Thursday, October 27, 2016

IM New Zealand - 20 weeks out

Previously I’ve found the discipline of recording and broadcasting how my training has gone and where I’m at is really helpful in keeping me on track. So, while I’ve been ‘training’ for my next event for a few months now, with 20 weeks until Ironman New Zealand I figured I’m now in the hard core prep zone and I could benefit from some increased focus.

If you haven’t seen my earlier posts on this topic this isn’t meant as a blow by blow account of my training. There aren’t going to be a lot of numbers and I try and keep brags and excuses to a minimum. Rather I’ll keep this fairly high level and general.

Ok, first things first, my coach (Craig Percival at No Limits Endurance) has me doing some slightly different training these days which is interesting and hurting me in all new ways. Basically, Craig has me working hard on strength and power. Like a mate of mine (Peter Coombe) I’ve come to triathlon late in life from other sports and like Pete I’ve been very focussed on trying to get lean and light and finally, like Pete, this has only been partly successful. So now, while I still don’t want to be carrying weight I don’t have to, this is now a secondary consideration, now the main goal is to develop the power I need to handle whatever course I’m dealing with at the weight I am (rather the weight I might be in an alternate universe where I’m built like Jan Frodeno).

So what does that look like in training terms?

Well so far its meant a lot more variety with greater changes in intensity rolling from long leg busting hikes up hills with a weighted pack to fast and furious 5km time trials. Likewise, on the bike there’s long, relatively easy Maffatone based rides at very low heartrates mixed with grinding big gears up hills that set my legs on fire. Its just a few weeks in but right now it feels right.

Ok, so that’s the background how did this week, NZ MINUS 20 go?

Depending on how you look at it this week was either really good or really bad. The good, I did virtually every session as planned and felt great. The bad, the only sessions that didn’t quite work were the key Saturday sessions of a hilly ride followed by a hilly run, the others that I nailed were really all just leading up to this. In short the weather screwed me. I tried riding Saturday but at one point I worked out that on the bike my visibility was only about half my stopping distance. That point was when I grabbed the brakes hard to avoid a car turning in front of me and simply sailed on barely slowing. If the car hadn’t – finally – found his gears and started moving I was going into the side of it. So I bailed.

I tried to make it up on Sunday but just couldn’t complete the ride as programmed. I did get do the run however so not all bad.

My NZ MINUS 19 program is in – lots (and lots) of running this week so wish me luck.