Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Training - Monday 18th December - Sunday 7th Jan

A new idea !!! I'll fill in my training as I go.

Have adapted this to cover the xmas period. Haven't covered myself in glory but have been away on hols and carrying injuries so have eased back. Hopefully back in the saddle though from Monday 8th Jan on a proper training scheme.

Mon 18th Dec - 90 mins swim (3.9km)
Tues 19th Dec - 60 mins swim (drills and 300m reps)(1.8km)
Weds 20th Dec - 45 mins swim (6 x 300m)(1.8km)
Thurs 21st Dec - Day Off
Fri 22nd Dec - Nothing today
Sat 23rd Dec - Nothing
Sun 24th Dec - 60 mins run, 30 mins swim
Mon 25th Dec - 30 mins run
Tues 26th Dec - 40 mins run
Weds 27th Dec - 40 mins run
Thurs 28th Dec - Day off
Fri 29th Dec - 60 mins run
Sat 30th Dec - nothing
Sun 31st Dec - nothing
Mon 1st Jan - 60 mins run
Tues 2nd Jan - nothing
Weds 3rd Jan - nothing
Thurs 4th Jan - 45 mins swim (1.5km), 42 mins run (10k)
Fri 5th Jan - 45 mins swim (2 km), 80 mins bike (32km)
Saturday 6th Jan - nothing
Sunday 7th Jan - 80 mins bike (32km) , 60 mins swim (2.1 km)

So... I would say the following for the xmas 2 week period:

Swim: 375 mins (6 hrs 15 mins) 14.2 km
Bike: 170 mins (2 hrs 50 mins) 64 km
Run: 332 mins (5 hrs 32 mins) 55 km (approx)

First swim of IronMan distance

December 18th - thought I'd show the pool who was boss and set about the IronMan distance. Did 13 x 300 m with a minute recovery between each. And that, my friends, adds up to 3.9km in anyone's book.
Who's your Daddy?

Training - Monday December 11th - Sunday December 17th

Winding down for xmas and busy at work but managed to get some quality work in including a PD (Distance equivilant of a PB !) on the bike.

Mon Dec 11th - 1 hour swim - 2.4 km
Tues Dec 12th - 1 hour swim - 2.1 km
Weds Dec 13th - 85 mins run (off road, approx 14.5 km)
Thurs Dec 14th - 3 hrs 40 mins bike ride - 91 km
Fri Dec 15th - Day off
Sat Dec 16th - 81 mins run (off road, approx 14.5 km
Sun Dec 17th - nothing today

Approx Distances this week -

Swim - 4.5 km
Run - 29 km
Bike - 91 km

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Tuesday 12th December - Back running

Went out off road today on a taxing 85 minute wind and rain run. Back seemed to hold up well. Fingers crossed.

Swim Splits - Tuesday December 12th 2006

300m warm up followed by following reps (one quarter of swim time as recovery between each):

1st 100m - 1"52"
1st 150m - 2'53"
1st 200m - 3'50"

2nd 100m - 1'48"
2nd 150m - 2'51"
2nd 200m - 3'53"

3rd 100m - 1'50"
3rd 150m - 2'52"
3rd 200m - 3'56"

4th 100m - 1'52"
4th 150m - 2'59"
4th 200m - 4'01"

300m warm down

Total swim - 2.4km

Monday, December 11, 2006

Training Monday December 4th - Sunday 10th December

Sneakily lazy week. Busy at work and recovering from a back injury are my only excuses, m'lud.

Monday Dec 4th - 60 mins bike
Tues Dec 5th - 60 mins swim
Weds Dec 6th - 60 mins bike
Thurs Dec 7th - day off
Fri Dec 8th - 60 mins swim
Sat Dec 7th - 100 mins bike
Sun Dec 8th - hung over - nada ! :-(

Total swim distance this week 3.6km

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Luton Marathon - Sun December 3rd 2006

Big up to Keith Harper - back in the marathon saddle again with a windswept personal best at Luton of 3 hrs 36 mins. Well done, son... good to have you back.

Ran a relay myself. Ran the third of a marathon course in an hour dead. Felt good. Felt fast. Felt like I'd knackered my back.

Training Monday November 27th - Sunday December 3rd

Could only run a couple of times this week due to back injury.

