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Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Training update

The cold weather continues and so does my time not riding outdoors!
That said I am still working on those short harder efforts. 2 turbos this week and an off road run on Sunday, and I'm feeling pretty good. Yesterday's turbo was tough, 10 minutes warm up and then 10 mile time trial. One of those stomach wrenching efforts, legs burning and heart felt like exploding. But nice to push myself like that. I also did a mini-circuit in the gym, 7 minutes of very intense exercise, no rest between exercises, 40 squats with 16kg kettlebell, 30 bench press with 20kg bar, 30 bent over rows with 2x10kg dumbells, 25 kettlebell swings with 20kg bell, 20 seated shoulder press with 2 x 8kg dumbells, 25 tricep extensions on cable machine, 30 bicep curls with 2x8kg dumbells, 25 seated ab twists with 12kg kettlebell. Good little circuit which I was getting a client to do a reduced rep version of and I thought I should give it a go myself. Left me with a racing heart, sweat pouring, and all over body worked out!! More of the same soon me thinks!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

More music

Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra with Kenny Garrett on alto sax. I had this on VHS when I was a mere teenager and used to love it. So nice to find it on the WWW. Brings back some happy saxophone memories.

My Last Gig!

Found this link on a website to my last ever live saxophone performance, with Steve Berry's fantastic Jam Factory. Can't believe that's over 8 years ago!

Sunday, 12 December 2010

New bike

Next season, I 'celebrate' turning a certain age. I will be going up an age group in racing. And to mark the occasion I am going to be treated to a new bicycle. 2006 saw me get my beloved Scott Plasma, and now in 2011 I shall be replacing above bike with the latest Plasma that Scott produces.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Personal Training

I am trying to find some time to develop a website, so the above link is a basic page with info and a contact number to speak to me about personal training.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010


As a personal trainer I get asked a lot for nutritional advice and spend a lot of time analysing diets and help people make smarter food choices. I also spend time looking at what I eat, and try and practice what I preach!
So what have I done to improve my diet. Not for everyone, but over the last 6 months I have been drinking full fat milk (and the proper Gold Top stuff), eating more eggs and having butter. I have got a lot leaner and dropped bodyfat. I've gained muscle mass due to increased strength training and I feel great. I'm very rarely hungry and don't often get that overwhelming feeling of fatigue. Gone are the refined sugars, although I do still like a bar of chocolate now and again as a treat. Oatcakes and peanut butter are now my snack of choice. On the whole it's really about balance and eating as natural as possible. If it grows out of the ground or it walks over it then eat it!!

Friday, 3 December 2010



And that's all I have to say at the moment.
Been swimming every day this week. Haven't run, other than circuits in Wareham Forest on Wednesday morning. Turbo'd on the bike on Tuesday, not bad.
Weekend is here, and more Forest Fit on Saturday, Sika Trail, Wareham Forest, 9am and 10:30am. Should be good fun in the snow!
Turbo on Sunday and hopefully a nice easy long run.
Warm weather next week? Probably not!!!

Stay warm!

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Boscombe 5k Results

Well, a really good evening to be out running. Another excellently organised event. Great fun, and damn hard work, breathing hard in the cold weather. But a big PB for me. 18' 43" on the finish, and I felt pretty good all the way round. My best 5k run to date and a new target, just got to get my legs moving along with a quicker turnover. But happy to feel like I can actually run, and not just a heavy donkey!
Training is going well, keeping things short at the moment, mostly due to work constraints, but more intense efforts which I'm hoping will build my strength up for when I can start getting in the longer biking and running miles.
Well done to Harry Wiltshire who was 2nd and had a solid run in 15' 55".

Tuesday, 16 November 2010


Just taken a training session for one of my clients out in Wareham Forest, glorious weather this morning, touch of frost in the air first thing but the sun came up and simply stunning scenery. What a fantastic place to work in, hopefully more of the same when me and Charlie do Forest Fit at the Sika Trail tomorrow.
On my return from this morning I went out for a run, did a 2k easy jog warm up, then 5k race pace for 3k and then 2k warm down easy jog. Feeling strong and refreshed, getting some good running in, had a 26k run on Sunday and will get some more miles in this week. While time is limited for getting out on the bike at the moment, it seems an ideal time to focus on my running a bit more in an attempt to get a little leaner and put my increased strength to good use. Seems to be working!
Boscombe 5k on Friday 26th November is the next race for me.

James Gilfillan

And just to add, James was first UK athlete, pro or age grouper over the line!!!!! Awesome!!

Monday, 15 November 2010

James Gilfillan World 70.3 Champion

Awesome! Simply amazing performance from the undoubted UK's top age group triathlete. There is noone in the UK that is in his league at the moment, and just rewards for James's efforts this year was the World title at the 70.3 World Championships in Clearwater last Saturday. He was first amateur over the finish line, 22nd overall. The list of pro athletes he beat contains a number of previous world champions at all sorts of distances from sprint to Ironman distance. The best endurance athletes in the world are at this race, in Clearwater, Florida, USA and to finish in the top 50 is a fantastic achievement in itself but to go 22nd in that field and scoop World Amateur Champ status is nothing short of outstanding!
I shall be buying the coffees when we meet up next week and get a full race debrief. I am so chuffed for James and his efforts and his talent have been well rewarded this year. And it's also cool for me to say that I have trained with a World Champion!!

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Time Out

Training, health and fitness and sport all the time can get a bit much, and even I need a little break from all that stuff. Mentally as well as physically.
Thank the lord for music! I have just rewired my music studio and am now sitting down at the piano, just generally messing around, and also doing some structured learning of tunes. And I have forgtten how much fun it is! Having been a professional musician in my former life it is nice to be able to sit down and do something purely for fun! I essentailly quit music because I had lost any feeling for it and it was no fun. How great to sit down and 'knock out' a tune. I have even begun to have a go at songwriting.
I say the same to all the people I train, taking up exercise is great and valid, but you have to enjoy it or it won't work for you. That said, of course there are times when going out to run in the cold or riding in the wet and windy weather is no fun, but the feelings of achievement always outway the nagging doubts in my mind as to whether there is any point to this!
I'm off to hunt for some logs as me and Charlie are taking circuits again this morning in Wareham Forest; and we have yet again been blessed with sunshine. Someone up there likes me!!!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Latest News

It's been a while since anything noteworthy to report, but here goes!
My personal training is going very well, enjoyable sessions, some fantastic clients with me, and all positive, really enjoying my work. As with triathlon, I wish I had started doing it years ago! Better late than never as the saying goes. The circuit training in Wareham Forest is fantastic. Brilliant sessions, lovely people turning up to train with us, and there is no better way in which to spend one's time and earn one's living! Charlie and I are really getting into the swing of things now and we are progressing nicely. Two sessions on a Wednesday and two on a Saturday, possibly some more lined up for the future. All positive.
As for my own tri training I am getting in some decent running and a reasonable amount of biking, not a lot of swimming. Favouring the turbo trainer at the moment, with the weather as it is, and only able to fit in around my work. On a mission as well to shed a few pounds, having gained a bit of muscle weight spending so much time in the gym. I have done so many squats and lunges with big weights over the last few weeks, I'm beginning to look more like a track cyclist with big legs!

Other news to report. James Gilfillan has departed for Clearwater, Florida and is competing there at the World Ironman 70.3 Triathlon Championships on Saturday 13th November. Best of luck to James and his support crew, Emma! He will be gunning for a podium slot in his age group(30-34) but I have sneaky feeling he might come back with a gold. Let's hope so. If he gets away without any drafters on the bike then I think he'll hold em off. You can follow his progress on the Ironman website

Right, off out in the rain for 30 minutes on turbo followed by a 40 minute run.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Forest Fit Training

Contact me via email or the blogsite for more information.

