Hello Folks, I have set this blog up as every triathlete seems to be blogging now and I thought I would jump on the bandwagon. You will have to excuse me as I am completely new to this blogging craze and hope I don’t bore you with lots of continuous swim bike run chat.
Thought I would start by talking about how my winter prep has gone.
I was lucky to have Four weeks of from training after Lost Sheep Half Ironman. 7th place at the Irish championships, at only my second time over that distance. Il take that! I got to say how epic that race is. If anyone wants an easy Half Ironman race that’s the one for you. Only a few mountain climbs and a hilly half marathon to finish. Easy!
My four weeks of down time consisted of eating lots and lots of pizza and the odd beer thrown in for good measure. Then time came to mount the bike again and clock up the aerobic base mile. All my cycling was done in the peak district, kept at specific heart rates and consisted of long hilly rides. I can assure you my heart rate did jump into zone 5 at times when I was pedalling up some of those crazy hills that the peaks has to offer and also the crazy Yorkshire head winds which I got real friendly with. I have to thank the headwinds as they have definitely helped make me a stronger biking this year.
My running was also kept aerobic and kept at specific heart rates set out by my coach/dad aka “the punisher”. Running was going well I was able to clock up some good mileage and everything was falling into place and I was feeling strong and my aerobic pace had increased. It was nice to see the progression, running at the same heart rate but at a faster pace. One thing I learnt is that patience is needed when using heart rate. I wouldn’t do any of my winter base mile any other way now.
My swimming was a different story. Sadly this has been the major aspect that has let me down as I always seem to be chasing come the bike and run. I set out over the winter to concentrate improving this. Masters three mornings a week at 6.45am. Dark, wet, windy and freezing mornings in mid-December never really added to the appeal of getting up at 6.15am and walking to the pool. But it was the thought of fellow competitors doing the same thing that got me out of bed those mornings. Once in the pool it was enjoyable “most of the time” or when we weren’t doing sets of 100s. 100s seem to hurt no matter what pace im swimming at. Drills Drills Drills was also emphasised. It can be boring but it certainly helps. It also helps to have good swimming partners, they say shared pain is half the pain and its certainly true in the pool. All this helped and I am now swimming faster than last season and I saw this at Lough Cutra Last weekend. (Blog to come).
Overall the winter had gone pretty well, power was up on the bike, running times were well improved from last year and my swimming times in the pool had fallen. But most importantly I had no injuries which is always a fear of us triathletes. Next up was to add in some half iron specific sessions and to do a race to see what work still needed to be done.