I can’t quite believe it’s been a month since I last posted, it has flown by and with one thing or another it’s been a very busy one. I’ll give you a brief update on what has been going on.
Training has been going pretty good when I’ve been able to do so, I’ve had a period of 10 days without doing anything, but more on that later. I’m really pleased with how my running is coming along, at COLT intervals on Wednesday night this week I really felt like I was getting my speed back and returning to form. It was a great session and we did lampposts, which as you know at one time in my life would have meant wheezing and struggling to reach the next one in the dark praying that no one would notice the fat lad plodding. Now it was a speed session along the Quayside at Lancaster – sprint 3, jog 1, sprint 3, jog 1 and then mix up the length of the efforts. It was a tough workout but one that left a smile on my face. No big rides on the bike because of circumstances but I’ve done several hilly hours spinning the legs out. I plan on doing a reccy with my mate Gaz next weekend of the new IMUK bike course to see what all the fuss is about. It will be a good test for me as Gaz is strong on the bike and hitting form with 18 weeks to go until his debut in Bolton.
And with swimming, running and biking surrounded by COLT clubmates that are all doing Ironman races it is helping me get back to where I need/want to be. Most are 8 weeks out from Lanza and all the others are 18 weeks out from Bolton, throwing in several doing marathons and there is no shortage of people in shape and form that I can hang on to and claw my way back up the triathlon ladder. In the words of a certain burger chain “I’m Loving It”.
I had a fantastic time over in Dublin talking at a day aimed at those planning to “Go Long”. It was organised by John who is hoping to become an Ironman at Zurich this year, and hosted at Wheelworx (Ireland’s biggest cycle/tri store ). There were talks from nutritionists, ultra runners, sports psychologists and a guy called Gerry Duffy who won the Enduroman Deca Ironman. Seriously if you ever get chance to listen to this guy speak then do so, the ex-chain smoker has overcome so many demons to reach his goals. I learnt a lot listening to him speak and chatting to him as well, what was interesting was although he is a phenomenal athlete and I’m just a back of the pack plodder is that we shared a lot of the same principles, ideals and ideas when it comes to training and getting your head right. I’m half way through reading his first book Who Dares Runs which is utterly compelling, and giving me urges to do something stupid like an ultra or a 24hr race. I’m also looking forward to reading the follow up Tic Toc Ten which is all about his Deca Ironman, now reading that could be bloody dangerous!!
I loved talking to the audience, they were so keen, asking loads of questions and thankfully laughing at my jokes and my dodgy English pronunciations of Irish place names. It was a fantastic experience and I’d love to head over to Ireland to talk again at some point.
Family & Friends
It has been a torrid time really. First of all one of my closest and dearest friends at the age of 42 was diagnosed with a very rare, very aggressive cancer. She is one of the most amazing, kind and beautiful people you could ever wish to meet. The news flawed me to be honest and I don’t mind admitting that I shed a tear at the injustice and cruelty of how something so bad could happen to someone who makes this world a better place to be. She quite simply is the most positive person I have ever met and that will be her greatest ally in her battle, she is strong and she will get through this. Some of you will know her, many won’t and it’s not my place to give names but please just close your eyes and think one positive thought today and smile just because she will be despite all that is ahead of her.
Charlotte, our 3yr old daughter has been quite ill. She was rushed into hospital by ambulance with suspected meningitis. I’ll spare you the details but it was the scariest few days of mine and Ems life. Our little girl was very poorly and we just didn’t know what she was facing. Thankfully the IV antibiotics and excellent care that she received saw her make a full recovery ( she thought it was great that she got to ride in ambulance for 60 odd miles with the lights on while they transferred her from one hospital to another ). It turned out to be a viral version of the disease in the end and didn’t thankfully develop further into the nasty one. Added to this, probably brought on by stress, Em was treated at the hospital for her asthma as she was struggling to breathe. She has a nasty chest infection and as such I’ve been looking after them both, hence the break from training. Em is still bad but hopefully will soon be on her way to full health.
I tell you something, you know things are bad when I’m the healthy one.
Last Sunday it was the Lancaster Duathlon, I was supposed to be racing but I didn’t because Em wasn’t well enough to be left with an energetic 3yr old. I had been looking forward to competing in my first duathlon and I must admit that standing there ( with Charlotte clapping them all – she loved it ) on the riverside watching them run past I felt a bit sorry for myself for a second but then I looked at my smiling little girl and I get a lightening bolt of perspective and then it made me want it so much more and focus on my next race, the Ribby Hall Sprint on the 27th April.
So there you go, a few great moments, a few not so but life goes on and at the moment I’m so very grateful for that fact. Enjoy your weekends, train hard, race fast, have fun, smile and give those that you love a bloody big hug.