Circuit Training
1 hour of exercise in Wareham Forest
Improve fitness strength mobility and general health

3 sessions a week
Mondays 6:30pm
Wednesdays 9:30am
Saturdays 9:00am

All ages (16 upwards) and abilities welcome
Sika Trail Car Park Wareham Forest
£5 per session pay on arrival

Get Fit
Have Fun

Bring something to drink.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Circuit Training - Wareham Forest

Monday evenings - 6:30pm
Wednesday mornings - 9:30am
Saturday mornings - 9:30am

£5 per session, all abilities.

Great fun outdoor exercise sessions!

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Boscombe 5k Results

I went through halfway in 9:13, and but for me stoppng brifely to see if one of the runners was ok, I finished pretty strong. 18:40 ish I think, maybe a bit over that. Good running and very pleased considering no training of any note and carrying a bit more weight than I should be. Focus now on breaking 18:30 and beyond!!!

Update, results now out and 19:08! Oh well, will try harder next time. Hopefully won't stop either!!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Boscombe 5k Winter Series

The brilliant 5k series is back round again. I've only done a couple of races in the past but they are great for motivation and speed work and a bit of a social; catch up with a few people I haven't seen for a while.
I am also going to try and run a bit faster! Time I really put in some effort on these short races. I would love to get near to 18 minutes. I have done 18' 50something before, which I am very happy with, but with some work I think I can get that down a fair bit. But we'll see, just go, give it some and have fun!!
More info on the Poole Runners Website.

Sunday, 10 October 2010

James Gilfillan

It's been a long time, but me and James finally managed to get out together for a burn up on the TT bikes! And yes, he kicked my ass, no surprise there then! But great fun, just short of 50 miles and I spent most of them hanging on to his back wheel, with not much of a draft! James, please grow by 10cms and 40kgs!!
Those 2 hour rides are what I had a lot of last year and they really helped get me riding strong. James is building up for a team shot at RAAM( Race Across America) next year, so hopefully me and him wil get out and about on the bikes a bit more.
Go to the British Triathlon Federation website to vote for him as Age Group Athlete of the Year.

My own training will start in earnest next week as I start to work on my running speed and get out for lots of solid bike miles.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Circuit Training in Wareham Forest

Forest Fit.
Begins Wednesday 13th Otcober, 9:30am at the Sika Trail Car Park in Wareham Forest. All abilities. £5 a session.
This should be great fun. Me and fellow Personal Trainer Charlie Tipper are leading a new circuit-based training session in the backdrop of the lovely Wareham Forest. Focus is very much on all round general fitness; just come along, have a go, get fit and have a good time!
Ask me for more info!

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Off season

Rest time, and I need it!
So thankfully it is at this time I have pulled a muscle in my lower back, one of the QLs, and it is very sore. Not preventing me moving a lot bu it is making me hold myself incorrectly and my shoulders and neck are aching as a result. Trying to keep moving as much as possible.
Unfortunately children, car seats and backs do not mix!
But this weekend I will be getting back out on the bike. Just have to purchase some wet weather gear, as I have bought no bike clothes for about 3 years! All my shorts have holes in and I have no overshoes, and just a pair of tri cycling shoes which offer no protection from the cold at all. Thankfully I have saved a little for such rainy days!
Hopefully now the winter is here I can get out consistenly for som elonger easy paced rides and get the mileage up as a base for next season.
Also going to focus on the running, will be doing a few events, Boscombe 5k series and Wimborne 10 miler and a few other local runs.
The personal training is taking shpae now and lots of really great people to train with. And I am setting up circuit training in Wareham Forest, more details to follow, so keep reading!!
Right, off for a gentle jog to see if I can loosen up my back a bit!

Sunday, 26 September 2010


Time trial time again today, first for a while, and also the first time I had ridden a 2 man event. Rob Jefferies, Poole Wheeler and strong rider elected a few weeks ago to team up with me. We went out and had a short practice on Wednesday just to see if I could follow a wheel. And so we turned up in very cold weather this morning, a cool Northerly wind keeping it a little on the fresh side!
But I have to say it went very well, and I found some form. In fact I have not ridden that well all year! We had a couple of scary moments, Rob took on a car at a roundabout and I backed off, then we nearly had a clash of the spokes moment, coming together a little on the close side, and I wasn't great at going round a second roundabout, the wind gusting into my disc. But for our first ride together, it went pretty well. 58 mins and 46 secs for the 25 miles. Typical, season draws to a close and I find my legs!! In fact, I felt that good today I could have gone and ridden the course a second time!
Most enjoyable, and the lovely guys and gals down at Poole Wheelers might even have talked me into a couple of hill climb events!!

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Rest and recovery

So the 2010 triathlon season draws to a close. Time for mind, body and soul to have a rest, regroup andplan a way forward.
I have a 2-up time trial with Rob Jefferies of Poole Wheelers on Sunday, first time for me riding in a team time trial situation, but should be good 'fun'!! We went out yesterday for a practice ride, but my legs were still feeling the effects of Sunday's New Forest race. Better today and another ride out will help recruit some more muscle fibres. Lacking in speed, but a couple of rides and a turbo session should get me firing on Sunday and at least with Rob we can help push each other along. My aerobic system won't be best equipped to deal with a very hard effort, but I'll give it my all and at least I will have a reasonabe amount of rest this week. 1 easy swim and an easy hour light jog yesterday has helped to keep the body moving.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

New Forest Middle Distance Triathlon Race Report

Last race of the season for me, and finished with mixed feelings.
Cool but fine weather was the order of the day, and another early start. Up at 3:30 for a large dose of porage oats and pack the gear up. Bike racked Saturday so not had to worry about that. Rocked up there at 5am at Sandy Balls for a short bus ride to the start. Felt ok, very relaxed, no expectations and got in a cool Ellingham Water, up the front, and then did my usual thing at the start of just not getting into it and not finding feet. I'm just no good at open water swimming, don't get to doit that often and I just end up swimming on my own and seem to make it hard work for myself. Felt ok swimming though, and exited into T1 to change for bike. I felt really out of breath and was flagging a bit. Onto bike, and I was nowhere, no legs, no breathing, just felt pretty rubbish. Took me 15 miles of riding to find anything in my legs. Climbs were hard work. But I stuck at it and after riding along with Lawrence Down for a mile I decided to just try and push on and find something. And it sort of worked. Headwind on the way to Sandy Balls and then back for another smaller loop, and before I knew it I was into T2, about 10 or 12 bikes already in. Slightly disappointing but I just tried to focus on putting in a good run.
Shoes on and out we go, running well, smooth, just a bit slow! Made a decision to walk the big hills, a 25% gradient at mile 2 was hurting my legs even when walking. My legs were pretty much shot and felt very sore and fatigued. But I stuck to it and by mile 7 or 8 I was feeling pretty good. Had to stop for nature call of the second variety, and was caught by Freddy Devos and we ran together for the next 3 miles, and I was feeling ok, even with tired legs. He was getting away on a climb but I pegged him back but then he finally got away on a downhill and I had nothing to give. 3 miles to the finish and I had slowed down and started to cramp, despite getting my nutrition right today for once.
A strong runing Emma Dews passed me with 2 miles to go and not long after Tracy Cook followed suit. I walked the last hill and then th run in was very slow, cramping calves made sure I couldn't push on, and was very pleased to finish.
Great event yet again, very tough race. James Gilfillan , Lee Piercy and Dave Woodgate made the top 3, Will Newbery in 4th. I think I was about 25th.
On the whole, I gave it as much as I could, but lack of training over the last few months has shown. I enjoyed the race and I was pleased that given the lack of conditioning I was able to get round in a respectable time. But the other side of the coin is that I did yet another race not being in any sort of shape. My biking has been shocking really this season, I've lost a lot of speed and am not quite sure what has happened. My swimming continues to be hit or miss, but running is beginning to show signs of improving. Winter work needed, strength work needed and I also need to shft a bit of weight, just too heavy, carrying half a stone too much. I hit 40 next year, as Freddy pointed out today, maybe age is catching up with me!! Yep, thanks for that Freddy, makes me feel a whole lot better.