Mon Nov 27th - 45 mins swim, 45 mins bike
Tues Nov 28th - 45 mins swim, 45 mins run
Weds Nov 29th - 63 mins bike
Thurs Nov 30th - Day Off
Fri Dec 1st - 60 mins swim
Sat Dec 2nd - 60 mins bike
Sun Dec 3rd - 60 mins run

Tired, busy and picking up a cold. But still training !!!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Swim Splits – Friday December 1, 2006

Back a little better after rest day. Will swim only today. Splits below:

300m drills warm up followed by following splits:

1st 100m – 1’46”
1st 150m – 2’54”
1st 200m – 3’53”

2nd 100m – 1’46”
2nd 150m – 2’58”
2nd 200m – 4’02”

3rd 100m – 1’51”
3rd 150m – 2’59”
3rd 200m – 4’01”

4th 100m – 1’55”
4th 150m – 3’03”
4th 200m – 4’03”

Total swim distance 2100 metres.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Went for a 65 minute bike ride today and am starting to feel a little jaded! Knee is stiff and I've picked up a back strain (I think on Sunday whilst running off road). Feeling thoroughly grumpy and hacked off. Couldn't go out running tomorrow night. Thursday is a day of rest. Maybe that will do me some good.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Training - Monday November 20th - Sunday November 26th

Monday 20th - 45 mins Swim, 45 mins bike
Tuesday 21st - 45 mins swim, 60 mins run
Weds 22nd - 45 mins swim
Thurs 23rd - 25 mins run
Fri 24th - BACK2BACK, 45 mins swim, 25 mins run, 45 mins bike
Sat 25th - Day Off
Sun 26th - 80 mins off road run

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Achilles injury

Rest has really benefited the achilles problem. Went off road running last night (Tues 21st) for an hour and felt no real ill effects. Minor twingeing. So... feeling good.


Thanks to Neil DuPreez... good friend and strong swimmer who coaches Ann Marie, his national standard 10 year old daughter.
He suggested I do timed 100 metres as part of my routine, allowing a set recovery each time. Did this earlier today and felt the benefits.
Swam Monday morning and Tuesday morning, doing 1200 metres each session.
This morning (Weds) swam 1600 metres comprising 300 m warm up, 10 x 100 m within 2'30" (including recovery) and 300 m warm down.

Still struggling to see how I can decrease my stroke count though. I guess it will come.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Training Monday 13th November - Sunday 19th November

Slow week rescued by decent weekend !

Monday 13th - Nothing
Tuesday 14th - 45 mins swim, 70 mins bike
Weds 15th - 35 mins swim (1600m plus warm down)
Thurs 16th - 45 mins swim
Fri 17th - day off
Sat 18th - 75 mins run, 45 mins bike
Sun 19th - 90 mins bike

Must do better !

Monday, November 13, 2006

Training Mon 5th November - Sunday 12th November

Running curtailed this week due to achilles injury...

Mon 6th - 45 mins swim, 45 mins bike
Tues 7th - 45 mins swim, 45 mins run
Weds 8th - 45 mins bike, 45 mins run
Thurs 9th - day off
Fri 10th - 33 min swim (1.6 km)
Sat 11th - 60 min bike
Sun 12th - 60 min swim (speed splits)

Swim Splits November 12th 2006

Warm up 300m drills, then:

1st 100m - 1' 47"
1st 150m - 2' 56"
1st 200m - 3' 58"

2nd 100m - 1' 53"
2nd 150m - 2' 58"
2nd 200m - 4' 00"

3rd 100m - 1' 56"
3rd 150m - 3' 00"
3rd 200m - 4' 05"

4th 100m - 1' 56"
4th 150m - 3' 03"
4th 200m - 4' 10"

Ended by 400m warm down

Monday, November 06, 2006

Will - Groin injury

Hey Will
I'm narrowing this groin problem down to the cycling discipline. It's when I most notice it... strike that... it's the only time I notice it... primarily when I am at the high poing of my right leg rotation - the last quarter of bringing up the leg and the push down... that seems to be the key to when it's happening and giving me pain. It doesn't cause me pain in my swimming or my running.
It's nowhere near as bad as it was but, like we said the other day, it's returned...
Let me know how you want to progress.

Training Mon 30th October - Sunday 5th November

Monday 30th - 45 mins swim, 45 mins bike
Tuesday 31st - 30 mins swim, 45 mins run
Weds 1st Nov - 45 mins run
Thurs 2nd - DAY OFF
Fri 3rd - BACK2BACK - 45 mins swim, 15 mins run, 60 mins bike
Sat 4th - 90 mins bike
Sun 5th - 90 mins run

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Speed Swim Splits - Tuesday October 31st

100 m warm up

then 9 x 100 m swims with 30 secs (approx) rest betweeen. Times below:


200 m warm down

Monday, October 30, 2006

Training Oct 21st - 29th 2006

Spent five days after Amsterdam Marathon recovering, then back into the saddle:

Sat 21st - 45 mins swim, 10k run
Sun 22nd - 80 mins bike
Mon 23rd - 45 mins swim
Tues 24th - Nothing
Weds 25th - Nothing
Thurs 26th - 60 mins swim, 80 mins run
Fri 27th - BACK2BACK 45 mins swim, 15 mins run, 45 mins bike
Sat 28th - 75 mins bike
Sun 29th - 120 mins run

Seems like I'd never rested...

