The Masterplan v1.0

Now that the fog of illness and antibiotics is clearing I need to start planning my next move. I’ve thought about it quite a lot over the past couple of weeks. I now have the opportunity to consider all of my options, put together some goals and decide on my next attempt at Long Distance Triathlon:

Bolton was booked partly on the wave of euphoria after successfully completing Wimbleball in 2011 and partly in the knowledge that there would be a screaming bundle of baby hampering any plans I had to train after this year. Now that IMUK has been taken away I am going to take my time and not eneter any races at this distance for a few years. There are 2 main reasons for this; the aforementioned baby is going to be the most important thing for me and I don’t want to commit the time needed for Ironman at the expense of my family. Secondly I have time to get fit, really fit, from couch potato to Ironman in 21 months was achievable, but it would not have been comfortable – a long hard day at the metaphorical office. Now I have the time I can build a firm base of fitness from which to try again.

I have my eyes set on Ironman Western Australia at the end of 2015 or 2016 – that is open for discussion with Russ at the moment. Seeing as I can take my time I may as well do this in style and combine it with a trip down under. Bussleton Pier

3, or 4 years until I enter another Long Course race is a quite a long time so I need to set some goals, both intermediate, for the event itself and further down the road. Giving myself the time to build this fitness means that completion is not really a worthwhile goal. Sub-10 is the pinnacle as far as I am concerned, but that requires a lot more commitment than going under 12 or 13 hours. I think this goal will dictate a lot of my intermediate goals so I should probably decide on this one first! My intermediate goals are a bit simpler, in no particular order:

Wimbleball (A yearly occurrence I think – it requires a lot less training than a full and is a useful fitness yardstick)
Brighton Marathon – An ‘A’ Race for 2013 and a good opportunity to focus on something specific
Maidstone Half Marathon (2013) Another permanent feature on my calendar
Alpine / Pyrenean training camp – A week / 10 days riding up in the mountains with a bit of swim and run chucked in – I need to be bike FIT for this so perhaps late 2013, maybe 2014
Short Distance Tri’s – Fun, fast.
Swimming Race – I don’t want to do this, I hate swimming, but if I want to be good, I must!

Long term – This one’s up in the air at the moment. I plan on staying fit my whole life so perhaps I don’t need to figure this out just yet.

So I have the start, then end and a few bits in the middle, I still need to do a but of work, but I hope to develop this plan with Russ and my family over the next few months, I have the luxury of time so I want to make sure I get this right.
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IMUK Withdrawal

M-Not

I should be running through my kit list, checking, re checking, packing and re packing everything ready for IMUK this weekend, but instead I am looking forward to heading up to Yorkshire on Saturday with the family and being on the other side of the fence as a spectator on Sunday.

When I started feeling a bit odd on tuesday night 2 weeks ago I thought I might have a cold or something minor. When I woke up on the Wednesday I knew there was something slightly more serious wrong. By the time I went to the Drs I was pretty out of it so I didn’t really think too hard about what was going on, just that it hurt, a lot. By the time I got to the hospital and they’d started dosing me up on painkillers and antibiotics I was beginning to wonder whether I’d make the start line for IMUK. When they told me I’d be staying in for a couple of days I sort of knew I’d not make it, but I was hoping for some kind of miraculous recovery.

It wasn’t until my 3rd night in hospital that it really dawned on me that I was going to have to withdraw. In the end it wasn’t a hard decision to make. My body was fighting a pretty full on kidney infection, I was going to be on antibiotics for 3 weeks and putting myself through an Ironman could not possibly make my recovery any better. With a baby due in 3 months staying in the race would have been both stupid and selfish.

Nearly 3 weeks later and it was definitely the right decision. although I feel better, I still don’t feel 100%. The antibiotics are pretty strong and the symptoms of the infection are only now totally gone. Jumping into a 13Degrees Celsius lake at 6am Sunday would have been a mistake.

There is of course a deep sense of disappointment that I won’t have the chance to get that medal round my neck on Sunday night, but there are more important things in life and I will be back fitter, faster and stronger next time.

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