Friday, 17 September 2010

New Forest Middle Distance Triathlon

Last race of the season for me on Sunday. Usually I am in great shape for this one and have come at it after a good block of solid training. Not this time!!
I haven't ridden my bike since last weekend's race. I have been up in London on business, so not been able to get out. Have run(30 minute son a treadmill!), swum twice and that is it! I shall turn my legs over later for an hour and also have a gentle jog tomorrow as well as an easy spin, but basically I am not at all race fit. I shall go and do my best and just relax and enjoy it. As long as I put in 100% I will be happy. No speed at all at the moment and to be honest I'm not worried about it. If I can break 5 hours for this one I'll go home a happy bunny! Last year was 5:01, so a minute to find from somewhere!!!
Have a great weekend everyone and good luck to all those racing on Sunday!

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Weymouth Classic Triathlon Results 2010

As for myself, I was 11th overall, 2 hr 29. It was a long course, 42km bike and nearer 11k run. Really pleased with how I went, could not have put in any more effort. But I am just soooooooo slow at the moment. Biking is way down on what I can ride. My swim was a bit of a shocker, thought I was a bit quicker than that. But at last a run leg that did me a bit more justice. Hilly bike to start with and it took until mile 20 for me to realy get into my riding and find any sort of rythmn. Just couldn't get my legs moving smoothly, but I didn't worry about it too much and pushed on with what I had. Missed out on a top ten finish by 2 seconds! I was running down a chap infront of me ever so slowly over the last 4k but just couldn't quite get there. BUt overall, very enjoyable morning, and very pleased that after very little training of any quality over the last few weeks I managed to bang out a decent performance. Bodes well for next season. Next week is the New Forest middle distance race. If I can run like I did today then I might be alright, but I really need to find some bike form and to be honest, I think it won't return this year. But that's how it goes sometimes. Bustin Skin put on a great race and great value for money. I shall definitely add in some of their events next season.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

weymouth classic triathlon

Sunday 12th September 2010. 7am start.

At last, a race! And one I can just go enjoy. Most of the bike route is on my various training rides. The 10k run appears to be pretty flat.
I haven't ridden my bike all week. I've run a couple of times and swum once. Feel reasonably refreshed but no idea how I will get on, and for once I'm not too bothered. Will be nice to get a good solid training session in and just enjoy myself. Racing without watch or hr monitor or bike computer, just want to go on feel. 1500m swim, 40km bike, 10k run. Simple!

Monday, 6 September 2010

Latest News

James Gilfillan, World Duathlon Champion, age group 30-34. Not only did James win his age group, he won the whole race!! Brilliant result, and the only guy to break 2 hours on the day. Results here:
Sister Ceris was 2nd overall in the women's race, so a great day for the Gilfillan family. I'm sure James will fill me in with a detailed race report when we meet up for coffee later this week.
It's quite nice to know that over the last few years I have had the privilege or swimming, riding and running with James. I must mention I did have a faster split than him at Ironman UK 70. in 2008. I was 20 seconds quicker in Transition 1! Woo-hoo!!! And that's about it. I did get to within 30 seconds of him in a 10 mile time trial in 2009 and again in a 25 mile TT, where I was his minute man and he only caught me with a mile and a half to go!!
James is racing the New Forest middle distance triathlon on 19th September, and he will win by a country mile. I am aiming for a top 10 finish. 12th last year and ran like a donkey!! This year, just gonna go and give it some welly, no pressure, and have some fun!
Got the Weymouth Classic tri this Sunday, but not in particularly great form, but now fully recovered from Outlaw efforts and bike and run legs are returning slowly. Will just go have fun and see what happens!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Harry Wiltshire

Nice to get back out for a 2 hour ride today with the boss man!! Harry is back in the UK after a successful European trip. His 5th at Alpe d'Huez being the highlight, as well as making the break with Jonathan Brownlee at the Sprint World Champs in Lausanne, but Mr. Brownlee proving too strong and ran away from the rest if the field.
I'll get Harry to have a look at my swimming at some point over the next few weeks, and DrivenToTri are hopefully going to resurrect their very popular and successful swim days. Technique analysis, video, lectures, swim pratice, drills, open water swimming. Loads of stuff in there. I'll post up some more info on here when I find out.
This weekend sees duathletes from all over the globe heading to Edinburgh for the World Champs. James Gilfillan will be there along with his sister Ceris Styler, both in good form and hopefully they will do very well.

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Sky Sports 4 - Outlaw Triathlon

Apparently on Friday night I was on TV, Sky Sorts 4, 8:30pm, me crossing the finish line at the Outlaw Triathlon! My god, what a mess that must have been! Thankfully I don't have Sky, and am not impressed that a few people I know have seen it! That said, my little boy Henry was running along side and he looked great!!

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Personal Training

Came back in out of the pouring rain after an hour of taking one of my trainees on an off-road run. 1 hour of running/walking, incorporating some hill running and some short sprints. One of the most enjoyable sessions I have done, and great to see someone you are training develope over time. 3 months ago this lady could not run for more than 2 minutes wihout stopping to catch her breath. Now, through a balanced and varied exercise routine and small changes to her nutrition and a more balanced diet, she has managed to surprise herself with what she has managed to do today. To help somebody to do that and to see what a positive impact it has on their lives is a huge privilege and is immensely rewarding and satisfying. We are now looking at her taking part in a 5K event in October, something which she never thought was within her capabilities. Triathlon after that???!!!!

As for my own training, taken a bit of a hit again, bad back!!! But on the mend, and with some massage and stretching will sort it out. I am now entered into the Weymouth Classic Triathlon on 12th September, and the New Forest Middle Distance Triathlon on 19th September. Weymouth will be a warm up for the New Forest race. The ever popular New Forest race features James Gilfillan, Dave Woodgate, Will Newbery, Frederic Devos, Lawrence Down, and a host of other top triathletes. I had a good race last year, finishing in a very respectable 12th place, though I didn't run very well. Hopefully I can go well this year. Getting off the bike in 6th place was a real buzz for me. Hopefully this year I can do the same and hold it together whilst running!!

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Highs and Lows

Extremes in one day. Up early, refreshed and feeling much improved. Booked slot in Weymouth Classic triathlon in September, 2 weeks away. Took boys swimming, then picked up youngest, and bang, there goes my back! Quite obviously a pulled muslce right in my lumbar region. Best course of action is to keep moving, pulled back muscles before and never been much of a problem. Went for a run, just no good at all, too much pain and I turend round after 5 minutes and walked home. Shut the door, went up to my room and lay down for half an hour feeling totally miserable. More time out from training. I am feeling slow, lethargic, I have definitely put on some weight. I feel out of shape. I start as a Personal Trainer at Virgin Active gym tomorrow in Corfe Mullen and it's not the best time to be putting one's back out. I know why it's happened. Lack of quality training over the last few weeks, lot of stress, illness, too much driving, sitting and general day to day stuff hampering things. To help keep things in perspective I remind myself I am not a full time athlete and I don't rely on triathlon to pay the bills, it's just something I do for fun. But it ain't fun at the moment. I just want to get back to the quality training and shedding some pounds, getting lean and mean again. I'll race at Weymouth yet again knowing that I'm nowhere near my best, frustrating, but I'll just go enjoy myself and take some business cards!!!