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Swim Times for Mark K

From swim training 26/10/06

First 100m - 1'46"
First 150m - 3'00"
First 200m - 4'08"

Second 100m - 1' 56"
Second 150m - 3' 01"
Second 200m - 4' 12"

Third 100m - 1'55"
Third 150m - 3' 09"
Third 200m - 4' 16"

Fourth 100m - 1' 58"
Fourth 150m - 3' 11"
Fourth 200m - 4' 20"

Monday, October 23, 2006

Amsterdam Memories

2006 ING Amsterdam Marathon

I ran Amsterdam last year in what was then my second marathon. Finishing in PB of 3:32 I set my sights on London and going under the magical 3:30 barrier. My body had other ideas however and injury prevented a return to the battlefield. Over the summer I discovered triathlon and foolishly signed up for the Austrian IronMan race in July 2007. Commencing training in late August, I embarked on a radically different regime from that which had seen me prepare for Amsterdam the previous year – much less running but more cycling and swimming – two totally new disciplines for me.

So I was interested to see how I would perform in Amsterdam with barely any marathon specific training.

For those of you who haven’t tried it, I can recommend the event. Amsterdam as a city speaks for itself, with its history, its charm, the museums and the... well, let’s say the ‘other distractions’. The marathon sits with its smaller siblings, the half marathon, the 10k and the 5k in an afternoon of running covered by the main television station in Holland and widely supported by the Amsterdam public.

The 6000 marathon runners begin in the Olympic Stadium with a well organised start seeing the time-penned athletes stream onto the streets and able to reach a reasonable speed pretty quickly after the gun.

There are no mile markers to be seen on the course and so I’d converted my time requirements to kilometers, knowing that 5 minute kilometers roughly equalled 8 minute miles which would bring me under the 3:30 time.

I felt good from the off and much of the first half marathon was spent containing my effort and trying to remember that every ounce of energy (if you can measure energy in ounces!) saved would be required over the last 10k. The route took us out through Amsterdam’s Vondelpark, back for a circuit of the stadium and out towards the River Amstel, where a long stretch out past the exclusive homes of the monied Amsterdamians eventually turned and came back on itself on the other bank of the river, back towards the city. I made the half marathon point in 1:39 and resolved to keep the pace steady, even though I felt strong.

The course takes us through a fairly uninspiring industrial estate before once again following Amsterdam’s main river, though this time within the city limits, back towards the Vondelpark and, eventually, the Olympic Stadium.

The kilometer markers were a welcome change from miles as they (not surprisingly) arrived and went on a more regular basis – and we all know towards the end of a marathon, when you can barely remember your own name, that anything that propels you towards the finish line is extremely welcome.

Sure enough, at 32k (or 20 miles), my energy levels were drooping but I found a spurt for the last 2k and came in at 3 hours 22 minutes and 54 seconds.

Which, as all marathon runners know, rounds down nicely to 3 hours 22 minutes !

Monday, October 16, 2006

Amsterdam Marathon

Had a good day in Amsterdam on Sunday 15th October. Ran a PB of 3 hours 22 minutes. Felt strong and in control and was particularly pleased with my balanced splits. Info below

Overall place
1255 / 5828
Category place
262 / 1014
Net time
Net split times (difference)
5 Kilometer
23:34 (23:34)
10 Kilometer
46:56 (23:22)
15 Kilometer
1:10:14 (23:18)
20 Kilometer
1:33:44 (23:30)
Half marathon
25 Kilometer
1:57:58 (24:14)
30 Kilometer
2:22:27 (24:29)
35 Kilometer
2:46:34 (24:07)
40 Kilometer
3:12:15 (25:41

Friday, October 13, 2006

Great Tips from IronM8 Mark

Thanks to Mark K... his tips for Sunday's Amsterdam Marathon have been focussed and apposite.
I'm looking forward to the race.
Links to Mark's page are on this blog page.

Working Hard on Knee Strength

Following a mild bollocking from Will, my sports injury guru, I've been working hard on strengthening the muscles around my knee.

