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-Pilgrim Challenge: 33 mile run on N. Downs way 6:44
-MarshMan: Half IM Dist 5:32 bad run Sad
-Wimbleball UK 70.3: 1/2 IM 5:48
-CowMan: Middle Dist tri 5:25
-JPMorgan Corp Challenge: 5.8 km run, followed by beer & BBQ! 24:13
-London Stock Exchange 1 mile swim: 1 mile, tooting bec lido, no wetsuits 33:23
-London to Brighton run 56 mile off road run 12:41 gets 2 qualification points for Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc, and some nasty blisters!

Forthecoming & Target

And ideas for the future/events under consideration:
-A Marathon: a marathon, somewhere quick - 3:10 gets GFA London... but that's pretty swift!
-Pilgrim Challenge in Reverse, at Night!: an exercise in navigation, running at night & generally sounds fun! leave off the last train from London, arrive for the first back to London!
-HM PB: <1:30
-A Century ride I've done one, it hurt because of bad fuelling, I'd like to do another for peace of mind however long it takes!
-IM Canada 2011 NFI - looking more likely France now... or actually anything!
-Olympian Race: 180km, 28 hours, on foot, in Greece <28 hours! Three points for the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc - Maybe CCC instead now, or TDS, but after L2B I'm doubting the sanity of any of it!
-Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc 166km, 9,400m altitude change, at altitude NFI It really is a bit bonkers!
    Etape Caledonia Done, with nails on the road

    UK 70.3 Wimbleball 6:22 - PB on rubbish training!

    VO2 3.8km Long Swim - Box End 1:15 longest ever swim in one go, quite happy with that

    IM 70.3 Monaco 6:05 - PB!

Wimbleball 2009...
Tue Jun 16, 2009 4:27 pm The Iain
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Wimbleball 2009...

So, going into this race possibly the least prepared I've ever been for a race. Swim training had been OK, bike training had gone well, but then had been a bit scuppered in the last three weeks due to technical difficulites, and my run training was... well it pretty much wasn't.

I got back to my parent's house near Reading after a flying trip from London on Thursday afternoon, and Mum had done her usual sterling perfomance and made/bought enough food to feed an army, their families, their families friends, and any random pets, for about 3 weeks. Friday I packed up the car, and off I went, revelling in the luxury of my borrowed Volvo XC90, against my usual wheels, a P-reg Fiesta Classic 999cc. Unlike last year I didn't have any traffic issues, so it was about a 2.5hr drive, with a bit of a diversion from the route the GPS wanted to take me, because I wimped out of the road that was "not suitable for motor vehicles"! Tent up, bit of a chat with the thoroughly nice chap (Ross) who was camping next to me, and early to bed.

Early to rise on Saturday morning, bit of brekkie and down to the practice swim. Here I had some issues with my race number, having not registered yet, and not really remembered what it was. For some reason I though I was 1016. I wasn't. Eventually we found me, and I was 943. Into the water we went, and it all went pretty well; comfortably breathing on three, bit of drafting practice on the way back - just an out and back to the first turn buoy, a bit of messing around looking at the bottom where it got shallow and doing surface dives, then back. On the way out of the water I managed to give another number "erm, according to this you never went in the water, and you're a 40-45 year old woman" Oh, that's not me, oh, hold on I'm 943!

Bit more brekkie, bike put together, off for a spin. Plan was 30 minutes or so with some accelerations, and lots of changing gear to see how that was after the car. Changing gear was bad after the car. This was rectified on return to the site, bags packed, off to the breifing, all's good in the hood. It had been pretty hot so drink LOADS. Early night, and then someone was talking, loudly, until about 11. Oh, and the drink Loads strategy was meaning I was up every couple of hours to check out the hedgerows.

0330 the first alarm went off for breakfast, Bread and honey x4 then back to sleep. Awake again at 0430, and hungry, so another slice of bread and honey, whilst I didn't want to be busy digesting stuff going into the race, I also didn't want to be going into it a tad peckish! STRONG coffee kick started everything that needed done pre-race, then a gel 30 minutes before kick off, bike all setup bottles on (1x 500ml orange power bar drink, 2x 750ml 2 gels & water).

And wait.... and wait.... and wait some more. HR leaping around like some kind of frog on speed, one minute it'd go up to about 100, the next back down to 55.

