Monday, 2 June 2008

What a week...

Having spent all week thinking about what I should write on today's blog entry I've been unable to decide. This has been such an amazing week though that I think a brief summary of the lest seven amazing days will hit the spot...

Monday (Bank Holiday)
Following a confidence building result at the Wetherby triathlon last week H and I had a bit of a lie-in then jumped on the bikes and went for a nice and leisurely 47 mile ride taking in some famous Ripley ice-cream along the way. A lovely sunny day and a great reminder of how amazing cycling in the dales really is.

Tuesday (University closed)
Up early for a return to one of my favourite swim sessions... 10 x 300 off 5:15. This time last year I was having to work hard to keep all of them under five minutes and was going off 5:30 but starting easy on Tuesday I hit 4.48 for the first, was down to 4.29 by number five and sat comfortably around 4.30 for the remainder! At lunchtime H and I went for a fairly steady eight mile run and in the evening I took group one at Run Club out for five miles in about an hour.

Back to work and plenty of research project marking but still managed to sneak a nice lunchtime swim in (2 x 400 wu, 16 x 50, 1 x 400 cd) before hitting the Pool Triangle timetrial in the evening... for the first three events of the year I'd struggled to find last year's speed but knowing that I'd probably only get to ride this once more before Germany, and desperate for a good result, I'd had a mini taper making mon, tue and wed a little easier than previous weeks, the result... a much improved 31.05, quicker than this time last year and giving me the win by just under ten seconds :)

I took the day off work for what was to be the biggest and most challenging training session I've ever done! Every year in the lead up to Ironman I'll do a couple of what I call 'Mega Bricks', these are bike/run brick sessions with a ride of at least a hundred miles followed by a resonably long run. This year though I'd decided to really test myself and combine the session with a proper long run and make it a 106 mile ride followed by a 20 mile run! Partly this was because I just wanted to push the boundries a little and partly it was to test out race nutrition and with most Ironman nutrition problems coming in the second half of the run I needed to go long. To cut a long story short I had the ride of my life going through 100 in about 4.26 and finishing the entire session in just under 7 hours 30. If you're interested in the long version click... HERE.

Back to work again and interviews for next year's race directors for the Hyde Park Time Trial and a rest from training after Thursday's exersions. We started the HPTT 34 weeks ago and with it now averaging around 100 runners per week and engaging people from all areas of the community it's been a resounding success. This year's race directors Adam, Flick, Tasha and Caryl have done a fantastic job in getting the event off the ground and from the start of the next academic year four new level two students will be tasked with taking it to the next level... I'm sure they'll be amazing!

Saturday (part one)
With our flight to Vancouver leaving at about one o'clock from Manchester Ben (L) turned up at around 8am for the first of the two trips required to get H and I to Leeds train station with all our luggage. At this point however I realised that at 998.1 training miles for May I was less than two short of the 1000 mile target that Ben G and I had set over four weeks ago! So with H and Ben on their way in to Leeds with the bikes I quickly pulled my training bike of the garage and did a quick mile out and back in order to satisfy what I call my 'controlled obsession' ;)

Saturday (part two)
With our clocks going back by eight hours as we flew over the Atlantic Saturday seemed to go on forever and at 6.30 pm we found ourselves in Vancouver... unfortunately minus my bag with all my training gear, clothes and essentials thanks to British Airways and terminal five living up to their reputation! Anyway, a quick taxi to the Tsawassen ferry terminal followed by a 90 minute crossing (where we managed to temporarily loose our other bag, which contained all of H's stuff) and a lift from a great guy called Charlie (who we met on the ferry) taking us first into downtown Victoria to retrieve H's bag (another long story) and finally we arrived at our lovely B & B in Cordova Bay on Vancouver Island.

After one of the most 'solid as a log' nights sleep I've ever had H and I followed a typical Canadian breakfast of 'eggy' bread, blueberries and maple syrup with a quick trip in to Victoria to pick up a few missing essentials and have a look around. Then back to Cordova Bay before H and I ran to a beautiful place called Elk Lake, chatted round a seven mile lap and jogging home for a total of eleven easy miles. 

...and here I am, sat up in bed with my eye lids propped open with matchsticks writing my second ever transatlantic blog entry! Bottom line? It's been an amazing week, my cycling is back on track and seemingly in good enough shape to crack the five hour barrier in Germany, running and swimming are going really well, with less than five weeks to go I'm starting to feel like a good enough athlete to break 9.30 for an Ironman and H and I are in the middle of a fantastic adventure!

I'll call it a day there I think, I'm way to tired to work out how to blue-tooth a picture from my phone to H's lap top and she's way to asleep to tell me... so you'll have to do without a photo from me this week. I will try and do some midweek updates from Vancouver if I get the chance though ;)


T x

1 comment:

Brian said...

Delighted that you both arrived safely (even sans valise). Have a great run on Saturday H. Keep up your training and travel safely back again. With you all the way.