The krazy life of triathlon


Ironman UK – Game On

So a few days after the last post, I was back in the doctors for yet more x-rays (I’ve had more than my fair dosage recently!) and to get the results of my MRI. I had my elbow x-rayed, which came back looking nice and calcified and well on its way to healing. The MRI results, however, put a big dent in my hopes for getting fit. Upon reading my report, my Doctor called in another specialist to come and take a look. I had done a number on my wrist, that’s for sure! The full report is below, but the short version is I fractured two bones (my triquetral and hamate), bruised two other bones (trapezium, which is what was originally a suspected scaphoid with my symptoms, and my capitate). The main problem was that the MRI had picked up a tear in my TFCC, which (correct my if I’m wrong) is a group of ligaments and cartilage that holds the radius and ulnar arm bones together and allows the forearm rotation, and essentially holds the wrist to the arm. Combined with my radial head (elbow) fracture, this is what is known as an Essex-Lopresti fracture, which essentially meant I was in the splint til it had healed. The fact that it was non-displaced and the radius and ulnar were still in the right place and the different fractured wrist bones was the confusing part, which is why the other specialist was drafted in. They were trying to work out how I actually landed (I had no cuts or grazes anywhere on my arm…)  as apparently a non-displaced fracture of this type is very uncommon. The plus side of the non-displacement meant I was not going to need surgery on it to put it back into place, the downside of it was I was in a splint until it had healed; any further tearing and I was risking having the two bones pop apart, which would be surgery and in a cast for 3 months – not good!

For once, I was actually good with my recovery, and stayed in the splint religiously to allow it to heal. Running was still off the cards as any jolt risked tearing the TFCC further and swimming obviously was a definite no-no with half my range of movement in my elbow still missing.

3 weeks on and the injuries are finally starting to heal, after a couple of weeks of not much improvement. The last week, things have rapidly fallen into place (which, I would like to think coincides with return to some sort of normal training, but unlikely). My legs were slowly coming back on the turbo, I was back running and still running pretty well thanks to avoiding the kitkats and excessive meals whilst injured and I even ventured into the pool once most of the movement in my elbow returned.

The first swim back was an interesting one! Tubigriped-up to the max, I tentatively pushed off with my arms in front and attempted some single arm swimming. So far, so good. I then picked up the kickboard and even that was fine until it came to turning around (one arm holds the board, one arm grabs the edge to turn, either way, my fractured wrist was going to have to do something!). After 15 minutes of single arm and kick, and no pain, I decided it was time to try using both arms…and it was ok! I had absolutely no strength, which is a really weird feeling, but it didn’t really hurt! So happy!

The only concern I had was that in the evening, when for some completely stupid reason, I decided to see if I could lift myself up out of my chair with my arms (really, don’t ask) to see how my wrist was. I had forgotten I had a fractured elbow. With new-found mobility thanks to my swimming, I was fine until my arm was straight enough that the fracture was rubbing against my humerus….OW! Felt like I had refractured it again, what a complete tit! Thankfully the pain was short-lived and went, and what muscles I had left rallied around to prevent me doing it again and restricting my movement to pre-swim levels.

The other concerning issue was when I was brushing my teeth. At this point I was trying to live life as normally as possible (a check-up a week earlier showed everything was still in place, the TFCC had almost healed and I was allowed to start getting movement back) so I was brushing my teeth with my busted hand. When looking in the mirror I saw my ulnar protruding so prominently I nearly carted myself off to A&E there and then, worried I had knocked it out of alignment. Calming myself down, with no pain during arm bending and wrist rotation, I could at least wait a few days til my next check up. It wasn’t until I showed a friend at work, and they noticed how much smaller my arm was compared to the other one. It had never occurred to me but my muscle atrophy was shocking. If you bend your arm, you have a nice lump of muscle running down the upper arm to the lower arm – mine is completely flat and non-existent, even now after getting back in the pool and normal use! The reason my ulnar was so prominent was because I now had arms skinnier than Bradley Wiggins!

My final check-up was Tuesday, and the x-rays showed my wrist was still stable and the fractures looked good. With my elbow giving me more grief than my wrist, I requested another x-ray on it, which showed that it had not completely healed. The fracture had fused, but the fracture line was still visible in the x-ray, meaning it still had a little bit to go, probably at the top, which is why I don’t have full extension yet. However, he referred me to physio so I could ‘start and get everything moving again’. That was good enough to me, I had told him I was back swimming, cycling and running again, and he didn’t raise his eyebrows too much. It didn’t hurt, so he was happy with that, and didn’t tell me I shouldn’t! I neglected to mention the fact I was planning on doing my IM on Sunday, but that was permission good enough for me! Game On!