80 one legged squats per day
40 one legged calf pushes per day
30 secs on body blade balanced on right knee per day (if I overbalance then I have to start again until I complete 30 secs)

Am feeling the benefits and determined to keep it up.

Keep on nagging me, Will.


It's Been a While But I'm Still Here - Training up to and Including Saturday October 14th

Ola one and all. Been mad busy since the last post, shooting commercials around the UK so have had to adapt my training schedule quite dramatically. Swimming access has been difficult and I've been using my old mountain bike when away which I've loaded into the back of the car. Still... am feeling fit and keeping going...

Monday 25th Sept - Nothing following Roade Tri
Tuesday 26th Sept - 45 minute run
Weds 27th Sept - 60 minute run with Tring Running Club
Thurs 28th Sept - 90 minutes bike
Friday 29th Sept - Rest day
Saturday 30th Sept - 30 mins swim, 30 mins bike, 30 mins run
Sunday 1st October - 3 hours long run

Monday 2nd October - 45 minutes bike, 45 minutes run
Tuesday 3rd Oct - 45 minutes bike, 45 minutes run
Weds 4th Oct - 45 minutes bike
Thurs 5th Oct - Rest Day
Fri 6th Oct - 30 minute bike, 15 minute run (Back2Back)
Saturday 7th Oct - 2000metre swim (42 Mins, 80 laps of pool), 40 mins 10k run
Sunday 8th Oct - 1hr 40 mins bike ride


Mon 9th Oct - 15 mins run
Tues 10th Oct - 15 mins run
Weds 11th Oct - rest day
Thurs 12th Oct - 20 mins run
Fri 13th Oct - 15 mins run
Sat 14th Oct - rest day prior to Marathon

Thursday, September 28, 2006


The good news is that the injuries seem to be subsiding. My groin strain is but a dull ache though I continue to ice and take ice baths after long exercise. My knee seems to have settled down now and is rarely swollen though the instability continues when tired.

Postings by visitors

It seems some of you are having trouble posting. I'll look into this. It could be something to do with the connectivity of the browser you're using. I downloaded the netscape browser which is great and has full connectivity with the blogger site. You might like to try that.. plus it's a great browser.

STOP PRESS - Hopefully the problem is now fixed and you won't have to change your browser. Just click on the title of the post and then on "leave comment". It should all work.

First Triatlon - Roade Sprint Tri

Okay. I guess you have to pop your cherry in all walks of life and "tri" is no exception. Took part in my first full triatlon at Roade School in Northampton. It comprised a 414m pool swim, a 20k bike ride and a 5k run.

Splits were (approx)

Swim - 8.27
Bike - 38 mins plus
Run - 20 mins (very muddy and off road)

Total time was 1 hour 07 minutes dead.

REALLY enjoyed the event. Friendly, relaxed and fun. Pushed hard in the bike and felt this could be my strongest event. Placed 90th out of over well over 400. Not so bad for a vetran newbie.

Weather was wet... especially in the pool.

Training Friday 15th Sept - Sunday 24th Sept

Training curtailed due to pressures of work... but anyway...

Friday 15th - Back2Back session 55 minutes cycling, 20 minutes running.
Saturday 16th - 30 minutes swimming, 90 minutes cycling, 15 minutes running.
Sunday 17th - 20 mile run at marathon pace (160 mins)
Monday 18th - Day off. Knackered from run.
Tuesday 19th - Swim 30 minutes, Bike 45 minutes
Wednesday 20th - 1 hour run, Swim 20 minutes
Thursday 21st - Day off (scheduled)
Friday 22nd - Nothing Today
Saturday 23rd - 30 minutes Swim, 90 minutes Bike, 15 minutes run
Sunday 24th - Roade Triathlon - See separate Post !

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Will - Knee Injury

Hey, Will
I'm going to drop that knee information in. Meantime, I can be a little more specific about the knee.

What seems to be happening is that I notice the jarring pain when the leg is tired. It was very apparent on Sunday's long run after Saturday's long bike and both on Tuesday and Wednesday when my legs would have been tired after swimming and cycling respectively.

The feeling is that the brain can't adjust the leg to the sudden change in any ground height. This is particularly apparent when off-road, for obvious reasons (the ground height varies a lot more) but also when on road... dropping up or down from kerbs, hitting a hill etc.

Sometimes when I'm going up hill there's a pain in an area which appears to be above or behind my patella but that can ease once I'm into my stride.

I think also that the leg is "turning" slightly. When I can remember to I adjust my running style so that my right foot lands parallel with my left. Obviously it should do this naturally, but tends to "wander" outwards when the leg is "tired".

