Monday, 29 December 2008

Festivities Over

Hellooooo! I’m back!

Nothing to report! And I mean nothing. I’ve done nothing.

Shopped at 6am rather than train. Spent time wrapping presents instead of training. Played on the Wii instead of training. Consumed far too much food and drink. Too scarred to get on the scales.

Hope you’ve all had a wonderful Christmas. We’ve had a fantastic time.

Turkey’s all gone (we had beef but scrounged some from my Mum and brother). Nut’s are all eaten. Taken all the booze to my brother’s. Don’t eat chocolate so that’s not a problem.

Back in work today and working full time (it’s going to kill me!)

Knocked the half on the head – can’t get myself too stressed over not being able to do it. (will however run the course before the event – probably will take me 3 hours but hey ho!)

17 weeks to Chirk – written the plan – onwards and upwards.

And… I ran this morning. Felt absolutely fantastic. Cannot believe I have missed this wonderful feeling for 3 weeks!

Oh yes and I believe my blog’s been hijacked. I would never, ever, ever contemplate an Ironman – would I? A moment of complete madness!

Sunday, 28 December 2008

Blame Sue

Blame Sue
Sun Dec 14, 2008 1:14 am LynneE

I’ve read some great things about Sue this week. About the support and encouragement she always gives to newcomers on TT. To all of you who have never met Sue – all I can say is the support you get in the forum is nothing to what you get in the flesh. Before I met Sue my ultimate ambition was to complete a Sprint. I’ve done 3. Entered a half marathon, pencilled in to do Bala oly in September and ultimate ambition is to do Bala Middle 2010. I have never wanted to do an Ironman. I swore I would never think about an Ironman. I have too many family commitments to train for an Ironman . IMUK Bolton… It’s too close not to think about. 2009 is definitely too short notice but… if I could do an Oly early in 2009 and a half late on then IMUK Bolton would be a distinct possibility for 2010. Running with Sue and the girls this week I was whinging “Sue I can’t do this! My legs are too heavy.” I wanted sympathy. I wanted “It’s ok turn back.” What I got was “They’ll feel far heavier after the bike so get used to it! “ Tough love yup but I walked less and finished 5 miles 5 minutes quicker. Thanks Sue

Blame The Weather (NOT)

Blame The Weather (NOT)
Sun Dec 07, 2008 3:41 pm LynneE

Monday – by the time I’d de-iced the car was too late to go to the gym Tuesday - 40 mins gym bike Wednesday – due to run with Sue – frozen pavements and black ice so bottled it ( Sue still ran which kind if proves why’s she’s an ironman and I’m not, or never will be!) Thursday – forgot to reset my alarm Friday- same as Thursday Saturday – made a conscious decision to finish the Christmas shopping rather than train So a pathetic week at the time I cant afford a pathetic week. Other things that have been going on.. (and no they’re not excuses!) Cough and cold getting worse instead of better so decided to give in and got some antibiotics. Tuesday my friend Lesley fell on black ice in her work’s car park and cracked her head. Wednesday hubby slipped on ice on our back path and had a mega panic because if he had been seriously injured Morgan would have been “home alone” Wednesday night had a discussion with Lesley about a local by-pass. It’s 3 lanes and I hate three lanes. The previous week I followed a car, obviously a stranger to the area who crawled at 30mph. OK his choice but a motorbike and car chose to overtake us both. Still no great problem until the 30 mph car decided to do a U turn half way down where there was a lay by. If we were being overtaken at this stage the consequences would have been dire. On Friday, not realising there was black ice I braked and slid into the path of a cement mixer fortunately stopping with inches to spare. On Friday afternoon an elderly couple were killed at the spot me and Lesley had been talking about. Another 2 people are seriously injured and a 17 year old has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. 10 weeks to my “A” race I’m miles, literally, behind schedule so I can either give up now or… Decided the hilly route I did with Sue is well lit so there’s nothing to stop me running it in the mornings (no excuses for de-icing my car.) So if I drop the swim until after Christmas add an extra run and only do 2 shortish gym bike sessions I should be back on track. Did an interval 5k this morning on ice so there’s a start.

The 2009 Plan

The 2009 Plan
Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:52 pm LynneE

Apologies again it's long Before anyone gets mightily impressed with what you’re about to read – I can’t take the credit – it’s mostly Sue’s. 2009 I’ve 2 main A races, the half marathon in February and Bala Standard (oly) in September. Both new to me. The other races. Chirk, Diva Divas and Llanrwst are just for measuring improvement. I’ve come to the conclusion (due a lot to Wiganers blog) that I can’t continue the training on a wing and a prayer there has to be a plan. So until February each week 3 runs, 2 bikes and 1 swim. After Feb can review but will only need 2 runs since will have the running and distance in legs from half marathon training so can concentrate on bike and swim. Enough time to increase their distances for Bala in September. Runs 1 long endurance run 1 hilly run for strength and muscular work (4-6 miles) 1 paced run (so not teaching myself to run slow 3-5miles n the treadmill ) Was looking at increasing long run by 10mins a week but to do 3 weeks then back off a week to avoid injury am going to have to increase by more than 10mins to be ready for half Bike will try for an outdoor longer ride if weather permits. Again endurance thinking increasing distance for Sept Bala. 1 on static bike, need to see what it does to mix and match hill training with intervals. Swim could wait till after Feb but some would keep me ticking over bearing in mind need to increase distance for Bala. So between now and half, concentrating on run. Then can review after half for next lot of training. Entered the half to give me focus for the winter but really think it was the right decision as running was by far my weakest discipline. I am very conscious I will have to put in a lot of bike mileage February onwards and will need to take every opportunity to swim open water. So the plan… Would rather go long in daylight so long run Saturday and long bike on Sunday and if I don't manage long run on Saturday WILL do it on Sunday and drop the long bike and won't beat myself up over it. Wednesdays – an hour hilly with Sue Will use treadmill for speed. Really struggle. I know it's psychological and boredom. Just got to knuckle in there I guess? So... Monday Gym Treadmill 5k TT Tuesday Gym bike Wednesday Run 60mins hilly Thursday Rest Friday Swim Saturday Long Run Sunday Long Bike All of course subject to flexibility. Pretty much stuck to the script except missed the swim and the hilly run was 85mins. The other biggie is Nutrition. I have got to lose 4 ½ stone by April. I’ve identified the benefits of wheat free. I’ve identified the benefits of longer consistent training. Job is great but a mediocre sandwich from the buttie van every day is not good. Will substitute for oatcakes and fruit. Am pretty much into the sensible shopping habit which helps enormously as meals are all planned which reduces temptation. Cold still bad. Tried the liquid beechams. Tried the tablet beechams. Tried the no training. Tried the hard training. Last night tried the ½ bottle of brandy, kill or cure approach. Combined with a particularly frosty long run this morning – might actually be getting somewhere. Suffered with migraine though. Frost and sunshine always trigger one. Plus sunglasses were well steamed up.

A Year On

A Year On
Sat Nov 22, 2008 6:41 pm LynneE

Apologies – it’s long. My hotch potch week started really well. Was at the gym bang on 7 Monday and did a taxing 40mins on the bike. Felt like I’d worked hard. Tuesday the treadmill. I’d forgotten how much I hate it. Started off ay 8.1 and struggled. Heart rate was all over the place spiking at 170 then dropping to 88. Decreased the speed. Held on to the rails and called it a day after half an hour. Wednesday cross trainer. I love it. Don’t feel like I’m working hard at all but love the amount of calories I’d burned. Because I didn’t feel I’d done much didn’t stretch properly and woke up on Thursday with problems with my left leg. Calf and hamstring. Couldn’t work out if it was a pull or just overdoing soreness so had a day off. Friday, still sore so just did a repeat of Monday on the static bike. Found it much easier. Booked an appointment for today for a massage. Morgan woke early this morning and as Mark had been ill last night I had to wait for him to get up to go for a run. Tight calf and hamstring so no real expectations but had planned to run/walk the Borders. Decided to go out really, really slow. If you knew how slow my normal is you’d realise just how slow this was. Got a lot of pain about half a mile out so decided when I got to the end of the road I’d head back . Of course when I got to the end of the road it was better so plodded on. Did a deal that once I got to the top of the first hill I’d head back. Felt great so carry on to where I got to last time and then turn back. Well it’s pretty much flat and downhill after there so I might as well carry on. The further I got the better I felt and absolutely loved the undulations. It’s a good 10k. Took me 82minutes. It’s by far the longest and furthest I’ve ever run. I’ve cracked 10k. I’ve cracked 10k with an injury and a cough and Mark is absolutely delighted I’ve lost my voice again. The job. Fantastic. SAP is a brilliant, user friendly system (and a great addition to my CV). The people are lovely. It’s great to have sensible adult conversation and to be able to discuss what was on telly last night but, I’m damned if I’m going to watch the X Factor or I’m a Celebrity just so I can join in. The only downside is the temperature in the office. It’s like a greenhouse. I was melting. Everyone there’s got coughs and colds so of course by yesterday mine was back with a vengeance. I’ve always said I’d never train with an illness but I’ve already lost 3 weeks and I felt so much better after running this morning and it’s cleared my chest. Weight wise I’ve lost another 4lb this week. No changes apart from upping the training. So now the long bit. Wednesday was my Birthday and apologies for the drivel I posted after a couple of glasses of wine. Amazing really how a couple of glasses affected me, the old Lynne would have needed a couple of bottles A year since I took on this triathlon malarkey and time to reflect just how much it’s changed my life. I’m about 17lb lighter than when I started. I couldn’t run the short sides of a football field. I hadn’t ridden a bike in 30 years and the only swimming I’d done was with the kids. I’ve completed 3 sprints. I have met the most amazing people who have been incredibly generous with their advice and their time. I feel I’ve got to know so many people off Tri Talk who I maybe will never meet but whose advice and inspiration have proved invaluable. I am well aware that my achievements are tiny compared to what others on here have and continue to do. It’s not what I’ve achieved in the last year that I’m looking at. It’s the basis that it’s given me for the rest of my life. I’ve always been a quitter. There is not one single thing I can say I’ve stuck at whether it be dieting, growing my hair, a marriage. When the going got tough Lynne always bailed. For the first time ever I feel as if I’ve got control of my life. I have a new job and today I ran the Borders. Last April the Chairman of Wrecsam Tri asked me to run it. Obviously I wasn’t ready but offered to marshal instead. I was totally intimidated by the standard of runners and decided after that I couldn’t possibly take part in Chirk. I was eventually talked around on the basis the only person I’d be competing against was myself. I vowed then that I would run that route and today I did. I no longer need to race it. I know I can do it. After the second training day of the Deva Diva’s I had a panic because I had seriously struggled to swim 500m in openwater there was no way I was going to be able to add 250m plus bike plus run. Sal, the race secretary made me promise that I’d turn up for the last training day and that she’s swim with me. I ordered a man’s XL £35 jobbie wetsuit from Tesco Direct. Sue twisted my arm to swim in Bala on the Saturday I did the training day on the Sunday – I absolutely loved openwater and had no problem with the distance. Consequently the following week I completed the Diva’s. Llanrwst was a strange one. I had stomach pains for 3 weeks before. Done no training withdrew. The day before hurt my neck so took Tramadol and Diclofenac all day. Then feeling mighty sorry for myself at not competing consumed vast quantities of wine and at 11pm decided sod it I’m going to do it anyway. And I did. Ok I was last but I did it. So triathlon has given me strength of body, strength of mind and a confidence in myself I could never have imagined. Never in my wildest dreams would I ever have considered entering a half marathon but I have. Once I’ve run the half the 10k of Bala in September will be a doddle and then all that’s left to do is Bala Middle 2010. Bring It On!

