I will be a Triathlete again

The last triathlon I took part in was Vichy 70.3 in August 2014. That’s 10 months ago!!

I have done other events since then: The Ball Buster Duathlon Nov 2014, the Brighton Marathon April 2015 and the Pearson 150K sportive. But it’s time to put my triathlon head on.

On Sunday I am competing in the Cowman Middle Distance tri, then in early August is an Olympic Distance tri at Bewl Water. Both of these are preparation for the biggy IM Vichy at the end of August.

My objectives for the Cowman Middle Distance event are below:

Swim

The objective is to see where I am at and see if my swim performance has reduced over the winter due to lack of swim training. I took the decision over winter to focus on running and cycling (in that order) and to neglect swimming. Sunday I will see the impact that has had on my swim time.

My swim times for 1,900 metres are very consistent:

Vachery 36.34

Gauntlet 36.27

Vichy 37 mins

IM Austria 1 hr 14 mins (half that being 37 mins)

So I am aiming for 37 mins on Sunday. If I drop to 40 mins or worse, than I need more work on my swim. I am happy to stick with 37 mins for 1.9K and improve my bike and run.

Bike

I will use the new TT bike and this event is about getting a race under my belt on the TT bike. I am ‘not really worried about’ the time, especially as it’s not a course I have ridden before. I will know if I didn’t ride well and if it was the bike, my handling of the bike or my legs/fitness etc.

70.3 Ride times are:

Vachery 3 hrs 2 mins  (but only 76K but very hilly)

Gauntlet   3 hrs 48 mins (very hard course)

Bedford 3 hrs 17 mins (fast course)

Vichy 3 hrs 10 mins (fast course)

IM Austria first lap was 3 hrs 15 mins (first lap)

So 3 hrs 9 mins or less is a PB but 3 hrs 30 mins and learning more about the bike would be tolerable.

Run

The objective is a strong run off the bike and a strong half marathon time. Ideally slower first 10K and build the second half or at worst an even pace over the entire run. I don’t want to start (too) strong and fade.

So lap one speed of circa 10.5kmph – higher than marathon pace (10kmph) but slower than half marathon pace (11kmph). If I can sustain this pace this would give a run time of 2 hours – so 2hrs – 2hrs 10 mins is the target.

This is obviously linked to the bike leg. If the TT bike is strong and I do a fast bike time then I may need to start the run slower at 10kmph and aim for a 2.10 or 2.15 run. If the bike isn’t a great ride and I don’t feel confident pushing the bike then I will run harder as should have more stored in the legs

Previous 70.3 run times are:

Vachery 2 hrs 23 mins

Gauntlet   2 hrs 31 mins (hard course all fields off the back of a hard bike)

Bedford 2 hrs 25 mins (fast course)

Vichy 2 hrs 16 mins (fast course)

So 2 hrs to 2hrs 10 mins is a big ask but my running has improved so much I think this is doable.

I am also using this event to experiment with Nutrition. Basically trying to use less or no gels on the bike and replace with Cliff Shots, more solids and energy via liquids. Saving the gels for the run.

Transitions I think will be slow as I haven’t practised them – only so many hours in the day!

So this event has clear objectives and unusually for me it’s not all about hitting an, unrealistic, finish time.

I can’t wait to get it on.

Thanks for reading.

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