Something clicked last week (about time eh?). Not a physical clicking (my knees already crack, so does my back. My neck clicks too oh and my shoulder) although these do occur briefly. Sometimes on a training run, or ride or swim everything clicks together and for however brief a period I feel I am running like Mo, cycling like Cav or swimming like.....a really good swimmer! For me these moments are fleeting but they often occur and when they do I feel strong, my breathing is perfect, my timing is spot on and for that second I feel like it will last forever. I also think that for that brief moment if someone saw me they would be more inclined to applaud me rather than the usual glance of concern and dialling of 999 for ambulance services!
No, this was a mental click - its like an acceptance of fate. I can run and ride faster than I could this time last year. I have trained more regularly over the last 6 months than I did during the same period of 2012 and I have avoided injury (smacks head on wooden desk top!) so it follows that I am in better shape to take on Outlaw! Granted my swim training had been non existent until last week but it is was it is.
The click occurred last Sunday when I followed my regular weekend fail to get out of bed for my 'long' ride with two short rides on a journey I would normally do by car. It was a springboard to my best week of training ever! A 4.5 mile Monday run was followed by a mile in the pool. Tue saw a pre breakfast 25 on the Merida. Wednesday an 8 mile lunchtime run and Thursday another pre breakfast Merida jaunt of 24. The nice thing was not only had I hit all aspects of triathlon for the first time in a long time I felt strong doing it! I enjoyed doing it! It built me up nicely to 76 Merida miles on Friday which included some good hills, good heat coping training, good fuel practice but most importantly I didnt wilt at any stage. I never felt it was too much. I could have cycled on at the end had time restraints not caught up with me. I eased down on Saturday with a slow/steady 5 mile run and completed the week (week 5 in the countdown to Outlaw) with a mile swim and a 4 mins improvement on the previous Monday.
A bit more of the same this week and next and then a little taper to the big day will see me at the start, Morphed up and in better shape than last year. The suit is off to the printers this week and whilst a sponsor would have been a financial help in funding this challenge I am secretly pleased I couldnt attract one. This means the suit design will be all about Outlaw, BCH, Poppy, Mrs B and the rugs, some general inspiration and one or two suprise acknowledgements for last years race and the last years prep. Pics to follow.
With 4 weeks to go (3 weeks 6 days to be precise) many people believe that what I do now wont make a difference to my Outlaw experience. I cant get a lot fitter or stronger during this time but I am not worried I need to. I dont normally do predictions and for this my second triathlon the target remains completion/survival but 2 + 7 + 6 = 15......just a thought!
I accept I am unlikely to win, I may even miss out on a PB but I am damn confident I will do it and I will be the first Ironmorph to cross the line on July 7th!