Following my endurance block of training out in Spain, I took a week to let the hard work soak in before getting stuck into the next phase of training. As it’s getting close to the first races of the year I am also going to be doing a handful of preparation events, 5km and half marathon running races and some 10 and 25 mile cycling time trails.
The last couple of weeks have seen an increase in intensity, building on the foundations of endurance that I’ve been working on over the winter months. This type of training is strenuous and you need to be able to recover in between to reap the benefits of the hard work you do in the pool, on the bike and running. My daily routine now consists of eat, train, eat, train, eat, train, eat, sleep. Putting my feet up in-between to sort race logistics and complete coaching work.
I’ve started putting some miles in on the Time Trial bike, this started very importantly with a bike fit from Andy at Bespoke Derby. We worked on using my low height as an advantage to get lower on the bike and maximize my aerodynamic position. I followed this up with testing out on the road, weighing up comfort and position severity to ensure I can stay on the bars for the duration of a 70.3 and Ironman, so anything from 2-5hrs.
Some really cool bits of kit have come though from sponsors this month including my Rotor In-Power power meters and ‘Q’ rings, my race suit from Pearl Izumi and a disc wheel for the TT bike. The Rotor In-Power cranks are one of Rotor’s latest developments with the strain gauges situated within the crank spindle, this gives the crank-set clean aesthetics and keeps the electronics protected from any damage. I’ve also started using the aero Q-rings, which have helped to increase the smoothness of my pedal stroke and minimize the dead spot during each pedal revolution. This will increase my efficiency on the bike and will be a very beneficial performance gain on race day.
Bideford half Marathon
I travelled back down to Devon for a few days before to catch up with everyone at home, which was really nice. The half marathon was going to be up on the North Devon coast in Bideford, which was only a short drive from home so ideal really. The race was pretty chilled out but had a lot of participants, 1300. I got a good warm up in and lined up at the front. My legs were feeling nice and springy which was a nice change from everyday training, a feeling you don’t get that often as a triathlete juggling three sports.
Before I knew it we were off. I tried to keep the first few kilometers controlled but still went through them in 3:19min/km pace. The course was an out and back. The first 6.5 miles out were on a fairly rolling road with some short rises in the road. I tried to back off on the hills and then use the descents to bring the average pace back up. I managed to settle into a pace averaging 3:28 min/km for the rest of the race. I’d managed to hold my 5th position since the start and went on to finish in 1:13:50.
I was happy with the time but know there’s some more prolonged strength work on the run to do until I’m ready. It was a really nice change to mix up the racing but definitely prefer running a half marathon off the bike in a triathlon.
It doesn’t seem long since my last warm weather camp but another is in the plan. I am travelling to Mallorca at the end of March for two weeks. Mallorca is one of my favorite places to train, especially riding through the mountains. I’ve only ever been on cycling camps and raced a bike there before so am really looking forward to running and swimming there too. I’m going to get the first open water swims of the season kick started in the sea which will make a nice change from the pool. It gives me a chance to test out my new Archimedes 2 wetsuit from HUUB too.
After camp it will only be a couple of weeks until I’ll be flying out to Fuerteventura for the start of the triathlon season at the Challenge 70.3 race.