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, 3 September 2011

All at 60 strokes/min
500m free style
500m paddles
500m free
500m PT paddles
500m free
500m paddles
Total = 3km

Into sauna 20mins.

I'm really liking the rhythm with this 60/min work. It's also easier to see what happens when you make changes.
Seems very surreal that 5 weeks today i'll hopefully be racing in Hawaii.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Running lesson at the "running school"
- This session I just asked to do most of at 8.7miles/hr (3hr marathon pace). The main reason was to see how it all looked at a relevant speed. We usually do faster sessions with more incline etc,
- It was lesson 5. The main things I have picked up are:
what angle to have at the elbow
cycling the leg behind
They took some video which i'll get after the 6th lesson which will be the last.

30mins straight at 60 strokes/min
I'm really enjoying this faster stroke rate. There's much more rhythm and more sense of having the equivalent of gears.
30mins straight
My massage roller broke so the lovely people at trigger point therapy replaced it for me - absolutely fantastic customer service. This rolling device really has been instrumental in allowing me to absorb the training volume. Like everyone though I don't do it enough.

A better picture than me doing it!

Hawaii 5 weeks tomorrow.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Finally made the half hour straight. Ran the 3.5km there and back to try and get used to running fairly hot and tired.
Doubling the amount of water I took in helped (1.5L)
It's great that there's a creche for Will, I wouldn't like to leave him any longer than 30mins but he has a good time.
After 30mins I ran home (slowly). It's interesting to see the heart rate climb steadily - I wonder if this means around 40mins i'd be anaerobic?

I used to go to a class in London called yoga for cyclists. It's run by Rebecca who is an absolute expert and ex professional dancer. Carrying on the running theme I ran there and back - 7km each way.

I'm trying to do a fair bit of run volume over the next few days. Just slowly and spaced out. I've also entered a 10km on Sunday (a club race) and am planning to do a turbo before it and just do it around ironman pace. I listened to a interview with the inventor of the yasso 800 - http://www.bartyasso.com/ and have got a bit of running motivation going again. He's done a multiple ultra marathons - I don't know much about this and how you would go about training for them. I was interested to hear it's more about running 20milers on consecutive days than going out and doing mega long runs that just wipe you out. I've been worried about the wipe out factor so will bring a bit of this ideology into my training.

Total distance today = 21km

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Mainly rolling the legs with the rolling pin type thing - http://tptherapy.com/
Absolute agony at times but know it works.
Bit of strength work
- I have some heart rate data today; The garmin returned from it's repair of the cracked screen. It was away for about 4days and they've replaced it with a new one. I've had it for 2 years so am really impressed with their customer service. I remember the old days with the polar watches that would take months to come back.

I stayed in until 26mins. Had a minute break then back in for the last 4mins.
I still can't get my head around sitting doing nothing and having a heart rate that's the same as a conversational pace cycle or run. Not even the thought of getting the full half an hour so I could put the graph up here could keep me in any longer. 
I think the dips are due to people coming in and out and bringing the cold air with them. 

2hours 20min
Main set 4 x (20min x 220W x 90rpm) on 10min recovery

Did this after kids went to bed. I'm still waiting for the final bike fitting report, I kept wanting to be further forwards so it would be good to see if that was in the "fit window" 

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

(AM) Core 
I follow a routine from Greg McMillan He does a core DVD
Level 3.3 takes 30mins;
1. Rolling plank - 20 reps each leg (my left side is definitely weaker than the right)
2. Scissor Kicks - 3x20 reps
3. Bridge - 20 reps
4. Metronome - 25 reps
5. Prone superman - 10reps / 10sec hold / 10reps
6. Swiss ball cross crunch - 20 reps (the girl in the video holds a weight - no way could I do that yet)
7. Modified Jane Fonda - 3 x 20 reps both sides
8. Reverse sit up 20 reps - Slow going down, fast up.
9. Donkey kick - 10 reps / 10 sec hold / 10 reps
10. Roll up - 20 reps

There were clicks and clunks that come from all over the place - more so on the left - don't know what to make of them, they have always been there.
The exercises I find hardest are definitely the rolling plank and metronome. A year ago I couldn't do them in one go but can now. I'll feel it tomorrow.
I was looking around on youtube to see if there were any examples and came across one by Nike there's a load of good stuff there - it's "Nike training club" and directed at women. She does it all a bit too quickly but has saved me making a video! There's a free app as well - I've got it on the phone now and will give it a go (can't find one for men!)

