Wednesday, 4 May 2011

April Showers (or lack thereof)

What a Month, sunshine, time off to train and more sunshine. Bar a bit of a kcoc up at the London Marathon (i.e. non receipt of my defered entry) it would have been a pretty good month.

I enetered my first race of the season as a replacement for the Marathon, I searched for a replacement on the 17th itself but there wasnt anything around. The next closet race was the Monster Duathlon in Ely the following weekend.

Duathlons are events that I have not competed in much before with my first Duathlon being the World Championships in Scotland last year where I ran as a guide to Iain Dawson. A good start as a 1st place (all Iains doing however!)

My second event was a club Duathlon earlier in the year which also ended in a a quickest time (and obviously a PB as I had not done one before).

The third event however was a diferent kettle of fish as I expected a good turn outr and some healthy competition from the likes of Oli Bradbury (winer at the first event) Tom Vickery (Cambridge Tri) and Joe Skipper.

Oli and Joe didnt race this time and although Tom was there he was racing as part of a team set-up. This left athletes who I did not know(although I did recognize names on the finish sheet).

The race started well(ish) as I almost ran to the lfet instead of the right off the start line but tried to keep with Tom (who was running the first run leg) for as long as I could. I expected to be a couple of minutes down on him for the 10k and settled into a pace with two other competitors. I ran the first leg in a pair of Asics Tarther (which I had planned to use for the VLM). I had previously ran a couple of 1/2 Marathons in these (and recorded a recent P:B) so knew they would be up to the shorter 10k distance. They are a good pair of comfortable shoe with a lot of room in the toe box which I like (as I have been using the Vivobarefoot EvoII as a training shoe which has a similar amount of room).

I hit T1 in 4th place but this was a tactical decision and although I could have pushed into 2nd (letting the relay team get away....for now) I knew that the bike was my strongest and that I would have a chance of making the ground up quickly....which is exactly what I did.

The mount was not the best as my flying 'OZI' caused my seat to drop an inch which I also knew would have an effect on both my bike and 2nd run split with the quads starting to burn quite early on. I caught 2nd and 3rd place within about 500yds and settled down to make light work of the gap that Tom had built in the first run.

With the weather being warm over the last few weeks and with IM 70.3 Mallorca in the not too distant future (with the warm weather being a good introduction to the temps and wind I will face over there)I played with nutition on the bike and during the race itself using the tried and tested Zero (High5) and some Extreme Zero (again High5). I didnt experience any cramping which ws good (Zero) and was just about to give the caffine kick from the Extreme a go when I hit one of the massive rutts on the bike course causing me to lose my bottle - I will have to update you on how this is at a later date!!!.

The bike was quite uneventful apart from being caught by Pete Norris of RAF TRI about 3/4 of the way in. I had been intent on catching the Relay team who I had passed at the half way point I had forgotten that there may have been others in the race.

I had worked hard to get into 1st place so I decided that there was no way I was being led into T2 and decided to push a little harder (although I still had the knowledge that I may struggle on the run with my seat being lower than the ideal)

T2 was pretty smooth (for me) and I had chosen to run in a different pair of shoes for the 6k leg (from experience of racing a run swim run aquathlon I knew that putting shoes on the second time round can be tricky). I had been using Asics Piranhas recently (including a recent 5k P:B) and they served me well yet again...

I knew that Pete was pretty close behind and expected to be running side by side after a while. However I tried to keep the pace consistent and managed to open up a bit of a gap that allowed me to take it a little easier on the home straight.

1st Duathlon, 1st Place and a bit of a confidence boost for IM 70.3

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About Me

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As an ex-National League Basketball player I took up triathlon as a development from cross training. I won my first Sprint distance race and placed second in my first Olympic distance. Since then I have raced the UK Elite Superseries coming 24th in the National Elite Champs, raced Vegas 70.3 WChamps and helped Paratriathlete Iain Dawson to World, European and National Titles. In 2011 I obtained Pro authorisation from the BTF and am pushing my development by stepping up to top level competition in 2012. Aside from this I am a L1 Swim and Tri coach and Professional Lloyds Broker.