A brief summary of Nuremburg

So I have been here in Nuremburg, Germany for a few days now, finally over the jet lag… Here’s just a few observations…

  • It’s hot! The legs actually feel spritely running of the bike, well compared to home when the legs are just frozen… So feel good for approx 5 min, before the heat hits and I feel like going to melt
  • Pedestrian crossing don’t make a sound when green, so have been known to stand there for a couple of light changes because I am not paying attention
  • Traffic lights are only on one side of the intersection, so if you go to far (as I normally do on the bike) you can’t see the lights
  • The bike lanes are fairly awesome, but even without a bike lane the drivers give you space. Today, I was on fairly narrow road and not once, did I get the “F$&@ that was close” feeling
  • Passport control was redicously easy, and no forms to fill in… Couldn’t believe I was actually officially in the country, I’m sure NZ will make up for that when I come home
  • the pool is pretty awesome, outdoor 50m pool, which is chilly compared to home. Automatic entry system, so don’t have to talk to anyone
  • My first run here, I decided to just run up and down the river, couldn’t possibly get lost doing that right? So left the phone at the hotel. Bad idea, got super lost, and the “return to start” function on the Garmin is crap.
  • The roads are super smooth mainly, but there are cobbles scattered around Nuremburg, which makes you loose half the drink from your aero bottle
  • There is a lot of noise to be made when the Germans loose a soccer game, wonder what it is like when they win?
  • the bakeries are yummy
  • the cheese is yummy
  • lots of things are yummy, pitty I am not supposed to indulge to my last couple of days here
  • I know a few friends who would love the shopping, the entires section of the old city is a shopping district
  • There is so much Christchurch could learn from this city, the bike ways, the public transport, the shopping district… Approx same size, though not the population outside or the history. This is why a lot of us don’t really care that much about the history…. It’s so young compared to this city.
  • Christmas in Nuremburg would be amazing!
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Snow, ice, wind and lets not forget the earthquake damage

Well its almost time to leave on a jet plane. Training hasn’t been easy, the weather hasn’t played fair,  but it has gone pretty well. I will not be Jumping in and training for another mid winter Ironman any time soon… its not necessarilly the cold tht is the problem, its the dark.

But from tommorrow, heading towards warmer weather and longer days… I am a little nervous about the trip, will my bike arrive in one piece, being on my own in a strange country with strange language… Supermarket trip shall be fun 🙂

I  am looking forward to race day, that is something I know, it’s the same no matter the language.  I have no paricular goal, just enjoy the expereince.

Any way, bags are pack… and I am traveling light

I need to market my “harden the f up pills”

Ok, so when you are biking for 5hrs straight, by yourself, mostly on flat straight roads, your minddrifts, or comes up with slightly rediculous plans. The topic for today’s. ride, my harden the f up pills are awesome! I need to sell them to others.

The reason my mind was going there, since Wednesday when it snowed and we  had the coldest day in Christchurch’s recorded history, I haven’t missed any training sessions and today was the icing on the top. Snow still covered the ground as I headed out. I decided tdo stick to the flabe fans then head to the hills at the end of the ride,hogging on the assumption the hillswould need more time for things to melt. Got that wrong, behind the back of the airport still heaps of snow and ice, and I decided to turn back on McLeans Island after the bump, where snow still covered the road…. Whereas the hills hardly had no snow when I made it there latter in the day.

Well,it’s less than 30days to the race now. 2 weeks to I fly out. Got the last program from Paul last week, turns out he doesn’t believe in a long taper, so I still got a lot of training to do in he first week in Nuremburg. Which is probably good, will let me get used to training in the heat… Though here’s hoping I don’t get to lost on the 4 hr ride.(smooth roads, can’t wait 🙂 )

Battle Lines Drawn

It has been a while. I just haven’t had anything interesting to say, life has been ticking along quite happily. train, work, train, sleep, train… and life ticks on.

But I am down to the weekly countdown, 9 weeks to go. Training has been going exceptionally well, things just seem to be coming together and I am sure I am fitter and stronger than ever before, and I still have 9 weeks to go.

The only thing not really working is weight not coming off… well in the last couple of weeks its come off by default, you can’t train that much and consume enough calories. But I can’t loose enough in time to be where I want to be, and know that means I have to be realistic in what my run time will be.

Days are getting shorter and colder. I had a 6 hour ride on Sunday, I started of on the hills and headed over to kaituna Valley, there was sun out there… but then I headed over to Lincoln and behind the airport, the nor’easter was blowing and it was freezing. I decided Sugar Loaf is cruel, I could see it where ever I was, and knowing home was just at the bottom of it was tempting. When you look at your watch and see you still got another 3hrs to go and you see Sugar Loaf and know it would only take you 40min to get there, and you are cold and miserable and just not in the right headspace to be where you are… But I told myself harden the f up and kept going and somehow with about 80min to go I felt great and was flying, even into the headwind. The run was a little tortuous, but I made it never been quite so happy to finish a day / week.

