Thursday, 17 July 2014

Lead in to Ironman Zurich

In an attempt to get to my 12 Ironman total as quickly as possible I decided to do two races 10 weeks apart. Now, 3 weeks after Ironman Texas I am seriously questioning what the hell I was thinking. I took two days completely off but then, re-energized by my performance in Texas I hit it hard again. That was until the Wednesday after and I got a nice bout of the flu. I took this as a sign from the Tri Gods and shut it down for 5 days.

It's kind of funny, I think I'm most excited about finishing Ironman Zurich to:
1) Get Boris Yeltsin drunk in 5 countries inside of a week and 
2) Get a break from training.

It's not supposed to be this way. It's supposed to be really neat to go across the Atlantic and race in a foreign country.

In retrospect, 10 weeks between Ironman races is doable but I needed to either take a 2 week break from training or change up my workouts so that I actually need to look at my training plan before a session. As it stands, I can recite my training schedule without even a glance at my plan and this make it seem like drudgery. I'm not sure why but when I'm surprised by a workout it's a little easier to go out and do it. 

For the most part I've had decent training sessions but one particular day was a day from hell. I went out for a 3 hour ride and it started swimmingly. Legs felt great, I had a fancy new helmet that made me look uber fast, and the weather was just awesome. That was until I crossed paths with a kamikaze bee. 34km into my ride this asshole bee slammed into my grille and rather than go on his merry way he decided to sting me in the lip. 

It would be a bad enough day getting stung in the face but the problem was I lost my friggin' mind when it happened. I steered myself right into the ditch and crashed. 

The best part of this was that after I got home my father-in-law said, "at least you didn't stop and take a selfie." Everyone started laughing and I had to explain that no, in fact that's exactly what I did. 

No worries, my bike was fine and I jumped back on and took off. The halfway point (50 km) is a small French town called Legal (pronounced Le gal) like French for the gal, but I have a sneaking suspicion that's not what it means. I stopped at the convenience store to refuel and the owner was good enough to give me a couple of band aids for my hand and off I went. 

At 72 km I hit a rock and blew out my back tire. I was actually ok with it because I hadn't changed a tire or used a CO2 cartridge in a while and was happy to get the practice. 

I changed out the tube and about 200m later I heard another small explosion and my back tire was flat again. I knew immediately something was wrong and after an inspection I found my tire was wrecked, not just my tube. This was a bummer as I was 28km from home and large men in spandex are not the most readily picked up while hitchhiking. About 5 minutes later a nice Welsh fellow pulled over and picked me up. He was a cyclist and took pity on me. This made me happy as I'd picked up a cyclist a couple of years ago and it was nice to have it paid back. 

After this race I'm going to time my races with about 6 months between them. Of course, that's after I do Ironman Arizona in November (4 months). This will allow me time to fully recover before starting back up again, but more importantly, it will make the race special again. That's what's missing the most out of this training, the excitement. 

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