Sunday, July 29, 2012

Managing Failure

Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.

Winston Churchill 

The week turned out to be a non event as far as training went. I did a good solid ride on Sunday morning with Tim and then a wind trainer session on Sunday evening. On Monday I ran in the evening and again did my interval session in the evening .I was having a hard time breathing and had the onset of mild flu symptoms but the run turned out to be very difficulty with me spluttering and coughing in the cold air . After that session it was no activity for the next 5 days as I just had to recover from the mild symptoms and I did not want to exacerbate it any further.

Mid week I attended a seminar and one of the speakers referred to the quote from Winston Churchill. Managing success is relatively easy. Managing failure is a lot harder . In the world of business , public speaking and advocacy , there is the skill of managing . Getting up from a disastrous campaign , takes courage .It takes fortitude. I understand more in endurance , those who are fast and talented have the enthusiasm to train as they are withing clutching distance of a win or a podium finish. ( taking nothing away from the few who have the mental fortitude and talent to win)The guys bringing the rear up have no such illusions and yet they push themselves and finish .But more commendable , they are back training for the next race.

How would you feel , training for the next race with no chance of a top 10 finish?

It is easy to strive for success , it is so different to lose none of the enthusiasm for something other than the satisfaction of finishing.

With 2 weeks of the Olympics before me , there will be more stories of sportsmanship , possibly drug cheats and hopefully stories of those sportsman and women striving to push the boundaries of human endeavour on the sports field. As the IOC President stated in his address at the Opening Ceremony :
These Games bring many hopes. Hope for harmony and peace between the 204 National Olympic Committees. Hope to see the young generations inspired by the values of sport. Hope that these Games continue to promote sustainable development.

Dear Athletes, make us dream.

Jacques Rogge speech at London Olympics opening ceremony

The sentiment is right but there is no escaping the fact that the Olympic movement has been hijacked by big business and its values. Hopefully the Athletes will still make us dream 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Life and Triathlon

In the midst of Winter and the dark mornings it is difficult to understand or appreciate the disciplined systematic training some put in .I am struggling with the morning sessions and the cold and my really big slide from fitness .But there is some light cracking through.

Today , I stumbled onto a few good and well written articles on triathlon and rules to live by . I also saw an interesting interview of John O'Çonnell, inducted into the WAFL(West Australian Football league) Hall of Fame this year.What he said was Sports and its rules was a great way to live one's life by.

A similar comprehensive piece was written by Susan Dupont , a teacher and triathlete , who wrote 20 Rules of Life and Triathlon which just reminded me why we get up each day and have a go. Today was particularly such a day. I made the effort and it turned out to be a beautiful Sunday Morning, despite the huffing and puffing in Kings Park as I climbed the hill several times.

20 Rules of Life and Triathlon by Susan Dupont

It summarises my feelings and this Blog. Susan writes all I know about Life I learnt from Triathlon.I would say that is true about most sports. It teaches us about life and it prepares us for life. All sports have rules and Life is about rules to live by.It is about goals and discipline , learning to love and  enjoy , working withing boundaries , balance , and  most of all about Giving it a Go.

Whilst her rules are specific to triathlon, there is wider meaning.

Her rules :
1.  Embrace your inner child.
2.  Never, ever cheat.
3.  Don’t get rubbed the wrong way.
4.  Narcissism is a deadly vice.
6.  There will always be someone who can and will beat you.
7.  Find a support team.
8.  The journey is far more important than the destination.
9.  Hills are tough to climb at the time, but what a great view when you reach the top.
10.  Anything can become addictive and unhealthy.
11.  Appreciate sunrises and sunsets.
12.  Stall falls will happen.
13.  Thank volunteers.
14.  Practice makes perfect…and permanent.
15.  The human body is capable of doing more than you think.
16.  You will fail on occasion; learn from those mistakes
17.  Find heroes.
18.  Find and seek balance.
19.  Set realistic goals.
20.  Just TRI!

It summarises what I have enjoyed about the Sport. Most of all we need to embrace life , all it throws at us , good and bad .I am thankful for the ability to be out pounding the pavement and whilst I have my moods and periods of just feeling overwhelmed , I am grateful for each day. I get to enjoy the feeling of knowing what it is like to be cresting that  hill climb , that feeling of gasping for air and painful muscles full of lactic acid. Without that I don't appreciate the life I have  .It is the near misses , the falls and the injuries ,which are all part of life .We can hide away and never live or try and dust ourselves when we fall  and keep at it.