New Job New Start New Me

New Job New Start New Me
Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:33 pm LynneE

What a week! No training for 3 weeks Cough got better. Got caught up in this stupid Zahada – quite the most frustrating and annoying thing I’ve ever done. Shows basically what an obsessive compulsive personality I’ve got. It has helped in many ways though. Made me exercise the grey matter and think of problems from a different perspective. Took my mind off jobs. Registered with yet more agencies. Interview on Thursday went really well. Seems like a really laid back Company. Perfect working arrangements. Flexitime so I can do 4 ½ hours a day term time so I can take and pick up the kids from school and school holidays 3 x 7 ½ hour days so I can have 2 days off with them. The more they told me about the job the more perfect it seemed. The only downside is a 1/3 cut in salary. They let me know 2 hours later that I’d got the job and could start tomorrow. I was absolutely ecstatic. It has taken so much pressure off me. I am extremely fortunate to have any job in this present climate. Decided yesterday, even though I felt much better, that I had to give the house a proper Spring clean. If I’m going to be working 5 days needed to get to a level where I can keep on top of it. Yet another whimp out of training. Due to poor planning the wheat free’s gone out the window. Fortunately I’ve kept off last weeks loss. Have had far too much to drink this week too. Celebrated getting the job on Thursday and a few too many last night too. Was reading Joxter’s thread. OMG that is a scary amount of alcohol Think I’ll give up in the week and then heavy training Saturday and Sunday will mean may partake in one or two on a Sunday night. This morning…no excuses. Raining. The Sue cap trick. If your face doesn’t get wet it’s not raining. So what route? Straight back up to the hour? A swifty 20 mins to break me in gently? Compromised with 5k. Started off at my normal snail’s place. Not good. Legs felt like lead. Lungs were on fire. Did a deal with myself if I could just get to the top of the hill I could cut back. These deals never work. Just another lamppost. Just to the end of the road. Next thing Transition Ted’s beeping his horn and waving at me which makes me speed up and home comes around very quickly. A minute slower than usual but just so pleased to have got back out there. The PC’s died and the grand plan was on it. Engineer not coming out until Tuesday so I’ll have to wing it a bit this week. Monday- Friday Gym 45mins (opens at 7 and have to get back to get the kids to school. Will decide what I’m going to do by who’s there, who’s supervising and how I feel. Saturday run 60 mins. Sunday cycle 90mins. Need to get a swim session in there somewhere but the local pool’s shut for refurbishment so need to sort an alternative. Got a family do on Wednesday so won’t be able to run with Sue again. It’s worked out quite nicely. 13 weeks until the half so a hotch potch this week and then start the real 12 week plan. 13 weeks to get from 5k to a half? I’ve had my illness. I’ve had my injury so as long as I can keep them at bay I am confident.

Magic Weight Loss

Magic Weight Loss
Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:00 am LynneE

When I went to get my back sorted last week Tracey reminded me of a kinseology session I’d had with her last year. It showed up wheat intolerance so I decided the magic weight loss cure would be to cut out wheat. I’ve had no bread, pastry, pasta or pizzas. I have had noodles, silly person that I am thought egg noodles were made from eggs and didn’t realise they contained wheat. So the upshot is I’ve dramatically cut my wheat intake and lost 4lbs. I know it’s not a sustainable amount to lose but it is the kick start I’ve been after for a while. From someone who was constantly hungry, last week I had to be reminded to eat. I haven’t trained for two weeks. My back is pretty much sorted. I decided to run on Saturday, then changed my mind as I thought I’d better edge back in gradually. I walked to the gym. It was shut. I walked back home. When I got back Morgan was awake and it was throwing it down so.. the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Sunday I’d arranged to watch my nephew on parade. I had a totally bazaar experience. I was sick. I don’t just mean felt unwell I had projectile vomit. I didn’t feel ill before. I didn’t feel ill after. Just a totally unexplainable incident. My cold has gone but I’ve still got a cough that is well and truly chesty. Coughing makes my throat sore. I’ve lost my voice( hooray shouts husband!) The coughing is keeping me awake so I am knackered.. Back on the Echinacea for a fortnight me thinks. Realistically loosing this much training time I’m not going to be able to race the borders but I will run it and it just means my half plan won’t need a taper or recovery so that’s got to be good? On the work front decided last Thursday to put the plan into action to tout for business but fortunately or unfortunately the phone began to ring with responses to the numerous jobs I have applied for. There are 7 possibilities in the pipeline at the moment. I’ve had to go in to register with various agencies. It feels very much like a waste of time but I can’t not do it as I don’t know who might be the agency to find me my dream job. I’ve got an interview on Thursday so fingers crossed and… I’m still in the enviable position that Boots and Evans ( that’s the big bird’s clothes, as opposed to bike shop!) are still recruiting seasonal staff,) I was advised yesterday to contact the AAT and CIMA as I may qualify for exemptions because of my experience.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Moaning Minnie But Credit Where It's Due

So the pinged back didn’t get any better. Resigned myself to no training. The only thing that gave me real relief was walking and my second best option was a hot water bottle.

On Saturday the cold that Mark and Morgan had been suffering from, and I thought I’d cunningly avoided with massive doses of vitamin C finally attacked.

By Sunday night, with no walk, no fresh air, a streaming nose and a back that I would willingly have attacked with a meat cleaver to relieve the pain,left me feeling pretty sorry for myself.

I got the kids to school yesterday and miraculously got an emergency appointment with the GP.

My GP is absolutely fabulous. She’s supported all my training from day one and her advice has always been “If it’s not too painful keep training.”

My appointment yesterday was with the “senior” of the practice.

“How are you?” Why do they ask that? If I was ok would I really be in your surgery on a Monday morning?

I explained what had happened. Showed him where the pain was. Explained I’d had a prolapsed disk 10 years ago. Told him that I’d got no pains shooting down my leg. He asked me what my job was? Erm..unemployed book-keeper. He wrote out a prescription for Naproxen and to add insult to injury gave me a sick note for 2 week!! He never examined me, didn’t ask me to bend, told me he thought it was a disk problem that would settle in 10 days or so and then the final blow “No running - hill walking instead”

Well that obviously wasn’t what I wanted to here so popped next door to the gym to arrange an appointment with Tracey the magic fingered therapist. She was fully booked so had to wait until this morning.

Thorough examination. Full and frank discussion and then assisted on to the magic carpet of a couch. Tracey’s been looking after my legs for about 9 months and when I first went to see her I nearly had to be surgically removed from the ceiling as she unknotted my calves where they’d been overcompensating for a broken ankle. I expected agony and I wasn’t disappointed. But in my hip? She’d checked my spine and all the disks and couldn’t find much wrong however my pelvis was seriously twisted. Yup it hurt but the relief was enormous.

And Iain says I can use the cross trainer and static bike whhoopeeeee!

Despite the doom and gloom it’s been lovely to spend quality time with Mark and Morgan. OK I only worked 3 days but my days off were usually spent doing housework, shopping, taxi service for the big kids. I guess I’m still in the honeymoon stage of being unemployed but I am making the most of every second.

On the self employment front it’s a bit on the back burner as I really can’t sell myself effectively to potential new clients with what Morgan calls “a face full of snoggle.”
I know we’re heading for a recession. I know the World is in turmoil but I feel more in control than I have in a long time.

I also have a cunning plan for my weight loss which I will reveal next week when I have results.

What I’ve also failed to mention is when I went to pick up the fish and pinged my back I had a discussion about planned races. Rob is not renowned for his tact but he is a realist and I honestly respect both his honesty and opinions.

“Lynne you will never take 15 minutes off in 6 weeks. If you don’t mind coming in 10-15 minutes after the last runner that’s fine but this is not a fun run it’s a club event with good club runners.”

Has he put me off?

Has he hell. The only person I’m competing against is me.