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Ironman Recovery

Nearly 2 weeks on from the event and I am still snotty but feeling much better, and have at least managed to get out and jog and spin and swim over the last couple of days. Off for a morning swim once I have had a caffeine fix, and then will have a little jog in Wareham Forest and a spin on the bike later this evening.
Trying to find a shorter race to do. Can't get into racenewforest's Middle Distance tri in September, and a bit disappointed about that as I had a good race there last year, finishing in 12th place, and know I can go there and do well again. But that's how it goes, these races are becoming massively popular as it is very picturesque to do one in the New Forest. Might wait until their One Last Tri in October. Othr than that, most races seem to be booked up. I would have done the Littledown Bournemouth tri in September but that's been cancelled. There is Weymouth Classic in a couple of weeks so I might give that a bash. Then again, I might just not bother and sign up for a few running road races and a few bike TTs.
Feeling a bit cheesed off with it all at the moment, and probably just need something to focus on to get me back into it.

Monday, 16 August 2010

How to stop a cold?

Anyone any ideas?
I have not been doing any training, very little exercise for the last 10 days, been resting, eating, sleeping well, but can I shift this bloody cold? Nope! Wearing me down and the body is now seizing up. Think I might just get out on the bike and have a blast for an hour and see what happens. If I keep effort level low, the worst that can happen is that I'll need more tissues for my nose!
Not much else to report, Swanage triathlon was great yesterday, my good friend James Gilfillan was first again by 8 minutes from Dave Woodgate in second. Was nice to catch up with him after the race. Had a good chat about Ironman racing and has helped put a lot of it in perspective. It still felt odd not to be out there competing and I woke up in the night thinking how I could have squeezed into the top 10 there, and have beaten a couple of people who finished up there. Next year, I'll add that on the 'to do' list for local races!
Must mention Ceris Styler( James G's sister) who won the women's race. She is coming back to form and both her and James are the World Duathlon Champs in Edinburgh in 3 weeks' time! Best of luck to them both!

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Outlaw Triathlon 2010 Race Report

I sit here writing this 4 days on from the event, feeling full of cold and fatigued, and generally pretty rubbish. I have had lots of time to reflect on my first long distance race and put it all into some perspective. I have mostly been reflecting on how this season has gone in general. But more of that later.

Team B got up to Nottingham and checked into a Travelodge on Friday evening. We ate in the nearby pub/restaurant type thing! Big mistake. Dreadful. But not a lot we could do, after benig stuck in a car on the way up for nearly 7 hours. Remind me never again to drive anywhere in the UK on a Friday!

Had a decent night's sleep but woke up really snotty and feeling very tired, still coughing. And headed off for registration and the like. Thankfully we were only 10 minutes away from Holme Pierrepoint, the venue for the race. And what a brilliant venue. Looked very well organised, nicely laid out finish and registration was a breeze. We even managed to get a decent breakfast there with the boys and it was a nice leisurely mornig getting sorted out. I got on my bike and did a lap of the rowing lake, just to loosen the legs and check the bike. And this was the first sign that I wasn't quite right. Coming down into a headwind I pushed the pedals a bit more and it felt hard, my legs were sore and I was starting to breathe hard. Not right. Anyway, I didn't dwell on it and hopped off to get changed. Bike then racked and transition bags delivered to the change tent and back to hotel. Now I sort of wanted to sleep but didn't feel like it so we walked down to the river Trent and had a picnic and chilled out. Rest of the day was fine and got to bed early and slept soundly.

Race day.

Woke at 3am, feeling knackered! Sound talking to infront of the mirror, which I am sure everyone has done at some point, and I got my kit on and packed bags. Had some cereal, couple of slices of bread and cereal barsand banana and a load of water. Felt better for eating. Also down some co-codamol as I was still feeling snotty and bit of a sore throat. Stuff together and off we went.

Lovely morning, but chilly and a massive queue for the car park. But eventually got sorted and all went smoothly from then on. Westuit on, hugs and kisses and off to the swimstart. There were 4'bays' in which we all started from, loosely based on predicted swim times. I got myself into the 1 hour and under group, hoping I could get on someone's feet and be pulled along for a 50something swim. Anywhere between 1 hour 5 and 1 hour 10 was about what I was thinking, to swim easy and save myself, as I did not know what to expect, never having done an Ironman before. I was in the water, it was wtill and calm, a small breeze, but promised to be a lovely warm day. 3-2-1 Go!! 50 metres gone,m straight into weeds! And not just a little bit, proper grab hold of you and pull you under type weeds! Spent the next 200 metres negotiating plenty of the stuff and didn't find any feet! So eventually got into a rhythmn that was comfortable and got to the turnaround in good shape. Coming back was fine, but still no feet. I got my sighting right this time, but it was a bit easier, as the swim was in the rowing lake and it was very straight and easy to see the bank on the right side when I was breathing. I coasted the last 200m and swam very easy, and had a very enjoyable swim. Out into transition, was ok. Wetsuit off, change tent, grab bag, change area, elmet and shoes on, food in tri top, glasses on and off to get bike. Ran past it( again!) and back to it, run with bike, mount bike, and off we go!

Bike leg. Got into my riding pretty quick and once the lap of the rowing lake had been done I was out onto the roads and into a rhythmn that I was able to keep up all the way round. Now this was billed as a fast course. Well, there were fast sections. I did go through the first 10 miles under 25 minutes, mostly on the fast dual carriageway section. And there was a section of the 3 loops that was very quick, and a few other quick downhill sections, but on the whole I thought this was a pretty good course. There were certainly some long slow drags, nothing steep, it was big ring all the way, but enough to slow progress and to make the legs really work. Also in a lot of places on the looped section it was into a bit of a headwind. The course was an out section then 3 loops of about 30 miles and then back from where we came. 112 miles in all.

I took on water at most of the aid stations and ate and drank well. But I still don't think it's enough. Most of the water I poured on myself and I only had 4 gels, 4 x 750ml bottles of High 5 energy drink, and 4 Elevenses cereal bars. I will have to look at eating and drinking on the bike and just do more of it! As for the bike on the whole, I was just down on speed, but I rode solid all the way, 56 mile splits were almost the same. 2' 35" for the first and 2' 33" for the second. But I felt sick as a dog at mile 30 and was coughing up the green stuff for a lot of the ride. But my mind just willed me on and on return to Holm Pierrepoint a marshall shouted I was 18th, including a few relays teams. So that cheered me up! Transition was easy, bike taken off me and into chnge tent. Swapped race belts and socks and shoes on and straight out.

Run leg.

