With thanks to my late aunt, Jean Abdee, whose legacy has helped make this possible.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Furthest distance yet run

Yesterday I managed an 8 mile run, which in a few month's time will probably be laughably easy (well I can hope) but for now is a real milestone; the furthest distance I've run yet. It was a gorgeous morning but even at 6:30 am very hot. I suppose it's no bad thing practising running in the heat, given that a race event is likely to be later in the day anyway (especially thinking the MK half marathon).

The time was good given that I wasn't aiming for speed, but I wasn't far off my ten minute mile pace at one hour 20 mins 48 seconds. The main problem with long-distance running is, I think, going to be boredom - it takes such a long time. And I could scoot round so much more quickly on a bike!

I was interviewed by the Chronicle & Echo the other day and was asked the 'why do it' question which I have to say, rather stumped me. How to explain in a few words? Having had time to think I guess the best answer is to see how far I can push myself. What am I capable of, really? It's so easy to watch the London Marathon and say 'I could never do that' (which I have) - but perhaps a half? And then what? Plus the side effects of vast amounts of exercise are great, not least that I can (within reason) eat what I like, and what I like is often not the low-fat/calorie choice.

Having said that, I don't feel fit, which might sound odd. Compared to some people I am but I know that in any given race I'll be bringing up the rear and just be glad to get round. It's all comparative.

Well I'm having a rest day today. The sun is shining and I may just go into the garden with a good book. Back to the training regime next week; there's not long to go now until the Northampton Tri at Grendon!

Monday, 10 May 2010

Grendon Tri - Results!

The results are out. I had an overall time of 1:53:35 broken down as follows:

Swim - 21:45 (not a bad time, considering - I'd expect this kind of time in the pool)
T1 - 3:28 (I was faffing for what felt like ages and this is reflected in the poor time here)
Cycle - 58:29 (could be better)
T2 - 1:30 (how long does it take to change a pair of shoes???)
Run - 28:20 (very pleased)

Which all confirms what I already knew - I need to work on *everything* including and perhaps especially transition times. But I am pleased with it; open water isn't easy and what's more, I still managed to enjoy it. So it's all good.

The sobering thought is that if one has to train to Olympic distance to be good at sprint, does this mean that I need to be training (in effect) for a 70.3 (half-Ironman)to be any good at Olympic?


Sunday, 9 May 2010

Grendon Tri

Just got back from completing the Grendon Triathlon (open water sprint distance) and feel it went quite well. It was a bitterly cold morning and the water temperature (at 13.6 degrees) was said to be warmer than the air temperature. It didn't feel it. Even with a wetsuit, I was freezing and very soon lost feeling in my feet. However, 20 mins or so later I was out, the worst bit over and soon on the bike. It was a nice bike ride and the sun came out which made it so much more pleasant.

I have to admit to feeling hopelessly outclassed by all the other bikes in transition though - a real wish-list of gorgeous road and tri bikes; Cannondale, Specialised, C Boardman, Trek, Planet X, Cervelo and so on. And there was mine; a very used and still rather oily (from the bracket change and chain clean) old-fashioned racer with no name to recommend it, but the point is that it goes, and I, being the standard I'm at, would not find my time greatly enhanced by carbon-fibre, or even titanium (though it would be nice to try :-)). And given that some of these bikes cost as much as a small car, I'm not sure I'd ever want to venture out on one!

When I came in to start the run, the sun was getting nice and warm and I was pleasantly surprised to find I had enough energy left to put in a really good time - by my watch at least - of about 28 mins. So I was pleased with that.

So that is the preparation for the Olympic tri in June. Two thoughts; one that I need to do a lot more training (and really should have made more effort to get an open-water session in before now) and the second is that I absolutely have to replace my wetsuit, which is so tight it's difficult to swim properly. It was snug before and although I've lost weight, I must have put on some muscle which doesn't help. It's all a big learning banana, as my sister would say.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Countdown to Grendon

So the bank holiday soon passed quickly (visited Andy on his LeJog walk and realised just how hilly most of the UK outside Northamptonshire is!) Now it's only days until my first triathlon of the year - Grendon, with the swim in Grendon lake. It's been very cold these past few days so wetsuit notwithstanding, I rather hope it warms up a bit next weekend. We shall see.

The bike maintenance is going well with the bottom bracket on the racer removed and time to get it all back together (fingers crossed!) If not, I'll be doing the triathlon on the touring bike - I might take the panniers off first :-)

Other than that, some necessary housekeeping on the blog, including improving the links and adding a Just Giving page - that could be by way of a hint, if you choose! I guess now the blog is now truly ready to meet the world.