Sunday, 16 August 2009

Between the Race and a Hard Place

after London i felt quite lackluster from training. all that effort, and still 2 sprints until the end of season... training seemed never ending, and i couldn't feel motivated. this was coupled by an injury which re-occurred on each run. all over, was just feeling a bit lost.

it reached a head when i got into the pool to time myself over 200 metres. at the start of the year, i was hitting my usual 3 minutes 53 secs.

when i pressed stop on that stopwatch, i was expecting to see a good margin less than that. after all, i've spent the last six months clocking up km after km in the pool.

but i pressed stop, and when i looked at the time, i'll admit - i almost attempted a stopwatch drowning fatality (not possible on a waterproof stopwatch, but i was desperate)

3 minutes 56 secs!!

all the training, all the laps, all the kms, all the sessions, nothing! no change in speed!

and after i spent the evening wallowing in self pity, it made me realise that i've never actually tried to go faster at swimming. so what did i expect? sure i clocked up a hefty distance over this year, but i was just aiming for endurance. did i think speed would automatically improve? that endurance would be leaping ahead and speed would sneak in on the side? like, no, allison.

when running, i've learnt that running miles + miles at the same comfortable pace will not make you a faster runner -- yet i've never transformed this over to swimming. sounds simple, so simple i had to stop wallowing and get over myself.

fortunately this week, i managed to do just that, and as a result things have picked up. i've got two new programs to introduce into the training mix, which are individual weights programs aimed specifically at either bike or swim. having a new focus, makes the world of difference, and has given me a little boost to continue training for those sprints.

so, what did i get up to this week?

monday> 20 minute run
tuesday> 20 minute swim
weds > 45 minute weights routine (swim specific), 20 minute run, 20 minute swim
thurs > 20 minute run
friday > 55 minute cycle, 35 minute weights routine (swim specific)
sat > 20 minute weights routine (bike specific), 20 minute swim (speed/strength drills)
sun > rest!

there's six weeks until the first of the two sprints; Hever Triathlon (400m open water, 20k cycle, 4k run) and then the following weekend it's Warwickshire (200m pool swim, 23k cycle, 2.5k run)

i'm hoping to use Hever as experience, because it's Warwickshire i'd really like to do well in. finally, London is behind me, and it's time to focus on the sprints!

(before the HIM :) )


teacherwoman said...

Oooh.... HIM!

I am curious about your weight specific program for swimming and biking. Where did you find such programs?

Trishie said...

Ohh which HIM? // you know, you could have just had a bad day in the pool... I wouldn't freak out over it !

al said...

hello! haven't locked in which HIM yet but am leaning towards Monaco. Setting just looks brilliant.

the weight specific program was designed by my PT who incidentally is now tri training! it's a v good program, and perhaps if i can convince him into the online world he'd be able to share the knowledge!

Paul "The PT" said...

Stop trying to lure me into your trap Al! The programs are based towards strengthening the specific muscles you either use for swimming or biking respectively. By increasing the maximum strength of the muscles that are working in either discipline, not only will you pull harder in the water, or push/pull harder on the bike, but you will also fatigue less quickly.

As Al mentioned, i'm not "in the online world", but i'm more than happy to help out, although unsure of the best way to do it online.

P.S. This doesn't mean im "online" just because i've signed my name Al!

al said...

ah ha! you're here! and signing your name, not even anon!

ok so how can you contribute on an online sense, here's an example; the latest blog post from Joe Friel. he's written a Tri Training book i referenced in one of my earlier posts, and has great blog posts regarding training;