Sunday, 28 December 2008


So here we are again, another Sunday evening and we find ourselves scrambling around trying to steal a moment to write the blog. For the last few weeks it doesn't feel like our feet have had a chance to touch the floor and having arrived back only a couple of hours ago from a lovely couple of days with H's family in South Shields we've got less than 12 hours to be walking out the door for three days at Tom's mum's, NYE in a Luton Airport hotel and a ten day training camp in Lanzarote. Twelve hours doesn't seem too bad but when you factor in eight hours sleep, writing the blog, packing two bikes (see today's picture) and all the kit for two weeks of travel/training and slotting a turbo session in somewhere... every second clearly does count!

We arrived back from an amazing honeymoon in Miami on Christmas Eve where although we managed about 55 miles of running and 15k of swimming we also overindulged in chocolate, ice-cream and Starbuck's Frappuccinos with true Ironman style. Unfortunately having left for the States feeling comfortably fitter than this time last year, we now feel comfortably fatter!! Christmas Day saw us hit the Dales on our bikes for a nice relaxing 45 miles of fresh air followed by a lunch of beans on toast, the Queens speech, Wallace and Grommit, East Enders and bed.

Up until a couple of weeks ago we'd been really excited about the Chevin Chase (just under 7 miles of seriously hilly and largely off-road running) and our first chance to compare our fitness against last year in a race situation, but warming up at 11am on Boxing Day it was clear that our transatlantic travels had affected us more than anticipated. Both of us had a similar race and whereas this is normally an event we really enjoy right from the gun our legs felt empty and unable to inject any pace, struggled to keep moving up the hills and screamed in pain on the seriously steep downs. Our combined times were around six minutes slower than last year and with Lanzarote only 21 weeks away we suddenly feel a long way off being Hawaii contenders... two weeks ago we were lighter and faster than our 2007 training diaries, suddenly we're heavier and slower!

Still, there's nothing like ten days in Lanzarote living like an athlete to kick start a training block and with our 20 week countdown starting while we're out there (Monday the 5th of January) we'll no doubt be able to hit the ground running once we're back in Blighty and able to establish our much needed routine. Although neither of us consider ourselves particularly talented athletically we do seem able to withstand and absorb higher than average training volumes over extended periods of time so by the time we hit our first major race of 2009 on the 21st of March, the Ballbuster Duathlon, we're confident that we'll be back on target.

Finally we'd like to say congratulations to our super motivated training partner Dave... the master of modesty had played down talk of a 45 minute run prior to the race only to fly round in 43.44 for a top 20 finish in a high quality field, well done mate! A field which by the way was led home by the Brownlee brothers, with Alistair's 37.19 equating to an average speed of around 5:25 per mile... not bad considering the steepest hill must be close to 1:2 and the deepest mud was half-way up our shins! Also a massive well done to fellow Virgin Active Road Runner Vikki King for joining Dave on the winners list for the Hyde Park Time Trial yesterday morning.

Right, next time you hear from us we'll be in Lanzarote on the final leg of our six week adventure and about to start 20 weeks of ruthlessness, determination and self belief ;)

See you in seven,

Mr & Mrs Williams xx


Russ said...

Your fitness will come back in no time.

Enjoy Lanzarote, having never been I'd like to see some pictures and plenty of info about the course! Is it only 20 weeks? That means only 13 till Ironman Australia. I'd better get working.


ADC said...

Yes I know exactly how you feel when you say "fatter". I cannot wait to start training properly again. Have fun in Lanzarote

Tom said...

Russ... detailed course description coming your way early in the new year ;)

ADC... what is it about December which makes us unable to achieve true focus? perhaps it's the breaking of our normal routine? who knows, but bring on Jan the 1st :)