Beer, Beer, Beer

Since my last blog I have been a complete beer monster!

I am usually so good when training for an event, no (or very little) alcohol, good food, good sleep/rest etc as soon as I am injured I go the other way.

I posted the last blog on Monday 20th August. The next day (Tuesday) there were leaving drinks for someone at work – so pub, Wednesday I took someone to Chelsea using our company tickets – free food and drink, Thursday a company networking event – free drink all evening.

Friday I was up at 5am loading up the car to go to Orleans in France where we were camping for the long(er) bank holiday weekend with my wife, daughter and some friends. Friday evening was pizza and chips and beer beer beer. Over the next three days I consumed a mountain of burgers, sausages, bacon, bread, pastries and of course more beer beer beer (and Cidre!)

I did do some training while there. Saturday an easy bike ride with the family circa 90 mins 20K, Sunday we did a longer ride about 40K but with plenty of stops and at a slow pace,  as I was with others who were on mountain bikes so it was a very easy ride. Monday I did a 38K time trial. I completed the ‘there and back’ course in 1hour 16 mins. It was a good hard ride but I paid the price with the knee.

The knee has been so bad over the past two weeks the drive to Orleans was ‘awkward’. When we stopped for a rest and a stretch of the ole legs every couple of hours I could barely walk. Each cycle ride meant the knee was sore after the ride and into the evening. Following the time trial on Monday I could hardly get off the bike and it was a full on limp for a good few hours afterwards.

Luckily I had an appointment with Physio 4 Life at Putney on Wednesday morning. After a very thorough 1 hour consultation and examination, which included some exercise on the treadmill to get the knee hurting, Mark (Saunders) diagnosed it as a nerve issue. Kind of like a trapped nerve in my knee. This is why is hurts but then the pain can go completely shortly afterwards.

This is all very positive – it’s not cartilage damage and it’s not tendonitis (which could be a long recovery) the nerve issue, if all goes well, could be better in a matter of weeks (but take it slowly Webby!)

Mark also noticed (or to be accurate investigated and found) how stiff my lower back is. He thinks this could well be linked or could even be the underlying issue. With my back so stiff the Femoral nerve, which travels down my back and down my leg under the knee, may be restricted from its usual movement and this is causing the knee issue?

I have a series of exercises to do 2 – 3 times per day to free up my back and also some exercises on my knee. I have another appointment next week to gauge progress.

I am also now back on a diet to lose the extra few pounds (or stones!) gained in the past few weeks and alcohol is out too. I am hoping the exercises will do the trick sooner rather than later and then I can start training again (mid September or end of September at the latest).

I might see if I can do some upper body or abs work so I am not a couch potato – over to the Mark to see if he agrees . But I will caveat that with the fact that work is so busy at the moment I am spending much of my time chained to my desk at work. I wonder if that could be why my back is so stiff ………

Thanks for reading.

Season is over

Very long time since my last blog for which I apologise but there hasn’t really been much to say. My knee has gone from bad to worse.

Any exercise at all and the knee starts to hurt during and is very bad after. After this weekend, exercise also includes driving the car!

I drove my wife and daughter to their Novice Super Sprint triathlon in Ringmer (near East Grinstead) and just driving for an hour each way my knee was painful all afternoon. Back on the ice and Ibuprofen by the evening.

We are away this weekend (Friday – Tuesday) camping in Orleans in France. I am still taking my bike, as is my wife and daughter, but whether I will be able to ride at all is a big question mark. The minimum is that I would like to be able to ride with my wife and daughter just so I can give some help on gears and handling etc. But as it’s a 6 hour drive there I am not that hopeful to be able to ride at all.

Next week I will go to the doctor’s to get a referral to go private and see a specialist as my private insurance will cover me if I get a referral from the GP and it needs a proper look at it. And I am guessing some ongoing treatment.

Having had the bad knee for 8 weeks now and rested it A LOT in that time and there has been no improvement in the past 5 weeks I don’t think it will be a quick fix.