Sunday, 2 November 2008

Posted On Tri Talk 30 October

Just When The Plan Comes Together...
Thu Oct 30, 2008 7:30 pm LynneE

Intended to go on the bike on Saturday and did actually get it out but it was much too windy so decided to run instead. The running plan for the week was an hour and an attempt to run/walk the Border’s course. Despite the wind felt really good and without walking managed the two big hills. Did it as an out and back and got back in 59:33 so was really chuffed. The wind had died down considerably on Sunday so managed the scheduled ride. Everything going swimmingly until.. One of the guys from Wrecsam Tri is emigrating to Australia in January and in preparation wanted to get rid of his fish. Cait absolutely loves fish. She wants to do her work experience in the local aquatic shop. The school is horrified as they sent her to Oxford last week to suss out potential Universities. Off we popped on Tuesday to get the fish and all I did was open the boot of the car and lean over when ping went something in the bottom of my back. I am so annoyed. I could cope with a training injury. I could understand if I’d lifted something too heavy but just to lean over. To make matters worse we woke up this morning to snow. I mean what’s all that about? It’s still October. Morgan found it absolutely magical. He couldn’t understand that it was in the front and the back. I did manage a walk today. We bought Morgan a sledge. Guaranteed now there’ll be no more snow all winter. And on the work front things are looking good. The deadline for paper self assessments is tomorrow so I’ve managed to get a few done this week. Not major earners but repeat custom hopefully. I’ve also managed to write a couple of papers and pull together some marketing material. It’s also been really nice to be off with the kids for half term and hopefully we’re off to See Thomas The Tank Engine in Llangollen tomorrow so who can ask for more?

Posted On Tri Talk 24 October

I've Lost My Job
Fri Oct 24, 2008 6:22 pm LynneE

I've lost my job and the relief is enormous. It's been on the cards for a while. The "R" word and all that jazz. The business was incredibly busy all Summer. Companies were reluctant to take on permanent staff so used agency workers and then on the 1st October it was as if someone switched a light off and the hours reduced dramatically. Incredibly my first thought was "Great I'll be able to get out and do more training." Then the reality of 3 kids and Christmas on the way sunk in. There are very few jobs out there so I've decided to set up my own bookkeeping, payroll and business consultancy company. I have no idea how thew market lies but I've got 4 weeks to dip my toe in until the money runs out. And if push comes to shove... anyone want a cleaner?
Realistic Targets?
Thu Oct 23, 2008 9:07 am LynneE

For reasons best known to my husband I didn’t go running with Sue last Wednesday. And for reasons best known to my husband didn’t go running on Thursday either. So there I was sat at my desk in work feeling totally miserable when I started to do some calculations. 8 weeks to the Borders which is 5 miles and totally achievable then 19 weeks to Chirk which is quite a long time. How was I going to stay focussed and motivated? I know I’ll do a half! Yup why not? I mean the furthest I’ve ever run is 5 miles and that was 25 years ago. Another 8 and a bit shouldn’t be too difficult? I mean I’ve read the most fantastic inspirational stories on here where anything is possible if you put your mind to it. Now to find an event. The Helsby/Four Villages is in January. A bit close. As if by magic what pops up? A link to the Wrexham, Village Bakery Half on 12 February. Perfect. 8 weeks to the Borders. Another 8 weeks to the half no problem!? The men in white coats are coming to get me. Well it’s no good just writing about it is it? Friday morning full of vim and vigour I ran my normal 5k then I ran for 10 minutes more. No great shakes I hear you cry but it is. At the end I felt absolutely fine and could have carried on but needed to get back to get the kids to school. It was easy. I’ve been kidding myself all this time I couldn’t go longer and why? Because once you’ve done it you have to keep doing it. Friday afternoon I erm.. ached somewhat. Perfect recovery me thinks a 90 minute bike on Sunday. Valuable lesson learned. When you start to push and go hard, don’t do it on consecutive days. What I’ve also realised that I desperately needed bib tights. Cold back. Trawled ebay and bought bib tights and running tights. Why ebay you might ask? When you’ve tried on the biggest size you can find in shops and they’re still too small and you ask do they have them any bigger? At best you’re greeted with a discreet whisper ”Madame, we have no larger sizes in stack.” At worst with a snigger ”They’re the biggest we do!” Weight loss has been rubbish. My husband forced me to have an Indian on Sunday. What you may or may not have noticed is I’m very quick to blame everyone or everything. At the end of the day I have realised the responsibility lies firmly on my shoulders. When I complete the half on 12 February it will be down to my dedicated training and hard work and heaven forbid if I fail that will be down to me too. So tonight, third week lucky I did manage a run with Sue. We did 50 minutes. I struggled for the first 10 minutes or so as per usual but once I got my second wind was fine and we managed to chat most of the way around which makes the time pass so much quicker. What I found quite amazing was how many other runners we met. I usually run early morning in daylight and hardly ever see anyone else running. It was dark tonight when we finished and the majority we saw were women. So the plans for the week? Train specifically a wise man (Transition Ted) once told me so taking the advice of my other two heroes Sue and AndyS I will run/walk the borders to give myself a benchmark. All that’s left to say is thanks a million Sue and I hope you have a very Happy Birthday.

Posted O Tri Talk 14 October

Hip Hip Hooorahhhh -I've Found My Mojo
Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:45 pm LynneE

Read a thread “Lost…. Please help.” Rang very true my mojo had totally deserted me. I felt totally yuck. I was consuming far too much red wine and takeaways and then there was this strange string of events…. I get a text off Sue inviting me to run with her before she runs with the girls. I’d woken up that morning with a really upset stomach which left me feeling totally wiped out so I declined but suggested that next week would be a good idea. I had a whole 7 days to find my mojo. It’s not difficult. I catch up on Blogs and realise the TT Blog is nothing like the AOL Blog and I should have come here a long time ago. I read Cleo’s Norseman, I read MrsSlacko’s Ballbuster preparation and Wiganer’s jolly with Mrs Wiganer in the Great North Run. All totally inspiring stuff. I get up Friday morning with the come hell or high water you will run 5K attitude and, no cold, no dark, no rain manage it comfortably. Because of the no dark though and having to get the kids to school I couldn’t go longer. Didn’t want to do too much too soon (for heaven’s sake Lynne you’ve been doing this for nearly a year!) Saturday - a steady 3k Sunday – 15miles bike Monday – a steady 3k Wednesday – run with Sue I saw my wonderful sister-in-law at my parents-in-law at the beginning of the month. She was complaining about the amount of weight she’s put on and how little exercise she was doing. My wonderful friend Lesley decided that 5th October was D Day (Diet Day) for her. She will be a bridesmaid in exactly 18 months. So us 3 “witches” decided to start our very own online slimming club with weigh ins on a Monday. My very own motivation is this; I have 28 weeks until Chirk next year. In the grand scheme of things it’s forever. Broken down it means I have to lose 2 ½ stone in the next 10 weeks then 2lb a week until Chirk to shift this 5 stone once and for all. I feel like I’ve got a 50cc moped engine trying to power a 50 tonne truck. I either increase the engine size or decrease the size of the truck. In an ideal world I would build up to a 1000cc engine and have a mini body but imagine my performance if I could achieve a 1200cc engine with a mini body. That’s where I want to be. I wanted to do a triathlon. Ok I’ve done 3 and I’m so glad I have but it’s not enough. I need to get under 1:30 for Sprints next year. I need to do at least one Oly next year and I really need to do Bala Middle in 2010. I’ve spent hours with spreadsheets and training plans and perhaps if I’d spent more time exercising than writing about it I might be further forward but that’s gone it’s forward I’ve got to think. Last year, my first baptism of fire with Wrecsam Tri Club, I marshalled at the Borders’ League. I was totally intimidated and almost gave up the idea of Triathlon completely. The rest they say is history and I vowed I would compete this year. Well it’s 9 weeks away which is far enough away to get myself fit enough to compete but near enough that if I don’t follow the plan and lose the weight as planned I will be unable to and will have FAILED. It’s very inspiring reading inspiring blogs but I can’t piggyback off everyone else’s successes. I really must succeed in my own right.

Posted On Tri Talk 2 October

Procrastination Is The Thief of Time
Thu Oct 02, 2008 1:47 pm LynneE

I've kept pretty detailed training plans. Which I split into preparation for each event. I've even kept the plans and the actuals as a comparrison. Last week I decided to put all the actuals together and study. There was one word that haunted me. REST. It appeared for too many times. I was absolutely horrified to see the last time I'd run 5K was 14 July. A week before the Diva's. I'd had some pretty confident 3k's improving times not intentionally but still no distance. I have the best 5k route ever. It's slightly uphill to start, then there's a bigger hill and then it's slowly downhill all the way home. The best bit about it though is it's got 4 "Get Out Of Jail Free" cards, or to anyone else if I struggle I've got 4 shortcuts home. So there is no reason whatsoever for me not to attempt it? Psychological. I couldn't fail. I've put on half a stone. Makes running so much harder. Not done it for so long. Makes running so much harder. Just get out there girl and bloody well do it. You've done it before. You should be well over 10k by now never mind struggling at 5. So I did. I took it easy and I took 2mins off my PB. Well that's it then if you can run you can bloody well bike too. So I did. Undulating 15miles. The longest training ride I've ever done. Legs were fine, bum was a bit tender but what the hell? Another couple of 5k's this week the fatigue's gone . Can't wait for the weekend to go long again. Hope the forecast's wrong. Don't mind the rain. Don't like the wind.


