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, 14 July 2012

5km to gym
20min on treadmill 1% 15km/hr

Weights - TRX, various leg exercises from the book cycling anatomy I bought yesterday
Swim - 1km as 200 warm up, 200 1 arm, 200 sighting, 200 fists, 200 5 strokes/breath
Run - 5km home

That treadmill was hard today - heart rate hitting 160/min (usually low 150s for the same effort) I think this was due to the hard turbo the previous day. Right leg not right, drifting over the centre line with the usual hamstring ache towards the end.
Enjoyed trying out some exercises from the new book - the lunges were good and my asymmetry shows up in those as well - hopefully this could help improve it.

Another night shift tonight.

Friday, 13 July 2012

10min warm up
4 x 7.5min x 85rpm x 270W on 4min recovery
Cool down

I've been adapting the program I followed last year and this was down as 4 x 5km at Olympic pace on 3.5-4min. Working on 40km/hr (a bit optimistic!) this gives 7.5min and 270W for the effort (also optimistic) - the aim was to get to anaerobic threshold which I did - about 160/bpm

Made the usual position changes! my anterior knee pain after the cycle to London recently is still there so i've reduced the aggressive position (saddle forwards).

Good session with Paul - ITB and Piriformis. ITB problems are the one thing that can really spoil the race so it's time to target this.

Bought a book on on gym exercises for cycling today - cycling anatomy by Shannon Sovndal from the cursory read today it looks good.

14.5hr night shift tonight - hope it's not too bad.

Wondered why I get pins and needles in my hands after long turbos so did a bit of research:

1. Usually effects median (carpal tunnel) - on upper bar or ulnar nerves (on drops)
Some studies have shown 23 out of 25 cyclists have some deficit

2. Handlebar design  - audax curved bars are better, get less rigid ones if possible (less vibration). Handlebar horns are especially bad for a branch of the ulnar nerve
3. The more horizontal your torso is the more pressure your hands get - so drops are worse and more aero can be bad.
4. Gloves help but not as much as you think
- swap position
- handlebars not too far forward and saddle not tilting forwards
- multiple angle handlebars
- shallow drops better than deep
- padded and non-stiff handlebars to reduce vibration
- gel gloves

Thursday, 12 July 2012


10min warm up
12 x 30 sec on 90sec recovery at 110-120 cadence
5min cool down

Very long day at work. This session is fairly easy as it's more about working the cadence and keeping form rather than aiming for a specific effort.
Also did some ITB stretching during the day as they are both really tight and are a concern for race day. Found my left pelvis is winging out a bit and seem to remember reading something about this being related to ITB problems - i'll see if I can dig it out.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012


4.5km to gym
5km on treadmill 1% 15km/hr
4.5km home

Some weights - decline squats for patella tendon strength, nordic hamstrings one and two legs (found my left one is rubbish)
Easy swim 800m

Previously at this stage I would have done this session after a bike. Right hamstring protesting still - from the weight session i'm starting to think it may be over working with the left one being a bit lazy.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012


Massage - Ouch

Read an article today on Stress fractures - Summary;
1. Much more common than we think (1 in 6 in some sports)
2. More common in - Female, Old, Non-white, Anatomic factors, Non-cushioned shoes, Orthotics, Hard surfaces (Tarmac!)
3. Low Vit D and Low Calcium intake
- Only 25% of population has adequate vit D levels
- each cup of skimmed milk reduces incidence by 62%!
- Vitamin D cannot be made by sunshine at 52deg N (London) from October to March!
- 15 mins per day of strong sunshine (without cream) is enough
- Recommended level (government) of Calcium is 750mg/day in UK and 1300mg/day Australia.
- Bottom line: take Vit D and Calcium supplements

Monday, 9 July 2012

15km - need to get some road miles in, took this one nice and slow

Sunday, 8 July 2012