Feeling fit, bit bored if Triathlons though!

Soooooo, i haven’t updated this for a while! I can not be bothered to fully recap everything in the last few months. I’ll do a quick recap of what i’ve been up to, a few picks, then i might rattle on about stuff.

  • May – Maltby Sprint Triathlon 1:16:41 – Was really happy with this and enjoyed the race.
  • Ripon Triathlon 2:48:08 – Swim = 31:19 – Bike = 1:21:17 – Run = 52:44 – I enjoyed this, bit warm, but was a nice day. I fucked up for about 10km on the bike, i couldn’t work my new hydration bottle thing!! And it was fucking baking, so i panicked a little! Yes, i’m the big dickhead who didn’t test things before a race!! No fucking medal either!!!!!!! Gutted!
  • Castle Howard Triathlon 3:08:25 – Swim 24:13 (Ripon was a non-wetsuit swim, hence the time difference) – Bike = 1:40:37 (This was about 7km longer than 40km, hence the 20mins time difference from Ripon) – Run = 55:57 – The swim was dirty and full of reeds, then a 600m run up an hill to T1 (T1 took me 6 mins!!!), i hated the bike, but again this is my dumb fault as the weekend before i did a 110mile bike from Filey to Barnsley! I could feel the fatigue in my legs. I loved the run, it was all off road on trails around Castle Howard, it was mainly up hill too! I might, next year just do the half marathon run as the weekend festival was good. I hate my time result on this, the 6mins in transition and extra 7km on bike ruins it!

The above are the races i’ve done, i’ve also do the Great Yorkshire Bike Ride which is 80miles, the Filey to Barnsley, about 7 Oxspring Trunces, which is a local fell race. The Dam Flask relays, which was awesome and Stan’s Toffee Run, which is a local trail race.

 

I’m getting bored with Triathlons, not so much the actual events but the training for them. I enjoy the swimming, the biking and the running. What i don’t like is that sometime its feels restrictive in how i train and what i want to do. Its mainly the biking and the running. The road biking i like and enjoy, i find nice rural roads and kind of just explore, which is good as there is plenty around where i live. The problem is that just training isn’t about a nice amble out. It has to be functional on the bike whether this is endurance or speed etc. So most of the time its head down and get the numbers right! And the running!! i love running, but i love running in the middle of hills, mountains and trails. I like to stop at the top and admire the views! I like that n one is around and its kind of just you and nature! i also like the kind of self sufficient thing about it. You put on your race vest, few snacks, water, rain coat and just fuck off somewhere! Training for flat road and speed gets boring.

I’ve been doing a few more trail runs lately and kind of neglecting the bike. I have about 4 to 5 weeks until Ironman Weymouth, so i need to get some biking in.

The plus point is i do feel a lot fitter than say 6 months ago. I did a 16 mile run in the Peak District the other day with 3,500ft of elevation in it. I felt brill, and i’ve not really done that for 3 months, and i have’t run over 10 miles since start of May. So i was happy with the progress.

Currently my training week breaks down into

  • Monday: Swim 2,000m (am) / 1 Hour turbo on Sufferfest (pm)
  • Tuesday: Swim 2,000m (am) / Speed work 5 – 10km (pm)
  • Wednesday: 1 hour Strength & conditioning (am) / 1 Hour turbo on Sufferfest (pm)
  • Thursday: 2000m (am) / Club ride 30km & 5km brick (steady pace)
  • Friday: 2000m (pm) / 30mins Yoga (pm)
  • Saturday: 100km bike ride & 5km brick
  • Sunday: 10 – 20km steady recovery run

Sometimes i miss shit, sometimes i swim less than 2,000m etc but i try and roughly stick to this. If i’m feeling tired or that i need a rest then i’ll take a day off. I use Training Peaks to plan shit and review my form and numbers etc. It works out to around 10 – 15 hours per week, depending on how i feel.

I do think though 2019 will be a run only year though, i’ll still swim and ride, but the comps will be run only!

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Running Adventures

So….. my plan of updating this thing every week properly backfired! about once every 3 months currently!

Anyway, lets say I started the Hardmoors 55, seems better than saying i did it, as ‘did it’ would imply a finish! Which i didn’t do. It was my first DNF, thought i would feel a lot worse for having a DNF. It bugged the shit out of me at the time, felt like a failure and that maybe i had overreached  “The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.” Arthur C. Clarke

So i beat myself up a little bit (the exact same way i do when i start a sentence with ‘so’), realised that i just need to slap myself, have another go and train smarter! I think the training is the area i need to improve. I dropped out at around mile 30, just before the 3 sisters. My hip started hurting around mile 15, which didn’t bother me too much until about mile 25. I must have been compensating for my left hip on my right side, as my right hamstring and glute started hurting. I just thought dropping out was the most sensible option, to not get too drastically injured and still be able to do the other events i’ve entered. I also pretty much decided the moment i’d quit that i was going back next year. To fucking smash it 😉

Now the weather was bad, with snow, sideways sleet and wind. But i had the right gear and never felt cold or wet, i can’t even blame the weather for sucking!