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Wednesday, 1 October 2008

22 September 2008
18:44:52 o'clock BST Feeling Happy
Flintshire 10K And Fun Run
The Flintshire 10k was supposed to be my last race of the season. I’d Grande plans in place to increase my running distance by 10% a week from 5k so that I could achieve race distance comfortably without injury. I was extremely fortunate as my 3 times a week 5k training run took the exact route of the 10K it was just that the 10k involved 2 loops.
Where shall I start with the excuses? A holiday? Stomach pains? The weather? Lack of motivation? Sheer laziness? At the end of the day I didn’t do the training so condemned myself to the “Fun Run” instead.
The name kind of gives it away it’s supposed to NOT be a race. It’s supposed to be fun and you’re supposed to run it. I convinced Cait and Jim that it would be great to do it together. Postal entries had to be in by 12th so organized as usual sent ours off on 10th. I was amazed to get our numbers back the day after the closing date. I was number 72, Jim was 73 and Cait was 74. I told the kids as we’d been so late in entering that there would probably only be 80 or so in the race – sorry run.
My Mum and Dad duly arrived at 10am yesterday and my Dad informed us there were hundreds there. “Yeh Dad!” We could hear the tannoy from home so thought we’d better get our skates on. So with numbers pinned firmly in place, water bottles for the kids and isotonic drinks and gels for the finish we set off.
Dad had not been exaggerating. There were hundreds of people. All shapes, sizes and ages – well none as fat as me. We saw Andy Campbell, World Sprint Triathlon silver medallist who informed me he was doing the Fun Run as a warm up before he did the 10K. Had a chat with Lisa from the Tri Club who was also doing both with her son and with Bethan daughter of the legendary Paula Jenkins.
The man on the tannoy was extremely funny and calmed our nerves (NOT). We were ushered up the lane and then 3, 2, 1 airhorn and we were off. We were at the back and it took a hundred yards or so before we could even start to jog. I little girl in front of us stopped to tie her lace and how I didn’t fall over her I’ll never know. We got to the top and I expected to turn left, a gentle stroll past Mondi packaging and G C Hahn butno we were directed right – up the hill (gentle incline really) and that’s when Cait decided to leg it. Thanks Cait. I told Jim to go with her but he decided he’d stay with his poor Mummy. The humiliation of being overtaken by yet more 5 year olds eventually took a grip and he went off on his own too.
The turnaround wasn’t far and I knew then I was on known territory. Downhill all the way – a piece of cake.
There were loads of marshals – all very helpful and encouraging. It was amazing to see so many little ones doing so well. It was lovely to hear Mums and Dads encouraging to run a bit more, rest a bit more. It was great to see people pushing prams whilst running with their children.
The finish line came very quickly – “And here we have number 72 Lynne Evans. Come on a big cheer for Lynne.” And they did. The crowds lining the finishing straight all shouting and cheering. I met Cait and Jim at the end. My watch said 20minutes and 10 seconds. The target had been 20 minutes but I hadn’t switched it off at the finishing line so I claimed the victory. Jim had finished 5 minutes earlier and Cait had finished a minute behind him. We ran the whole way. We had fun.
We went to collect our goodie bags complete with medals.
This was such a brilliant event. Extremely well organized.
The kids want to do it next year. Next year I will do the 10k.
And bringing up the rear were two army guys carrying 8 stone backpacks. I am carrying 6 stone of "baggage." Let's see how I get on next year once that is lost?

15 September 2008
17:48:22 o'clock BST Feeling Happy
Bala Standard
There's quite a few filling in bits here before I startAfter I did Chirk there was a guy on TT caled Alan, from Bury, who was doing Harlech as his first and we exchanged mails of encouragement. He decided his goal was an Ironman in 2009. I thought he was crazy but who am I to judge other people's goals. I suggested he do Bala Standard so that he could do the Middle (half Ironman) in June.He took my advice then had this mad panic that he'd done no openwater. Lexi to the rescue last Sunday in Bala.Jim from Wrecsam Tri helped me so much when I was starting out. I will never be able to thank him enough. When I really struggled with openwater threatening not to do the Diva's he gave me a good talking to and my answer was "You can get off the bike, you can walk the run but if you struggle with the swim you either drown or have to be hauled out." I did the Diva's - he entered Bala.Now the amazing Iain from the gym, well I'd done the Diva's even before he bought a wetsuit - he entered Bala.Paula's first Tri was Chirk. Paula is the first to admit she struggled with her running and she absolutely hated openwater after her first attempt in Boundry Water Park. Paula is the strongest, most determined person I have ever met. She forced herself to do 5k then 10k races, absolutely blitzed the Boundry Breeze Tri and has done an incredible number of events this year improving all the time - she entered Bala.I got up at 5.30 yesterday, in the dark and bleary eyed set out for Bala. As it got light the visibility didn't improve as it was incredibly misty. I wasn't really concerned as I was travelling over the moores and knew it would clear by the time I got to Bala.Got to the Leisure Centre and was despite wearing a hi viz, refused entry into the car park by marshals. Well as I'd be marshaling myself all day didn't want to give these people grief so had a personalitly transplant, kept very calm and in my best creeping voice pleaded to be let in. I must explain here about the hi viz, used my own as well... the Wrecsam Tri ones were too small. Only problem with mine was, I'd lost numerous work ones with people borrowing them and not returning so I'd written Lynne on the back.Very organsed in the Leisure Centre. Gill told me that not many had registered on Saturday so we'd be busy. I had the fabulous task of handing out the "goodie bags" which contained water, red bull, a banana and a top quality souvenier towel. It was so nice to be able to say "Hi" to all the competitors. A lady asked me if I thought they'd be able to swim with such poor visibility. "Of course" was my reply. I had no idea the mist over the lake was so bad. Julian assured me it would soon burn off which would give us perfect racing conditions. Ever the optamist Julian.It was great at this point to actually meet Alan and Rhyd another of the TTers.Lots of people registered really late and we had a bit of a run on goody bags which was a bit hairy. That's when the cavalry in the shape of Bev and Ryan arrived. Me and Bev pretty much stuck together all day but all credit to Ryan. He's 14 years old and he worked tirelessly all day showing incredible common sense, maturity, foresight and confidence.The mist hadn't cleared much but the Sailing Centre had given us the go ahead to proceed. The bouys were moved closer to the shore for safety reasons but the course would remain at the 1500 distance. The start was delayed slightly but the time between waves was decreased so overall there was barely anything in it getting the last wave off.Bev and I were delegated to ensuring all the swimmers were in the pens to be counted in. This is really important as they are also counted out for safety reasons.This finished and we were fortunate enough to be delegated to stand guard on the run exit which also happened to be where the swimmers got out.
The time really does fly when you're having fun and the first of the swimmers were back in no time. It's great to be able to clap and shout well done especially when it's people you recognise. Unfortunately I missed Alan but big shouts for Tim, Jim, Iain, Rhyd and Paula who looked fantastic.From a safety point of view there are kayaks in the water who will get swimmers in distress to the motor boats. There are divers to assist on the swim exit and the St J ohn's are on the shore. We had a junior who had to be assisted out by the divers. Bev legged it down the pontoon and he was basically carried to the shore. I have never seen anyone shake so violently. I gave him my jacket and the St John's wrapped him in a foil blanket before whisking him off to the first aid station for a cuppa. He was fine. Just a point to note though he was wearing a shortie surf wetsuit. If you're doing these events you really do need the correct equipment.I had a great position directing out of T2 out onto the run. I had to keep my left arm up and shout "Keep left - be careful it's slippy!" which is ok for the first 100 times but then it gets menotinous even to me hearing my own voice. I felt really sorry for the spectators behind me listening to the same shout over and over again. Matt from TT had described the kit he'd be wearing so I was able to identify him on the run and give a big shout.Once all the runners were out on the course, Transition was opened for competitors to remove their bikes we moved over and checked every bike number to either race numbers or the markers on their arms and legs. This is where I met Rhyd again who I congratulated only to be told he'd felt a ping in his arm on the bike and as he couldn't brake had been forced to retire. I was gutted for him and I guess saying "It could be worse at least your bike's in one piece" wasn't one of my better decisions but his bike was one sexy bit of kit. Managed to have a brief chat with Iain who was grinning from ear to ear. Paula had done phenominally well. Jim was pretty hacked off over his bike but when I asked him had he done any bike training he confessed he'd been on it 5 times this year. I was pretty hacked off with him. I've been on mine at least 3 times a week and I'm still crap!The results were up and managed to grab Matt who'd done an incredible 01:59:58. It's amazing these goals we set ourselves if he'd gone over 2 hours he'd have been gutted.And so to the prizegiving. An £8000 prize purse which is amazing by anyone's standards. 10 prizes for the senior men. Rhian won the women's by 10 minutes but second was the junior Lois Rosindale. Ultimate credit to Elizabeth Hamer-Davies she's the lady who took 8 hours to do the Middle in June and still came back. At registration she said "I'll be last. Look out for my result. I will be last but unless I end up in hospital, I will finish." Well she finished in 3:44:29 and she wasn't last but even if she was someone has to hold the rest of them up. Wrecsam men got third in the team event and Pete Norman won the supe vets.An absolutely fabulous day. I enjoyed every second and can't wait for the season to start all over again.

07:50:00 o'clock BST Feeling Adventurous
Compete Not Complete Next Year
So that’s that then. My season of Triathlon ”completing” is over. I ummed and arrhed about doing Warwick. On the one hand it would have been nice to finish the season on a not last, on the other if I’d been last I would have been so demoralized/ demotivated.

Had two non training rest days after Llanrwst and then “got back on the horse.” Just shortish runs but I got quicker by the day.

Now comes the time to lay down my plans and ambitions for winter training and “competing” next season.

Much as I prefer being out on the roads, British weather the way it is I’ve got to get back in the gym. I don’t mind training in the wind and the rain my problem is coming back soaked and having wet clothes. Having to deal with them, then a school run and then off to work or playgroup.

I’ve given Iain, from the gym a plan of my available time but my own plans are a pilate’s class (I need to improve core strength), a spin class (I need to be pushed hard on the bike), I need to get to 10K running so I can join Sue and the girls for their Wednesday night run. I need to do a LSB (long steady bike) and a LSR (long steady run) whatever the weather outside at least once a week and finally, and most importantly I have got to shift this weight. I cannot hope to compete at this weight.

Events for next year

April - Chirk
May – Harlech
June – Ellesmere
July – Deva Divas
August – Llanrwst
September – Warwick

The aim is Olympic distance. I don’t want to swim in the Dee so Chester’s out and I don’t want to wait until September to do Bala. I’d like to do Oswestry but it clashed with the Diva’s this year. I’d really like to do Oswestry because I was told I wasn’t up to it.

I’d planned to do the Flintshire 10K next Sunday but my stomach problems wrecked the training. There’s a 3k Fun Run so me Cait and Jim will do that together, which I think will be the highlight of my season.

Oh yeh and the objective is to get under 1:30 for a

01 September 2008
22:17:56 o'clock BST
"Had a chat with Simon Roxborough the husband of the fantastic elite Rhian (She was on Eurosport last week.)"
Oh my God, Not only did I meet without realising, my heroine, winner of the Llanrwst Sprint Triathlon, who beat all the blokes by the way - who has ever heard of that? She has commented on my blog.
I'm sure I've died and gone to heaven.
Good job you didn't tell me who you were Rhian or I'd have fainted and blamed you for a DNF!