The next month, is actually a little lighter in load, but I am sure will not be much easier, apparently week 4 & 5 are going to be the big ones. Feels like the final battle lines are drawn and I am about ready to charge.

The flights are booked, the accommodation sorted… OK not all, but the week before the race is. I decided to go for a tour package the week leading up to the race, that way I don’t need to worry about getting there and accommodation and being all by myself. Starting to get excited and anxious…. and looking forward to a warm summer 🙂

Boom or Bust – Wanaka Half 2012

My race strategy can be a bit risky, but until its always come off. But this time it didn’t work, I haven’t quite worked out why… Not fit enough?? Don’t think so…. Nutrition screwed up?? Don’t think so… Just not my day?? Probably.

So the strategy is really quite simple, go hard on the bike. Risky, because I could go too hard and blow the run… Which is what happened. The last hill before the airport, just after 70K…. I hit the hill and hit the wall. My legs just said WTF and seemed to stop working. I crawled up the hill and then tried to recover as well as I could for the last 20. Unfortunately, that included 10K of head wind. So by the run I wasn’t right, I tried to get the legs working but they wouldn’t go, it was a shuffle. Felt like it was 2 years before and I was doing the 2nd lap of the run. At the first aid station, I slowed to grab a coke and kinda of stumbled, I was all over the place. 

So grabbed another coke and walked it out for a bit, and then a bit more.. got to the next aid station and downed some more coke and finally started to feel better and jogged through the outlet track, but I had given up on a good time, as soon as I stumbled to a walk, so I decided to just enjoy the lap. And debated if I could be slow enough for the Full pro’s to pass me.. I was! 

I didn’t have a clue who it was though when the lead male passed me, saw the bike and saw the guy and thought who the f is that…. then as I was in the last K Jamie Whyte came passed  ( I was just behind where they crossed and 1st place(Aaron Farlow) was coming back, could see the look in their eyes). So that was the most interesting part of the day.

Not great overall day, but think I can be happy with the swim and bike(even with the final 20K crawl). Plus at least I finished, that was quite frankly the most important part of the day for me mentally, other wise I would have crawled under a rock and stayed there for several weeks

Sometimes it just comes into focus

Gosh a couple of days ago I was moaning lost little soul. But within the last day things have just refocused themselves. Sometimes it just does that
I did need a break this summer, but half ironman’s and the not happening kinda threw my focus. But now I am looking past them to 6 months down the track. The flab i have put on needs to come of and the desire to train comes back into focus.

Sure, hopefully I do ok in wanaka, and I am thinking of doing a long tri down there at end of Feb for the Summer send off, but what worries me the most at the moment, is how I am going to handle the long bike sessions in May, and especially June… Behold the wonders of a new year and a goal within reach and striking distance

2011 – Shit happens

I can’t think of a better description for a year. 2011 will never be forgotten, it will stay as legend in New Zealand. For me, in some ways a most exciting, interesting, devastating and frustrating  year. On a personal level it has finished almost as bad as it has started.

I haven’t added a post for a while. The reasons, mainly because didn’t seem to have anything to write about…. I had a mechanical (that’s a bit of excuse really.. more of a brain meltdown that couldn’t overcome a slight issue) at Ashburton half so pulled out on the bike. Then, after getting really excited for 2 weeks before Rotorua, I get sick the day before the race. How unlucky is that? It just wasn’t worth racing, so I got to watch instead. Which is an interesting experience… watching the girls get out.. “I would have been out about now… 3rd out of the swim”… I should have been off the bike by now… top 2… the run would have taken me an age. I did a loop of the lake the next day, it wasn’t a track best suited to me (not sure if there is a track best suited to me… but you know what I mean).

Anyway in the last 2 weeks the training wheels have fallen off and I haven’t been able to train very much… a few easy swims or bikes in the last few days…  maybe tomorrow… but I seem to have been saying tomorrow I will be back to normal for the last week. So my summer of Half Ironmans has not been very succesful to date, and I doubt I will be at 100% for Wanaka… just have fun might be the aim of the day.

Ok.. being sick for 2 weeks at the end of the year compares nothing to what happened at the start… I am just feeling sorry for myself.

On an interesting note, The Press this morning has Andrea Hewitt on the front of it (over the All Blacks) showing the positives of 2011. I wonder if the editor is a triathlon fan…