Thursday, February 21, 2013

city of mandurah race report 2013

first event back from ironman.  my training plan consisted of very little swimming, some bike riding and the odd run.  excellent training plan if you like to suffer a bit.  but just to make sure i did more than suffer a bit i rode a 4.5 hour 100k hill ride on the monday prior and  a few other sessions during the week as well as a 50k ride and 3k swim the day before.  fuck knows what i was thinking.  

another long drive to the event so up at 4am.  it was going to be hot. this event is always HOT and has moved from langley park to mandurah due to the road works around the river.  most of the course is the same as the mandurah 70.3 event.  the best part of the day was getting to catch up with a few people that i had not seen for awhile.  

so i line up for the swim start with rae.  pip was doing the team event.  somehow i remember both of us being less than enthusiastic.  rae had honed her training even more than me by doing nothing since ironman.  now that is how you make sure you either really do suffer or you turn it into a bigger challenge. 

i was pretty confident i would struggle in the swim and feel like crap.  but i felt good.  this is new and i am putting it down to me getting the open water monkey off my back after the busselton ironman swim.  confidence is a wonderful thing.  but it was a weird swim in that for each section between buoys you seemed to have different conditions.  the first part was easy and quick.  then we turned and it was choppy and a few stingers were around.  people started getting in my way.  then after the next turn the water got really shallow and some people were walking.  the refs came past on a jetski and told them off.  no forward progression other than by swimming is the rule.  i was pulling myself along.  then i had to deal with the awful smell of the jetski's fuel.  after the final turn before the bridge you hit a really strong current and had to put in some effort to avoid getting dragged back towards the bridge.  i was pretty glad to get out of the water and a 33 minute swim with my lack of training was excellent.  maybe i should stick with swimming less !

i was happy to be on the bike but my legs were not fresh.  only myself to blame.  so this was just a slog and windy on the way out and pretty good coming back in.  it was a shorter version of the 70.3 course and they had the ridiculous green zone where we had to share one lane and no passing allowed.  most people just ignored this.  along with the no drafting rule.  someone did say that there were alot of people who ended up in the penalty box.  this ride was not my best effort.

so now for the run.  the weather had warmed up and it was hot.  in the end i think we were running in 37 degree heat with no breeze.  they had promised ice on the run but all we got was warm water and that was it.  i did not want to do this and my legs were tired and the only reason i kept going was because my brain kept telling me i could not quit.  this was the slowest 10k i have ever run EVER.  my fastest kilometre was my last at a blistering pace of 6.00 min.  there were two other reason why i kept running.  firstly i saw a girl with only one arm and it was missing from the shoulder.  how could i give in when she had swum and rode a bike and was now running with only one arm.  and then there was rae.  she is a hard arse competitor.  i was ahead after the swim and the bike and as it turns out it was only my swim that had me in front.  every time i saw rae she had gained on me.  rae is a much better runner than me and i didnt think i would hang on but i became determined that i would at least keep running.  towards the end of the last lap the sea breeze kicked in and it did feel a little easier.  i had been throwing water over myself and broke my rule of never getting my shoes wet. i was very happy to finish and managed to hold on and come in just ahead of rae but she put in an amazing effort and is one tough cookie.  

my time sucked and is my slowest result over the olympic distance.  last year i competed in hot weather with low iron and was 10 minutes faster.  again - i only have myself to blame.

i was a happy little vegemite to get back home to a nice shower, air conditioning and an ice cold choc milk.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

the year of the dragon that was

2012 was the year of the dragon and i am a dragon so the year was going to be my year.  it is hard to think back and remember that i started the year needing an iron infusion and now having completed two 70.3 races and my first full ironman i realise that it was a big year and a pretty good effort.  sadly it was also in may that i was told molly dog has cancer.  while she is doing really well everyday is a gift.  

after busselton i felt like i recovered okay.  i went for a group ride two weeks later and while it was a hard ride (normally it is an easy day out but we went as one with the faster group) i felt okay but i think it was too much too soon.  i also took my road bike and basically it fucked with my lower back.  since then i have struggled and some days i feel okay and others i have felt like crap.  things are coming good now and i am getting some consistency back.  i have had 4 weeks out of the pool which i always planned on.  five years of swimming 3-4 times a week was even burning me out.  running has been slow.

over christmas and new year i had two weeks off work and i worked on the house every day.  i cleaned out every room and cupboard.  i painted the ceilings in the main bedroom and living area.  i will never do that again.  i also painted the walls in each room.  i changed the colour scheme quite a bit as i really needed a change.  the main living/kitchen room is quite large so this was a project in itself.  i also scrubbed the floor tiles and i have to admit this came up really well.  i bought quite a bit of paint and ended up with two tins of jellybeans as dulux was having their special.  5.6 kilos of jellybeans.  hope this doesnt cost me in dentist bills.

so lance finally came clean - just not in the way we wanted.  what do i think.  i think he is a nasty prick, a liar and a cheat.  i was like everyone else and i believed.  i read the books - more than once.  even when i thought he might have taken drugs i justified it by saying it was a level playing field.  everyone took drugs.  but once he was banned for life i started reading all the negative reports.  i read tyler hamiltons book.  he is also a liar and a cheat and he only ever came clean because he got caught.  but i also read books by journalists who have fought for years for people to see the real lance armstrong.  the drug cheating doesnt bother me as much as the personal attacks and nasty tactics lance employed just to win.  he never was and never will be a true champion.  a true champion would have stood up and said this is wrong.  he will be punished in the court of public opinion.  i dont think he should be banned for life.  10 years will be enough so by the time he can return he will past any possibility of making an impact.  when he spoke to oprah about being able to run a marathon he was just about to say what else he wanted to do and oprah interrupted.  you could see him getting excited.  he really wants it so he shouldnt have it.  and when he is 50 and turns up at some event i have no doubt that he will not be welcome.

so i have neglected this blog.  i just needed a break.  i have a race report to write and results to update.  i feel like i am getting back into it.  i have another race this week and the shortest one i have done in over a year.  hopefully it will be fun and not as much suffering.  however this year is going to be the year of suffering.  i intend to push myself.  i think with all the training i do i should be getting slightly better results.  i need to train smarter.