Yesterday morning saw me start to switch my body clock to IM time, and an early start saw me back in the pool 10 hours after leaving. My swim on Monday lasted 45 mins until my elbow died, but it felt OK yesterday morning. My replacement helmet also arrived this week, so I ventured out on the roads at six yesterday. It felt very alien, and very weird after 5 weeks exclusively in the TT position, but being back out on my bike made me so happy! I just have a few days now to get stregth back in my arm, and have been spending lots of time in the pool to try and build the muscle back, as well as trying to use it normally, including typing and playing xbox and guitar (definitely a medical recommendation that…) This morning was my final day of proper training, and saw me getting up at 5 for a run, cycling to the pool, having a good pool session where my arm is really starting to feel strong again, and cycling home. The grief my arm gives me seems to switch between my elbow and wrist. I think the elbow fracture has just about finally healed, and full extension has almost returned and the muscle is helping to protect it, I just hope it holds for the swim. My wrist is still very weak, so will be strapping my wrist up rugby-style, as well as wearing a double tubigrip. Day-by-day it is getting back to normal, I just hope my legs remember how to work now!

My MRI Report:

      Sequences  obtained:
      Coronal  STIR,  T1,  T2*,  sagittal  STIR,  T1,  axial  STIR,
      Scan  findings:
      Marrow  signal  is  intensely  increased  within  the triquetral  on  STIR,  with  associated  intense  signal increase  within  the  trapezium  and  to  a  lesser  extent within  the  ulnar  border  of  the  distal  capitate  (images 07-10  of  series  eight).
      There  is  preservation  of  radio/ulna  carpal  joint  space  and  alignment.
      The  TFCC  is  of  altered  signal,  with  evidence  of  a partial  tear  of  its  distal  attachment  to  the  capsule. The  scapholunate  ligament,  lunotriquetral  ligament and radioscaphocapitate  ligaments  are  intact.
      The  flexor  extensor  tendons  appear  normal.
      The  median  and  ulnar  nerves  appear  of  normal  signal and  calibre.
      There  is  marked  ulnar  sided  synovitis  seen.
      1.)  Undisplaced  fracture  of  the  triquetral,  and  the dorsal  aspect  of  the  hamate,  with  no  significant  displaced  fragments.
      2.)  Associated  dorsal  synovitis,  that  may  mask  a  small  avulsion  fragment.
      3.)  Bone  contusion  of  the  trapezium,  and  ulnar  margin  of  the  capitate.
      4.)  Compromise  to  the  capsular  attachment  of  the  TFCC with  ulnar  gutter  synovitis.
      For  clarification  of  the  morphology  of  the  fracture  of the  dorsal  triquetral  and  hamate  further,  a  CT  may  be useful.


2 Weeks On

So 2 weeks on from my crash, and I am slowly remembering how to live life one-handed again, although I am typing this out OAP-style, using one finger on my broken hand (though don’t tell my doctor!). It’s rather amusing looking through my old blog posts detailing my last break, and seeing how my recovery compares, and it seems that physically at least, the bone healing is following a roughly similar timescale, albeit slowed down a bit, which is hardly surprising as I don’t have the opportunity to sit in the sun all day, and sleep for 14 hours a day! Mentally, the bad moods hit me a lot sooner due to a variety of reasons. When I broke my collar bone, the aim of the season was to finish an Ironman; I had the opportunity to focus everything in my life on getting healed up as quickly as possibly, and concentrating on it 24 hours a day; I was surrounded by my friends in a place that I loved (and had significantly better air quality!) and I had an excellent doctor who understood me and wanted to help me achieve my goals.

Compare this to my current situation, where I have this annoying work thing taking up my day(!), seem to spend most of my spare time on tubes and trains living a London life, and I had a doctor who, to be frank, couldn’t seemed to have care anymore had I been a health and safety notice on his wall, and was more interested with getting me through as quickly as possible. I’ll be the first to admit I am one of the most difficult patients an orthopeadic surgeon will come across, as I try aqnd push my recovery as much as I can, but this one wasn’t interested in the slightest.

