Well it has begun. 25 weeks of structured, calculated and dedicated training. I put the plan together a while ago, but have been a busy man! As well as being back to work, I am in the process of setting up my own Web Design company to pay a few bills and finance my training lifestyle, and I also had my last weekend with a social life (well out all weekend) before training really ramped up, with 2 friends birthdays and an excursion to the lake district. At least that’s my excuse for taking so long to put this up…
Anyway, the next block of training covers the first 5 weeks up until the 7th March. The last 4 days of that week I am off to Russia to see my girlfriend, so will have a bit of rest from training to recover from the block. For the block, I do yoga on thursday, and will also do 2 weights sessions a week to help with injury prevention and general body conditioning. There are 3 swims a week, 2 interval swims and 1 technical swim, though they will all have technical work in them. I will do 2 long bikes a week, at the weekend each with a short run (for now) afterwards to get used to running off the bike, and there is also a dedicated brick session in the week. I will do my long run mid week, as this allows me to have 2 days where I can spend a lot of time on the bike, which I finds really helps to improve my cycling fitness and to keep me fresher for the run, whilst still having the run to improve my run economy and form. I also have an extra run and extra bike to fill the week in, and to proivde some steady state work, or higher paced work when the time comes.
This is the plan for the next 5 weeks:
As well as putting together the detailed plan for the next 5 weeks, I have also done some rough outlining for the year. As you can see in my Schedule, it is quite a busy year! And more races are still being added, with the most recent the Ribby Hall Triathlon, which was announced yesterday. This is run by the same people who did the old St Annes Triathlon, and Fleetwood Triathlon, which I did last year. Being a similar race, with similar competitors I am hoping to win M20-24 again. It should be a good test of the form anyway.
Putting all the races down that I plan to do, allows me to know which I want my A race to be (IM Switzerland obviously) and to plan the year around it. It allows me to know what period I am in for each week of the training plan, what races I have coming up, what weights periodisation block I am in, and so helps me to plan the training plan. So far I have done up to Switzerland, anything after that will be planned once I have done Switzerland, I am going to have lots of time on my hands after that! This is what it looks like:
I am now in week 2 of the plan, and despite Sunday not happening thanks to going to bed at 6 on Saturday, well Sunday morning, it is nice to be back into things. With the Fred Whitton Challenge in a few months, we have started to scout out the course, doing the first 33 miles of the course on Saturday. It isn’t too bad, though it will be tough. We did the highest climb on the course, Kirkstone Pass, which was fine as it isn’t too steep, but had a 22% long climb on the way back that I ended up walking up half. It is an odd sensation putting everything you have into the pedals, only to have the back wheel lift up off the ground becuase all your weight is so far forward! Was an excellent ride, and the weather was amazing. If it had been 20 degress more, I wouldn’t miss Lanza so much! The course has been broken down into 4 chunks that we can incorporate into looops, so will do these over the next couple of months, as well as the entire course over 2 days at the end of april.
The first week has gone well, and I am really feeling the effects of camp. Although I may only be marginally quicker, if at all, my fitness has been given a great kickstart and I am in a much better place than where I was this time last year. I feel a lot better on the bike, running and especially in the pool. It was also very pleasing to see that when I was doing sets of 100m in the pool, my times have gone from 1:46ish pre-camp, to 1:36 post-camp! Very happy!
Week 1 totals:
Nothing compared to camp, but still massively over this time last year. Still, only 24 weeks to go…
Well as I sit here comtemplating on all the training I am missing, I thought why not blog about it! It’s been a while afterall…
As you can tell from the title, I am not exactly having the best pre season so far. First of all, at the start of last week I stood on something in my room, which I think was an upturned plug (I didnt pay much attention at the time) and hurt my foot. Nothing major happened, just a small strain I think. However, with my usual sensible mindset I decided it would be a good idea to go for an hour and a quarter run the day after with one of my training partners who I am training up for the Preston 10 mile road race. Felt fine for 20 mins and then the muscles protecting my foot got tired and I was in a lot of pain! Consequently I still can’t walk properly and have done a 10 min run since to try it out. It is taking a long time to heal this, mainly as you can’t really get much rest as no matter what you do, you have to walk. But it is slowly getting there.
The other problem I have is I have gotten ill, for the 2nd time in a month and I think it is the same bug, certainly the same symptons. The reason for this I suspect was that I had possibly a bit too indulgent weekend with not enough sleep and a far too large binge on sweets at a party. I am rather hoping it is not a chest infection, but with the symptons and the recurrance it could be possible. Having asthma I think I may have to nip to the GP in the next week or so for my Swine Flu vaccine, so can ask him them. So I am off training for the moment in an attempt to recover quickly, and sticking to my diet to give myself the best chances. Slight problem in that I have the Tour of the Peaks, over 100 miles now of cyclling in the Peak District, on Saturday, which means I need to recover quickly!
There are a few positives from this however (though I am scraping the barrel a bit!):
- If I am going to get ill and injured, at least its at the same time at not seperately so I don’t miss even more training
- It explains why I have been feeling so flat recently, especially in my long ride at the weekend when my legs have just been refusing to fire
- It is the off-season, so not the end of the world missing a week of training or so
So when I am finally recovered, I will need to rewrite my training program. I am going to keep my runs short, and try and get some interval work in there. I have been doing a lot of runs at easy pace lately, mainly whilst I switch my technique, but as that is getting there, I need to inject some pace, because at the moment I have none! Whilst in the run block, I will keep my formula of 6 runs, 2 bikes, 2 swims and 2 weights a week. Oweing to me getting a tattoo (yes I am following the norm and having an M-dot tattoo done) I will be out of the pool for another week or so after the 10 mile race, so will continue my running for another week, or have a transitional week depending on how I feel. One thing I have noticed when I actually was training and running 6 times a week, was how my knees felt. Usualy I always have a few niggles in my knees, especially when doing lots of running, and in all honesty I haven’t been doing my knee exercises as much as I should. But I have had absolutely no problems from then! I think the reasons for this are partly actually doing some exercises, even if not enough, recovering properly from last major training (my IM), and my diet. With the Paleo diet I am getting enough protein in my diet, and I suspect that all my stabilisers and muscles can actually recover and repair themselves properly, saving my ligaments! So that is certainly good news. Another massive improvement from the diet is muscle strength, muscle strength in my jaw that is! Boy do you have to chew a lot!
I have alse finally got round to starting yoga, and it wasn’t as bad as I was expecting. It is very easy stuff (well theoretically) so nothing too complex and I can get most of the poses, though I do need to work on my flexibility. Given that the room was full of middle-aged woman who look like they do it every other day, giving this 21 year old man with shaved legs dodgy looks as they wondered what on earth he was doing here, I was pleased that I could do all the poses and was more flexible than a few of them. I also found some muscles that were incredibly tight, most notably my lats, and it seems to have helped my neck a lot, so a trip to the doctors may not be required. Finally, I have found a new massage place, conveniently based in the gym which offer an hours sports massage for under 20 quid! I may need to ask for a loyalty card…
Anyhoo, that is all for now, hopefully next time I will be writing about settling back into training and how my running seems to be coming together… unless things take a turn for the worse, so fingers crossed!