The run was a 3 lap affair, which included 4 loops of the rowing. I settled into my pace straight on it, and I was feeling good. 4:50 km pace. and I managed to maintain that through to 21k, halfway on the run. The run was very flat, all the way out along the Trent, under one of the stands of Nottingham Forest football ground and to a turnaround by the river, and back along the river again to Holme Pierrepoint for another loop and repeat! Gels and water were the order of the day and it was all going very well. I hit my halfway point with 1hr 39 gone and I was then going to hold it and try to push on a little. 3hr 20 was what I was aiming at and I was bang on target and feeling great. OK, you know what's coming. BANG! Went for a drink and carried on, then stopped! Agony, IT band on left leg in spasm, above my knee and I couldn't even walk. Couldn't even stand on it. Massage like mad, stretch and drink and I managed to stand and hobble forward for a few minutes. ANd thus the rest of the run went like that. I did manage to run for some sections, but it was at a greatly reduced pace and I had now begun to cramp all ovetr the place. To be honest I don't remember much of the last 13 miles, except the point where I sat down next to the rowing lake and was just going to quit. Not just the race, but the whole of this triatlon thing. Why was I putting myself through all this. I was hating it, proper hate. If someone could just have picked me up and offered me a lift home I would have taken it. At this point I had 16k to go. I don't know what made me get up and get going but I just had to finish. So I went on as best I could, hobble, shuffle, walk, stop, stretch and it took an eternity to get to the finish line where my boy Henry ran over to me and ran alongside to the finish. Crowd support was excellent and a big cheer over the finish line. I was greeted by a medic who was looking at me with great concern and got me to sit down asap. I don't think I looked or sounded very good. I just wanted liquid, I think I was dehydrated. My mind was mush! I was elated to just finish. Had I managed to run like I should have done I would have got myself a top 10 finish, but in the end, it was 50th place(56th if you add in the team relays). 10:33 in the end. I'll look closely at why it happened, maybe I was dehydrated, not enough condtitioning, fatigue, ill, or body just decided enough was enough!

My journey towards Ironman has reached a temporary conclusion. Will i do another one? Well I'll have to, I have signed up for Challenge Roth next year.

This year has been a funny one, I have had some quality training, but my performances have been disappointing. A lot of stress been going on, change of career, illness, getting to Roth and not doing it. I have also had 10 weeks of an intensive Personal Training course that really exhausted me at a time when I was hoping to really get solid trianing under my belt. And I have had the recnt added stress of trying to find work in my new chosen career.

On reflection I have done as well as I could have. The biggest question I have been asking myself, 'did I enjoy it?' 3 races, 3 different repsonses. Swashbuckler triathlon, I hated every minute of it, I felt tired, rubbish swim, no bike legs, and I just couldn't run. Weymouth middle distance, I enjoyed, I had a solid race, and stuck it on the run when I started to feel bad! Still slow, but I was happy, I did my best. Outlaw triathlon? My first go at Ironman, and not the race I was expecting to do. Preparation hardly the best, but on reflection I really enjoyed it( most of it!). Difficult to be totally honest as I am still feeling the effects and I'm full of cold. When the dust settles I will have a think about the whole triathlon thing and get some perspective on it. After all, it's just something I do for fun, and if I'm not enjoying myself out there then time for a change?

2 weeks off from anything heavy and I will try and find a short race to go and do. Also will get back to time trialling and trying to find my speed!

For anyone wanting to do a long distance race, I hope the Outlaw is here to stay, I recommend it highly and it is definitely one to put on the race calendar.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Outlaw Triathlon Race Report

Swim : 1:03
Bike: 5:08
Run: 4:16

Add in Transition and I have an overall time of 10:33.

Report to follow. As every triathlete knows the numbers never tell the story. Delighted to have finished in the end and enjoyed (most of) it!
Very sore and have full on cold and feel pretty rubbish, and that's 3 days on from the event. Plenty to work on and has given me lots to think about. Ironman distance racing is certainly in the head!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010


Brilliant swim vids on efficient freestyle swimming, and so refreshing to hear the commentary that goes with it.


Thank you to all those people on Facebook who have taken time to wish me well for this weekend's Outlaw Triathlon. After the disapointment of not getting to do Challenge Roth, this is my chance to put all the training to good use. 3 days to go! Now for some quality rest!

Monday, 2 August 2010


I am so up for this race on Sunday. Mental preparation begins in earnest. I am going to go there and give it my all and just enjoy the atmosphere of race day, and remind myself of why I do this fantastic sport!
Love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Grrrrrr!!!!!

Alpe d'Huez Triathlon

Coach and elite triathlete Harry Wiltshire was on form at the Aple d'Huez Triathlon last week, storming through with the fastest run split and first out of the swim. Unfortunately some idiot(or whatever the French is for it!) nicked his bike the evening before the race and Harry had to borrow one, which was not the right fit and left him aching all over after the bike leg. But he managed to run himself through the field for a great finish. Well done Harry!
Results here:

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Outlaw Triathlon

So another 7 days to my first 'Ironman' distance race. ANd unfortunately I am not in the best of shape. Laryngitis has cleared up and I feel ok, but not 100% and I still have a little catarrh hagning around a a niggly cough. Voice is still a bit hoarse. I have not ridden my bike for 3 days, and only swum and run on Thursday, now Sunday. I have been building a patio at home with my father the last 2 days and it has been tiring me out. All done now and a place for BBQs, so now I will get out and about on the bike today, but I feel a bit lethargic and not at all in any shape for racing. Maybe in 7 days I will be better, but mentally and physically I am just nowhere at the moment, and it's disappointing. I am fit enough to get round in a reasonable time. But I want to go there and race hard and give it my best. I know I won't be 100% and as fully fit as I was going into Roth, but I need 7 days now of mental preparation and focussing on racing as well as I can.
I will give myself a solid talking to when out on the bike today!!! Come on Steve!
Outlaw Triathlon website:

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Quote of the day

Have just entered for Challenge Roth next year. 10th July 2011. And this is why:

Failure just makes me more determined to succeed.

The quote is my own. Someone may well have said something similar, but it just resonates with me. I haven't been down about not being able to race at Roth, but just want to get back out there and try harder!

Steve Lumley

Great fun blog from Steve Lumley, top triathlon coach, and love this quote on his site:

"Stressing about things is a bit like using a rocking chair. It gives you something to do but gets you fooking nowhere"

Stop smoking

I was recently asked by a fellow personal trainer some advice on giving up smoking. I used to smoke. Yep, before all the triathlon I used to smoke a lot of cigarettes and drink a lot of alcohol. Oh how I wish I hasd never done it, I would be able to buy myself a lovely Scott Plasma 3 for next season!!! Anyway, here is the advice I gave. This may be useful for anyone else out there who is wanting to quit.
"Well, the most important thing I can say is that it takes a massive amount of energy to give up. What I mean by that is, it is such a big part of someone's life that it requires an immense effort and a lot of focus and concentration to give it up. So what might help is to find another source of focus. Also, on a scale of 1-10 how committed is he to giving up? It has to be 10. If it is he will do it. Small steps. 1 hour, 2 hours, 4 hours, 8 hours, awake, 24 hours, 1 day, 2 days etc. You get the picture. Smoking is 99.9% mental habit. It is not physical addiction. Break all associations if you can with smoking. If he has a coffee with a cigarette, stop the coffee. If he has a break at 11am every day, move that break to 10:45. Try and break down any habitual behaviour. It will scramble the brain and it won't be able to focus on the need for a cigarette.
Just be positive about it. Don't focus on the smoking as a real negative thing. Sounds a bit odd. But smokers can get very defensive about their habit if you bang on about how awful it is. He has smoked, he is still alive and he can change. It's all about you just supporting that change and finding ways in which you can help him break the habit.
Remember, goals are massive. So think of the small steps above, and set regular short term goals, and he will be successful in quitting."

Monday, 26 July 2010

Personal Trainer

My website is in production, but there is a link to my basic profile. Please contact me for more information if you are interested in training, whether it be online or in the flesh!!