It took me a week to get an appointment at a fracture clinic (compared to a day with Manchester…) and I turned up, he looked at my hand, said yes it’s broken, go and get a cast fitted and come back in 5 weeks. No x-rays to confirm the wrist fractures, no advice on management, and certainly no help to get myself fit again quickly. Given my Ironman was 5 weeks away, this is far from ideal and I tried to push for a closer time, but both him and the receptionist said I wasn’t allowed, and it could only be 5 weeks or later. Great. I also heavily pushed to stay in my splint, as though although it wasn’t the most comfortable and giving me the best support, I could at least wash, manage my own recovery as pain allowed, and most importantly still train. He didn’t seem to be too bothered, as long as I didn’t ever take it off in the 5 weeks, so at least I could still train.

A few days later, I got fed up with this, and decided it was time to get a 2nd opinion, and time to make the most of having private medical insurance through work. After sweet-talking the receptionist at my local GP so I could register, see the nurse and then see a GP to get a referral all in the same morning, I found myself at London Bridge Hospital at lunchtime to see a specialist, who was great and understands type of patient I am! I had X-rays done, which showed the elbow healing nicely, but the wrist x-ray was inconclusive so a few days later I was being squeezed into an MRI scanner to get a more definitive answer. Certainly making the most of my insurance, and the £3 a month I pay to remove my excess is paying off in spades, but I have to say that MRI scanners are not designed for people who can’t straighten their arm! I had to lie down, with my arm straight and wrist clamped into a cage, not ideally comfortable! So meant it stopped me having a kip during my scan, but at least I know my arm can just about straighten! On the plus side, between me, my specialist and the physio I saw to get my fancy, custom splint fitted, I think we know which of my wrist bones are actually damaged, none of which the fracture clinic doctor suggested!

My swanky custom thermoplastic splint

Having had a look through my MRI results, I think I have found the culprit bones, though I can’t really tell what is a break, and what is just detail from the cross-section! I am off to see the specialist again tomorrow, so I can found out what the damage is, and hopefully I should get a better timeframe for my recovery, as opposed to just ‘come back in 5 weeks and we’ll see how it is’.

Some cool images from my MRI – spot the fractures!

My elbow recovery has gone well and is starting to slow down, so it must be nearing completion. There is still a bit of pain when I force the movement in the bone, so I reckon another week until the bone has finished fusing. I have about 75% of my movement back in my elbow, with more and more of it now comfortable and pain-free and can be achieved unaided. There is still a little bit of swelling left preventing me from full extension, but I am confident I should be able to get full movement back in a couple of weeks with the help of my sports therapist once I get the all-clear from the doctor to do so. I am trying to get back to normality and use it as much as possible, as long as it is pain-free, and can now do little things like put my toothbrush underneath the tap! Still can’t reach the back of my mouth with that arm… But arm is getting happier at least and thankfully my shoulder has fully recovered and moves properly, it must have taken one hell of a hit when I crashed as I couldn’t raise my arm above my head for a week, was getting worried something else was broken! The whole arm can’t be that bad any more, I have left the house having forgotten to put my sling on, on more than one occasion!

My wrist seems to be improving rapidly after a couple of weeks of not much improvement, and having said about my one-fingered typing at the start, I am now typing happily away almost normally now with hardly any pain. The latest thinking is that I have fractured my hamate (physio and doctor’s thoughts) and my trapezium (my thoughts, undetected pain in that region, which was originally a suspect scaphoid fracture, but that has been cleared). How I have managed to fracture these two bones, and avoid the scaphoid (again!), I have no idea! They seem to be healing well though, and I am finally getting some strength back in my wrist. I did some serious ligament damage, which is going to take some time to heal, but movement is slowly beginning to return and strength is coming back. I can even hold my phone in my hand now with no splint or tubigrip!

So whilst my recovery is progressing, training isn’t going to well! Being unable to run or swim, my life is confined to the turbo, which I hate on the best of days. Unfortunately I can’t just sit up on it like I could on my road bike as it puts me very forward and there is a fair old. Holding myself up with one arm gets rather tiring rather quickly! If I take my splint off, I can sit in the TT position, but with a broken elbow I can only take putting weight through it for so long before it begins to hurt. Mentally I am also fed up, so bailing out is happening far too often. I am hoping to get the go ahead to start running this week, and I just need to build up on the turbo. With 4 weeks til IMUK, there are going to be some rapid increases in training load, and I am going to have to train full-on up until the week if the race. At least I have managed to keep the diet pretty much under control, so haven’t put on too much weight so my return to running shouldn’t be too painful.

