Woooo hoooo... racing again:-) Almost pain free too!
by tiggaOct 22nd 2013
Finally I have managed to get on top of a niggling knee problem which has left me unable to run properly. Spent some time in the gym working on core/stability and getting the one legged leg press to where I like to see it and now I¬'m running almost pain free and able to run longer and even sneak the odd interval session. The one thing I have realised and accepted is that as the number that tells me how old I am increases, so does the time it takes to introduce speed intervals and regain the fast running legs. I¬'m still a way off where I¬'d like to be but I¬'ve had nearly 3 years off competitive running and I¬'m now officially a veteran!! So I have come to terms with the fact my run PB¬'s will never be beaten my race tactic is no longer going to be run with the leaders and if feeling god ¬- push on. It¬'s more like I have to run sensible and rely on a strong bike and strong second run!
Seems to be a working tactic¬... in the ¬'come back¬' as a veteran I have managed two races, two blitze bike rides and two wins.
Bath duathlon 5-40-5 (Actual 4.4km 36.9km 4.4km)
Having not toed a start line in good shape and chasing a win for a while I forget how nervous these occasions can be. You would think after 20+ years of racing it¬'d be no issue, but when it¬'s a race/s that means a lot no matter who you are the nerves are there, the butterflies in the stomach very much still flutter and it¬'s a buzz to race again. This one was a tester to see where my running was, get over those nerves, hammer the bike and see what run I could manage off the bike. I ran hard the first run, one fella came with me and we pretty much ran in together¬... onto the bike, I went out pretty hard to see if he came with. I easily came back with the fastest bike split on a technical hilly course with 6 hairpins, numerous tight corners and a nice steep climb that Strava tells me I climbed both times in almost the same time!! The second run was strong and only 5sec/km slower than my first run. A successful first duathlon as a 40 year old. OK so it was a very low key event, but I stll biked faster than all triathletes/duathletes ¬- even those doing the sprint!! A positive race and it certainly proved I¬'m in great shape. 1st in 1hr35min41sec (15:06/1:03:40/15:42 + T1/T2)
Next up Thruxton duathlon¬... 5-30-5. Less biking, more competitive and on a motor circuit which means TT position all the way¬... not really my thing but I needed the test!
Thruxton duathlon 5-30-5 (Actual 5.2km 29.6km 4.4km)
Annual event with 150 entrants, so I was expecting a tougher race. My Team Feat members were there in force to try pick up a team prize on offer (which we did) and Paul Ashley is a demon runner so I expected a faster run. It¬'s a deceptively tough run as you run around a 3.8km circuit after an initial out and back down the only hill on the circuit. First 1km in 3:09, OK it¬'s downhill but still faster than anything I¬'ve done in training. I forced the pace on the uphill and again up the hill as we got close to T1, managed to rid ourselves of the army chap and went through T1 quite quick, Paul was quicker but I was faster up to speed and shoes done up and literally blasted the bike as hard as I could. I rode fairly even split with laps of 5:15-5:20 all the way and opened a 3-4min gap. My ride split in windy/rainy conditions was 43:14 (including T2) a healthy lead and time to focus on a strong run. Although their splits show me running 16:33, my 2nd run was actually a 15:33 which gives me a lot of confidence that although my running is not fast it certainly is strong. That¬'s exactly where it needs to be for my next challenge the Balluster duathlon. A race that favours the runner, but with a technical bike a big lump to get over five times called Boxhill¬.... I¬'m in about as good a shape as I could have hoped. I¬'d like to be running faster, but I¬'m biking as fast (if not faster) than I¬'ve ever biked before as a duathlete.
One thing is for sure I have a Ballbuster reputation to uphold and I hope to do just that, not necessarily a win either, just a blitz bike ride with solid runs and see where it puts me. With two previous winners there and in particular the quality runner turned triathlete that won last year who¬'s biking would obviously have improved somewhat, I will be hard pressed to hang on to any lead I intend to have off the bike, unless of course I do a rain dance of ten long notes again;-)
Less than 3 weeks to race day