A few years back I hated change. The ideal world would see everything remaining just the way I’d like it predictable and ordered. I say all this having not stayed in one place for more than a few months in the past two years. Things do change.

Here I am again at a period of change. All packed up and with one final night in Wellington before I head back to the UK. As always there’s mixed feelings there’s a lot I like about New Zealand, but then there’s plenty I miss from home. Let’s be honest once I land back home it’s only three weeks and I’m off to Lanzarote!

There’s a lot more change to come. Right from the start of my journey I’ve had things tightly plotted out. Races entered twelve months in advance, tickets booked, somewhere to stay… I may have been moving a lot, but it was well planned. Check my schedule and you’ll see it’s suddenly looking pretty blank. For once I can’t tell you exactly what I’ll be doing over the next year.

The question I’m most commonly asked is how I afford to do all of this. My answer to that is changing. Unfortunately I’m not independently wealthy and their are limits to my funds! Once I’m back in the UK it’s time to start addressing the bank balance a bit more. The horrible truth is I’m going to have to do a bit of work!

I’m not expecting sympathy. Actually I’m looking forward to what’s ahead. There’s a lot of potential on the horizon, but not too many definites. I can say my aim is to build a lifestyle still focussed on training. I’ve come a long way in these last two years and feel there’s more to come. I’m not giving up now.

I’ve mentioned before a long term objective of achieving a sustainable lifestyle within the world of endurance sports. I started down that path with my coaching and I’ll be continuing further down that route in the coming months. I’m looking to achieve a balance whereby I can work just enough to support my continued development as an athlete.

My first step will be working with the guys at the Tri20 Swim Centre in Reading. Aside from helping out at the lake I’ll be running some training camps in the Dordogne. If you’re thinking about training camps over the summer check them out. The aim is to provide everything from start to finish so all you need to worry about is training. I’ll be on hand to guide training and help plan sessions for the week. Of course how much you do is entirely up to you.

It’s certainly going to change the way I structure my training. I’m hoping it might introduce a bit of discipline again. I may pack in a lot of training in a week, but I’ll admit without work my time management isn’t what it used to be. Can’t do any harm to get on top of that again and be a little more efficient.

For now though the focus is Lanzarote. Once I’m back in the UK it’s all about the build. I’ll be getting back into hard training and preparing myself to break 10 hours there. I want to get back on the age group podium too! Let’s not be shy with our goals.

These past few weeks have been a little easier than I’d intended. In fact my original plan was to almost train through New Zealand. Things didn’t quite work out that way, but it’s not been an entire waste. I opted for a swim focus and I mean a focus. Last week I managed 41km in the pool! That’ a record for me and remarkably despite fatigue by the end of the week I started hitting very comfortable sub-1:30 100s.

Two months of a lot of swimming seems to be paying off. It’s easy to accept a 1 hour swim as good enough, but the reality is if I want to progress further I need more. Coming out of the water in 55 minutes would make a massive difference to my position and the way the bike would play out. That’s the goal to keep working till I can swim at least a 55 in an Ironman.

It’s getting late and I have to get up early for my flight. Next time I post it’ll be back in the UK. One last change to mention – I promise to get back into the blogging habit. Less of the silent treatment.