A testing day

Today was a day for a few mini-tests to bolster my confidence prior to the triathlon this weekend (3 days to go).

Since my last triathlon in March, I have spent less than 5 hours on my bike – total and until today, none of those were outside. They were all on the trainer. There are many benefits of training on a windtrainer. You can do it when it’s windy, rainy or dark.

There are two main disadvantages for the inexperienced/cautious cyclist with minimal confidence. The first is that it doesn’t allow you to practise your balance because the bike is locked into the trainer and the second is that you (I anyway) clip into and out of the pedals with the opposite foot first.

I was getting a bit concerned about it. It’s been too dark or wet in the mornings for me to ride outside and it’s dark again by the time I get home from work. I need to buy a new light for my bike but simply haven’t got around to it and have had higher priority items to spend money on (like thermal clothing for my little trip to Hobart in a few weeks).

I was worried that I will try to clip out with the wrong foot during the race like I did at one of our local club tris this season. I also hadn’t run off the bike for quite some time. Maybe once since March. Today was the day for the “can I still ride a bike” test.

On my one hour lunch break from work, I came home, changed, hopped on my bike, rode 2.6km, came home, changed shoes then took off again for a short run. Very short. Less than 750m actually. Back home, drank water, made lunch, rolled on a bit of BO basher, back into work clothes and almost made it back to work on time. Well, I was about 15 minutes late. I underestimated how much sweat I could work up in 15 minutes of exercise since I so rarely exercise after 8am.

It was worth it though. I am satisfied that as long as I concentrate on Saturday, I will manage the ride without any (un)clipping mishaps.

This also gave me a chance to try out the multisport setting on my new (second hand) garmin. Now I’ll be able to track my individual leg and transition times at club tris where we only get an overall time.

newwatch

The second test for today was the “can I fit into the wetsuit” test. Fortunately, I can. At least, I can get it on. I can’t do the zip up myself so I’m assuming it will do up. I know that’s a mighty big assumption. I got a PB today though. I managed to get into it in less than 8 minutes! It would have been interesting to wear a heart rate monitor during this process…

wetsuit

Tomorrow morning I’m off to the pool for my first swim since the end of March. Since the triathlon on 8th March, I have been to the pool twice and each time I only swam 1km for a total swim time of 1 hour. There will be two tests: “can I still breathe on both sides” and “can I still swim 750m without stopping”.

In other news:

  • I completed my marathon-in-a-week challenge. 42.2km running over 8 days. The second last session I did in sub-zero temperatures. The last 7.2km were done in the middle of the day (approx 20°C). Talk about extremes. The midday run was an attempt to prepare for the race which starts at 11.30am. I’ll be hitting the run somewhere around 1pm I think.

cold

This was the day before Tamworth recorded the lowest
overnight temperature in the country!

theend

I’ve heard that you really feel that last 0.2km of a marathon.
I certainly did in my cumulative-marathon-in-a-week, but I finished!

  • I upgraded my garmin 410 and garmin swim to a 910xt which I managed to pick up second hand on ebay when the previous owner upgraded to the latest model. I’m still getting used to it, but at least I can wear the same watch swimming as I do when cycling and running. It can also track open water swimming instead of only lap swimming.

daytime

I don’t generally get to see the river sparkling like this.
There are benefits to running later in the day after all.  🙂

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