So the positives and lessons learnt are that, i did 30miles, no small feat in itself. The course is worth running more than once, and i’ll get to! The weather makes the adventure. Fucking stay over, getting up at 3 in morning to run 55 miles is fucking dumb. My flexibility and mobility is zero, i need to work on this. Just because on a training run you can comfortable do 20miles, does not mean you can do 55miles, and doing 40-50 miles per week is not enough. One long run a month of a marathon or more is on the cards when in training for an Ultra.

 

The above stories are a huge over reaction and absolute bollocks. Whoever Bethany Lodge and Graeme Hetherignton are maybe they should have asked the runners, or got off their lazy arses and run it themselves to find out. Useless twats, being good at you job and having some integrity would help.

Last weekend i did the Great Lakeland 3Day event, this is a Mountain Marathon event 3 different classes (as with most mountain marathons). The event is 3 days in the Lake District, Run/Hike camp everyday. You get given a map and have to navigate to the check in points, these are just electronic markers, no people. There is no aid stations so you have to be self sufficient on the Hills/Mountains.  The event was brilliant, on day 1 i did the the Elite class, 30 miles with 3,000 metres of elevation. Day 2 and 3 i dropped down to the lowest class, covering 20 miles on day 2 and 10 miles on day 3. I’ve been to the Lake District before, but not like this weekend. This was up in the Western Lakes, a place i’ve  never been before. It’s part of the Lakes that isn’t really busy compared to Windermere or Keswick way out. There is basically no one on the hills. We started from Ennerdale, went up Hen Comb, down to Crummock Water, up on to Dodd and then up again onto Whiteside running the ridge past Hopegill Head onto Grisdale Pike, back down and then up to Barrow, from their along the ridge onto Scar Crags and Sail, then a steep down and up to Knott Rigg. Down from there all the way over to Dale Head, over to Hindscarth and onto Robinson. Finishing at Buttermere, the new camp site. Second day was backup to Hindscarth along to Dale Head, and down into Little Town, where i had Soup and a roll 😉 From there up back onto Knott Rigg and back down to Buttermere. The 3rd day i just walked it back from Buttermere to Ennerdale. I would defiantly recommend the Great Lakeland 3Day, the adventure and exploring is amazing.

 

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Now it’s onto some triathlons…………

1 week to go Hardmoors 55 – Kit List

Well thats it, if i haven’t done the training i’ll soon find out, and a week isn’t going to improve anything! This week is pretty much relax week, eat well, drink plenty of water, stretching and Yoga, with maybe one run thrown in to keep the legs mobile.

The last longish run was yesterday, 10mile around the Upper Derwent & Howden reservoir. This is a amazing place to run around, the views alone are amazing, but the roads and trails around the reservoir’s are easy going and undulating making it a good, quick run on trails.

I spent the rest of Saturday checking the kit, i ordered a new top for race day, and i’m hoping it gets to me before Saturday 😬

There is a mandatory kit list, as expected. Its the usually stuff, waterproofs, map, water, bivvy bag etc.

He’s my kit list and some of the gear i will be wearing.

I have the Petzl ACTIK head-torch, the race starts at 9:00 in morning, so we could potentially be running in the dark, the sun is setting around 18:00 here in England. Map, spare hat and a buff, plus a few gel’s and some Made Good chocolate chip Granola bars. These are good, and contain all natural ingredients, they even have one portion of veg in them! sounds rank but you can’t taste the vag shit!

 

For the waterproof jacket i have the Salomon Bonatti Pro, best waterproof for the trails i’ve had. Awesome coat, highly recommend. Its windproof with taped seams. A pair of Compressport calf sleeves, i find these really work and help on long distance runs, i also tend to keep them on after runs for quite a while too. I have a Salomon Advance 12 Skin Set race vest, i have tried a few race vests and this one, so far, seems to be the stand out vest. It is really comfortable to run, the front pockets and rear pockets are really easily accessible, which is good for food and waterproofs. There is a few zip pockets too which i like, the pouch at the rear is plenty big enough for any race needs, and the hydration flasks are easy to get to. I am also taking a pair of Black Diamond Distance Z poles, i’m not sure if i will use these or not, but i’m going to pack them. They’re light enough to not care about.