And so into the water - almost ready to go, all the night before's electrolytes mean there are fish looking up at me envious of how hydrated I was. On the plus side the water was pretty cold, but it wasn't cold in my suit for long. The off took me by surprise, and so the scrabble in the washing machine commenced. First turn buoy came and went and eventually I started to feel a bit more comfortable, and onto the second turn without too much issue. Then I spotted a guy who was swimming head up and at about my speed. Well, if he's going head up (he appeared to be lacking goggles) he should be swimming straight, so I'm going to get on those feet. Somone decided to get on mine too. That's fine - but when I was behind the guy I made an effort to be close, but try not to make contact. I touched his toes a couple of times, but the guy behind was all over me; slapping my calves and knees, and after a while I got bored of that so kicked a bit harder. Eventually I kicked him in the face, sucks to be him, but if he'd dropped back 50cm it wouldn't have been a problem. Could have been a her, don't want to seem sexist. 40 minutes

T1 - oh my that's a long run. Took quite a while about it, had another trip to the facilities (my word that was a lot of fluid I took in). 6:30

Off on the bike. There was chaos on the road to begin with, folks everywhere! but eventually it thinned out and it came to pick the next person to pass game. This went reasonably well, there were people passing me, and I'd have a go at getting them back. I'd planned to smack the hell out of myself on the bike, it didn't quite go to plan. My legs felt more tired than the rest of me, I was slow on the "flats" I was doing alright on the uphill but larger people were passing me on the downhill. I also get scared very easily on the downhill, so the wiggly one didn't exactly fall in my strong points. I also lost a water bottle going down there - I really hope no-one hit it, I wasn't aware until the bottom when I thought I'll grab some gel/water and it was gone, the empty one was still there though, which was useful! Coming back into T2 enjoyed going down those hills, and shouting to the crowds, brilliant. 3:24

Into T2, and feeling OK. Maybe this run would be alright; cheeky can of Red Bull, and a couple of ibuprofen, and we're off. 2:30

It wasn't fast, but it was running. Spasms in the bottom of my back, especially on the steeper uphill, soon I found out that I was faster and more comfortable with a mincing power walk; going down hill bent knees to keep the shock off the back, and soon lap one was done. I managed to run a bit more of lap two, and by lap three I was running all but the uphill by the farm and the feed stations. Quite pleased with myself! As I came towards the home stretch I picked up the pace as much as I could and started reeling people in, responding to the crowd, smiling, and having a great time; turning right instead of left there was a woman just a little ahead of me... eventually I concluded that it would be bad form to sprint past her for about 30 seconds, so I went for the crowd "I can't hear you" kind of gestures, and other said they really responded well, beaming as I went over the line - curious to see how the finish line photo will look! 2:09

Afterwards it became apparent that I was pretty beaten; I sat down on a box and a few volunteers came to check I was alright. I must have looked bad because in the transition tent when I was picking up my bags more people were asking if I was OK.

I was great; really enjoyed the race, I didn't quite do it as planned, but I took 28 minutes off last year's time with much less training.

I'll be back in 2010 - then we're looking for sub 5:45...

Thu Jun 18, 2009 7:49 pm iainm
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nice one the iain. great result. must admit, i'd forgotten this was you. will check in more often!
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Fri Jun 19, 2009 3:15 pm Paul L
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Excellent stuff. Cool "Mincing power walk" Very Happy I'll add this to the epic race reports list when I get the chance. Take care, Paul. Very Happy
From the pen of Mark Twight
"Why: not all are invited"

Meaningful achievement takes time, hard work, persistence, patience, proper intent and constant self-awareness. The path to such success is punctuated by failure, consolidation and renewed effort. It is wet with the tears of emotional breakdown. Personal reconstruction is art. Discovering one's self, one's talent and ambition and learning how to express it is a creative process so may not be rushed. What's the hurry? Pressure to succeed according to a particular timeline comes from outside. If the goal is selfish self-improvement there is no schedule, no deadline. One's rate of progress is influenced by the intensity used to address the task. Hard, intelligent work speeds us along the path. Neurotic obsession and compulsion may steepen the trajectory but usually lead to illness and injury. In the end, the process takes as long as it takes -- you can't push the river. We are in it for the long haul and demand the same of the athletes we train.
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