Showing posts from March, 2010

The Advantages of Limitations

The major component of getting the best out of yourself on race day is dictated by your training. Naturally this makes performing optimal training essential for an ideal race. However, my view of an ideal training program for long course triathlon cannot be achieved with full time work. Since my view involves a reasonably high volume combined with high frequency in each discipline means working 8+ hours most days a week almost impossible, especially with the requirements for extra sleep and recovery management. Training 22-30 hours/week with 5-6 sessions per discipline, plus 2 strength sessions is not achievable for those working more than 35 hours/week with a family.
Let me make it clear. High volume training works, and it works very well.
Of course there are some necessary covenants to make this rule true. Probably the most important is the ability to adapt positively to the volume load. That means you have to have to have the ability to absorb and recover from the workload. You need …

Day One

Solid criteria usually works best for me. That is why today is marked as the official start of my next training program. Today is when that switched is flicked, my body and mind are now in triathlon territory.

As my program goes, each modified week begins with one or two easier days. This scheduling works best since I am scheduled to 10 hour day shifts at work at that time. This usually involves grumbling at my alarm at 05:00 then either running and cycling before walk for about 30-40min.

This morning I was well and truly up before the alarm. Unfortunately at 03:30 my daughter decided we haven't fed her anything for the last week, and now was the time to make up for it. There was no letting up until she had a full belly. Lucky for her she could then go back to sleep. Unfortunately for myself, that was it for sleep. With a later than expected night of study to compound at to the lack of sleep, I lost a little enthusiasm for training.

Still, I grabbed my gear and drove to work. Parked …

Run For The Kids 2010 - Race Report

About the best autumn weather set the mood for a great event. Picking my usual parking spot for city based races allowed for an early and relaxed 15 minute walk, instead of driving in circles looking for a park. Soon enough the crowds starting converging towards the start area. You could smell the nervousness in the air, it hung thick. Over hearing some conversations made it clear this event attracted plenty who weren't regulars on the fun run circuit. Being a fund raiser for the Royal Children's Hospital probably had a lot to do with that.

The warm up would have been one the most relaxed I have ever had. Every step led to a smoother and smoother stride. I extended the warm up to allow for the protracted standing time that always accompanies the big mass participation races. However over 30 minutes stuck in one spot waiting for the start did take a fair bit from the warm up. No problem since everyone else was in the same boat.

The start always seems a little lack lustre when you…


A handful of some easy training sessions across disciplines, some corrective strength and flexibility training has me feeling rather underdone. Especially with this being on the end of  rather inconsistent training over last couple of month. The good side is I am feeling refreshed and injury free. With the 14.6km of racing in the Run For The Kids tomorrow, I am curious to see exactly how I perform.

Usually I am pretty unhappy about a lack of training, but this time I am in a different place. This time I feel like I am at a start of a new stage in my athletic endeavours. Tomorrow's race just provides an opportunity to kick this new stage off with good hit out. No stress. No preconceived performance ideas. Just back-to-the-basics racing on feel. The perfect springboard for a restart.


After thinking for a while about moving back towards triathlon, the more I am happy with the idea. The training plan continues to make sense in my head, and has reignited some of the fire. The decision is now made. The official first day of training will be the 18th of March. Still over a week away, but there are a few reasons for this.

Wanting to try my hand in the pool again before committing was one reason. Now having jumped in for a couple of splashes, I know I will again enjoy swimming. Historically it was always time in the water I skipped. I also wanted to know if I could really get my act together for cycling. With a couple of rides, I am convinced I can get in good quality training within my time constraints.

Next Sunday I had already committed myself for the Run For The Kids run. While I don't believe I am in shape to nail the race this year, I still want to get in a good go at it. I didn't want to commit to a new training regime that would take away from that race p…

The Triathlon Template

The parameters of my next training template are as follows:

Unique Version Of A Week

Since work is a rotating shift roster, the normal 7 day week timetabling will never work for me. Currently I am on a pretty set roster. That roster is based on a 6 week cycle, which can be broken down into 5 distinct weeks of 8-9 days. Each of these weeks starts with a 10 hour day shift followed by another three shifts of day, afternoon or nightshifts (up 14 hours for a standard night shift), followed by 4-5 days off. One week will be an exception, in that it is a very heavy on the work hours by adding another 14 hour night in the middle of what normally are my days off.

The rest of life's committments, family, friends, sleep requirements, etc are then plugged into each 8-9 day week. The end results gives me the time I have left to train.

Key Sessions

Keeping with my long running concept of having key workouts for each week still works for me. So for every 8-9 day week, I plan on including the follo…

All Inclusive

Life has been pretty busy lately. This lately has been extending for quite some time. Being busy isn't such a bad thing. Reflecting back throughout my life, I have achieved some pretty high goals and had enormous satisfaction and enjoyment during my busiest periods. I am one of those people that works better when I have constraints and deadlines, as opposed to plenty of free time. That said, managing the competing demands and slotting in the ability to relax are very important to the process.

The basics haven't changed for me over the years. The key difference now is some of the demands are more likely to change at the last minute than they used to. I used to be able to timetable everything well ahead of time. Having a family means this timetable may need to be thrown out the window at any moment. This is where I have come a bit lost. In an attempt to handle this unpredictability I have devised some so-called flexable training plans. With some hindsight, most the plans with th…


There have been a few interruptions to training recently. Because these have been imposed by life, I haven't been too worried. The problem however, is that my enthusiasm for getting back into proper run training is probably best described as intermittment. Set backs can put a dampener on training attitude, but it is more than that this time. Looking back over my post for this year a trend has finally stood out. That trend is I have been struggling to find that extra drive I am used to. As a result I have experimented with taking different outlooks to define how I train. Adapted where I can best apply my focus. Put in some measurable goals. All in all, I just haven't hit where I want to be. Not only in my mindset, but also from a fitness/performance standpoint.

For these problems to persist and surface so often, it must be something fundamental. The issue obviously hadn't indentified what is the main cause. I've been doing a reasonable amount of thinking on the topic la…