I am in the process of cancelling the Half Iron Man on 23rd September and luckily I didn’t enter any more events this summer. I am hoping to be able to train by the winter for next year. I am thinking of swimming lessons to improve my technique and maybe a winter series of bike rides to do some competing this year. Ideally some half marathons and 10K’s over the winter too, but one step at a time at the moment.

I have also emailed about marshalling at the Half in September as I am going anyway as we have a hotel room booked so might as well make myself useful and that will be a new experience for me.

Finally, a bit more about the Novice triathlon yesterday. Which was a great deal of fun. The event is very low key, very well organised and very easy to enter. It’s a real mixed bag of competitors both for the novice and the sprint distance. My wife and daughter went ‘head to head’ for the second time this year after my wife demolished Leigh at the East Grinstead try-a-tri earlier in the year.

Leigh went off first and had a terrible swim as she is a terrible swimmer, lessons needed there to improve, my wife had a superb swim (she has a better technique than I do) but she didn’t put her number belt on when leaving T1 and got sent back and lost time. The wife made up time on the bike (Leigh on my mountain bike, the wife on her Specialised Douche) but Leigh was in and out of T2 in a flash and the wife took forever! So it was all on the run and Leigh gave it her all, the sprint at the finish was awesome she must have overtaken three others on the finishing straight. But even though my wife runs like Leigh swims! Leigh couldn’t make up the difference.

The wife won again and by 6 minutes, but the last win was by 20 or so minutes, so Leigh is improving. Our camping trip will focus on giving Leigh a better basic swim stroke and getting her used to one of my race bikes and next race it will be even closer.

For me, looks like the season’s over.

Thanks for reading  

Inspire the nation – who’s going to inspire the weather?

It has been a couple of weeks since my last blog, not been up to much training wise – mainly due to work and specifically work load. After the stomach bug I had a two day work event which meant a stay over, the day I returned I didn’t get home until late due to traffic on the M25 so didn’t train that evening either, so the week was almost gone with no training.

This week I started to step up to the mark. Last weekend (Saturday) I did a 90 minute turbo, I rested Sunday, I didn ‘t get in from work on Monday until gone 9pm but I still did a 40 minute turbo, I was out Tuesday evening and I rested Wednesday. Thursday I did another turbo of 60 minutes.

I rested Friday and yesterday (Sat) I did a 40 minute run, two easy laps around Beddington Park. Rained during the run but I run through it and weirdly it was only one section of the park where it was raining. But a good run, the knee held up fine and all felt good.

Today I got up at 7am, had breakfast and went for a 2 hour bike ride. The Sun was out so I didn’t take my gillet and also my wife was driving to Richmond Park (where I was cycling to) as she was going to do a lap or two as she has a Super sprint tri a couple of week away.

It was so good to get out on the bike rather than sitting on the turbo in the shed. Nice ride there, it had been raining but it wasn’t by the time I got there. caught up with my wife about half way around the first lap and ‘motivated’ her up the big hill, mainly by suggesting a different gear to make it easier for her.

She loaded her bike back into the car and set off for home and I did another lap and then would ride home. Another good lap, drafted some other riders for a bit, went down on the drops for most of the lap. Then after the lap was done I set off home.

Got to Wimbledon Park and the rain came down. It was like a sheet of water. I got soaked but the roads were also so wet and flooding in places as the drains couldn’t keep up, so I stopped at a bus stop until the worse had cleared. 20 minutes later it was still bucketing it down. Other ‘inpsired’ riders, in shorts and a cycling top were also soaked to the skin and riding in dangerous conditions.

I called my wife to say I would be later back (due to the weather, not because of an accidnet) and she agreed to turn her bath off and come back out to pick me up. I cycled to Wimbledon and she picked me up from there. I had the heater in the car on full blast while I trid to warm up and then straight in the shower when I got home. Still waiting (2 hours later) for the rain to stop so I can get the bike out the car to wipe it down. Watching the Marathon which is happening live ….. in the pouring rain …..

Oh and my knee hurts.

Thanks for reading