Six months into 2017 and yeah, I haven’t been posting much… The reason behind this is probably that race I entered very lately after having listened to a few friends while away on a triathlon camp. The sort of race you normally enter as a goal but not as a joke. It is happening this weekend and it’s the IronMan70.3 Switzerland. Oh dear… #ShitisGettingReal
More seriously, it’s been a hell of a training session since 1st of January 2017. The original plan had been to tackle my first Marathon this year but as per 2016, I just repeated the same error, too much, too soon. It ended with an “almost” stress fracture as the doctor described it and me having to sit out from running for almost two months.
As per last year, the plan had to be shelved and while left on the side of the road, I just had to look for something else… When saying too much, too soon, it was simple. After a great end to 2016 and finishing on a high with a great personal best, I just missed the apex as you would say in motor sport, I entered the year too fast, missed my braking point and ended in the wall. Basically I didn’t rest and started 2017 too fast, too hard.
Still and while sidelined with running, I focused on swim and cycling training. The other goal planned for 2017 was to get into triathlon and being injured, I sort of saved myself or my mental by just focusing on these two disciplines.
Swimming was and is still a very hard time, I remember getting in the water in very late December and well, I realized I was almost floating… So I got into the technique swimming sessions as I had joined the Triathlon Club de Genève. Honestly, the best decision I took. Lots of training sessions and probably the best way to get into the thing.
On cycling, I didn’t cycle much in 2016, it was a start and so I focused on the spinner during the winter and cold days. RPM, turbo sessions, call it what you want, I just gave a lot of energy and sweat on this crazy machine while looking red as f*** with people staring at me thinking “Is this guy trying to be a water fountain?!”. Three times a week at one point, it was painful but as I like to say, no pain, no gain!
Later on, it didn’t pay as much as I thought it would but I started cycling out while keeping the swimming going. Got into a group, the one from my running coach along with the one I used to cycle with from the start and that helped it a lot. Trying to stick with the group makes it an interesting training session when talking of speed but normal rides and pacing are also very important I realized.
Trying to smile and be gentle when the guys were asking if was alright was pretty good as well. This along with my indoor training paid with an all around improvement in my cycling skills. And confidence could be built from then on I guess.
One day, I heard of a triathlon training camp while coming back from a ride. I just emailed the club and got into it. You know, it had been two years I didn’t take any proper holidays. Okay, I can admit it, I don’t like beach and cocktails, I much prefer action packed holidays and that’s how I got there, thinking it would be fun and a good time!
It ended being a funny and great time in Mallorca, a hell of a riding week as well with a few swimming sessions and runs. Yeah, it was the time I started running again as well. It had been a month and a half and I felt much better and took it easy, short but fast at the beginning but as confidence came back I ended the 10 days running a half marathon and I was almost back where I was before so pretty happy all in all.
But the big news was that IronMan70.3 Switzerland entry… Yeah, I just went for it after a few jokes from a friend and the coach saying that funny thing, you know, the “Man, of course you can do it”… So I just got in, bought some carbon wheels in order to look like a proper professional you know and also as a reward for my bike or girlfriend I should say. It’s just like offering a Tiffany necklace, it makes it look good!
From that point, the training went on and on and on… Yes, I haven’t been laid lately but pretty much, it’s my fault I must admit it. I’ve been a monk or living the dream as some would say but so far it’s been a great journey. I’m a bit of a maniac and so I took it seriously, getting from around 6hours of training a week to about 14 in the last few weeks.
I am far from being serious but it’s been interesting to embark on this. The training, the specific brick sessions and changes to my schedule from one to two training sessions a day, 6 days a week and stuff like race food simulation, etc. It takes a lot to get a strong training plan into your life, managing work, trying to keep a social side and rest properly is far from easy and I can see why some are called professionals. It takes an awful lot to deliver.
But yeah, a few days to go. The race recce is now done with a visit to Rapperswil and its bike and run courses. I know where I am and we’ll see how it goes but fingers crossed it will be a hell of a good time. As I said previously, this is just like motor sport, endurance is key, not burning your tyres will be key while pushing that average speed and taking those apexes.
The race report will surely follow, depending on how I feel after all this. Shit is surely getting real.