Saturday, 24 July 2010


You gotta love it, it is the one guarantee thing to make you well. Drop the pills, health drinks, recovery shakes and vitamins and minerals. Sleep is king!
And as a result of lots of it this week, I am recovering well and have woken up for the first time this week feeling refreshed and wanting to eat and drink. I shall just have a 20 minute very gentle jog later today and if that's ok I will try 30 minutes of very gentle spinning tomorrow on the rollers. The idea being to get the body moving after a week of nothing and not raising the heartrate to anything resembling effort.
So far so good.
Here is a link to the Outlaw Triathlon on 8th August.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Ironman Journey continues

OK, well, it's not gone according to plan. But things seldom do. That's just life and the unpredictability of it all.
We flew out to Roth, great flight( and I do NOT do airplanes at all well!) and we picked up car and had a lovely drive to Ingolstadt. Lovely hotel, very helpful. Nice room, refreshed, met parents, ate out, very good food. Then got to hotel for sleep, and couldn't. Unbearably hot. And so I was wide awake all night. Tired the next day but ok with food, and I drove up to register with the family and we ate out and spent a nice day together and then back to hotel for eating and sleeping. Then Saturday I got bike into transition, only to be stopped with acrack in my helment. So off I rode to the bike shop, new helmet purchased and back again. Bike in, no problems. At this point, feeling a bit tired and snotty, but ok, just thought part of the tapering. But then the evening wore on and I was getting worse, started heating up and feeling very grumpy. Very very tired and got to bed early. Then 2am race morning, hot and cold, shivering with sweats and just absolutely no way I could race. Drove to the race start, handed in timing chip, collected my bike and then went back to hotel. That was it. Race over before I even got wetsuit on.
Disappointing, but it never sunk in as I was feeling so rotten. Now back in the UK and had time to reflect. I have laryngitis, and am taking anti-biotics, loads of co-codamol and have been sleeping and drinking as much as possible. Feeling much better, but another 2-3 days required before I even put on a pair of run shoes. I have managed to find another long distance race on the 8th August which I shall be able to do. And I will just go and smash it and have a good ol time!! See what I can do.
Not the way in which I expected to do my first 'Ironman' race, but hopefully in 3 weeks' time I will be one!
Watch this space!

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Challenge Roth

Bike packed up. Kit ready and everything more or less organised. We fly tomorrow from Heathrow, touch down in Munich at 2pm, then pick up car and 40 minute drive to hotel. Put bike back together and take for a spin and find a pool for a gentle float!
Massively excited and nervous at the same time. Not the best of flyers either, but thankfully it's less than a 2 hour flight, so only white knuckles for a short time!
Did my last run session today, felt a bit tired, but it was wet and windy and early morning, so not really awake. But I will hit that start line in the best shape I have ever been in and ready to do my thing! My race number is 288 and you can follow my progress throughout the race on Live streams and reports, photos and video. Updated all day long with an athlete tracker, just stick in my number and see how I'm going!
Race report will follow as soon as I am back and have enough energy left to type!
See you all soon.

Saturday, 10 July 2010

All about the bike

Watched my first bit of Le Tour yesterday! Great stage racing and another excellent win for Mark Cavendish. Regardless of whatever come sout of his mouth, he is one talented sprinter and without a doubt the quickest man in the Peloton and will be for years to come. Great stuff for Britain to have an elite athlete like this and I only wish he was getting more exposure and the sport would become more high profile in the UK. I don't know why on earth we are like this in Britain. That's why I am really looking forward to Roth next week. 500,000 fans and supporters at a triathlon race. 30,000 people lining a 1km climb! Brilliantly organised race( well, it is Germany after all!) and it just looks like an awesome place to be for a triathlon.
I had a ride out with coach Harry on Thursday and we had a chat about approaching the race. This is my first attempt at long distance and a bit of a journey into the unknown, and we discussed two main approaches. I either go at it very conservative and within myself and just get round, or I have a good go, do what I do well and push as hard as i can and if the wheels come off, just suck it up, laugh and enjoy myself, knowing that I have given it a good go and I know what to do for next time. The conclusion was the latter. This is what I have been training for for the last 12 months, the last 18 months. The focus of everything has been to get strong for long distance. The training is in place, it's time to put my body on the line and just go for it.
This last week has been a weird one. The tapering effect is in full effect!! Ridden easy, sea swum, run easy, tired and feeling rubbish and body stiff and aching. It's slowly wearing off, after yesterday's hour in the sea at Swanage. Wetsuit repair is a good one, very pleased with the guys at Dorset Diving Services.
So 8 days to go til the race start. Run this morning, bike later today. Early bike tomorrow and easy 20 minute run and sea swim. Monday as a rest I think and then some short efforts Tuesday and Wednesday. Fly out Thursday, register and practice swim Friday. Rack bike on Saturday, then back to hotel for sleep! Up at 2am race morning and breakfast, race start at 6:20am. I can feel the nerves already!!!!

Thursday, 8 July 2010

One week to go!

7 days til I fly out. Am slowly preparing everything, making sure I am well organised, got all the gear I need, bike parts, spares, right clothing, all flight and accommodation info and anything else I can think of. Lists a plenty!
This tapering is killing me! I did an easy jog and easy bike on Tuesday, a 4k easy swim yesterday and just got back from a 40 minute easy run this morning. My body felt like a train wreck! Very slow, joints and muscles tight, and so tired! Easy 90 minute bike to do later and then I'll see what is in the schedule for the weekend. Nothing heavy, still light. Next week will be a few short sharp efforts, kickstart the body back into action. I know I'll be ready for Roth and I can't wait to get there and get on that start line.

For the latest race info go to:

Monday, 5 July 2010

The body

The body is a funny old thing. I have had 4 easy days since my last hard training session. I had a gentle swim Friday, a very easy jog Saturday, a 2 hour spin Sunday and I am off in a minute to go and have a nice easy swim in the sea followed by another gentle spin. And it feels horrible!!
Tired, no energy, no appetite, restless, can't settle. Just couldn't be bothered with riding yesterday, so after 2 hours I gave up and rode home. Not like me, I love being out on the bike. Truth is, I feel a bit lost without the focussed training session. Without the target pace to hit or the right level of effort to maintain! Just easy riding has lost any meaning! But that's the idea this week, it's just to rest the body fully before I shock start it into action next week with some short hard efforts and then ready for the big one on the 18th July. Temperatures are set to sore out there, so looking at some white tri kit and one of those 'Lawrence of Arabia' style caps with the rear flap. Might look a right plonker, but if it keeps me cool then that'll do for me!

Thursday, 1 July 2010


Well, that's it. That was the last hard session before Roth, and now we start the tapering. Gonna be hell next week, but it's all in a good cause! Today was tough, very tough. Same session as 5 days ago, and not at all fresh. Bit of a stressfuly week so far. However, 72 miles in 3 hr 5' and a solid 20k in 1hr 35' on another warm and muggy day. And damned windy. Managed to build the pace on the bike and hung on for my 21 x 800s. Legs hanging off as I write, not been that tired after a session for a long time. Good to have really worked as hard as I could. Like Harry said to me, 'job done!'
So off for a glass of milk and some chocolate!!

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Personal Training

As of June 6th I qualified as a Personal Trainer. Personally I prefer to think of myself as a Personal Fitness Coach. I'm a facilitator, enabling people to achieve their health and fitness goals by a combination of support and leadership, whatever their current level of fitness or their level of sporting ability.
If anyone reading is interested in my services please do get in touch. I am currently developing a personal training website which will have all the information on what I have to offer. I can also offer online personal training for people who have no access to gyms or prefer to train themselves but just need someone on hand to help with programming and planning and just to monitor their progress or lend an ear.
Future plans will be to add triathlon coaching to my skillset, as I know there are loads of age group triathletes out there like me who try to juggle family and work commitments with the demands of training for this fantastic sport. The level of support I have received from my own coach Harry Wiltshire of has been excellent and it has enabled me to hit my targets and reach my goals.
My personal goal now is to help others hit their own targets and realise that a healthy lifestyle is possible. Let's face it, if I can do it then anyone can!!