I am still hopeful of making it to the start line. If I can do that, then I know I’ll finish.

A Little Update

I have been meaning to write an update for a while now, as a lot has happened since the last, but it was always one of those things that got put off as life got in the way. It has taken (another) accident on the bike to get an update.

So, as many of you will now know, I have a fall on my bike at the weekend crossing lanes on the road onto a bike path, and I didn’t see the ridge for the stupidly designed junction and hit the deck. I’m not quite sure how I landed, but my left leg is pretty torn up and my hip and shoulder have some nice bruising. I think I landed with my arm outstretched, but I haven’t got any cuts on my hand or arms, which is odd. However, my wrist and elbow were severely painful and I knew right away something was broken. I walked the few miles home (barefoot..), dropped my bike off and walked to A&E. I was seen quickly and x-rays confirm that I have a fracture in the radius head and they suspect a fracture in my scaphoid, which apparently takes a few days to show up on x-rays.

To say this is frustrating is the less colourful term I am using now I have calmed down. After a couple of years incident-free, it seems I am back to ruining my season after two previous bike crashes at almost identical times of the year. I can come up with hundreds of what-ifs, first and foremost was my stupidity of ordering brake cables instead of gear cables, as I was on my way to the bike shop to pick up the right ones. However, what is done is done, and I have to find a way to move forward.

Obviously this means I am missing IMUK 70.3, which I am absolutely gutted about. Not only do I have so many friends racing who I would have loved to have seen, I was the strongest I have been across the board. I have built on my massive swimming improvements from last year, and my stroke was greatly improved with times dow; a recent bike fit at Freespeed put the icing on the cake on my bike strength; and whilst my running has been hampered by a shin injury, I am the quickest I have been and was confident of putting in a PB for the half marathon. Whilst I don’t have the endurance from last year, with my greater speed and strength, I was confident of at least getting a roll-down slot for the World Champs in Vegas. It also means I will unlikely to be racing at Liverpool 5150, which world have been fun as I had another pro slot and the opportunity to line up against an amazing field, including Macca (and Joe Skipper ;))

This also puts my participation for IMUK in doubt. Whilst a ‘home race’ would be good, I don’t have anything left to prove for rocking up to an Ironman unprepared. I will have to wait and see how long I am going to be out before making a call. I will be back on the turbo once my elbow starts to fuse, but I won’t be running for a while, and certainly won’t be in the pool for a long time, and that assumes I don’t have any issues with mobility and a full range of movement, but I already have a good sports therapist friend ready to help with rehab.

Once I know whether I can race Bolton, I will have to decide what to do if not. I could be tempted to leave it for a year and just race short, something which I think I will do next year, with Ironman Arizona at the end of 2013. Right now, however, I just need to pick myself up and get healed. Thanks for all the well-wishes, that have been coming in, I just can’t believe I’ve had another season ruined by fractures.

Kinetic PB Training Camp

So after a hectic Christmas/New Year which involved me travelling around most of the country, I left the day job behind for a couple of weeks and jetted off to Alicante airport to try and turn myself into an athlete. At the airport I met up with Nat Banard and we undertook the first challenge of training camp – trying to find the hire car! After much wandering around we eventually found a pick-up place, got away without paying the young driver excess and luckily managed to get both bike boxes and suitcases in the little Polo, even if I did have to take half of my stuff out and cram it into the gaps in the boot.

The adventures continued on the journey down as well; after an easy couple of hours heading down the motorway with the most challenging part being trying not to throw up thanks to travel sickness from the flight, we arrived in Cuevas del Almanzora, the location of Kinetic PB and came a little unstuck. With a dodgy map and directions, it was up to Nat to use her pidgeon Spanish (and rather amusing rowing impressions!) to find the way. Finally, the huge painting of the Indalo on the dam came into sight and we had found it.

The Lodge is the main building of the Kinetic PB resort, built next to a purpose-built rowing lake, which for some unbelievable reason was only built 1k long. Utterly useless for rowing, perfect for open water swimming! The lodge itself consists of a number of dorms which is great for sharing with mates and builds up a great spirit. There is a big bike room, big kitchen, nice balcony overlooking the lake and a massive living area with the obligatory flat screen for watching films when recovering.

