I started this blog in 2010 when there were 11 weeks to go before my next Ironman triathlon. People have found it interesting (mainly my Mum!) so I continue to write.
The Ironman is a long distance triathlon; Swim 2.4miles, Cycle 112miles, Run 26.2 miles (marathon). I have competed in one every year since 2004. I hope this blog can help others see what is involved. I find the process of writing it makes me more accountable and motivates me to do the harder sessions when i'm not feeling like it!

Saturday, 11 June 2011


Turbo 3hrs 15min
Within easy aerobic session 25min 220W x 80-85rpm on 5min recovery x 4
Held aero position for 4min with 1min off throughout (difficult!)
I am hoping that an hour aero position on the turbo is about as hard as two on the road. That has been my experience in the past.
Bit of right lateral knee pain sorted out by moving the shoe more laterally.
The aero position causes my heart rate to increase by about 3-5bpm - it's all a trade off.
Didn't want to go over threshold so for the last set messed around between 210 and 220W - just 5W makes a huge difference.

Run (off bike)
15km at IMP
Went off a little fast. Note to self choose different route on a Saturday afternoon! (tourists)
From this I think my ceiling heart rate should be 150 and pace 4min/km at the very most. Need to be super disciplined with this.

The usefulness of the blog really hit home. As the turbo got harder the negotiations that take place in your head become louder. Although no one will probably read it, it does give an extra degree of accountability which helps get the work done when it gets harder.

Friday, 10 June 2011


Recovery drill
10 x 50m rolling catch up
200m easy free in front quadrant
6 x 50m on 20 sec 1 arm drill (25/25)
300m easy shoulder width catch up with pull
10 x 50m on 20 sec finger trail/high weightless arms catch up
200m easy free
6x 50m on 20sec torpedo kick with flippers
300m easy with pull.

Total = 2.6km

Getting on the roller for a few minutes every day to try and get some flexibility into the quads.

Have been feeling fairly flat last few days so bumped up the food, had an early night - it's made a huge difference.

There's a 100km cycle and 15km race pace run planned for Sat or Sun so want to go into that feeling good.

Finished my sign language course today so keen to try it out this weekend.

Thursday, 9 June 2011


(am) 2km Drill
Warm up, PT paddles, ankle band, single arm drill, cool down.

PT paddles improve the catch at the beginning of the stroke. You get a few odd looks though.

If you can swim well with a band around your ankles you are a good swimmer. I can manage about a length. You need to eliminate dead spots in the stroke and up your rate. In the years to come I hope to get better at this.

(pm) Core

I wanted to do a turbo. Started but it just wasn't happening - called it a day and did core work (30mins)
1. Rolling plank x 20
2. Siscor kicks 3 x 20
3. Bridge x 20
4. Lying windscreen wipers or metronome x 25
5. Prone "supermans" 10/10/10
6. Cross crunch on swiss ball x 20
7. Side leg raises - 3 positions x each side x 20 (Jane Fonda's)
8. Reverse sit up (slow going down) x 20
9. Donkey kicks 10/10/10

Had been doing a sign language course for George today and then had to rush off to pick him up as he was vomiting at nursery - hence dropping the turbo.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011


100mins aerobic

Had planned to run for longer, something like 20 miles. There's good evidence that the fastest marathons are run by the people who have done the most 20 mile runs in training. This was the rationale. However, half way through thought the argument against this at this stage is that it will impact heavily on the quality of the bike training and increase the chance of injury. Difficult call but exercised caution.

Looking after Will in during the day. Did manage to get on the roller when he was asleep and hit the legs - for once I felt a change with better form on the run. I must force myself to do this every day; it's painful.

In the London marathon this year I tried a run walk strategy from the start - 4mins running 30 seconds walking right from the start. My time was 3.03 (and I did an extra km running around everyone). I am toying with the idea of this for the Ironman but it's crucial I do a bit more of this in training now if i'm going to do it in the race.

Listening to IM talk podcast - a lot of debate about the "paleo diet" - interesting, seems a bit of a fad - it has stopped me from putting the juicer on ebay though.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011


Warm up 10mins 90rpm
Set - 4 x 9min on 5min recovery at approx. race pace.

Run off bike 8km easy aerobic

Today I tried a new session on the turbo as advocated by Gordo. He likes to do 3min at 60rpm, then 3min out of the saddle then 3min at 90rpm (in the saddle).
Found this session really good as I don't do too much work out of the saddle but do when it comes to the race.
So this was very specific and mentally the time went really quickly as I only thought about the 3min blocks and not 9min.
Some interesting things about the heart rate -
1. Out of the saddle results in the higher heart rates
2. Block one and two were at 250W block 3 at 245W and block 4 was broken into - 3min x 250W x 240W x 240W. Just a few watts less on standing resulted in a much smaller peak. As Ironman has a lot to do with minimising carbohydrate use (high heart rate) it's sensible to bear this in mind when out of the saddle.
3. The change from standing to high cadence sitting results in a spike - in a race it may be best to build the cadence gradually and change to an easier gear initially.

Run felt comfortable - tried to stay under 5min/km. Had a few crazy biomechanical issues that need to work on.

Monday, 6 June 2011


600m Easy
800m every 3rd 25m 2 arm drill (2 arm right/2 arm left) with pull buoy
8 x 100m at steady pace
4 x 200m with pull and paddles as 2 arm drill up free-style catch up back

Total = 3000m

Sunday, 5 June 2011

am Run

30mins with some drills
Sauna 30mins

pm Turbo

15min warm up
Set 4 x 25min x 220Watts x 85rpm on 5min (2hours)
10min cool down

- Really hard to motivate myself to train this evening. Back from the conference, emotionally testing. Jumped on the turbo expecting to get off after 10mins and go to bed. Music really helped and after 20 mins or so felt pretty good so did what I thought would give me a good training effect.
- It's time to get specific in the training so i'm trying to find what this year's race pace intensity is. This comes pretty close heart rate wise.
- position wise reasonable comfortable but not in the aero position - this is the next thing to move towards. I've put a longer stem on the bike to improve the handling but i'm at too much of a stretch, unfortunately will have to go back to where I was.
- Really valuable session motivation wise

oh nearly forgot - passed a shop that had fish in it that eat the dead skin off your feet. Gave it a go, video to follow.