only thank Andrew for in preparing me for the 12 weeks of torture that will I face.

Greg has been a massive help in the pool, smashing me to pieces more often than not, however his help has been invaluable and made the progress easier and faster.

Tonight will not only be exciting, however a little scary all the same as I have been averaging around 20hrs per week at the moment without any big riding. What will the hours get to?? I have no idea, however will find out this evening.

The count down is definitely on and the phone calls will start happening sourcing training partners from around the place, not only to train with, but to feed me also :-).....I have to thank a few people for have dinner ready for me after training, it is muchly appreciated!!

After my discussion tonight, will have a whole lot more knowledge, excitement and nerves about what is forthcoming.

For Now...


Ps. A big well done to those who toughed it out at IM Korea over the weekend and a HUGE congrates to Dane for finishing 4th and booking his ticket to Kona.