After a day of getting over the travelling, the next day was a ride down to Aguilas for some swim practice in the sea. By this point, a lot of the camp had already been out for a week so were feeling the effects, and I got a little overexcited pushing the pace, but riding in shorts and t-shirt, in brilliant sunshine on great roads was too good to miss. After a little cafe stop (where everything is ridiculously cheap!) it was time to test out my new Helix in the sea.

Although it took an age to get on, once it was on it felt amazing compared to my old suit. We swam across the bay, and despite the lack of swimming over the festive period thanks to all the closed pools, I felt pretty good. After getting out and stripping the wetsuit off, I was told that we would be doing some relay races… and there was no way in hell I was getting on a wet wetsuit, so it was skins in the water! Hopefully I didn’t scare too many locals….

On the ride back, we found out about the winds along the coast…made for pretty tough riding! However, I got a run in once home, and add that to 85k on the bike and a sea swim, and Day 1 of training was off to a good start. I kept up the mileage on the bike as the week progressed, though avoiding any mega rides whilst I was still getting fit again. The riding is absolutely incredible, it rarely rains, the roads are good quality and there is a lot of respect from drivers! The locals also are intrigued by cyclists, including one cafe stop where I was mobbed by about 10 locals checking my bike out and asking me countless questions, which put my Spanish to the limit. The views are also just stunning, whether you are riding down the coast with the amazingly clear sea, or in the mountains with perfect, quiet roads and incredible scenery.

As the camp progressed, I began to bring up the intensity and duration of my rides. After a week I ventured out with Joe and Paul on a ‘5 hour’ ride with them to Uleila and around the mountains there. It was tough going and hilly from the off, and after 50k I was dropped for good and had 100k riding solo round the mountains, which was incredible. A ‘rest day’ the day after was supposed to involve a couple of hours easy, but having been joined by Lee, Nat’s boyfriend, on the camp, and me with my riding mojo back, we did get a little excited in parts, especially when we were joined by a couple of local Spanish guys which tempted us to turn the screw and put the hammer down. I was feeling pretty good, and climbing well and we promptly dropped the Spanish pair. However, in our excitement, we also dropped everyone else in the pack, and were faced with some stern words from Nat!

The following day Joe and I headed out with some of the guys from the BTF development squad, who were also staying at Kinetic, for a TT effort. After an easy ride out, the aim was to ride for 25 minutes out, 15 minutes back and then easy back to the start. As soon as we set off it was tough going, straight up a hill and into a massive headwind. Joe, who had kindly given me a 30s headstart soon caught me as I struggled up the hill and it was a long slog of 25 minutes. However as soon as I turned around, I was flying! So quick in fact that I hit the start point again during my effort, despite going for slightly longer to turn around at a roundabout. Average speed out – 25kph, average speed back – 50kph, including some nice sections ticking along nicely at 65k!

The final big day of riding (which was the next day…) was the Uleila ride again, and despite being completely trashed from the start and having many thoughts about turning around, I manned up (our motto of the camp!) and rode all 155k and didn’t feel too bad, I could certainly hold on with everyone on the climbs if I had to. At least I managed to have an easier hour on my final full day there.

Around all this cycling we had to fit some swimming and running in! Initially the plan was to swim mornings, but as the camp progressed and we wanted more sleep, it got pushed back to the afternoons. With a lake to swim in (though admittedly a little chilly at this time of year!), a pool in the town with exclusive use during the day and the sea down the road, you are spoilt for choice. The aim of the camp was to pick my swimming back up to a decent level, and I certainly think I have achieved it. Lots of technique work, and a concerted effort to sort my bilateral breathing and tumble turning out have paid of masively, and I am almost back to swimming near my best. Once I get around to joining a swim club, I have high hopes of smashing some PBs this season.

With all the cycling and swimming, running can take a hit, but it is really not difficult to motivate yourself out there. There is a track around the lake, which is perfect for interval sets, or you can run futher down the river bed to a couple of smaller running tracks to train on, whilst the river bed gives you a nice place to run down for an easy run or some strides. However it is the surrounding area where the real running is at, and it is an awesome place to get strong, because it is really not flat! Just behind the dam by the lake is the beautiful national park, and a favourite run of ours was a 4k climb up the national park and loop back round through a small village and orange groves for a perfect 10k loop. You can also run up to the mast by the top of the dam, a brutal 10k climb, but with stunning views once you get up there (though I must admit I am told this, my legs were too trashed from all the riding to be running that hilly for that long). The other amazing run to do is the Caveman run, which takes you past the amazing ancient caves, through a river bed and over the hills to yet more amazing views. It is a proper off-road run, climbing up rocks as big as you, running down hills so steep you can’t stop and taking your pick of the paths through the overgrowth. Stunning.

