Monday, April 13, 2009
Right said Fred...
Time to rock n roll. Time for the gravy. Time to get serious. Today marks the end of my build phase towards Ironman, having completed base training and increased base training for the past three months.
I'm now ready to get serious about all this.
I only wish I had a plan to share with you but, as its Easter, I'll be getting my next week's plan from Coach K sometime tonight or tomorrow morning. I'm looking forward to ramping it up though. The past few months have seen me emerge stronger, fitter and lighter than last year at this time, better and faster (I'm convinced) in all three disciplines. It's now time to remain focussed and train towards the all important Ironman Germany race.
Yep, that's right... 'race'.
I'd never looked at it this way before, just seeing Ironman as an 'event' but chatting with my mate Tom (more of why I was able to chat with him in a minute) on a long-ish bike last week, he told me to forget the notion of 'taking part'... at the level I'm at now, I'm 'racing'. And he's right. It's about performing and shaving time. Perhaps even shaving legs. Though I think that might be a step too far for my long suffering wife.
We've had a good week here at Old Thatch. Monday saw me taking Erin up to Manchester to catch a performance of Macbeth (you may remember I'd raved about it in a previous post). It was just as good as ever and, most importantly, Erin was knocked out by it. We also took the opportunity to look around my old alma mater, Manchester University, visiting the John Rylands University library and not only looking around its vast stacks containing millions of books but also seeing the fragment of St John's Gospel which is on view there. We took a walk around the Drama Department and also dropped into my old Hall of Residence -Woolton Hall - where Erin saw my (now somewhat faded) name on the President's board. We returned late on Tuesday after a great couple of days together.
Wednesday saw our good friends Tom and Helen joining us for a couple of days. Unfortunately T and H live in Leeds and, true to form, the M1 was shut on the morning of their journey south. Still, with a bit of route planning with my Team MK bike buddies we managed to divert our ride and meet up with them in Stewkley, riding 52 miles together and following it up with a quick 2 mile run off the bike. The weather was so glorious that we had to pop home, have some lunch and, as you do, nip out for a hilly 13.1 mile cross country run. The following day we banged out a quick swimset of 2km and then went on a 62 mile bike ride followed by a 2 mile run. If you don't know Tom and Helen by now then you'd be forgiven for thinking they were either mad or Ironmen. In fact, they're both, training for Ironman Lanzarote in six weeks time where they hope to qualify for the World Championships in Hawaii. They're great friends, great fun to have around and we're looking forward to seeing them soon, whenever that may be. Today's photo is taken on our 62 mile Thursday bike.
Whether it was a reaction to Liverpool's thrashing by a much improved Chelsea or a little over training, I was under the weather for the next couple of days and took a rare day off on Saturday. In fact, it's been a wonderful family Easter, with lots of quality time in the company of the girls and - belatedly - getting back into training on Sunday with a 42 mile bike and 2 mile run.
The week was like this:
Monday - 80 mins 3.1k swim set
Tuesday - 30 mins recovery run following Sunday's duathlon
Wednesday - 52 mile bike, 2 mile run, 13.1 mile x country run
Thursday - 10 x 200m swim set, 62 mile bike, 2 mile run
Friday - 1 hour hill walking, 5.6 mile run
Saturday - Rest
Sunday - 42 mile bike, 2 mile run
Swim - 5.1km
Bike - 156 miles
Run - 28.5 miles
Total time training 17.75 hours
Big thanks this week to Helen who took some fabulous photos of the girls and our home. Top talent, that girl. Congratulations to Colin who, after mucho hard work, ran a PB in his 10k race at the weekend, setting himself up nicely for a final month of training before his first qualifying race.
Thanks also to Marcus for helping me fit my compact chainring ready for my upcoming training camp in the mountains of Italy. I'll be climbing like a mountain goat, especially since my weight has dropped below 14 stone for the first time this year. And that with all the easter eggs too!
Hope you've had a great Easter.