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Oh well, World Cup over, wonder what they made of it in Roth!

So we are now out of the World Cup, poor effort and I am sure all those involved with the England team are just as disappointed. They did not do themselves justice, simple as that. No excuses, it just didn't happen for them on the day. theymay well have been prepard and in the best shape of their lives, but for some reason they didn't perform. Such is sport, a great leveler.
And so is triathlon. My training is just so good at the moment, getting faster, leaner, stronger, harder!! Weekend of quality finished off 2 weeks of excellent work. My bike legs are now returning, helped by some new pedals! I didn't quite realise how worn the old ones were. Instant improvement. So saturday was key session day, 73.5 miles on the bike in 3 hours 8 minutes with loads in the legs, followed by 21 x 800m with 1 minute jog recovery between each, and at the height of the heat at midday! Thankfully I did this over a 2k loop near my house and was able to pop in after every 5 reps to hose myself down! It was HOT! Covered 20km in 1 hr 35mins. Got my nutrition pretty much spot on, and another confidence booster to take forward. So recovey today from that was a 3 x 1000m swim set and a 2 hour easy bike, lovely out in the sun. Bash out 10 x 400m swim tomorrow after giving someone an open water swim lesson and then a 40 minute easy run off-road. One tough session to go on Wednesday and then start to taper down for Roth, mixture of long easy and short sharp stuff. So far so good! And loving this weather!!!!

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Forget the 10 TTs Steve

OK, I rode out with James Gilfillan last night and we ventured out for a Poole Wheelers club '10'. James is in awesome form at the moment and riding very strong. I've been going well over distance and the last couple of weeks have seen my riding getting back to some sort of form. Then we get to last night! A good hour and a half of solid riding beforehand and I felt tired at the start and yet strangely I felt quick for most of the ride, found the last 4 miles tough, and crossed the line in 23' 57". Disappointing. Trying not to think about it as in 3 weeks I will be pushing the pace over 112 miles, which is a big difference. But I feel I have lost so much top end speed. Same course this time last year and in tougher conditions I was a whole minute quicker. 30 minute post 10 ride home at pace and I was feeling better. Tired today and I have a bike to fix. 23 days to get my mind right and find my bike legs!!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Latest News
Fraser gets a much deserved win at Wimbleball to take Ironman UK 70.3 title. Bella Bayliss won the women's race.
As seems to be happening at these very popular Ironman races there was a shortage of top quality age groupers there and it was shown in the times. And a massive amount of first timers at that distance and even people who were doing there first ever triathlon. Fair play and hats off to everyone taking part. Great for the sport and to see how triathlon is really taking off. Unfortuantely the downside is these events get booked up so quickly now and it is very difficulty to have to plan one's season so far in advance just based on the fact you want to get a slot in a race. I'm a bit stuck for races after Roth for the rest of the season. The two races I wanted to do, the Vitruvian and New Forest Middle Distance were both booked up by January!!
Big well done to Dave Woodgate who has been out with injury earlier this season but went back to Wimbleball for a great 11th place finish.

Training continues to go well. 160 quality miles at the weekend, 3k sea swim and 4.5k pool session, some shorter runnig off the bike and a long 2 hour run to come today. Feeling in good shape.
And this weather is loverleeee!!!! Long may it continue!

Saturday, 19 June 2010


Back on it this week, with regular bikes and two solid run sessions, one 80 minute build run and a very tough 21 x 800m with 1 minute jog recovery on the track. 5 hours in the saddle today with 30 minute run off and then for a 3k sea swim early tomorrow and 3 hours build on the bike at race pace. Pool swim Monday and spin on bike, 2 hour run on Tuesday with a recovery sea swim and then pool Wednesday and more to follow. The weather is helping, the body is feeling good and I'm strong. Happy Days!
This weekend I will finally sort out my nutrition. Trying the High5 sachets for drinks today, and will try eating more food. Got to try and work out how many calories I need to take on per hour. Well, more like grams of carbs. Also, for me in the heat, vital I take on more liquids, at 90kg I will be among the heavier athletes out there.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Start em young!

Had to post this one of my youngest, Elliot, just turned 2. Haven't got the heart to tell him the helmet is on back to front!! He loves bikes and I will be amazed if he does not take up some sport when he's older!

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Challenge Roth Swim Waves

Swim waves have now been confirmed for Roth and I have got in a good wave. 3rd wave, following the Pro wave and the sub 9 hour finish wave. I'm in the with the fastest age groupers which has given me a huge mental lift and I'm now really excited about it. Everything is now booked, flights and accommmodation etc. so all systems go. Now to put 3 weeks solid work in and then taper nicely and just hit that line raring to go!

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Weymouth Middle Distance Triathlon 2010 Race Report

Lovely morning for this race, but a firm westerly wind was beginning to blow as the race started.
7am and I was stood on the beach with misty goggles, just unable to get them clean and promptly got myself in the wrong position for the start, off to the left furthest from the first turn buoy(2nd from left in white cap). See pic left! D'oh!! But despite the swim position I had a really solid swim and actually enjoyed it! Water was very calm and once I got rid of my annoying swim cap and stopped the water geting in my goggles I settled into a good rythmn. The swim was definitely long, as well as the fact I have to get my sighting sorted, needs work. Probably would have saved me a minute.
Anyway, after a good swim I exited onto the stoney beach, ouch!! ANd then up some steep steps into transition, and successfully ran straight past my bike, and then ensued the sight of me runing up and down my lane trying to spot it! The front wheel had been turned on it's side, hence I couldn't see it! Steady change, made sure all sorted and out onto bike.
And what a difference this week. My bike legs were there from the word go and I was soon into my riding. Didn't know the first part of the course, but it takes you into the cenre of Weymouth along the seafron and a right turn at a mini roundabout takes you to traffic lights! Thankfully I hit them just on the change and carried on. The firt section is a steady climb up to Dorchester, think it's about 4 or 5 miles, so just settled into a nice cadence and was able to push on passing a few people as I went. Once at the top, new road surface for the next 2 miles let me get up to 40mph on a slight downhill to the first big roundabout which gets you onto the Dorchester bypass and dual carriageway to Bere Regis.
At this point I was flying along and the following wind made riding at pace a real joy! Great fun. I caught maybe one rider from Dorchester to Bere Regis but I could see them coming back on the other side of the dual carrageway and the leaders had about 4 or 5 minutes on me at about 20 miles. The turnaround came and thenit was a real slog into a strong headwind back up the dual carruageway to Dorchester. I did manage to pickoff another 2 riders, one of them Jack Wiltshire, brother of Harry who is an excellent triathlete, and elite swimmer. He was obviously finding the wind hard work and I tried to exchange a few words, but he was in deep concentration, so I pushed on.
Left turn before Dorchester sees the race go out towards Wool via Warmwell, and this section was quick with a following wind, and even though undulating, I was finding the uphill sections pretty easy. I caught another rider and worked out I must have been up to fourth, and that was confirmed at the next turnaround point by my wife Tracey who shouted out where I was in the race. 3 riders ahead and I saw from the turnaround I had made up some ground on them. The return to Weymouth was into a strong headwind again and I was tiring a little, but the last 3 miles are more or less all downhill and I coasted in, past only by one guy flying along on the descent. So I hit T2 after a 2:15 ride. I had ridden strong but cetainly well within myself, and was delighted to hit transition at the front end of the race.
T2, I took my time, socks and shoes on, laced them up and got my gels in hand, watch on and off we go. First mile is flat and then next few miles are gradual uphill over about 3 miles, then downhill and undulating for 3. And repeat. So the first mile and I was ticking along feeling really good at 6:30 mile pace. No problems, I hit first 'ascent' and slowed a little, trying to find the right pace. Got passed by a couple of runners and held back from chasing them down, just focussing on my own race. By this time, the sun was out and it was sheltered, and by 10am it was already very warm. I am not good in the heat. That said, I pushed on and at the end of the first lap I was doing ok, but then my mind and body started to faulter. Oh dear, the wheels were about to come off, I was feeling rubbish. More gel and water and I was back to feeling better, but then mile 8 and 9 were dark. 'I am not doing this any more!!' was the biggest thought in my mind, quickly followed by 'why am I putting myself through this!' I decided to stop at the next water station which was mile 8 and then the next one at mile 10. This worked for me, and after two very slow miles I then pushed on for the last 3. I got my second wind, the legs revived and I pushed on til the end finishing the run leg in a (for me) a very respectable 1:35. 4:32 in the end, on a warm day. I finished the race in 7th, but there were a couple of waves that set off after the one I was in and a few athletes just came infront by a few minutes. I was 20th overall, picked up the Age Group prize and collected the team prize with driventotri.
As this was a training race as prep fo Roth, and on the back of little quality run training and not as much riding as I usually would do, 10 weeks of a full on intensive course in Personal Training, I was delighted to get that result, and really pleased by my performance. Some of my strength has returned and I am now very confident that I can do well at Roth on the 18th July. Lacking top end speed on the bike, and certainly short on run legs, but I have 5 weeks to really get strong, and if I get to the start line in good shape and mentally in the right place, then I will do well. Just got to get that nutrition right. Still not enough eating at Weymouth. I'm 88kg and I keep forgetting that I need to take on more calories. I'm no racing snake, so I will be trying to work on that when out for long rides and brick sessions.
Good friend of mine, Kerry Mclean was 11th lady home, she is in training for Ironman Germany in July, and in good shape. Well done Kerry!
As I write, James Gilfillan will be in the water at Bala middle distance, the National Age Group Championships. The form he is in, I cannot see anyone else getting near him. Go James, positive vibes going out to you!!!