The final highlight of the camp was Rob’s birthday, midway through my time there. The day started with a 4k sea swim out to an island and back, though mine got slightly cut short because as I was nearing the island I met Rob and Vicky coming the other way, trying to avoid a school of jellyfish… I went back with Vicky as she was suffering from mild hypothermia, to be caught up by Rob again minutes later as he was forced to turn around again due to all the jellies! The afternoon was a series of mini-triathlons, involving a kayak, hill-climb or lap around the lake on the bike and a hill-run or out and back down the lake. Oh, and it was old-school kit, so speedos only! Apologies to the locals that went past me on the bike, they looked slightly shocked! Despite my best efforts to ruin the race for my team with my utterly shocking kayak skills (seriously, I was paddling one way, and going the other, rumour is that Oli has a video of this… I’ll stick to the day sport!), I pulled it out of the bag in the reverse triathlon to secure the win. I almost managed to get away without getting chucked in the lake after everyone threw Rob in, but to no avail, at least it was just about warmer than I was expecting!

Apologies for the length but there was too much to write about! A big thanks to Oli for letting us stay, it is a fantastic facility and its popularity will only snowball. I left the UK as an overweight, pale office worker and returned as a skinny(ish!), tanned athelte, finally feeling fit again and with my motivation back.

2012 should be a good year.


Getting Back Into The Swing Of Things

So as I sit behind a desk with the old familiar ache in the legs, it is safe to say that I am slowly getting back into a routine of exercise. The fitness is slowly on the way up, and my weight is slowly on the way down, although my recovery speed has got some catching up to do!

The biggest boost to my training has been finally getting around to replacing my battered commuter bike, which was beyond saving, so that I can cycle into work. This gives me a good hour/hour and a half of riding each day, with a mixture of battling into the winds, easy spinning and a few lumps to get over. Now having a single speed bike, I can’t hide behind an easy gear when the going gets tough, you have to deal with it! Hopefully this will get some strength back in the legs. The prevailing wind also works out quite well for me, as I tend to ride to work into it, and can have a hand getting home if I’m knackered. My feel for the bike is almost back at least.

New Bike! Although I've removed the peddles and add-ons...

The other two sports are coming along at a mixed rate. Running is getting back to it, though my technique has gone out the window and I seem determined to hit the ground with my heel with as much force as possible, and I am really having to concentrate on it to stop. I am definitely looking forward to some drills in January! Swimming is ticking along, and the swims I do are starting to feel better. The main problem is now that I am cycling in, I can’t take my swim kit in as well so I swim when I don’t cycle in. Thankfully I have 2 pools close to me, so can go to those in the evenings, and it may even be time to bite the bullet and drag my lazy self out of bed in the morning to get a swim in before work. At least I am slowly getting back into the athlete bed times.

The diet is at least going well. I have completely cut the rubbish out finally, and my treats usually revolve around cereal bars before/after training. Couple this with training again, and in the 3 weeks between ‘weigh-ins’ I have lost 5 kilos! A few kilos more and I will be back into a happy range.

The culmination of all of this was last weekend in Manchester. The Saturday saw me race cross-country in the afternoon, and despite a dismal performance, I had great fun! I was massively off the pace, and well below my usual performance, but really enjoyed it and it was nice racing again. In the evening, I headed down to the velodrome for a Man Tri session, and was completely dead! But a good, solid double session day was perfrect for catapulting me back into training. To top it all off, I cycled home from the station when I got back to London in torrential rain with a big smile on my face.

The last step to getting fully fit will be my winter camp in the new year. I am tagging along with a few of the elite athletes from the club to Kinetic PB in Spain for 11 days of getting hammered! It looks like it is going to turn into a very professional camp, with one of the guys going threatening to bring his video-camera and accupuncture needles, both of which I will hopefully get some use out of! I certainly know my technique needs a lot of work on, in all sports. It should be good fun though, and will be exactly what I need to set up a decent 2012 season.

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