It’s been several days since I last posted. Oops! That doesn’t mean I’ve not been busy though. Training has continued and I’m now 2 weeks from my next triathlon (Blenheim) and 16 weeks from Challenge Weymouth Half!
My training hasn’t really had any major highlights over the last fortnight.
Last weekend, I did a lake swim at Lakeside Country Park which went well. It was good to swim with lots of other swimmers and see even more familiar faces. Carl, Donna and Teri were all there. I swam 4 laps of the lake (approx 1400m).
As we were meeting up with friends, I wasn’t able to squeeze in a parkrun after the swim so cycled home.
On Sunday, it was a rest day and a junior parkrun
Monday was swimming with STC. As Steve was no longer poolside, Peter was coach for lanes 1 and 2. We started off with a 200m front crawl warmup and then 100m pull and 100m f/c.
We then did a sculling drill to help enforce keeping our elbow height during the catch. This was really effective and it’s a drill I’ll include to help work on a particular weakness of mine.
The main set was a 1500m non-step effort. I’d seen the 7-8pm session do this and it looked like torture! 60 lengths of the pool. I’m glad I had my Garmin on to count lengths! I lost count after about 6!
It was a real confidence-booster to be able to complete the distance. We had about 30 minutes to complete it although it took me 31. Still very happy with that.
After we had a 2-lap cooldown (I did 1 lap as I got cramp) it was time to get out of the pool.
On Tuesday, I went out and did a 5km run. No real highlights! Just a relatively sedate run.
Wednesday started with the early STC swim. It was quite quiet in the pool with Sonia, Neil (fresh from Ironman 70.3 Mallorca), Jon and myself. The session was another toughie! All good though.
Having recorded a slightly high blood pressure reading in my NHS Health Check, I’ve been testing it once or twice a week since and it was good to get the result below on Wednesday:
110 over 62
which puts me in the ideal blood pressure zone:
Thursday was Run Camp intervals and S&C. This week’s set was 200m fast with 200m recovery repeated for 12 minutes and then the S&C set before repeating another 12 minutes of the same interval set. It was a great session. I ran with Jules for most of the efforts (he was having an easy morning) and the company was appreciated.
I woke on Friday feeling a little under the weather. I was tempted to have a rest day but a large slab of Denise’s birthday cake and a very high calorific Indian meal on Thursday evening meant that I needed to do something active so in the evening, as Denise was out again, I decided on a zone 2 5km run. This meant keeping my heart rate between 139 and 154 BPM. I used my Garmin VivoFit in HEART mode to give me a clear indication of HR throughout the run and it worked well.
The 16-week Half Triathlon plan is based around heart rate so it was good to focus on that during the activity.
It was good to nail it:
After another bad night’s sleep and still feeling less than 100%, I decided to skip the lake swim and just parkrun on Saturday morning. Having not been to Netley Abbey parkrun for far too long, I chose to go there. It was good to see some parkrunners I’d not seen in a while including Julie Salt, John Tussler, Kenny Oloro and Aurelio Bello. The event still has a very friendly feel and the perfect number of runners (about 150 on average).
We were running route B which is a 3-lapper. The ground was wet and muddy after the overnight rain but I had a good run. It wasn’t a quick one as is decided it was going to be a T-shirt run. In fact, it was my 5th run at NA and almost 2 years since I’d founded the event. It was also a course PB! (I’d run most of the previous runs with Daniel but has no excuses for my sedate 26:04 other than it being my goal not to push it).
In order to get home to spend the day with the family, I left immediately after my run and got home at 9:45am. Unfortunately, Denise had left already to take the boys swimming at Romsey Rapids so as we were having a midday grocery delivery, I spent the day doing chores, preparing for junior parkrun and watching episodes of American Horror Story on Netflix.
In other news, I’ve put together the first 8-weeks of my 16 week training plan. It’s based on the Intermediate plan in Don Fink’s ‘IronFit Secrets for Half Iron-Distance Triathlon Success: Time-Efficient Training for Triathlon’s Most Popular Distance‘.
The plan is 8-9 hours a week on average with a peak week of about 11 hours so it’s definitely going to be a challenge to fit it in but I’ve managed to work out ways to fit it around my existing STC sessions and that many of the sessions will squeeze into a lunchtime. The plan does call for some long rides (up to about 4 hours) so I’ll need to squeeze those in when I can with either early morning rides or turbo sessions. It’s one bit of the plan where I may simply not do as long a ride as the plan calls for. If so, that’s a compromise I need to make. There’s a ‘just get around’ plan in the book too which has a lower average number of hours per training week which I can resort to if necessary but I’d like to try my hardest to stick with the intermediate plan and cut back a little on the cycling if needed. We’ll see.
Having reached my goal weight of 12 stone 5 lbs, I’ve continued to lose weight and am now 12st 1lb. I’m not worried about that as it gives me a 4lb buffer. The reason for continuing to loose weight is likely to not accurately working out the number of calories needed to ‘maintain’ and/or not having an accurate level of calories burned during activity. I use the calories burned as recorded by my Garmin which is the best I can do.
I’ve adjusted my calorie intake target accordingly and have maintained (on average) over the last fortnight which is good.
During the week, I found out that I’ll be exchanging the Commonwealth Baton with Iwan Thomas on the Queen Elizabeth Ocean cruise liner on 4th June. Iwan is a GB record holding 400m and 4x400m relay runner ‘by trade’ so has rather a lot more experience than me!
My next post will probably give more detail about the start of my 16-week training plan. Don’t worry, you won’t have to wait long!!!