I would rather not have fallen and injured myself but I can also just keep moving and building on all the good moments.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Back To Easy week

From Dash Photography facebook Page Marathon Club run on Sunday morning
Tim at the Cafe after the ride

It is Easy week but getting up in this cold weather has been hard.

This week I started off the week with just a 30 min run choosing to miss swim training.The mind is still weak.Tuesday was bearable with an easy ride round the river on a small chain ring in high cadence. Did just 40 km .In the evening we gathered at Yokine for a run session with a 3 and 5km time trial.I did not record my 3km time but did the 5km in 23m 42 sec.Not my fastest but a clear indication of where I am. It was all up about 9-10km of running.It was dark and cold again.

Wednesday , I got to my first swim session in the morning.It was 2C but the water was warm. Managed 200m Free for a warm up and then some drills and 4 x 300m sessions with a medley , backstroke and breaststroke thrown in. Did 2.2km .

Thursday was a morning ride but with the temperature 1C I decided to stay in bed. I did run in the evening and it was still cold and pretty dark .I was pleased with the run as I was a little quicker without too much more effort and it was still hard running in the dark. 15 km in the cold evening night.

Friday I did a swim session in the evening .Managed the 15 minute warm up with 700m and then 300-400m of drills (lost count) .The main set was 100m x 11 with the first set being medium , threshold , fast , easy , medley and threshold  repeated .Cool down was a straight 300m swim. Managed 2.4km

Saturday , I skipped the ride and rode on  Sunday with Tim and chose to do Hill repeats in Kings Park .It was a beautiful Sunday morning .We rode round Burswood as the WA Marathon club were staring their Sunday Gold Coin donation run around Burswood. It was a beautiful Perth Sunday and and I struggled on the hills but kept my cadence up on the small chain ring on the flats. I struggled to keep up with Tim on the climbs as he came back down to push me and look at all the pretty runners running along in Kings Park.We had coffee at Subiaco before riding back. I rode to Northbridge for early Yum Cha Brunch and then a walk around the WA Museum .

It was an easy week and I skipped a swim session and a ride session.The positive was I am feeling better on the bike and run.A small step back to fitness.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Week 2

"I must be willing to give up what I am so that I may become what I will be"
...Albert Einstein

Sunday Ride
Getting up in the morning is still difficult especially when my shoulder just aches.I slept in only to make it up in the evening with the  swim session after a 30  minute easy run. It wasn't bad as I still had fresh legs.

I am still slow but beginning to feel a little better in the water. With warm up and cool down and the main set I ended swimming about 2.2km

Tuesday turned out to be a wet morning and I was one of the Exceed triathletes that opted to stay in bed rather than the nine who actually did a bike session in the rain. Still fearful of wet roads and another fall.I did venture out in the afternoon for my run session. It was a 2km warm up and 15 x 400m at below threshold , above and at threshold. It was all the same for me and a little slow .That word is becoming a familiar description of all my activities but I have to start somewhere. It was a constant drizzle and a little lightning around so it was not a fun run along the river.

Wednesday was an easy day and I was suppose to be swimming.gave that a miss and did a wind trainer session in the evening.that was really hard from a mental viewpoint but i knew it was good for me.

Thursday again i did my long run but skipped the bike training. I ran 15km really easy and it felt a lot better than the previous week but still really slow at 6.30 minutes per km pace.

Friday , I swam in the evening doing a 2.5km session with 10 x 200m as the main set. Survived the session but the left shoulder was feeling it.

Saturday , I did manage to get up and get out to the start of the bike ride. It was cold and again there was a fast group and then everyone else . The second group was so fast that at Nedlands I got dropped. I was on my own for the River and Shelly loop. I felt better than the previous river ride . I got to Shelley and followed some cyclist and did end up on a longer route with a detour back to the city. But I was at least putting in the mileage for now.

In the afternoon , I had a relaxing Yoga session and that helped  stretch some of the tired muscles.

Sunday was a rest day but I had a make up ride with Tim B and I rode trying to keep my cadence as high as I could.It was hard but I am sure it will help me get my riding fitness back.

It is slowly coming along but it has been hard getting back into training especially in the morning. I have definitely regressed significantly with my fitness levels and so , the challenge is to be able to build on what is a very low starting point.

