White Water Rafting, Lee Valley Olympic 2012 Course

But before getting to the exciting bit, a quick reflection on the training week just gone.

After the panic of sore knees and a dodgy calf, the week started gingerly with a rest day on Monday. Tuesday was also going to be a rest day, but instead I tried a quick recovery run – turning out to be 3 miles longs in a little over 35 minutes. Whilst the calf didn’t feel right, it didn’t cause any pain and certainly didn’t warrant any more delays in training.

After struggling with various plans for triathlon this week I came across a plan I’d previously forgotten about. The reason I discarded it before was because I felt I was doing much more quantity that it was specifying – however with the realisation that I was sacrificing quality in order for this quantity to continue I had a fresh look at it. So the training plan I’m following for the next 6 weeks in preparation for the South Coast Triathlon is courtesy of Triathletes World. Plenty of quality in there, just now need to dedication to put in the hard work for the next few weeks.

And so on the back of this plan was a week of interval training. Firstly on the bike Wednesday morning – 20 seconds effort, followed by 40 seconds recovery. A commuting PB was grasped from me by 2 sets of traffic lights. That 40 minute barrier will be broken – hopefully this week!  Thursday saw the dreaded return of interval sessions in running. Whilst these work they’re not half painful. They’re also incredibly hard to do on your own, so I’m considering a return to a running club in the not distant future. 2 minutes moderate pace, 1 minute hard and then 3 minutes recovery. Repeated 6 times. Whilst it hurt I wasn’t in as much pain as my wife who somehow managed to run into a tree. No major damage to the tree I’m happy to report.

Friday saw a continuation of interval sessions, but this time in the pool. 5 repeats of 200m efforts with 30 seconds rest, followed by 3 repeats of 100m efforts. Arms were ready to drop off by the end. I did however get a chance to test out my new Timex Ironman watch to track my timings – an excellent piece of kit I wish I’d gotten ages ago.

Saturday morning was a couple of laps at the lake at Redricks – doing a mile of open water swimming in approximately 43 minutes. Sighting is still pretty poor with me ending up in the centre island on the second lap. I’ll not mention crashing into someone on the 1st lap either. The evening saw a run up towards Sonisphere to get some background music. The only thing that could be heard though was the falling raindrops that miraculously finished at exactly the same time as the run. Drenched is the only way to describe the run.

To keep inline with the efforts done this week I decided to finish the weeks training on an all out bike ride on Sunday morning to see exactly how fast I might be able to ride this triathlon. On a relatively flat route I managed to average around 18mph. After meeting up with a couple of other people and having a little bit more of a leisurely ride, I turned off to find the best downwards hill I’ve ever come across – it seemed to go on forever and ever. 25 miles later and feeling much happier I might be able to post a respectable time on the bike.

White Water Rafting, Lee Valley Park, Olympic Venue 2012

To celebrate his birthday, my best man, Craig, ran a marathon in Edinburgh earlier this year. I’m sure a much more welcome present was today – which was a trip to Lee Valley for a go at White Water Rafting courtesy of his girlfriends parents. We went along for the day out today, and a really great day it was.

After the safety talk, where most of it made sense, we got a chance to splash around in the water to ensure we could all swim and make it out alive if the raft capsized. During this swim I realised what a difference a triathlon specific wetsuit makes!

5 exhilarating trips later and being soaked through we all got off for a burger from the bar-b-q. An excellent day out and thank you very much to Claire and Craig for letting us come along. If you can get down there I can highly recommend it. Some random photos from today follow.

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