Sunday, 27 April 2008

Rain rain go away...

H has written a pretty in depth report on Saturday's race so I'll keep my review to the point... the target in Ashbourne was to remind my legs what running hard was all about, test myself on the bike and finish somewhere around 2 hours and 20 minutes. One hundred and seventy nine painful minutes and 52 seconds later it was job done. I was right... my legs had forgotten what running hard was all about... but won't forget again in a hurry! With one of my LBT club mates in sight for most of the bike the motivation was there to keep them working... unfortunately, there's a reason why I never did well in downhill mountain biking and the fast and steep Ashbourne descents got the better of my 'bottle', coming in to T2 over 40 seconds behind I was never going to bridge the gap against a pretty handy runner over such a short second run. Still, crossing the line in 2:19 I was pleased to place 25th out of 170 in a quality field with the marathon only 13 days before (they say it takes 26 to fully recover) and even more pleased to post the 16th fastest bike split despite hanging on to the brakes for half the race ;)

People often overlook the training benefit of racing... but there's something special about competition and it allows you to work at an intensity far higher than normal. H and I will never set the world on fire in events like Ashbourne as they're to short (i.e. fast) and there's no swim but in terms of getting out for a 2+ hour high intensity training session they're hard to beat.

Afterwards we hung out all afternoon in the sun with Ben G, Max G, Daz (+family), Sam (my best man to be) and Amanda for some well earned chill time... it was great to remove both feet from the gas for a moment and genuinely kick back... for what possibly could have been the beginning, middle and end of summer!

H and I are riding in a seriously challenging cycle sportive, the 110 mile and hilly (3,500 metres of vertical ascent) Etap Du Dales, on May the 18th and had been really looking forward to riding the course today with no time pressure and just exploring an area of the Dales that we don't know so well. Having set the alarm for 5 o'clock this morning, packed the bikes in the car and driven over to Grassington for about 6.30 we had a choice... 8-9 hours of torrential rain in the middle of nowhere and yet another Iron session of suffering or a hasty retreat to our trusty, warm and dry garage and yet more hours on the turbo trainers... no brainer really...

10am - two hour steady turbo at a heart rate of 130

3pm - two hour interval based turbo session followed by a nice steady 8 mile run straight off.

Not only were we warm and dry all day but had time to tidy the house, sit down for a civilised lunch, check out a bit of the Grand Prix and fill in the last couple of weeks of my (paper) training diary :)

This week coming will see a slight increase in bike volume and a little more running before three weeks of swim, bike and run hammer time that will take us up to Vancouver (we fly May 31st) by which time we'll need to be pretty much in race shape so that's...

One medium week (this week coming)
Three hard weeks
One easy week
One hard week (in Vancouver)
Two easy weeks
One medium week
RACE WEEK (in Frankfurt)

So what started 40 weeks ago as '50 weeks to Kona?' is now just ten!

That's about it for now, time for bed,


p.s. well done to all our friends (Carl, Ady et al.) who braved the elements today (unlike us) and belted round all 100k of the Kirklees Sportive.

p.p.s. Having won a bronze medal in the world age-group champs and won the sub-2.30 wave of the London Triathlon, both in 2007, our great friend Emma-Kate Lidbury (Ek) is about to enjoy her first season as a pro-triathlete. Click HERE for a great interview with her on

p.p.s. I'd like May to be very hot and sunny thankyouplease ;)


runtilyoudrop said...

Tom, MTB 10 weeks before IM is brave. Mine is firmly stuck to the wall, mind you there are no hills to fall off round here. I promise you good weather soon (probably the second and third week of July).

Tom said...

Hi Gabriel,

Cheers for the comment... not sure what you mean by MTB though.. the Etap du Dales is a road sportive if that's what you're refering to?

Hpw's training?