I read a lot about ‘life after ironman’. Articles about those who suffer post ironman blues having focused on training for so long and then to have nothing to train for, having to get into a different routine etc.
So how am I three weeks after IM Austria? Depressed, got the blues – not likely.
If anything I am more motivated now then ever before. In the past three weeks I have done the follow:
I rested a lot the first two weeks and only really trained seriously this week. The recovery time included beers out after work, beers with work colleagues at our summer party, big take away blow-outs. Basically things I laid off the last 6 – 8 weeks leading up to the event.
I have bought a new tri suit, some new wheels for my bike, some tri specific cycling shoes, some new cycling kit. A bit of retail therapy.
Having put up with the crap my gym dishes out, especially the pool use, I have finally found an alternative gym with a bigger pool (more lanes for swimmers) to swim in. Equal distance from home and half the price.
Cycling to work
I have started training this week and that includes cycling to work. This is a big change and is key to some of my other objectives below. Cycling to work takes one hour each way, so if I cycle three times per week that’s 6 hours of cycle training without really noticing it. When I get home, I can chillax and not have to quickly get changed to go and sit on the turbo for an hour. The turbo takes an hour out of my evening and means only one hour of training. Riding to work doubles that time on the bike and gives me evenings again.
Today I had a bike fit at Pearson’s cycle fit. It was a really good session, very useful and very informative. I have changed the set up on my bike, but nothing massive, little tweaks here and there. The biggest change was putting on different bars 38cm from 42cm, so that explains my aching shoulder on long rides. Cleats were moved back a bit, saddle height increased, seat position tweaked etc.
I had a ride afterwards and it didn’t feel any different at all, so the tweaks weren’t massive. The guy that did it was really good at explaining what we were changing and why. He did Ironman Nice this year so he knew what I was after; super aero position, but with comfort. The trade off is key. The fact it didn’t feel that different I think means the comfort box is ticked.
The changes should be a double winner. If you think about the maths – being more aero will save drag and means, with no additional effort, I could be 1kmph faster for my average speed. If you think the bike fitting me better means each pedal stroke gives more power and that increases bike speed by 1kmph – over 180K that is more than 20 minutes faster time, without being any fitter. I will take that!
The second win is by being in the right ride position on the bike, the run legs will be there quicker and should feel better – well as good as legs can feel running a marathon after a 180K ride!
Anyway back to what else I have been up to since the Ironman . . .
I am trying to get more sleep per night and therefore per week. No social media, twitter, blogging, interweb etc after 9pm and in bed by 10.15pm. One week in it’s going all right.
Core / Flexibility
I have known for years, literally years, I need to focus on improving my core and flexibility and I have never put in a sustained effort or commitment to do this. My core strength and lack of flexibility was raised again today in the bike fit. The new gym does a yoga class on a Tuesday at 7.30pm – 8.30pm. Tuesday is usually swim night but if I want to fit in Yoga (or something like that) once a week to improve my core then something else will have to give, best for my strongest discipline to ‘suffer’. Although this will need to be discussed and agreed with Mark.
I will have some swimming lessons in the winter months – again this is offered through the new gym by the instructor that taught the wife to swim.
So no post race blues for me – for me it’s focus, focus, focus.
Thanks for reading.