Ireman Middle Distance

Its been a long triathlon season. It started back in January with the training camp in Lanzarote. Two weeks off after the cyclocross nationals then straight into a 28hour training week. Just the way to kick the body into preparation for Ironman Lanzarote in May. A few more months of training and May rolled along and we were standing on the beach waiting to go. Then the normal tri season started…

In retrospect I’d not do an early IM again. I felt jaded for the rest of the tri season. I wanted to do more but knew I had to back down for a few weeks post Lanza. Come the Bunclody sprint race I was raraing to go again, go hard, go fast. 6th was the result and top of my AG. But then it happened I blew mentally. BOTE was a mental and physical failure and I had to reassess my aims, focus on one thing and just get it done. Ireman middle distance was the race, qualification for European Long Distance age group championships next year was the aim.

The week leading in I’d been dropping ibuprophen like they were Skittles. A root canal and 3 fillings waiting to get done over the next few weeks had led me feeling like it was all going to go wrong. So I promptly went and got wasted at the Devneys beer festival on the friday night, went bouldering on the Saturday and assumed the race was a write off. Saturday evening …it all kinda clicked…I felt good…I was not tired and I wanted to race. Game on. Packed the car, hit the bed early, slept like a log. So race details then (coppied from mail to Russ)

Prep –  Not a great week in the lead in. Dentist trip has resulted in a root canal starting so that didn’t help as I’ve been on drugs all week, unable to run or swim and feeling pretty shitty mentally. Went out friday to a beer festival and got blathered, was debating not racing until Hugh talked me back into it saying ‘go, race, have fun, look at chicks’. Second I got in the water it was game on TBH. So that was not ideal, but, it was grand on the day.

Swim-00:38:47

Didn’t listen to swim briefing….turns out it was two laps…wondered why it felt short…came out of water and unzipped…then got shouted at ‘its two laps!’ FUCK. Struggled back into arms, Tri Ireland official right beside me…he looked at me then helped me in and zipped me up…asked about DQ…was told not to worry ‘sure I don’t know your number’ was the response and a smile 🙂

T1- 3:03 Faffed, got socks on as I am minus a few toenails, then rolled out.

Bike- Bike was long by about 4km. Shite road surface, windy and lots of traffic of both sorts. Due to the swim I had to bike through about 50% of the field which was good as I pretty much had targets for the whole of the bike course. Road surface was punishing my back so had to hold the gas back and keep it about 200W mark. Honestly, don’t think the legs had much more in them. Just dont have that ‘form’ I had earlier in the year, maybe just stale at this stage. Felt dead from about middle of the second lap. But I was still working way up the pack and had no one come past me or even close. Wind picked up on the 3rd lap and I took a beating with the disc for a while. At this stage neck was cramping bad from lower short course position. 12th fastest bike which was ok, came into T2 about 30th I think. Knew I had some work to do.

T2- 2:06 Faffed with laces and grabbing gels. Mostly tried to get composed before going for it on the run, maybe lost a place or two.

Run-01:47:54 Not fast by any stretch of the imagination, didn’t realise it was an actual off road course with small sections of road 🙂 So was pretty chuffed when I’d passed 3 lads within the first 3km as they had no idea how to run on trails. Held back for the first lap (avg 5:10/km) and came through feeling ok, few coke burps/vomit moments but ok. Then aimed to hit 5min/km on the trail and 4:30’s on the road sections. Went more or less ok until the last 3km where I had to walk an aid station longer than planned as I was getting that feeling in my stomach and no toilet near. Ran back solid. Lost 1 place on the run. I think I got lapped by the guy who won….

Nutrition- went 100% fluid. Gels and drinks no solids. Torq gel  every 20km on the bike and every 7km on the run. 90ml of Torq drink at 9% concentration on the bike and ~1L of plain water (69g CHO/hour in total). Water and coke at every aid station on the run. Felt awesome. Food time was a treat (rhubarb and custard gels are tasty) coke was in from 500m into the run and just kept it going. One or two coke burps but they tasted nice. Think I’ve nailed this now. 

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