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Personal Fitness Coach

This is me! Now a qualified Personal Trainer and Gym Instuctor. Very exciting to be starting out on a new venture. Building new website and a lot of promotional stuff and already training/coaching some people. Good Times!!!
More info and race report from Weymouth Middle Distance Triathlon to follow. I won my age group and driventotri won the team prize!!

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Time calculator

Here's just about the best time/distance/speed calculator that I know. Great little tool.

Weymouth Middle Distance Triathlon 2010

Tomorrow, 7am, I will hit the water, head down and concentrate on not getting bashed about!

Treating this race more like a solid training session and trying to replicate what I have been banging out in training over the last few months. Eating and rest and recovery has been very good this week. I feel rested and will be getting some more sleep and more rest today as the family are away in Legoland visiting more family! Actually would love to be going along, but Legoland in hot sun all day long and a drive there and back would not be the right preparation for a race, and as this is only my second race of the year, I would like to go into it in good shape and able to at least put in a solid performance.
Weather is perfect, maybe a little on the warm side, but hopefully I shall be on to the run before 10 before it has had chance to get too hot. Plenty of liquid, get my food right today and tomorrow and I should be good to go. After a fall out with my disc wheel, it's back on again. It's a pretty quick bike course. 2:10 for 52 miles is a comfortable marker for me, as I know the course very well. But we'll see what happens on the day. Swim strong, ride solid, and push on the run.
More info on the race at

Monday, 31 May 2010

Just for the record - I can run

Well, jut to prove my running is not that bad, here is me at the start of the Swashbuckler run leg. I was tired but I was detemrined to try and push on, but didn't account for dehydration. It will come right sometime soon. :)

Sunday, 30 May 2010

End of May

Another week on and chance to move on from last week's poor performance. Learned a lot. And in the end it boiled down to 3 things. Tiredness, stress and poor nutrition. I got it wrong on all counts, but the first two unavoidable. Nutrition is an ongoing experiment, binning the refined carbs, taking on more fat and protein and cutting out the naughties!! But I don't think it's working that well. So a bit more tinkering, adding in some more good carbohydrates and making sure I drink plenty of water, and not worrying about the coffee. Loving the eggs, whole milk and butter, feeling fuller and definitely helping me lean down. Also enjoying the organic pasture-fed meat, had a fantastic roast today, beautiful succulent beef joint off the market, none of this supermarket anabolic steroid supercow crap!
I scaled right back on the training this week, as the mind needed as much rest as the body. And I have just got back in from a 50 minute run in Wareham Forest, a lovely sunny evening witha nice cool breeze, perfect running weather, and has set me up for a positive week. Weymouth Middle Distance tri next Sunday and I'm not putting any pressure on myself to perform. I know what I can do, I'm going to go and relax and concentrate on putting in a solid effort. The result will hopefully take care of itself. But most of all I am just going to go there and enjoy it,and race with a smile on my face!

Monday, 24 May 2010

Never a bad race

Whilst coming away from yesterday's race I heard of some tragic news that a competitor had collapsed out on the run course. Unfortunately he was unable to recover after medics had attempted to resuscitate. It is a very sad time and I offer my condolences and thoughts to all those involved and the athletes from Southampton triathlon club. There is more information on their website

It just makes me rethink my own performance and get some real perspective on things, and in the cold light of day, there is never a bad race. Just to finish a race is a privilege and nothing on earth should ever be taken for granted.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Swashbuckler Triathlon 2010 Results

Well, please don't look for my name! It is there but way back in 32nd place. I went into this race with high hopes of mixing it with the front end of the race after a consistent 9 months of solid training. But I fell apart from start to finish. Just not on it in the swim, biking was well down, nothing in the legs and I suffered on the run with stomach cramps, GI problems and couldn't keep stuff down. Very dehydrated, and I have never suffered with that before. I can only think I must have been very tired going into this race and just not realised it. My legs aren't even sore post race, which speaks volumes and suggests that I was not able to generate any kind of effort near to what I know I can do.
James Gilfillan is on fire at the moment, he dominated the race from start to finish, awesome performance. Well done James.
Yet another fantastic race from Richard Iles and his team in the New Forest, and what a beautiful venue and the weather was simply stunning!

Thanks to my family who yet again came along at silly o' clock to support me. Next time I will do you all justice and get it right on the day! Weymouth middle distance tri next in 2 weeks and I will be out to put things right.

Friday, 21 May 2010

Race time

Swashbuckler Triathlon 2010.
The sun is going to shine, and I am in good shape. Really looking forward to the 1.2 mile swim, 49 mile bike and 14 mile run. No let up in the pace til the finish line. This is my first test of the season and my goal is to just keep pushing as hard as possible to the end. No let up unless I completely blow!!
I feel reasonably rested, have done a couple of run sessions this week, an evening 10 TT which was ok, no amazing times, just a steady 22' 19", bit disappointing, but that's not my focus and just glad to be at least riding fairly consistent. If I can get into a good rythmn on the bike on Sunday it will set me up for a solid run. Objective for the race within a race is to do myself justice and run like I know I can off the bike. I can do it in training, so it has now got to happen in a race. No excuses!!!
So race report to follow on Sunday, and let's hope it's a positive result. James Gilfillan is racing, I'm never going to get close but I'll be up there in the mix with the guys coming in just behind him. Happy Days and Good Times!
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