31 August 2008
16:53:44 o'clock BST Feeling Ecstatic
Llanrwst Sprint
I did it.

I will probably be last but a last is better than a Did Not Finish and a Did not Finish is better than a Did Not Start.

I woke up at 4 – couldn’t get back to sleep. Went down for a cuppa. Still couldn’t get back to sleep. Decided that my alarm was set too late (6.30am) so got up and got sorted.

Had a mega struggle putting the bike in the car (I will not listen to my husband!). Had a bigger struggle getting the child seat out. Was ready for 6. Realised I’d forgotton my glasses! Realised I needed petrol. Tesco garage is 24 hour sel;f service. The pump refused my debit card. Had to use my credit card. Eventually got away at 6.15 and it took an hour.

The drive into Llanrwst is part of the bike route backwards. I became slightly nervous when I realised there seemed to be quite a lot of downhills (uphills for the bike).

When I drove through the town they were taping off so asked where registration was and a very nice ambulance man directed me in the car park. Very kind of him but as everything was taped off how was I going to get out? Never mind job in hand registration. They weren’t open. The briefing said from 7 but hey ho. Had a chat with Simon Roxborough the husband of the fantastic elite Rhian (She was on Eurosport last week.)

Got my bike out and rode it around to make sure nothing had fallen off and all the gears were working. Racked up. Got my transition box – don’t trust the weather and got a right telling off from the race referee for “Riding in Transition.” Well I know you’re not allowed to mount before the mount line and I know you’ve got to dismount before the dismount line but doh! It didn’t register like NO RIDING IN TRANSITION.

Had a chat with Steve from Wrecsam Tri then Paula turned up so off we popped.

She was in the wave before me. When I looked in the pool my worst nightmare was realised no steps. I explained to the briefing lady that I couldn’t possibly do it without steps and I’d specifically asked for and been granted a step lane. She got hold of the lifeguard to ask how difficult would it be to put steps in (Quite regularly the kids have said to me lately – “Oh Mum don’t make a fuss.” I knew I was making a fuss but would quite happily then reverted to being a spectator than a competitor. Not to be daunted they had a cunning plan. They’d haul me out bodily.

I got in and away I went. Bearing in mind I’d taken the conscious decision that even if my swim time improved it wouldn’t be by much so basically the last time I swam was the Diva’s and apart from my one lesson the last time I’d swum in a pool was Chirk.

I flew, well for me I flew. I did crawl without getting tired and out of breath and was really happy with my swim. Bonk on the head with a float equals two lengths to go. Soon over and…wait for it…. I climbed out all on my own.

I retrieved my flip flops (yeh I know what a whimp!) and ran through transition. Not a good T1. Nothing particularly wrong just slow. Realised my lace was undone so had to stop before I’d even got out.

The bike was fantastic. Maybe the hills looked bigger with my glasses on but I managed to stay on the big ring most of the first half of the course and was absolutely gobsmacked how quick the Tal Y Cafn turn came round. That’s where my tactics came into play. Two massive (for me) hills so off I popped and pushed and treated it as a chance to replenish my depleted fluids. The beginning of the second half was mostly downhills. Got some serious speed up and, didn’t use the break. The last quarter was a bit tough mainly because I’d been told it was 15 miles and it turned out to be almost 16. That’s just me messing up psychologically, plus I remembered because I haven’t trained for 2 weeks I haven’t done any brick sessions and began to panic over jelly legs.

All in all very pleased with the bike despite “hundreds” passing me.

T2 was a bit strange. Not done a split transition event before and as I hadn’t been to T2 couldn’t find my racking space plus left my run bottle in T1. Took my time and got a bit of fluid on board.

Legs were better than expected but I knew there was a killer hill so wanted to conserve energy. Run/walked to the hill. Walked the hill. Had a lovely chat at the water station to try and get my heart rate down and run/ walked to the turnaround. Ran most of the way back. The killer downhill was almost as bad as the killer uphill. Really pulled on my knees. Ran to the finish to be greeted by yells from paula and her mob only to realise I wasn’t at the finish. Only another 100 yards or so but when you think you’ve finished quite hard.

Watched Narren, Leonie and Pete from Wrecsam Tri finish. Saw Sue in off the bike out on the run.

Was very wet by this point and started to get cold so headed back to the Leisure Centre for a shower.

As if by magic they were taking a “Train Break” so I was able to get my car out.

All in all a fantastic day. So pleased I did it. Definitely some serious swimming and running winter training and if I’m very good I might even treat myself to a new bike.

So the plan was to complete a Triathlon. I’ve done 3 and am very proud of myself. It’s very doubtful if I’ll do the Flintshire 10K. I haven’t put the running mileage in but between now and the dark mornings I will and stage my own race just to prove I can do the distance.

25 Lynne Evans 00:14:12 01:20:56 00:49:50 02:24:58 LAST!!!
But.. there were 172 starters and I was 171st
I'm still chuffed.

This entry has 1 comments:
Comment from rockrhi 01/09/08 19:56 Permalink
Hi Lynne, My husband has been reading your blog regularly and keeping me informed with your progress. Emyr then told me on the morning of the race that you were ill and may pull out of the race. We were both gutted for you and thought it a shame that after such an inspiring story that you would n't complete your aim. We were both very happy to see you on the morning and when we realised that despite how you were feeling, you were still going to do the race, we were made up for you. I started you off in the morning, in the pool and me and the life guard were at the ready to help you out of the water. You didn't need me and it was great to see how much enjoyment you were getting from completing the race. Unfortunately, I didn't get to see you finish as I was still on the pool. But I would like to congratulate you and I am inspired by your determination and it is great to see another triathlete 'getting the bug'!I look forward to seeing you at races next year and wish you well with training and future racing. See you soonRhian Roxburgh

30 August 2008
23:19:34 o'clock BST Feeling Determined
Tomorrow? Yes? No? Maybe?
So I guess 7 hours before you’re due to leave the house to compete in a tri is not the best time to blog about it but here goes…

The most turmointible week in triathlon in this triathlete’s life ever.

So I had this pain in my stomach which got worse and worse so it was going straight through my back. I was in agony. I managed to get an emergency appointment with my GP who asked “What did I think was causing it”

“My bowels?”

“Yes you’re probably right”

So armed with a prescription and instructions to diarise my food intake and bowel movements for the next month I left the surgery.

The the pain didn’t get much better. I’d hinted to the likes of Sue that I wouldn’t be able to compete and offered Minnie my place but was still holding out hope. Yesterday I ran well basically failed on the Flintshire 10k route and had to concede I would be unable to compete. This morning I turned over in bed and ricked my neck. Been on the diclofenac and tramodol all day then decided tonight it would be a good idea to have a glass or two of wine.

Well I feel marvellous. Decided to hell with it. So what if it takes me ages to complete tomorrow. I’m going to watch anyway. I won’t get my money back. If anyone looks at the results for next year they’ll see my pathetic attempt and think “I can beat that” so I will compete tomorrow. Provided I can get my bike in the car. Something my husband says I can’t do.

He also said “You are not a triathlete!”

And… if the worst comes to the worst There’s the Warwick triathlon on 27 September. My sister in law lives there. My niece is a county cross country runner. I want to convert her 2012 and all that jazz?

23 August 2008
09:54:49 o'clock BST Feeling Cheerful
Olympics Stop Training
"Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn't know that so it goes on flying anyway. "
~Mary Kay AshToo long since the last post. Excuses? Training too hard? Erm no watching the Olympics.
So off we popped to Pembrokeshire with the intention of getting lots of running and swimming in. Unfortunately the car was too full to take the bike.

I’ve been down that way once before but couldn’t remember how awful a journey it was and how beautiful the beaches were. It took 5 ½ hours to get there even with the benefit of Amanda, our wonderful Tom Tom. And it rained, and rained and rained some more.

The pool was a bit bigger than a puddle so that ruled out swimming (probably not as big as some of the puddles if I’m honest).

Nicole Cooke won gold in the cycling. I cried. Then Rebecca Adlington and Jo Jackson got their swimming medals so I cried some more and became totally addicted to the games.

The big kids were in Italy when the European Championships were on this year and we had a discussion as to how many games I’d watched. Precisely none. This is the same me who would never have missed football on the box. Why? Because there were no home nations involved.? Maybe I’m more patriotic than I thought.

Why am I watching so much Olympics? Because Team GB are doing so well. And why are Team GB doing so well? Last Wednesday’s lottery said that since it started 14 years ago £3bn had been given to British sport. Is that the reason? All but one of the medallists had benefited from Lottery Funding. (I’d be interested to know who the one is?) Then there are the benefits of the Manchester Commonwealth games. The success of the cycling team is phenomenal. Is it because it now has the facilities, a by-product of the Manchester games. Aaron Cooke who narrowly missed out on a medal in the Taekwondo trains out of Manchester and Cassie Patten and Keri–Anne Payne , the 10k marathon swimming medallists train from Stockport. There’s probably a lot more. These are just the ones I’ve picked up on.

So back to me and training from the camp site a lovely downhill into Narberth. Great running route to give the bum some achy on the way back. I kept to what I thought was a straight line and got lost and had to ask for directions. Oh Amanda where are you when I need you?

We also turned the wrong way out of the campsite to Tenby which gave me an absolutely fantastic circular route with a mega uphill out and a big uphill back.

So the holiday achieved its objectives, got me focussed and my head out of the shed.

When we go back I knew I had to hammer the bike. It was so hard. I don’t feel I’ve improved at all since Chirk. I had a dental appointment on Wednesday and when I came out bumped into Iain from the gym who I conned into checking my saddle height. I rushed home and back and ever the diplomat Iain suggested that the height go up by 1 ½ inches he also suggested I “get somebloody air in those tyres.”

Mark’s got one of those thingy’s that go in the cigarette lighter of the car and it checks pressure and blows up. My tyres should have been between 50 and 85. One wasn’t registering and the other was 12.

Let’s just say I no longer have problems.

