Monday, 23 May 2022

E-Bike adventure

I know, you must be thinking 'E-Bike adventure'.... that's it, he has finally given in to old age, no more 'Tri Hard Dave' or training tips, bring on the 'Dad bod'!

Well, maybe, or maybe not....

So, yes, I do find e-biking a lot easier (and less strenuous on my body) but my goodness it is good fun. It also potentially gets you out there (for longer) and up for any hill. I was looking for any excuse to climb, whatever the gradient, in fact the steeper the better - let me at it! Plus the speed and thrill, it brought a real smile to my face. I am definitely hooked.

At the moment I am happy to rent a bike for a Sunday ride - I recommend Beacon Bikes, close to where I live and the hosts of my most recent e-bike adventure. However, in the long-term the research has begun to either invest in a nice MTB electric beast or possibly build my own using my old 26er as the base.

Watch this space

Monday, 16 May 2022

And I am back (again!)

The title of this blog is probably my most common, primarily because I have struggled keeping this blog up to date over recent years. Life changes, motivation and other priorities are my main excuses, although I do still enjoy looking back at my posts, every now again, simply as a record/diary of what I was doing years ago. The process of recording my progress towards a fitness goal was also useful to keep me on the right track and gave it more meaning.

So here I am again, giving it a go, albeit no fixed fitness goal (for now) apart from the keeping fit via swimming, cycling and running (should also add strength training to that but doesn't often happen!) and trying to lose a few kilos to bring me back to an acceptable range for a triathlete of my age and height.

That word 'triathlete' is really a bit of a push now as I haven't done a triathlon event for some time now, although I feel I still have a degree of base training in the three disciplines to have a crack at one, even if not the full Ironman or half-ironman distance. I also still train with a number of triathletes who still are flying the flag and competing on a regular basis.

I do have some unfinished business in that I would like to complete a SwimRun event, which I did at least train for last year. Even a nice 10km or half-marathon local trail run event would be something. Thereafter, I would 'never say never' to a half-Ironman distance race.

So what am I going to do about it. Well, I need to pick up the training, I need to lose a bit of timber and I do need to get 1-2 events in the diary - all sounds relatively simple. It might even give me enough motivation to keep this blog going.... you never know.... here's hoping!

Wednesday, 25 August 2021

Another cancelled event - such a shame

I was just getting into the SwimRun training - feeling stronger in the water, faster in the pool (with paddles) and generally looking forward to my A-Race and SwimRun event at Loch Lomond, scheduled for this Sunday (29th August).

Unfortunately, it wasn't meant to be and the event got cancelled less than a week from the big day and ironically an hour after my last formal SwimRun training with my buddy, Graeme - what a nightmare.

I think they had logistical problems - health and safety, number of boats on the swim course etc. This time around we get a full refund but I had already booked flights, hire car, hotels, restaurants etc, some of which was paid in full with no option of refund.

Oh well, my wife and I are still going up to Loch Lomond for a long weekend of swimming, kayaking and walking plus a bit of chill time.

There is a more local SwimRun event at Bewl Water in mid-September but unfortunately I cannot make the date. Even on that event the organiser highlight on their website that there is a possibility it will not go ahead. Looks like I will have to defer to 2022.

Meanwhile, my training continues, still keen to make the most of sea swimming, even during the colder winter months. I will probably look for a run race, which is probably less likely to be cancelled.

Never say never to a Pegler. Onwards and upwards!

Thursday, 12 August 2021

Continued SwimRun training

Nothing massively interesting to report, although pleased that I am managing to commit to weekly SwimRun sessions, which are going well.

Graeme and I generally meet each Wednesday for a 2-hour training session, typically 3 swims + 4 runs, totalling around 2-3km of swimming and 10km of running - approx. a third of of Loch Lomond event, which is approaching quite quickly. Let's hope we can both get to the start line healthy, fit and without any COVID symptoms (a lot going around at the moment).

Meanwhile, the training continues - I really need to get in a long (20km+) easy trail run with hills - possibly a run into work over Downs. Plus a long easy swim, at least 2km.

We are still pushing to see course map, leg distances but no word yet. We have been told we now have to carry a swimbuoy, to add to the many essential items.

I am resting today after yesterday's session (arms a little tired as the sea was so choppy - hard work with paddles). Tomorrow I plan a run from home. Saturday, a Club swim.

