There is real momentum in my training now and my confidence is growing and growing. ‘Whether I will complete The Half or not’ has now become ‘what time will I take to complete it’.
An example would be Saturday’s session. Before I signed up with my coach Mark Kleanthous ( www.ironmate.co.uk ) every Saturday used to be my ‘long bike ride day’ so every Saturday I would get up early ride 80K – 100K and ride home. Always enjoyable, but not very structured. This Saturday’s session was a shorter ride with efforts and then a short run again with efforts.
I did the ride and thoroughly enjoyed it and the session went so quick – it didn’t really feel like a session. Then I went straight into the 6K run as half at pace and half easy.
I went out on the run fast, too fast (circa 12.5kmph), so very quickly I dialled it back to 11.5kmph. I hit a slight hill and just put my head down and went for it, reached the top and just kept going – maintaining the 11.5kmph. Did the first lap of 2.8K in 15 mins, reduced the speed down to 10kmph and did the next lap in 16 mins 30 secs. I was very impressed:
1) a good strong run after a good hard bike effort.
2) realising I had gone off too fast and dialled it back quickly.
3) being able to control my speed so I could show a different pace for lap 1 to lap 2 as opposed to doing two laps in a similar time and only thinking I had gone fast(er) initially and then slower.
This Saturday session was also off the back of a run set Friday evening again with efforts.
Sunday I went to Heron Lake and did an open water swim. Again this is nothing new. I have swum there several times, a regular patron.
However this time rather than just get in and swim I had a structured warm up to do, I then had a structured main set which involved focussing on my stroke, pacing myself differently during the main set and trying different sighting techniques. Again the session flew past.
I then went from Heron Lake over to Marlow where The Half is being held and drove the bike course: 1) to familiarise myself with the directions etc and 2) to gauge how hilly the course is.
Ideally I would like to have ridden the course but just no time to fit this in so driving it was better than nothing.
So that was the weekend, two shorter, harder, more structured sessions to improve my fitness and build confidence. I also threw in a power nap Sunday afternoon (Heron Lakes involves a 5am alarm call) which made up for Saturday afternoon being an afternoon of chores including cutting the long long grass, putting up a shelf and building more IKEA cupboards.
The weekend rounded off a good week notching up more than 10 hours training.
Thanks for reading.