So a week tomorrow is Llanrwst. Am I ready? Yes – I can do all the distances. No I haven’t done the course and the bike is lumpy and the run is a mega hill. My start time is 8.40 so even if it takes me 3 hours plus I still won’t be the last finisher. (I will probably be last but not the last finisher.) There’s a man off the same time as me that finished behind me at Chirk so I think that will be interesting.

My big concern is that I’ve had horrendous stomach ache for the last two days. I hope it shifts.

08 August 2008
09:22:28 o'clock BST
Get Your Head Out Of The Shed
So there I was completely fired up and focussed ready to implement the final stages of the training plan.

Monday – out on the bike – still struggling with hills and bazaar weather. Left home in glorious sunshine. It started to rain as I got to the top of the first hill. To be honest it was quite welcome as it was really sticky. Just spits and spots really until I got to the huge down hills on the way back. No rain but massive puddles.They’d had a downpour and heaven knows how I’d missed it.

Tuesday, a nice gentle 5k run. Yet again left home in glorious sunshine. Had my Ron Hill running shorts on as they’ve got a zip pocket on the bum for my phone. Saves wearing the arm coff which I think looks a bit pretencious with a running vest (ok a £2 vest jobbie from Tesco.)

Felt really strong, especially up the hill and then it started again. Massive spots of rain. The downpour I’d avoided yesterday hit me full pelt. I know you will confirm that I am crazy but is was really nice, felt really fresh, a tiny bit slippy undert foot but nothing too drastic. But then disaster struck. The earphones of my phone crackled and then gave up the ghost and I realised my phone was getting wet and I had nowhere to put it so had to curtail the run.

Wednesday should have been a rest day but I felt so good decided to get the bike out, Rain, wind and a real struggle on the hills. Definitely needed to rehash the training plan.

Decided that failing on the hills is only de-motivating me so will get some mileage into my legs instead in a morning and add extra sessions after work literally doing hill climbs. The sticks and stones method again. This time on steeper hills.

So since then have done…precisely nothing.

I’ll blame the weather. I’ll blame Morgan waking up before I’ve left and Mark still asleep so I couldn’t leave him alone. I’ll blame a niggle I’ve had in the bottpm of my back since the Divas. I’ll blame a watery ear that I’ve had since the Diovas. I’ll blame this event is getting a bit close it’s time to spit my dummy out and stamp my feet and say I’m not doing it.

At the end of the day I have no excuses. I haven’t trained.

There’s lots that has happened in the world of Triathlon in the last week. The National Club Sprints and The Double Ironman.

This was posted last December by a lovely man called Hywel Davies, Towel is his Tri Talk name

“This is meant to be Towel's helpful moment, so inspired and get some mojo. Many of us will set some real goals in the next week or so and most of us know the SMART target approach....Specific, Measurable, Achieveable, Realistic and Time Orientated. But there is something very different out there that i am experiencing at the moment. For me my target is where i am now...Point A, and Point B being winning the UK Double Ironman, yes....not doing well but winning it. Now for me that means that i have to be able to comfortably swim 8k, cycle 230 miles without killing myself and being able to run every step of 52 miles...not only that but having the mental toughness to believe its possible and the mental skills of being able to deal with 320 lengths, 20 laps on the bike and 52 laps of the run. Also i need the capacity to run through the night, overcome several low points and be ready to experience the fear of failure like never before. So, my approach is this...What does a top Double Ironman athlete do? They work full time, as there is no money in the sport They train at wierd hours They eat very well and dont care about weighing food or calories They have a supportive team They think a marathon is very easy They have the ability to switch off and swim many lengths They have lots of ways of keeping focus They can cycle a bloody long way without needing too much fuel They love training and being outside Etc, etc So what i need to do now is become that person, not aim to be there in august but take on those characteristics NOW. Even if the fitness and mileage is not there, the spirit has to be there before i really think about training. Some has already started, and what was seeminglya long run on Xmas eve of 35 miles, now seems like it was just a training run and i can take that to 40, 45 and 50 by February. I am racing a 35 miler in Feb, and its no longer to just prove i can do it but to race a target time or try a nutrition strategy. For ironman, i would cycle to my dads in Cardiff, but now its cycle there and back to be a long ride (230miles). A double athlete will use more opportunities to train rather than have separate sessions, so a longer commute, running parts of journeys, cycling rather than using a car, running to run races etc...its not normal but then doing a double isnt normal. Ok all of that sounds a load of balls to most, but look at it another way. IF you were superfit and woke up one day 5 stone heavier, what would you do? You are already the person who knows how to lose weight and maintain it and you know how to do it. You would eat properly, train properly, wear clothes to suit your personality etc....but if you are already 5 stone overweight and want to be superfit 5 stone lighter...its hard because you dont act the same way that person you want to be does. Make sense? Does to me and therefore setting the process goals of by January i want to be X and by March i want to be Y doesn't cut it for me...i am trying to be that person i want to be in August right now, a little less fit than i will be but i know that this will work as i have adopted the characteristics that will get me there. Roll on the Mojo, 2008, Austria and DIUK!!!! Love you all!! (not in a gay way)”

I take so much inspiration from these words particularly the:

“winning the UK Double Ironman, yes....not doing well but winning it. Now for me that means that i have to be able to comfortably swim 8k, cycle 230 miles without killing myself and being able to run every step of 52 miles...not only that but having the mental toughness to believe its possible and the mental skills of being able to deal with 320 lengths, 20 laps on the bike and 52 laps of the run.”

He did win by the way – beating the second person by 2 hours.


“Ok all of that sounds a load of balls to most, but look at it another way. IF you were superfit and woke up one day 5 stone heavier, what would you do? You are already the person who knows how to lose weight and maintain it and you know how to do it. You would eat properly, train properly, wear clothes to suit your personality etc....but if you are already 5 stone overweight and want to be superfit 5 stone lighter...its hard because you dont act the same way that person you want to be does.”

I am 5 stone overweight and it is hard.

I have read this week so many reports from the DIMUK which are all full of emotion, dedication, focus and a degree of insanity. I have no aspirations to ever do an Ironman but I admire their guts and courage.

And then last night on BBC2 Wales a Sports Special about the Welsh athletes competing in the Olympics.

Dave Davies has a great chance in swimming and I was quite shocked to learn there is a new open water swimming event which he will be taking part in – very similar to the first leg of a Tri.

The fantastic Nicole Cook will be flying the flag in the cycling as will Geraint Thomas.

Rowing will be represented by Wrexham’s Tom James and the 20 year old from Monmouth Tom Lucy.

We have only 2 representatives in athletics and it is a show of physical and mental strength that Philippa Roles holds down a full time job and in order to train gets up at 3.30am. She’s joined by sprinter Christian Malcolm.

Of course the very best of this show was the World Champion Triathlete Helen Tucker. She is a Godess and overcoming injury she has defied her critics who showed so little faith that they cut her Lottery Funding.

There was talk of how few Welsh athletes were going to Bejing – well if they cut the funding of a World Champion what do you expect?

To all our athletes I wish them the best of luck.

Oh yes and to the fantastic Wrecsam Tri’s Tim Burnett who is competing in the Big Woody, an Ironman at Chepstow, next weekend the best of luck. Race strong Tim and stay safe.

And me? I’m off to Penbrokeshire tomorrow with the kids. Lots of swimming, lots of running and a head out of the shed which will see me focussed and raring to hammer Llanrwst on my return.

27 July 2008
10:38:12 o'clock BST Feeling Confident
Llanrwst 5 Weeks and Counting
"It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves." ~Edmund HillaryFelt absolutely amazing after last weekend’s race. The body part which hurt the most was my left index finger. I have no idea why.

So it was down to ok that’s over what’s next – Llanrwst 31 August.

I put a thread on the Wrecsam Tri site and was amazed by the response. There are absolutely loads of Club members doing it, many have done it before and were vey generous with their advice.

The swim’s straight forward. 400m in a 20m pool which will give loads of push offs. Not good for good swimmers, great for me.

The bike is a lovely undulating route on wide roads until about half way when there’s a killer hill.

The run starts with a horrendous hill and then flattens to a nice trail run through the forest.

It was decided there would be a Club outing to recce the bike course. I said I’d hold everyone back and two lovely people agreed to ride slowly with me. Awww!

I’ve been totally pathetic with training this week. Managed a very hilly run on Wednesday but that’s about it. Weight totally out of control. 15.94 the most I’ve weighed this year.

Wanted to recce both bike andrun myself. Decided to do it Friday but it just didn’t happen because Mark was too ill to look after Morgan.

Not to be beaten decided to make a day of it and involve the big kids on Saturday instead. Made a picnic which we had in T1. Drove to T2 and off up the hill. Let’s just say 3 kids and a pushchair is not the best way to recce a Triathlon route. The road was narrow, there was no pavement and there were a few cars and motorbikes. Hairy to say the least. The hill was steep and endless. Then off along a forest trail. Lovely. It had been pointed out to me that the turnaround point was unclear so I decided to use my all singing all dancing phone to measure 2.5k and then turn around. Obviously we lost GPS. We walked for 45 minutes and I was reasonably confident we’d gone far enough for me not to encounter surprises on race day.

Back to the car, after being attacked by a pack of wild dogs.

And then the bike. Really nice flat route, wide roads and.. roadworks. Never mind they’ll be finished in 5 weeks. On route we discover a high up in the trees, rope adventure centre. We stopped off just to find out what was involved and I casually asked where this particular pub was on the bike route and surprise, surprise we were on completely the wrong road.

So back we went to T2 and start again. The first thing that struck me about the road was that it was busy, all I can hope for is an early start time. But, it was a beautiful, sunny, Saturday mid afternoon.

The course was undulating but nothing too drastic. A bit of a cross between Chirk and the Penymynydd route. So about half way you turn and go over the railway and over the river. The view is spectacular. Just when you think things can’t get any better you are faced with “the hill.” It’s steep, and I mean really steep but it’s not too long. It flattens and then wham bam up, up, steep, steep again. All I can say is it’s a tiny part of thecourse and If I have to push I have to push. The second half is through a seriesof hamlets on much quieter roads. Still undulating but very nice all the same. It did seem to me like a very long 25K.

