Phew, April’s just vanished.
No races this month, but I have finally entered some! It’s always hard to balance pros and cons, weighing up what to select as a goal race, how many prior races I need to dial in race mode, whether too many races will affect training, and how to fit them round family life and other commitments. There are advantages to going to events I’ve done before, but it’s good to try new ones too! It’s nice to be able to race with friends but schedules don’t always align. Then there’s simply how much racing costs, particularly if it involves an overnight stay away from home.
In the end, I have gone with the provisional selection I made of four races in four weekends.
The first weekend, in less than a fortnight’s time, I would have liked to begin at the All Nations triathlon at Dorney, with Andy – it was an excellent flat and fast practice event for us last year – but I’ve got a 20-year school reunion to go to… sounds fun/horrifying, doesn’t it?! Instead, Salisbury Fast Twitch is first up, a race I’ve done at least twice before, most recently in 2012. It’s a pool swim and a classic rolling bike course and a nice run, and should be good fun, even if it will involve a really early start to get there for registration before 07:00!
The following weekend I’m going to do the awesome Emsworth-Basingstoke relay with a team of friends from work, 70km of Hampshire countryside, which I’m really looking forward to having bailed out last year through sickness. It doesn’t do anything for my triathlon racing but it’s too much fun to miss. I’ve done several more recces of legs this month which have varied from spectacular to spectacularly muddy (both at once for much of some legs). The race charity is Meningitis Now; please have a look at our JustGiving sponsorship page.
The third weekend I am going to go to Dorney to get some flat and fast racing, at the Eton SuperSprints. I’ve not done a Human Race event before, but this should be good. This is their second weekend at Dorney in a row and it might have been nice to do the BTF national sprint champs the previous Saturday, but that would have meant missing the Emsworth relay. As a bonus though, this allows both Kitty and Isaac to have entered the Scootathlon! It’s a 390m scoot, 390m bike, 250m run format, for 4-8 year olds. We’re all looking forward to it. 🙂
Finally, right at the end of May, I’ve entered Nottingham Triathlon again. Given my delayed start to the season, it really feels too soon for an ‘A’ race, but it’ll be great to have a comparison with last year, and there’s the remote possibility of qualifying for the GB Age Group team.
Phew. That’s the planning for May, what’s actually happened in April?
Training’s gone pretty well. In fact looking at my log, I see no gym sessions, and a decent amount of biking and running; that must mean the weather’s been better. On the running front, I did make it up to Sweatshop in Reading to find some new running shoes. They didn’t have the new version of my current Brooks Ravenna 3 in the right size, and I came away with the Adrenaline 14. After three weeks of running I’m not completely happy with them, but Sweatshop’s 30-day satisfaction guarantee means I may go back and swap them for the Ravenna 5, which I hope will feel a bit lighter and livelier.
On the bike, I had another scenic ride with Duncan in the South Downs, though I rode hard to meet him in Alton and by the time we completed the round after almost 100km, I was fairly trashed! How on earth did I manage 200km/day for seven days in a row doing LETJOG a few years back? I’m definitely best at the sub-hour sessions at the moment!
Finally, I’ve also done some swimming. My first swim training in over 6 months was a solo 3km at the Tri2O Swim Centre and I went back with Jon a few days later and did another 4km in just over an hour. He’s since dragged me down to the pool. Trying to keep up when he’s a stroke or two per length quicker than me is a good workout, but I’ve also been trying to think about technique. Just like last year, I’m finding I get out of the water after a long swim with grazes or bruises on the right side of my face, which I suppose is from thwacking myself with wetsuited upper arm. More than a bit silly. If I had time to spend, I’d try switching my breathing from 95% on the right to mostly on the left… maybe a project for later in the year.
I got a copy of Chris Carmichael and Jim Rutberg’s book, The Time-Crunched Triathlete for my birthday. Its goal – training to win in the time you have – and the justifications for the training strategies they outline make perfect sense to me… now I’m scratching my head working out where I can fit several 2+ hour brick sessions into my week.
Finally, here’s the comparison between this month’s training, last month, and this month last year.
|Apr 2014||Mar 2014||Apr 2013|