The aim next week is to keep to the programe and to get to the morning sessions. It is  cold and I am not aiming for a podium finish or a Kona slot , like thousands it is it about a challenge and meeting it head on . The mantra next week is just about getting to the sessions despite all the pressures we confront  each day . It isn't helped by the Tour De France at the moment and the late nights.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Week One IM Training

Perth City From Zig-Zag Hill...On the way home
Breakfast at Le Croissant Kalamunda

All journeys begin with the first weekend was filled with 2 big rides with the Hills session on Sunday really hurting the legs.

Monday morning was the first day of my programme with a swim session.It was cold but fortunately the water was great.

I had a 400m free warm up and then 5 x 400m made up of 100m threshold , 100 medley , 100m threshold  and 100m easy .
The 100m kick as a cool down a total of 2.5km I was tired. In the evening it was an easy 30 minute run and I did 5km.

Tuesday I was up early and it was the first "Hour of Power session"I rode out to Nedlands and did a few hill repeats as I got there early. We then got put into groups by the Don (Rosco) . I was with Claudia , Sarah , Ross and a new guy to the group. I was struggling from the first lap to take my turn in the front .I got dropped on the way back and then turned early thinking the group will overtake me .But I managed to be in front for most of the second lap before they passed me and again I hung in there but in the last lap I got dropped at the end.I just did not have the legs to take a turn in the front. I was categorically the weakest rider in the squad today. The weekend of riding  ( a total of 175km) and Tuesday's session truly turned my legs to jelly. They were hurting lots.

So much that I could not do the run session on Tuesday evening. i will have to move it.

On Wednesday , my legs were just dead....dead tired.I wanted to swim in the morning but ended up; swimming in the evening.
had 300m warm up freestyle , drills for 600m  and then  the main set was 6 x 100m with 100 fast and 100 easy alternating followed by 6 x 50m alternating between fast and  easy and then a 300 m cool down for a total of 2200m.

Thursday , I had to get up early as I rode to Nedlands and then did 4 x 10m at threshold with a 5 minute recovery after each set.Rode back to Zekkas for breakfast and work.Did a total of 53 kms.

In the evening I rang home with a detour up the cycle path along Reid Hwy and then back to my house a total of 14.84 km.It was a slow and cold run but a start.

Friday was suppose to be a swim but the sore legs meant I skipped swimming in the morning and i was going to do it in the evening but it was raining and just decided to skip the swim.

Saturday , up early for the group ride in the hills.I rode down to the city .It was not as cold as the previous week. There was a good turn out of about 20 and we made our way down Albany Hwy to Whelshpool road for the start of the climb up to Kalamunda. I got dropped immediately as the climb started.I made my way up to Canning Road and then followed the road round to Pickering Brook and did the loop back to Kalamunda but not before taking a wrong turn and having to detour back after hitting a dead end. It was hilly and a good ride. As the main group headed back to the city , I went to have breakfast at Le croissant at Kalamunda and then rode home .A total of about 90km.

That was the end of the first week. Not too bad .Just needed to be more focused .

Sunday, July 1, 2012

The Training Starts

At Tiger Lil's after the ride

Rod Marton heading for Kona Again

Got back on my bike after one false start a few weeks back . Haven't been doing anything for 2 months .It was very cold and hard. The 6.30 am ride from the Narrows was an easy ride with threshold pace towards the end. I made it to Leightons Beach about 12 km into the ride and got dropped. I wasn't about to try and chase the group and blow up on the first ride. I managed the circuit round the river and back thru Curtin and Canning Hwy in over 2 hours .Terribly slow but it is a start.

The club is slowly regrouping after everyone has had a break. I felt pretty cold thru the ride . It was really cold when I started out at 5.45 am and it never got much better.

After breakfast I rode home , making it about an 87 km ride. Then had Yoga in the afternoon .

On Sunday , I felt colder but I promised I would ride with my mate Tim and friends. It turned out to be 3 of us.It was 3 Degrees centigrade .I was cold with even 2 layers on . It was a ride into the hills . But this was off my Saturday session. The legs felt fine but I wasn't sure I would be able to climb. It turned out to be OK but very slow. However it was a clear bright day and well worth being out on the bike. I did struggle a little on the final climb into Kalamunda Town .I cramped as I got off my bike ... a clear indication my muscles were just not used to this amount of effort. The shoulder was bearing up OK. It was sore when I got home though. Tim was miles ahead of myself and Eric the other rider and he came back down each climb to ride with Eric.  It was a slow ride but I know where I am starting from.