I now know what I’m up against. It doesn’t exactly inspire me with confidence but I‘ve got 5 weeks to train specifically. I need to get a lot of bike mileage into my legs.
The failed hills on the Mold course are on a par. They need to be conquered. Running needs to be split in 2. I’ve got to get some serious hill work in but I’ve also not to lose sight of the fact that I want to do the Flintshire 10K on 21 September. I must add 10% distance. I hate speed work so oh what a shame that’s the thing that will have to give.

So here I am, extremely focussed and confident that come 31 August I will have a good race. The ultimate plan for Chirk was that I wouldn’t have to get off the bike and that I’d run all the run. With Llanrwst I don’t think either of these will be achievable but, just goes to show how events are so different. They laughed at me when I said Chirk was challenging. For me then it was. Now things are different.

In a bazaar way I want this season to be over so next year I can physically measure my improvement.

22 July 2008
15:40:14 o'clock BST Feeling Happy
I Am A Deva Diva
The First thing I did when I got back from Chirk was to Blog the experience. I was absolutely bursting to tell everyone that I’d done it and how ecstatic I felt.

The Diva’s is a bigger achievement but, its not my first Triathlon.

It was supposed to be a nice weather. I packed sunscreen. I live about 25minutes from Manley. I left home in sunglasses. I got to the end of the road and it was throwing down and then there was the wind.

Registration was really well organised and the T shirts are top notch. Security in transition was really tight which was very reassuring. And then to decide. Do I use my box? Do I just lay everything out? It started to rain so box it was. I met Triref who really does have sexy legs but he wouldn’t get on the picnic table for me and Caroline who I didn’t realise was competing. (It was her IM Austria report with beating her pb by 75 minutes that made me cry

They said the lake temperature was 16° but let’s just say it was choppy .Naively after two good open water sessions in calm warm conditions I thought I’d got it cracked.

I was off in wave 2, 15 minutes after the first wave. There were some out on the run before we’d started. I kept to the back because I didn’t want to be kicked or swum over. That was just my tactics. Survival and finishing. The bit that terrified me the most was actually swimming straight across the Mere. This was relatively easy. Still very slow. Across was ok too I don’t know if it was because the wind got up or the current but conditions deteriorated rapidly and let’s just say I took a lot of duck poo on board. The guys in the kayaks were fantastic shouting encouragement all the way. I saw quite a lot of ladies struggling. I just tried to keep them going by shouting ”Come on, nearly there, the hard bit’s over” By the time I got to the funnel I was doing breast stroke but was just so ecstatic to have actually finish I didn’t care. Plus there were too gorgeous dudes doing the haul out.

T1 encountered a lady who was obviously injured and in a great deal of pain. She had lots of people looking after her. The rest of T1 was a very sociable affair. I actually sat down to put my trainers and socks on but still managed a reasonably quick exit.

There’s an endless hill not far from the start. I’d had to get off and push on the training day and I wasn’t surprised to see lots of ladies pushing. I’d got the bit between my teeth and despite being all over the road (I was even asked if it was closed roads!) managed to stay on the bike. There were lots of marshals congratulating, encouraging and generally pointing in the right direction all the way round. It wasn’t a difficult 16k but it certainly wasn’t helped by the wind.

It was very concerning to be passed by the paramedics on the way in.

T2 was awful. I just went the wrong way.

My legs were ok and amazingly didn’t have much jelly in them. I was surprised when I got onto the run, an out and back twice to hear one lady giving up after one out and back. I ran out and back walked out and ran back. I walked not because I had a problem with my legs or stamina but because my back was killing me.

28:30 swim 1:02:25 bike 42:04 run Total 2:12:59.
Two people finished behind me. Strange really – two people finished behind me in Chirk too. I felt so much stronger, better equipped and confident today though

I had a fabulous day. I met some fantastic people. The organisation by Chester Tri was excellent so thanks guys.

I’m still not entirely convinced what the biggest achievement is, starting this event or finishing it. I’m just so glad I did do it.

Bring on Llanrwyst – I must learn to run up “Big” hills.

Friday, 18 July 2008

Diva's Reinstated

Off we pop on Sunday to Manley Mere, armed with my secret weapon the tesco wetsuit. It’s a bit like Jimmy Grindley’s magic football boots and Dumbo’s magic feather. The fantastic Sal, the race secretary of the Diva’s had asked to swim with me just to establish exactly what my problem was. She looked at my feet and said “you can’t race in those” erm Sal, they’re not shoes it’s the legs of my wetsuit too long.

It’s never been a 750m problem. It’s been the other side of the mere looks so far away. It looked even further away. So the pep talk to myself starts. I’ve swum across it before. I can do the distance. I can swim in a wetsuit. Just take it really steady.

And we were off!

I kept right to the back. I didn’t want to be kicked and I didn’t want people swimming over me. I loved it. I don’t mean like. I mean Love. With a passion. Im parts it was like being in a warm bath. I didn’t do much breast stroke. I didn’t do any crawl as in with my face in the water. I did an over arm of a fashion and soon got to the other side. I did have sighting problems but being at the back just followed everyone else.

It was an exhilarating experience and the kids cheered when I got out. They were pretty gobsmacked that there were 9 behind me. Not that it would have mattered in the slightest if I was last. And I wasn’t in the slightest out of breath.

So that’s me back in then. The kids want wetsuits and they can’t wait until Sunday so they can do the adventure trail.

A very strange training week. Struggled with the bike on Monday. Absolutely blitzed 5k in the rain on Tuesday. Struggled again with the bike yesterday so did as Sue had suggested and turned it into a brick with a longer run which was fine and today did a 10.5mile bike easily and a shortish run after no problems.

Was reading a thread on Tri Talk this week about someone spending £350 on new bike gear to reduce the weight by 500g to go faster. I’ve put on 5lb since Chirk so that’s obviously why I struggle with the bike.

Had my legs massaged this morning and Tracey commented on how much smaller they were.

So that’s me ready then. I’ve done the swim. I’ve done the bike and 5k is 5k in anyone’s money, especially when it’s flat. Just don’t want to get too cocky.

It has been a fabulous week. Paula had an amazing result in Boundary Breeze. Carolyn was fantastic in IM Austria and I’ve read to fantastically inspiring reports from IM Austria. One girl beat her PB by 1 hour 15minutes and another, despite being knocked out in the swim and beating the cut off by seconds and having to stop on the bike because of a thunder storm still achieved a PB.

This is what Triathlon is all about. To all you lovely girlies in the Diva’s on Sunday “Good Luck and have fun.” To Sue, Iain and all the Wrecsam Tri guys competing in Oswestry “Good Luck and ride safe – that bike is a bit lumpy”

To everyone else have a good weekend.

Tesco To The Rescue

This should have been posted last Sunday

"The man who looks for security, even in the mind, is like a man who would chop off his limbs in order to have artificial ones which will give him no pain or trouble. "
~Henry MillerSo there I was filling in my training plan and my husband adds his halfpenny worth of “I don’t know why your bothering, you’ll only bottle it like you’ve done with this open water one.”

Well.. how very dare you?

To say I was livid was understatement of the year. What made it worse was that he was right. I never finish anything.

As if by magic the next day I open an email from Paula which basically said that I should do the Divas and the worst thing that could happen would be it would take me ages.

No Paula the worst thing that could happen would be that I’d drown and even worse than that would be that I’d have to be hauled out and sink the kayak.

She ended with if you’re not doing it can I have your entry.

It got me thinking

Nothing in this world is ever Lynne’s fault. Blame the weather. Blame the bike. Blame the birds. Blame the sky. So in this particular case I can blame the wetsuit.

I have no idea how a wet suit is supposed to fit. Iknow it’s supposed to be tight. I am extremely grateful for Andy giving me his old one and in an ideal world I would have lost weight and it wouldn’t have been so tight. OK I saw other women having help to be zipped up but didn’t see anyone struggling like I struggled to get in it.

Cunning plan. For the sake of £35 I’ll order an XL mans from Tesco Direct. Well I ordered it plus £4.85 postage and it came the next day.

It’s thin. It’s neoprene rather than rubbery. The arms and legs are too long and they can’t be chopped because they’re sewn rather than glued. I can get in it on my own and zip it up. It’s got a lot of gaps but it does fit on the boobs, bum, tummy and thighs. I had visions of it turning into a wet nappy.

The only answer was to bite the bullet and try it.

The fantastic Sue to the rescue.

We’ll go to Bala Saturday morning.

Grateful as I am Sue I’m terrified.

Manley is shallow therefore relatively warm and when we’ve had the training days there’s no boats except the rescue kayaks. And with the best will in the world Sue’s tiny – she would never be able to rescue me.

As expected no excuses, we’d stay close to the edge where it would be relatively shallow, relatively warm, too shallow for boats and I would not get into difficulty.
What she didn’t tell me was the bottom was stony ouch!

I got in. I could feel the water sucking inside the wetsuit. It didn’t turninto a wet nappy. It wasn’t too tight across the chest which meant I could breath. Ok the arms didn’t allow for fluent crawl but I invented this kind of Lynne stroke. A sort of cross between breast stroke and doggy paddle. It’s not quick. It’s not attractive but it does propel me forwards and I don’t get breathless or feel as if my arms and legs are going to fall off.

We swam for 40 minutes or so. No idea how much ground we covered but I absolutely loved it.

We got out got changed and Sue FORCED me to run, off road on a very uneven grass track, along the banks of the lake.

Well that’s it then. Swimming sorted. Running sorted. Bike sorted. There is nothing to stop me doing the Divas.

Going to do the swim course this afternoon just to make sure.

I’m not sorry I decided not to do it because it’s taken the pre race pressure off me for the last couple of weeks. I’ve not trained specific but I have trained with Llanrwyst in mind.

This week should be a taper week but I don’t do tapers very well and end up sluggish so 3 hard brick sessions planned with a gentle run and cycle thrown in. Rest on Saturday and a visit to the lovely Tracey for a leg massage.

Paula’s actually doing Boundary Breeze this very second so good luck to her. She’s been suffering all week with a stomach bug contracted swimming in the Dee last Sunday.

Carolyn Hewitt is doing Ironman Austria as we speak - good luck to her too.