A lot of the exercises above need good technique - mine was a little off following the interval running yesterday and a sore left knee.

(PM) Swim
400m warm up
20 x 100m on 15 sec rest middle 5 with paddles all at 60 strokes/min
Cool down

- unfortunately it didn't feel great like it did on Saturday - don't know why. I might suit longer sets to get the rhythm or the core work could have had an impact.
- very hungry this evening.

Had an email toady from an app developer - they are doing a a fitness/diet app and wanted my take on keeping motivation up etc, I've replied with a few things and will think about some more. I think a lot has to do with intrinsic v extrinsic motivation. There's a good book called Drive by Daniel Pink on this.

Also had a really lovely email from Nick Rose - I had a read of his blog and found that his story has been very similar to mine. He got to Hawaii in 2009, and has given me some great advice. Check out his blog at http://nickrose33.blogspot.com/

Other wise it's been a busy day - had a puncture with George and Will in the tricycle - that was really tough - keeping them both in the box, lifting it up, initially filling it with that latex puncture repair stuff (didn't work). I found I could change the inner tube without taking the wheel off - only for the new tyre to explode with a very loud bang 500m up the road. It's funny how things pan out though as now stranded a lovely couple gave me and the boys a lift home and the husband pushed the bike back to the house - amazing, thank you. They also have a disabled child so we talked about the uphill struggles we all have. I'm getting much better at receiving help. If I could remain that calm come ironman if I have a puncture i'll be doing well.

Monday, 29 August 2011

90 mins treadmill 1% incline
800m warm up
2 x pyramids of 800m (14km/hr, 15km/hr, 16km/hr, 15km/hr, 14km/hr) on 200m walk/jog recovery
Remaining 90mins 800m repeats 14km/hr on 200m jog recovery
Lost count of how many intervals this was - total distance around 16 km

Sauna straight afterwards 20mins (1 break)

I'm not sure why i'm gravitating to the treadmill so much. I think it's because I know exactly what pace i'm working at, which can be hard on London streets.
Contolling the pace has been useful. I seem to be in a good place where the pace corresponds nicely with the distance to be run:

Marathon pace = 14km/hr
Half marathon pace = 15km/hr
10km pace = 16km/hr
5km pace = 17km/hr
3km pace = 18km/hr

There's a bit of approximation going on but it's simple and easy to remember. The distances correspond to those used in many programs to give people an indication of how fast the session should be.

At some point I need to do a long run but I know it detracts from the quality I can put into the bike.

I don't write much about the nutritional side of things - obviously it's a huge area. I did a bit of calorie counting for the UK race. This time I seem to be 1.5kg heavier with the same amount of fat - I should be pleased but am not sure.
Bought a sledge hammer today - guess it counts as core exercise swinging that around. There's the foundations of the old outside toilet to break up.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

500m warm up
5 x 500m all at stroke rate of 60/min using the wetronome 4th set was with paddles.

I'd go as far as saying this was the best swim i've ever had! I don't do much work on stroke rate. The first couple of sets were hard and felt fast then it all became really easy and the rhythm felt great. Putting paddles on helped to correct my hand entry and improved the catch on the final set. I tried to eliminate the dead spot at the front of the stroke by focusing on my hand not stopping. Each lot of 20 lengths seemed to fly by (for once)
I'm keen to do more of this as it's a sea swim coming up which suits the higher stroke rate.

30mins (1 break at 22mins)

Gardening - moved about a tonne of soil today - I would have run today but my back was a little overworked and didn't want to do anything stupid. I thought a swim was the best option.