IMUK Training through the eyes of a first timer! week 23 of 28
Couple of things I wanted to mention this week before going into the training that I have been doing:
First : Sleep!
Last week, I talked about how I have never been as hungry in my life.
Well you can add another thing to that:
I have also never enjoyed sleep so much in my life!!
If you want to know the secret to a fantastic nights sleep – train for an Ironman!
Out like a light and sleep like a log, every time without fail!
This isn’t a recent ‘happening’, I have been noticing it for weeks now.
Worringly, the only time I do not feel tired is when I am actually training!
When I wake up, I am excited and itching to get stuck in to whatever session the day brings….
And during the actual training itself, I feel great.
Its when I return to base that the problems start!
Often, the only thing I want to do upon my return is eat some food, have a hot bath, and go for a nap!!
But my 3 year old usually has a different agenda!
If, like me, you find yourself ‘craving’ your bed at 3pm each day during this process then worry not, you are not alone – it’s perfectly normall!!
Second : Open Water Swimming
I am about to tell you something that I never thought I would hear myself say….
I am starting to really enjoy swimming in open water.
In fact I would go further….
I now actually prefer OW to swimming in a pool.
I find it much easier, there are far less distractions (like a wall every 25 metres for example!) and I find that you can totally absorb yourself in your rhythm, breathing and technique, especially when you are swimming with other people….
Yes! especially when you are swimming with others!
Learning how to swim with other people in OW and ‘play’ them to your advantage is one of the biggest things I have learnt on my journey and something I talk about in great detail in my book.
I went and knocked out the full iron swim in 1:17 down at 3 sisters and I have to tell you, I didn’t even feel like I was trying particularly hard – I just relaxed, focused on my technique and it all just seemed to ‘click’.
What I love most though about Open water TT’s is this:
Once the initial ‘scrum’ is over and you settle into your rhythm, you will inevitably be joined by someone who is of a similar pace to yourself.
Swimming side by side with a total stranger as you make your way around the course together like a couple of dolphins is a wonderful sensation and one which I absolutely adore.
But I must re-emphasise the point that it wasn’t always like this for me.
Far from it in fact……
The first time I got into Open water I think I lasted about 2 minutes and hated every second, despite being a competent mile pool swimmer at the time….
Anyone stuggling with the transition from pool to open water right now believe me – I truly feel your pain, I was there myself not that long ago……
But let this post be your lighthouse in the dark as to what is possible if you stick at it!!
Here is how my training went this week:
Saturday: 1 Hour Swim in the flash then Babylon lane & back on the bike (28 mile)
I have established a nice little routine now where I swim in the flash on a Saturday morning then immediately get onto the bike to follow the exact 14 mile IMUK bike route round to Babylon lane which is precisely what we will do on race day.
The flash was a complete dream today, warm and calm.
I even managed to swim all the way out to the furthest buoy!
I did 3 laps of the short course (1350 total) then 1 lap of the bigger course which I thinK is 900metres so roughly 2250 for the session which I was pleased with.
One thing I noticed when getting onto the bike was that I was freezing for quite a while so this needs to be monitored.
I sailed round to Babylon lane within an hour but two things happned.
First, I dropped my water bottle about 5 mins from Babylon lane.
‘No problem, I will get it on the way back’ I thought to myself.
When I returned 10 minutes later – it had gone!
Who would take a used drinks bottle, £2 from Sports Direct?
Seriously, why would you do that?
Second, I dropped my mobile phone on the way back to the flash!!
I could not believe it when an elderly gentleman called the wife to say he had found the phone on Chorley New Road!
With everything going on in the world right now people like that simply warm the heart!
Sunday : 30km Run – 3:35
So I have taken the long slow runs up to 30k.
I made sure I took the pace really slow and concentrated on completing the distance rather than speed, taking regular breaks.
The first 20k was fine, I feel like I could knock 20k’s out all day long now.
To 25k was just about ok.
25-27.5 was a challenge.
The last 2.5k I found tough.
By the end I could hardly walk.
It’s always like this first time for a new distance.
3:35 would give me nearly an hour and a half to complete the last 10k on race day to fall in line with my plan of 5 hours for the run, so i’ll take that.
Slow, I know, but I don’t give a shit – running over 20k I find tough – always have and probably always will!
It’s weird, for LSR’s my 5k time is always 30 mins, 10k = 1hour and 20k = 2 hours dead….
But as soon as I take it over 20k that nice little matrix goes completely out the window!
I am going to try a new strategy for next weeks 30k, i’ll let you know how it goes.
Monday: Mile swim in the pool
Easy, felt nothing more than a warm up, not being arrogant, that’s just how it felt.
Tuesday : Weights and sauna session
Wednesday – 10km run am then ‘Iron swim pm’
10km run, nice and easy sub 1 hour
I then got some issues with my bike sorted by Ian @ wigan bike tec fantastic service as usual
Open water TT went really well as above – Highlight of the swim was seeing Nick doing his David Hasselhoff impression keeping all the swimmers safe whilst stood on his paddle board!- I shouted ‘alrite Nick’ as I passed him on lap 3 ‘mid stroke’ and I could tell by his reaction that I was probably the only one to do this!!
Thursday – 47 Mile IMUK bike loop from Babylon Lane 3:17
I shouldn’t have gone really as the weather was poor but I had booked a day off and was itching to get out, convincing myself that ‘it wasn’t that bad’
As soon as I pulled up in Babylon Lane to unload the bike, the heavens opened.
I got drenched and battered by a constant headwind for large periods.
It is now June and there is still no sign of the gale force winds receeding out on the loop.
I swear I am buying a ‘twat hat’ for the rest of my training, I don’t care what I look like – every time I go out on that circuit I feel like I am in the opening scene from the wizard of Oz and I’ve had enough!
Friday – Day Off
Next update : 17-6-17 (I don’t like the look of that)
To your amazing journey!
You will not believe who I am out with this weekend! keep an eye on my blog for details of a truly amazing interview which will be uploaded very soon!
Readers should not be under the illusion that I am going into this 28 week Ironman plan straight ‘off the bat’ as it is not the case.
Full details of my journey, together with the exact daily training plans that I followed for each race and of course the secrets from the Iron men themselves will be revealed in my book, which will be available to download soon.
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