And finally, the lovely Thea who commented on my blogs and gave me such encouragement and inspiration, her Blog of A Year Of Living Dangerously was the same as mine but much better written. It’s been deleted. So Thea, hope your ok and please get in touch

Sunday, 6 July 2008

“Some people dream of success... while others wake up and work hard at it. “
~Author Unknown

So there I was incredibly proud of doing the Mold route. I even emailed Sue to tell her how I’d got on and where I’d had to push. This Ironlady had done the Oswestry route at the same time and assured me I’d made the right decision by not entering as yes, there were down hills but they were narrow with bends at the end so you couldn’t get the speed going down to get up the other side anyway that’s all a bit immaterial. What was significant was that she said she would never attempt two of the hills I’d failed on as they were too steep. So I checked my course and I’d taken a complete wrong turn. Despite still ending up in the right place I’d made things so much harder. Which in a way is good?

So all fired up I’ve had yet again another mixed week.

I’ve blasted my 3k route 19.47 and brought down my 5k to 41.09 yet again I haven’t done any swimming. My eating and drinking have been totally out of control and then there’s the cycling…..

I intended to do the Mold Sprint route yesterday but it was raining and windy. OK so it might be raining and windy for the event. I don’t actually mind rain and wind. Chirk was lashing down but I just thought from a safety point of view I might be better postponing it after all with 8 weeks to go there’s plenty of time to get it done weekly. I thought about going for a run. I thought about going to the gym and in the end did nothing.

I got up this morning all fired up raring to go and it was raining and windy again. Never mind bite the bullet. Thing is though what do you wear? I normally wear a short sleeved base layer. Last week I wore my long sleeved running top over the top. This morning I put my top layer of my 3 in 1 walking coat over the top. (Can’t you just feel an excuse coming on here?)

Off I popped feeling super confident and failed miserably.

I don’t know if it was because I had no expectations last week and everything was a bonus. Or because I’d talked myself into because I’d succeeded down the line on far harder hills than I’d failed on at the beginning, there were no excuses for not blasting the early ones. Or the rain. Or I was too hot. Or I’d eaten fried chicken and chips the night before. Whatever, I failed and I knew that going on was not an option.

So I turned around, went down the bypass and blasted 16miles in a different direction. Ok the hills weren’t as steep but they were pretty long. Similar to the Chirk course in fact. There were also two right turns at quite big roundabouts which has improved my confidence no end. I had a scary moment when approaching a junction. I had right of way but a skip lorry came hurtling towards me and had to screech to a halt. A cyclist got killed at that very same junction a couple of years ago. I don’t have any answers just the motorists be aware of cyclists. Talking of which since I have become a cyclist I really do think I have become a better driver by being more aware.

So the rules for this week – stick to the script and even though I’m not doing the Deva Diva’s I am going to attempt another open water session next Sunday.

Sunday, 29 June 2008

Do Not Overtrain Do Not Get Injured Do Not Get Demotivated

“Whether you think you can or think you can't - you are right.”
~Henry Ford

So I realised I was sadly lacking and despite doing an Olympic training plan I had a long way to go so upped the training.

Did a spinning class for the first time. Wasn’t sure what to expect but knew the purpose of me going was so I could cycle out of the saddle. I couldn’t. Pedalled really hard, sweated buckets, thoroughly enjoyed it and at the end, when everyone had left, learned how to get out of the saddle, was extatic.

Had a really productive rest of week and was really looking forward to a hard run with Alexia on the Friday but sneaked in an extra bike session and put into practice the standing up on the pedals and pinged my hamstring!

No training for another week which got me contemplating the state of my swimming.

I can swim breast stroke in a pool - not fast but pretty much forever. I can do crawl and my crawl has improved dramatically since I learned to breath out underwater (don't laugh! I've been doing it wrong for 40years!) Anyway I've had 2 open water sessions which have proved I can do 250m crawl however I cannot do breast stroke in a wetsuit. My legs come up and I basically end up treading water horizontally if that makes any sense. I'm expending a great deal of energy and not moving forward. If there was a local pool, where I could swim for an hour every morning I'd be able to increase my crawl distance over the next 3 weeks but without absolute dedicated practice 500m is too much to make up. Our local pool opens at 7. I've got to be back for 7.45 to get the kids to school so half an hour isn't enough. In a way you can blag the bike by getting off and pushing up the hill and the run by walking but the swim if you run out of puff you're finished!

So after much weeping and wailing and grinding of teeth I’ve withdrawn. A DNF is a failure a DNS is even worse but I can’t spend the next 3 weeks getting stressed to the moon knowing I’ll fail and then there’s the fuelling the can’t swim fire by putting myself more under pressure that I’d probably barely manage 25m.

So I’ve had my entry rolled over to next year when I will concentrate on my swimming and blast the distance.

The other thing is the Diva’s is full and there is a waiting list. It’s only fair to give someone who will finish the chance.

So was suggested that Oswestry was on the same day. Great solution put all the training to good use and enter that instead.

So I put a little post on Wrecsam Tri’s Forum to say that I’d pulled out of the Deva’s and was taking the easy option of Oswestry and what were the courses like in comparison. Well… the Elite Bobby Edwards said Oswestry was tough, the World Number 12 Paul Williams said stick with the Diva’s and other people basically said the same. So I’m faced with a dilemma. So I ask the question how does it compare to the old Mold route and am told about the same.

I’ve been putting this little darling off for ages because, apart from it being horrendously hilly I’ve never been sure how long it would take and as you’re all well aware I have to be back for school. I did it this morning leaving at 7.55 and left the route for Mark and a note saying come and look for me if I’m not back by 9.30.

Was ready to turn around at the Ruthin Road roundabout but plodded on. Mark has always said to me I should have trained up that way. He said I'd only know if I was fit if I could get to the Swan. Well I did. Had to get off a bit after but soon got back on and then got off again by the Rainbow and then just after Loggerheads. I absolutely loved the lanes. I learned more this morning than I have since I started. I blasted the hills. Kept pretty much on the big ring and used the down hills to get up the other side. Had to get off by Eryrys school and another killer of a hill but then the wooshes back were amazing. Getting off 6+ times is ok in training but not for events so I'm giving Oswestry a miss. I'm so glad though that I considered it because it's forced me to do this Mold route.

Took 1 hour 43 minutes and when I got back Mark had put the bike rack on and was coming to look for me.

So now we have 9 weeks to Llanrwyst. I believe that course is a bit lumpy but it can’t be any worse than what I’ve done this morning. I’ve got 9 weeks to conquer 6 hills. Today was race distance so it’s going to be incorporated within the training plan. I need to formulate different training routes – there’s plenty around here. I think I’ll do what I have been doing the opposite way to practice steeper hills.

Three weeks after Llanrwyst is the Flintshire 10K. I’m still not doing much more than 5k. The plan is to increase it by 10% weekly and add some interval and fartlek sessions. (I absolutely hate speed work!)

The plan in the beginning was do not overtrain, do not get injured and not to get demotivated. Yes I’ve let all three happen but I’ve learned some very important lessons and will do my utmost not to let them happen again.

Monday, 16 June 2008

Manley Mere - Tri Again

Oh my God where in the world do you start this?

Off to he Doctors on Tuesday who in no uncertain terms told me not to stop training.

Blood tests Wednesday and appointment for X-Ray next Monday. If it's too painful to run just cycle and swim! It's not painful - just swollen. She thinks part of my metalwork might have become loose or dislodged so in a worse case scenario I'll have to have it all taken out but it could be possible if it's just a little screw that I could have it done by keyhole. Entirely possible though that it's just the heat and because I've laid off the training circulation is sluggish. Was reading on tri talk when people taper their body fights back so maybe that's what mine's been doing.

So the training Tri on Wednesday. They said it was a Club training so I couldn't do it. Then they said they'd squeeze me in. Then I got the list saying there were 5 spare places and was anyone interested. Cerys my swimming teacher said she'd come. I mailed them back and they said it was Club only! grrr so I told Cerys and she'd also been in touch with Sal the Divas secretary - I wasn't sure if she was back from Vancouver and she said that Cerys should just turn up. so mad panic after work. Mark put my rack on. I got changed and broke the zip on my tri suit so ended up putting a swimming costume on under it. Left my kit bag on the top of the stairs. grabbed my wetsuit and Morgan decided to throw my bag down the stairs and follow it head first. So off to casualty complete with bike rack and me panicking that I haven't got any knickers on!

His nose is very grazed. He's got a big bump on his head but basically they don't think anything's broken and we've got to see GP in 10 days.

Reasonable Nercwys loop Thursday

Saturday decided to wear my new running vest. Tip – never race in a new vest. It kept riding up and showed my vast belly – was totally mortified.

Off to Manley yesterday. I went off first in the slowest bike group and I was last which says a lot? Failed on one hill too was mightily peed off. Longer than the ones I do but no steeper. No excuses just don't know the course. Will get out there and conquer it a few times before the race. Cracking course though. Quite twisty and up and down but ok if you get the cadence going down and change early enough. Sal says I need to use the balls of my feet and raise my seat so there's the jobs for this week.

Didn't run as there wasn't much time and takes me forever to get in my wetsuit.

Absolutely hated the swim. Was only 250m the same as last time but I seriously wanted to get out once I was across the mere. Last time I had a canoeist and a club swimmer by me most of the time. This time I felt totally isolated. We were supposed to do 2 X 250m I felt quite chuffed that I'd done 1 but towards the end got my stroke and confidence and second wind. Important lessons learned:-
1) I can swim
2) I didn't consume half the Mere
3) The support guy's are there to help and they obviously didn't think I needed any help
4) I really didn't need any help.

Got out and said to the guy at the side "Hated every minute of it - that's why I'll be back next time!"

Got out of my wetsuit reasonably ok so T1 isn't quite as daunting.

I need to say to you now exactly the same as I did last time. I desperately need to lose weight so that my wetsuit fits better. I need to get some serious swim practice in and I need to get to bed earlier so I can get up earlier and add an extra 30 mins training a day.

Have an extraordinary story to tell about Sue the Ironlady but need her permission first,.