Tuesday 16 December 2014

One track mind

I'm beginning to think that I'm a little obsessed!

Although I think that I've always had the type of nature to 'need' a hobby or interest to focus on - something just for me, I don't think I have the sort of nature that has 'addictive' tendencies.  That is to say, what ever I've been interested in, it hasn't consumed me entirely.  I've always seen the bigger picture and always treated them for exactly what they were - a pass-time.  Something to enjoy, but would always be second place if more important things came up.  That has never been a problem for me.  Perfectly happy to stand-down and leave it for another day. 
But Tri ..... I'm beginning to think that it is becoming an obsession.  Even given the events of July (never to be mentioned by name again!), taking a couple of quite months and slowly ramping up the training, I've now found myself back top the place (in my mind) that I was in June / July.  Almost every spare moment I have I'm thinking about ......... the next training session, where I can fit in another Turbo set, where I'm gonna run, the swim set that I'll be doing tomorrow morning.
I have my face in Magazines, reading other Blogs, listening to Pod Casts (Friday Fat Black, IM Talk and The Real Starky are favourites), thinking about speeds and times and distances ALL the time!! STOP NOW!!

I NEED a break from work now (the past three weeks at work have been almost unbearable with office politics (not involving me, but with an open-plan office you just can't help but be dragged down by it).  I'm sure that I've been assigned my own personal 'Dementor' to follow me about when I'm in the building, sucking the life out of me when ever certain 'subjects' or people are mentioned.  I look forward to customers calling in and placing demands on you, just to create some relief..... or the Holiday break to do some more training :).  I should be moving to a new office come Jan, so that'll bring some relief.  The long commute home helps.  I've catch up with the obligatory PodCasts - The Real Starky is SO funny, and I'm also trawling my way through the Jack Reacher book series on Audible.  They make the journey fly by, and when I arrive home, seeing the Girls and doing a bit of exercise always helps.

So, thoughts have been:
  • Considering the small amount of running that I've done, how come I feel so good? 
Mostly night running due to the time I get in from work, but that's all good.  I've mentioned before, running round the back-lanes of Kent in the cold rocks.  The last few runs (5 / 6 miles) have been at least as fast as pre 'the event' with relatively little effort.  I've certainly not gone out with an intention to push the pace.  I'm thinking of throwing in a couple of long runs to see what I feel like there.  I'm trying desperately to think only about form while running and look at the numbers when I get home.  This seems to be working - NO over-exertion, NO pressure.  I must get into the habit of using the local athletics stadium for some Reps on the way home from work.  I think that that'll really help my pace.  The 'interval-based workouts that I've done using the Turbo Trainer are already seeing benefits, so I'm thinking that run intervals may also help.  I MUST keep my eye on the prize though - FINISH first, time will be what it will be.

  • Why do I NOT want too must more kit?
SO it's always nice to look at bike and gadgets and all (and I always do), I'm really happy with what I have right now.  The Chinarello is working a treat.  Smooth as silk and I feel completely at home on it.  OK, some winter tyres are probably long over-due and I have a new chain to throw at it soon, I'd be really hard pushed to replace it right now.
Watches and things don't really interest me.
I've invested in some exercise stuff to help with the CORE work-outs (Yoga band, Medicine Ball, Core Roller), but they are not exactly 'sexy' gadgets!  Am I normal?
OK, so maybe a new ATC Tri suit some time soon (broke the Zip on mine in hospital as I recall), maybe some nice new Soucony's will be coming my way in the New Year (but trainers are just wear'n tear aren't they?......... and a MTB would be nice .......... some new wheels may be coming next year .......and a training vacation ...... and ........ OK, I do want after stuff.  Consider myself normal.
  • Target time - What 'could' I achieve .......... NO stop that.  What will be will be .......... But could I qualify for GB ..........NO - STOP IT!!

  • Are the running injuries going to return when I crank up the mileage?

  • Etc, Etc Etc.  You get the message.

The connections via GOOGLE+ are growing across the globe.  I've people following the Blog from all over.  It's bloody great.  NZ, Chile, USA, Columbia, Hungary, Italy ......... even Wales!  Reading some other's stories is interesting.  Different motivations, accomplishments and interests. 
Should really post more - tri and spread the ATC word!  Would ATC make a good global brand?  Think we should start an informal competition to see who has ATC club kit in the most far-off place for training or competing.

Recent bike action has been bloody great fun.  Sort of can't get enough but just have to juggle weekend commitments with saddle time.  Couple of HARD hours on the MTB a couple of weeks ago followed by a nice long road ride.  Couple this to the Turbo and I'm really happy with two wheels.  For all the rides that I've done over the years I've never suffered from sore legs the day after .... until the Turbo.  Even after 'the event' and 6+ hours of work - not a problem next day.  Maybe I just wasn't trying hard enough or was just happy in that comfort zone where I felt that I was working adequately, or I've re-calibrated the mind into having different targets.  Now, EVERY session on the bike in the shed results in sore Quads.  Sadistic, but LOVE IT!!
The re-calibration needs to transfer to the 'recovery' rides.  This is relatively gentle saddle time just ticking over with a low heart rate and minimal effort.  It is really difficult to understand that it IS Ok to ride slow and maintain what seems to be NO effort and still call it 'training'. 
I have found it strange that the sessions I concentrate on this and just plod away at 60 - 65% I get to a stage just over an hour in when I become so hungry I'm climbing off the bike almost shaking.  It happens within minutes.  One second I'm fine watching a film or something and then, the next I'm loosing concentration and desperate for food.  Bizarrely, working with a higher effort and I can go much longer than that while feeling relatively fine.  Must be the way I'm drawing on the old energy reserves or something!
I generally try to train in empty and look to replenish after a work-out.  I think this works well for me and the time that I get to train. I've started on the Fat Black coffees in the morning.  I've found it easy to do and feel fine with it, so I'll persevere with this.  I don't have a problem with any difference in taste and all.  I do need to drink more water though, so I'll focus on this during work-days - and stay off the Coffee after 12:00!! 

It seems that every week I try and plan for the next Park Run, or a nice long run, or hours on the bike or the Track Interval sessions but never seem to get round to it.  I suppose that isn;t too much fo a problem at the moment and I should remember to chill out about it.  I'm not in a fixed plan right now, so should just make sure I maximise the training that I can do!! 
I'll continue with the bike at Weekends, the Turbo mid-week and just slotting swim and run is as and when.  Over the Holiday period I'll be compiling The Plan onto a wall-chart and slotting in those target events to work back to a start-date so that I can slowly start to crap myself :)

Happy training!


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