"What are my plans for 2011" I hear you ask?
Ok, I didn't hear that, but I'll tell you anyway!
The Tri season is still a long way off of course but I have not been resting on my laurels. I tend to take the pressure off myself during the off-season. I train a lot on "feel" and really mix it up. At this time of year, I spend a lot of time listening to my body. I train how and when I fancy. I also try to address some of the weaknesses that I identified in 2010.
I try to avoid a huge amount of structure this time of year - again, keeping the pressure off. I believe "getting all serious" this time of year can cause a lot of stress (mental as much as physical). By the time the season comes round, you often see atheletes "burned out" from getting too serious, too soon.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not just sat on the sofa eating cake! I'm getting out every day - often twice and am conservitively racking up about 10 - 12 hours each week. Modest by many IM athletes standards - but hey I'm a busy boy!
At the mo' it's strength and endurance for me. So long off road runs and fun on the MTB (plus road miles when I really have to!)
However, I truly believe that completely negleting speed in the off season is a big mistake so I am still getting in tempo runs, intervals, horrible turbo sessions and hills. How many athletes spend the winter "getting the miles in" only to find themselves, in their first race effort of the season, wondering where all their speed went!
I'm a racer at heart though, so I've been packing those in as well. MTB Trail Quest races and an active season of Cross-Country (North Mids League and County Champs)
|Leicester County Cross Country|
The Local Road League got underway with the Barrow 6. I guided my pal Haseeb for that. Haseeb is a phenomenally talented blind triathlete. We flew round in 35:42. My heartrate was a steady 152 BPM which is a good 5 beats below my normal Half Marathon HR - so that all bodes very well.
|Haseeb and Dunc at the Barrow 6 mile Road Race|
Hasseb is also going for a fast time at the London Marathon. He's asked me to guide him. Works for me! I've always struggled with Spring marathons, just because, when run hard, they can take a lot out of you and can leave you needing about a month of pretty serious recovery - just when you should be getting ready for the Tri Season! At least by guiding Has' I may be able to stay a little more inside my comort zone. Not much though....the guy wants to smash 3 hours!
So there's my focus for the spring - Thanks Has'!
Few short term goals....
I have a Trail Quest this weekend in the Peak District, that I'm hoping to smash. I know the area pretty well, so that should help.
I'm then actually off to Morzine for a long weekend on the Snowboard. Hope to get some running in the Mountains while I'm out there!
In March I have a 21 mile fell race in Edale coming up and the Ashby 20 mile road race, where I will most probably guide Haseeb and test our pacing for London.
Claire, Myself and a group of our bestest mates have a cheeky little trip planned to Mallorca in April / May to find some sunshine and mountains.
On our return, with our new found bike legs, we'll be taking on a few sportives, including the Midland Monster and the awesome Fred Whitton
Once the Tri season gets under way. I'll be picking my races quite carefully. I'll be needing some serious bike and run strength for the Norseman, so plan to tackle a few tough middle distance events. "Day in the Lakes" has been entered and a few other are "on the radar".
So the "biggy" is Norseman - more on that later. Think it deserves a blog post of it's own! I may round the season off by joining Claire at Challenge Barcelona but we'll wait and see how the piggy bank looks!
Stay fit and well guys...