Birds 1 – Russell 0

As part of a new and better time management initiative I’m trying writing these posts off-line. It keeps me off the internet that little bit more which has got to be a good thing. I might even put a bit more thought into them and that’s definitely got to be a good thing!

The theory behind this blog was that once I was in Australia then things would become a bit more interesting and I’d have more to write about. A little patience is going to be needed here these things take time. Right now I’ve passed the first week getting used to training lots everyday and doing the odd bit of admin. It’s not exactly gripping stuff just yet.

Training goes well though, I’m coping fine with repeated days of high volume. The heavier swimming load takes it’s toll a little on my shoulders, but otherwise things have been fine. I’m not yet really into a structured plan as such. For the fortnight my plan is to get in a lot of swimming along with regular bike and run sessions. I’ll mix and match short and long runs as time allows and try to keep fairly consistent lengths of bike sessions. I’ll continue this up till 2 days before the Gold Coast Half-Ironman and then go into a mini-taper. The plan is to use the race as a rough gauge of where I am now and not to miss too much training for it.

Signs so far this week are that things are starting to pick up a bit. Certainly on the bike I’ve been feeling a bit better than I did the last few weeks back in the UK. Possibly a bit of a motivational boost from the new location, or from training with others, but a good sign. I’m not feeling great in the water yet, but trusting that just spending enough time there will fix that. As for the run if my legs feel fresh it’s great, if not it’s a slog. Nothing new on that one a few weeks of good running and hopefully I’ll be able to focus my training a bit more.

Once the Gold Coast Half is done then it’s time to switch to a structured plan. I drew up a rough outline before I left, a few tweaks to fit in training partners and it should be good to go. Each weekend I plan to use the basic week template to come up with an exact training plan for following week. Yep, I may have more time to fit things in, but organisation has become key to using this most effectively. This way I can adjust and control the build up of training and focus of the week. At the same time by sticking to a template it prevents me getting too easily confused.

Vicious, vicious birdI’ve said before how this is my ideal training environment. I should make a note of one exception to the rule. Birds. Particularly the Magpies. They get very territorial during nesting season and have a tendency to go for passers by. Last time I was here I was climbing up Springbrook when I encroached on a Magpie’s territory. It swooped me 3 times whilst I put in a hard hill climbing interval to escape. I got my first swoop yesterday! Brushed the top of my helmet as I cycled home. Probably not a Magpie as it swooped once and did a pretty poor job of it. Fortunately so far no trucks or utes have scored points on me.

Based on the winds the past couple of days this should be a great training environment for Lanza. The hills are there to use, maybe not quite as long or exposed. Riding from Point Danger up to The Spit and back can be pretty challenging depending on the winds. I think it’s time to start exploring west though, much as I enjoy riding the beach front roads there’s only so many times you can do it in a week. Just a swim and a run to go today, then I’ll back things off a little tomorrow.