I think I need to keep up the strengthening exercises and any others we might think of.

I'll get Roade tri done (Sunday 24th) and try to see you the following week.

Good news is that the groin pain appears to be subsiding and is now reduced to a dull ache following extensive exercise. I am, of course, icing and treating it as we discussed.


Training Friday 8th September - Thursday 14th September

Friday 8th - First Back2Back session. 1 hour bike followed by 20 minute run. Felt good and ran sub 7 minute miles for 3.5 miles.
Saturday 9th - 2 hour Long Bike. 36 miles through country roads. Used higher wheel and increased leg resistance.
Sunday 10th - 90 minute run off road through Beacons. Hot and hard. Legs felt dead. Toughed it out.
Monday 11th - 45 minute swim (usual drills and distances). 70 minute bike.
Tuesday 12th - Back2Back, 45 minute swim (usual drills and distances) followed by 45 minute road run. Felt good and strong. Tri suit also felt good on first time use in pool.
Wednesday 13th - 45 minute bike. High cadence, small ring. 1 hr 25 mins off road run with Tring Running Club.
Thursday 14th - Day Off.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Team O'Neill - Another Brick in The Wall

Of course... how could I forget my brother, Sean, who will be with me every step of the way on the big day in July. Sean will be my batman, my very own Sherpa Tenzing, my Fannie (if I were Jonny Cradock, of course).
Seriously, we'll be travelling to Austria together and he'll be my support mechanism, ensuring all goes smoothly and, if it doesn't, that I'm not left 50 miles from someplace I don't know that well with a puncture and a failing ticker.
A fine athlete in his own right, he completed his first marathon last year and is running the Amsterdam Half whilst I do the marathon on Oct 15th.
Rumour has it he also manages to hold down a reasonably important job in the international business community.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Couple of things for Will

Will, I will post the knee injury details that I have from my GP. You should get these in a couple of days. Let me know if we need to speak when you've seen them.
Also - after ice bath following exercise, should I then be going into a hot shower to wash, or should I do everything in the cold environment?

Training Schedule Friday 31st August - Thursday 7th September

Friday 31st - 80 minutes early morning cycle. Sports injury meet with Will. Groin manipulation and knee remedial work.
Saturday 1st - 45 minute swim session comprising 100m warm up, drills as per Mark Kleanthous, 400m warm down in 8'34"
Sunday 2nd - Ran the 10k stage of the Northampton Triathlon (Olympic Distance). Our team won the team event. 10k time of 38'41". Iced groin immediately after exercise.
Monday 3rd - 45 minute swim session, 100m warm up, drills, 300m warm down. 65 minute bike ride plus transition coaching session with Mark K. Again, iced groin and elevated knee.
Tuesday 4th - 45 minute swim session as above. 17 mile run in the evening to cover this weeks long run for Amsterdam Marathon (Oct 15th). Knee sore but tolerable. Ice bath immediately after.
Weds 5th - 45 minute bike session. 7 mile off road run with Tring Running Club. Iced groin and knee immediately after exercise.
Thurs 6th - Rest day. Groin seems much improved compared with last week.

The Team

Team O'Neill comprises three key members.

1. Fiona, my wife, who lets me train so much without a grumble.
2. Mark Kleanthous, my coach, an amazing athlete who has completed 28 IronMan Events and is one of the UK's foremost triathletes. If you're interested in triathlons of any length - go visit his website and get stuck in. When I figure out how to do it, a link will appear on this page.
3. Will Tullett, my sports injury guru, who - when he's not fixing legs at Chelsea Football Club - keeps my battered and ageing body on the road.

Thanks to you all.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Training Schedule Thurs 23rd Aug to Thurs 30th Aug

Weds 23rd August - 8 mile off road run with Tring running club. Sore tendon in groin area.
Thurs 24th August - 22 mile bike ride. Felt strong.
Fri 25th August - Sports injury session with Will. Found knee swelling. Monitor this. 1 hour swim at Linslade pool
Sat 26th August - 10k race pace run. Ice bath immediately afterwards. Knee swelling minimal. Groin sore but minimised with ice bath
Sun 27th august - 15 mile marathon pace run (8 min miles). Groin again sore but minimised by ice bath.
Mon 28th August - Day Off. Groin recovering. Knee swelling minimal.
Tuesday 29th August - 20 mile cycle. No impact on groin pain.
Weds 30th Augus - 8 mile off road run with Tring running club. Very sore groin. Extensive icing. Mobility limited after event and following day.