 

I’m taking 2 pairs of trainers, i’m lucky enough that a few people are following us around the race (in their cars) and will carry spare kit for us. I’m starting the race in my Inov8 Terra-Claw 250, they are really roomy and comfortable, but i’m not sure how they will feel after 55 miles, the soles are pretty thin with not much cushioning, so i’m pretty apprehensive to do 55miles int them, i’ve done 32 miles in these, but my feet aching for a few days after. I’m going to take my Inov8 Park-Claw 275 GTX shoes, just incase things get a little too rough for the feet! I’ll be taking spare socks too, i love the injinji socks, so will be wearing these and taking a few spare pairs too.

So all i have now is 6 days of waiting! really looking forward it, i’m confident i/we can do it in around the 12 hour mark.

Hardmoors 55 – nearly there!

So its 11 days until Hardmoors 55. Really looking forward to this, it’ll be the furthest i have run, and its going to hurt, but, still looking forward to it. We did a recce run of the last 10mile or so, this was from Kildale to Guisborough (we ran back, as we’d parked in Kildale).

This was a good part to recce as this could be the bit done in the dark!! Its a bit of a climb from Kildale up to Captain Cooks Monument, theres a few flats thrown in though. Its then a nice downhill from there, then back up a little hill to the start of Roseberry Topping, this kind of reminds me of WinHill, but its easier to run than WinHill. Its then back down, and a nice run into Guisborough from there, around 5 mile of undulating trail. I’m still hoping for around 12 hours, and i’m hoping the snow has gone, as nice and cool as it is to run in and have fun in, running 50miles in snow would be wank!

As well as this recce run theres been training runs every week, well quite a few runs every week to be honest! A few snippets are below.

 

Few runs on the Trans Pennine Trail, its pretty flat, so normally a faster run. A few runs in the Peak District for the hills and undulating trails. Through the week just thrown in some hill repeats, recovery runs etc. Along with this i’m trying to keep up the strength training with Squats, lunges, plank, press-ups etc. Added in Yoga and stretching. Plus swim drills once a week on a Sunday, and up until a week ago i was on the turbo trainer once a week!

I have all the kit ready, i have a slight foot issue though. The top of my foot is sore, i think this is from my trainers being too tight! its now a decision on what trainers i wear on the day. The ones that hurt me are the specific ones i bought to run this race, ahh!!! I’ll try them this weekend again and see how they go, if not i’ll have to revert back to the Inov8 Terraclaw 250.

Anyway, few easy runs this week, one last proper run this Saturday, a hike on Sunday then chill for a week!

Race re-cap Waterway 30

This weekend i did the Waterway 30, it is a 31.5 mile ultra run (51.7km). Its run along the Chesterfield Canal, and some surrounding trails, it has around 1,000feet of elevation (325m). Over 31 miles its pretty flat, the main elevation is the first 5km and last 5km, as you would imagine the canal paths are flat. However the mud was pretty terrible, it made it harsh conditions to run on, for a lot of the run there was no real footpaths, it was just grass verges and embankments, which gave you a great views, but sometimes restricted the speed.

My aim for this race was to gauge my time over the 31.5miles with an eye on the Hardmoors 55. The Hardmoors is 55 miles, with 2,800 feet of elevation, i am aiming to do this in 12 hours or less. I used this race to gauge my running times. I wanted to at least do the Waterway 30 in 6 hours, aiming for nearer 5hours 30 minutes. Meaning for the Hardmoors 55 i would have a base speed and be able to calculate in the extra hills and milage (in theory)!

So how did the race go? I think i went out a little fast, i did the first 30km in 3 hours, after that i started to feel my legs lagging behind a bit, and the pace started to slow. The last 5km was mainly uphill and the most muddiest parts, so this kind of helped, in a weird way, i was able to slowly trudge through the mud missing the deepest areas, while also walking up hill, bonus! I guess the mud at the end added around 10 mins onto my time. I know what you are thinking, just run through it you soft twat! If it was just a few puddles i would have, but this was shin deep slop, with shoe losing potential!

Anyway, i ended the race in 5hours 39 minutes, with a average running time of 6:39 min/km or 10:43 min/mile. This shows that the last 20km was a lot slower than the first 30km as that average time was 6:00 min/km or 9:41min/mile. So for the first 30km i could have taken it a bit easier, which in turn would have helped me keep the pace until the end!! in theory!!

Anyway, my target time for the Hardmoors 55 has not changed, and i’m more than determined to complete in 12 hours or less, this race has just given me more confidence in doing this. My target time per mile for the Hardmoors 55 is 7:10 min/km or 11.32 min/mile. This will put me in at around 10 hours 30 minutes, giving me some leeway of 1 hour 30 minutes!

Well back to the training for the Hardmoors 55 then! Just a quick note, if i miss the target i would still be happy with just finishing any race, it is all an achievement, and you still get a medal 😉

P.S the shoe in the mud is not mine!