So I’m behind on my updates already, not such a great start – much like my training to date.
Let’s start with my stats for the year
Of the 112 days so far this year, I’ve spent 75 days out of the country. That’s 67% away – so does that mean I’m only 33% focused?
As I wrote previously it’s been difficult to fit in the training sessions in the various hotels and different locations. A lack of pools, areas to run, sometimes even a gym of any description. Not all my trips have been for work, I’ve had 2 weeks away with my beautiful wife. That was much needed as it can be difficult not seeing each other a lot – she’ll be thankful for these times when I’m away in years to come no doubt though!
I continue to swim when I’m back in the country, I haven’t managed a decent swim whilst I’ve been away, yet. For our holiday we went surfing in central America. My thoughts were prior to this that the paddling involved in surfing (you actually have to paddle a lot to get those seconds of glory standing up on the waves!) would be directly comparable to swimming. Its similar, but my first swim back in the pool and I cramped up. I’m still enjoying the ladder sessions in the pool, it keeps you focused and breaks up the distances nicely. In an effort to spend quality time with Holly, I’ve signed us both up for a couple of long distance swims this year, 6km and 10km respectfully. So now we spend ‘quality time’ together in the pool, perhaps that’s not what she had in mind.
I hadn’t managed a long ride this year, but earlier this year with some friends I signed up to the Tour of Flanders sportive. It’s about 240kms (I talk in metric these days, sorry for those still in imperial – I’ve gone all continental). I’m not sure I was ready for it, first of all the length, but mostly the cobbles. The Tour of Flanders is a bike race celebrating its 100th running this spring and to the locals it is more important than the Tour de France in cycling terms and even football takes a back seat in the early spring when it’s held. I couldn’t believe how many people come out to watch the race and how important it is in Belgium. The sportive has only been running 25 years, it gives you an idea of what the pros go through. I don’t want to go through it again, it’s a war of attrition. You start in Bruges, cycle about 130km just to get you in the mood and then you start hitting the cobbled sections. The first one was fun, the second ok and then after that I have to say if there was gutter or mildly smooth dirt section beside the road I was straight in it.
‘Cheat! Cheat!’ yelled my companions as I passed them as they toughed out the cobbles, they were soon following my excellent idea… I finished the ride and whilst not a world beating time (I was waiting for my companions of course…), I must have a little fitness still as I wasn’t on the floor (completely knackered). Does that mean I didn’t try hard enough?
I have my first race coming up. The half ‘iron’ distance event in Mallorca on the 7th May. Had I have know I’d be travelling so much I probably wouldn’t have signed up for it, but as it is it’ll be an early season fitness (or lack of it) test.
I’m currently out in Mallorca with some mates for a week of cycling. A last gasp block of binge training… More on that next time, don’t worry I’m actually due to submit in almost a week, sorry #thetrilifereporters