T is for Taper

The hard work is done, it’s time to start the taper and let the body recover ready to race! Things come around fast, it doesn’t seem that long ago I arrived out here and started training. Actually it’ll be time for a 2 month review very shortly. I wonder if anyone ever enters their taper feelings that they’ve done enough? I have to admit to doubts in the back of my mind about whether I’m ready. It’s too late now though so I just have to put them aside and get on with it.

I finished off my last bit of training by racing at the other end of the scale to usual. A local sprint tri so just a 400m swim, 15km bike and 4km run. All I can say is that was bloody hard work give me 9 to 10 hours of racing (preferably closer to 9) any day! Still on the plus I can stick with some of the faster short course guys still so it’s not all bad! Oh, and my Polar HRM broke! I can’t stop the timer anymore. I really don’t need to have to buy a new one right now, but it’s kind of an essential.

My swim was a bit of a disappointment. I thought I was going fast, but looking at my watch when I exited the water apparently not. A humble 7.5 minutes for 400m apparently, I hope the course was long, because I cruise that distance in the pool faster than that. I’ll be getting some swim analysis done on my way back from Busso, hopefully it’ll find something I can work on to get me past this plateau. Consider it a project for next April, the goal is a comfortable sub-1 hour Ironman Swim. Let’s not be shy, I’d like to be putting out a 55 minute Ironman swim. I’ve 3 months and largely unlimited pool and open water access to achieve that one in.

I have a long course approach to transitions, so lets skip over that bit. A 15Km bike course is a bit like a warm-up really! Normally I don’t warm up by going as hard as my legs can manage though. I have to admit they weren’t at their best, they’ve been getting better as the week goes on, but need some more time. I’m just making excuses here and as I write this I have no idea how I actually did! I put in a solid effort can’t say I was overtaken much that I noticed, but with 1500 competitors in numerous waves it’s a little hard to tell. What helped a bit was a couple of mates further up the road I’d see at each turn around. They’re short course focussed and it spurred me on to try to catch up with them.

Another transition to skip over though this one was one of my faster T2s! I’d opted for the Zoot shoes again and this time they worked better than in Noosa. 4Km is a tiny run so it was a case of hit it hard and hope you can hold on. My legs started hurting a few hundred metres in and that pretty much set the tone. Again the mates up the road were there to try and reel in, but it never happened! I don’t think I was running my best, but I had a good turn of speed out there and claimed a few more places in my age group for it.

Over the finish line and lots of fresh fruit to refuel on, a few cups of gatorade, a cappuccino and then ride home. I’ve since done an easy ride out and about with a lunch break in the middle of it. Storms have rolled in though and so my training options are pretty much done. The week wasn’t anywhere near as big as planned, it was still a solid effort though. As I said at the start of the post, it’s too late now. There’s some expression about money in the bank or something or other that’s probably relevant!

For those that skim the training posts I realise that’s been pretty much every post for the past couple of weeks. With the taper starting and some travel lined up I’ll get some other stuff up here for sure. Hopefully some decent photos from out West. At least I need to test out my modelling skills with my sponsors kit. I don’t think I’d mentioned that my page on their website is up! Fame at last!

On that note time for some rest. I have a lie in to look forward to tomorrow and some easy training. Plus prep for my trip out west, 3 more days to go and I’m off. There’s going to be a few changes when I’m back, but more on that in December.