Onwards and upwards

Thursday, 22 July 2021

More training with swim lead/rope

For the last 2x training sessions my SwimRun Buddy and I have been trying out a swim lead/rope connected between us. There appear to be more positives than negatives so we will most likely be using it on race day. More training needed but we certainly feel it is the way to go..

- Places me neatly behind the feet/fins of my SwimRun Buddy (stronger swimmer) so benefit from his draft
- Less stress of losing pace and being dropped (and worse disqualified for being more than 10m apart)
- My swimming was generally no slower and fortunately my partner didn't notice any slowing/pulling him back

- The rope does move quite a bit in the water (especially in the sea) so you can easily hit it with padddles (at back) or feet (at front) - it is elasticated but it can sometimes be a nuisance. The best position is a very slight pull, which keeps it tight and straighter in the water. As the rear swimmer (so the rope is in front of me) I find it easiest to rotate my arms either side of the rope.
- You obviously have to carry the rope, which I generally wrap around my waist, for the entire race. There is also that extra step in transition - clipping ourselves in/out and re-wrapping/un-wrappring the rope.

By the way I saw a large jellyfish in Brighton yesterday, which swam by me within inches of my hands - it looked reasonably big, I would say 40-50cm in length!

Monday, 12 July 2021

Need to fully comit to SwimRun training

Me again - time for a brief update.

The SDW100 relay never happened (more COVID related issues) - the team has deferred to next year - may be I will have a crack then.

Meanwhile, my focus is on my one and only A-Race, which does look like it is going ahead - I have 48 days!

I have committed to a weekly SwimRun with my partner in crime (Graeme) but also need to have an additional 2 sessions (pool/sea/lake) to assist with my training and especially arm strength using the paddles for longer periods - the event includes a total 8km of swimming, which is considerably more than my longest swim (3.8km Ironman swim), albeit that was done as one. We are going to try to use an elasticated cord between us for our next swim so we keep with 10m of each other (event rules).

I should also be including some strength work (TRX, Zenn 8 swim trainer + other) although that is a bit 'hit and miss'. My running is OK (I regulary punch out sub 5 mins (per km) paced runs, even on 10km+) - I probably need to complete a couple of longer/slower trail runs before the event - possibly a run into work across the Downs. The cycling is just cross-training for now whilst my focus is on SwimRun.

That is the plan!

Monday, 26 April 2021

Still here!

My goodness - I am not very good at this blogging business. It has been some time (again) since my last confession.

Anyway I am still here - let's give it yet another go.

So since my last post the weather has improved somewhat and gradually the lockdown is easing. I am not back in the pool yet and recently turned down some training with the Club at Arundel/Guildford Lido (just too far to travel, especially when I have the sea on my doorstep). So swimming still a bit hit and miss - if I do go in the Sea with my lovely wife (she is braver than me) it tends to be a 15 min session, although they seem to be getting a bit longer. I look forward to when I can do some proper SwimRun training in Brighton.

Otherwise I am back to working in the office from Mon-Wed, which gives me an opportunty for some commuting time (back on the road bike) and seafront runs. Thu-Fri is working from home, which is a great base to go off-road and onto the Downs.

I have my name down for the SDW100 team relay in which a team of six runners (Club event) take 3 legs each (total of 18 legs, approx 5-7 miles each). I have done this race before and it is certainly a long day - you tend to go harder than you would normally, mainly because of the individual (shorter) distances and generally want to do your very best for the team. However, it is over the South Downs so it is not easy - expect a lot of hills!

So what with the SDW100 relay and the Loch Lomond SwimRun (my A race) I need to pick up the training and work towards a plan over the coming months. Nothing new but the focus will be on 3x runs a week (intervals + tempo + long-run), ideally with 1-2 off-road. Swimming will need to increase to 2-3x a week, which will be easier in warmer weather or when pools re-open. Then cycling 1-2x as a multi-sport extra and give my legs a rest from the running. As usual (and my general weakness) I need to include some strength training and stretching (weights and/or TRX) to the mix.

I recently purchased some more home training kit - the Zen 8 swim trainer - more on that in a separate blog.

Over and out for now

E-Bike adventure

I know, you must be thinking 'E-Bike adventure'.... that's it, he has finally given in to old age, no more 'Tri Hard Dave...