Monday, September 16, 2013

Week 7. Here Comes the Rain

Boris Fit Squad with our matching T Shirts .They are lime Puke to match the intensity of the sessions

After the  hiccup of the flu and a wasted weekend , I was hoping I could work it off this week. The end of the week was another rain soaked weekend. Could not avoid getting wet a few times despite the loads of thread mill sessions and Saturdays wind trainer session.

Monday. I managed to run 13 km  rather slowly with the chest infection and coughing and spluttering and then 2km in the evening with Molly as a cool down .I got to swimming and again managed to finish the session with 2.4km comprising 400m warm up, 300m drills  and then 2 x 250m at threshold and medium and then 5 x 100m at threshold and medium pace followed by another 250m x 2 and then cool down .

Tuesday I was on an hour of power but decided to just follow everyone on an easy ride round the river . I ran at lunchtime and did some efforts for 7km and then in the evening joined the Exceed group at Yokine but ran on my own . I did another 6km with 1km x 2 at threshold and then 2 x 500m at threshold .Total 13km .Did not make it to cross fit .

Wednesday .A little tired so I missed swimming in the morning.I ran again on the treadmill with efforts comprising 12-13kph pace for about 3 -4 km and ran a total of 8km in about 45 minutes   .Again doing some leg exercises after the run.

Thursday . With the wind and rain in the morning I skipped riding. I ran again on the thread mill (5km )  and had a good cross fit session called The Wisdom .Hard work out and I took 69 minutes to complete it.

Thursday's Cross fit session

Friday: I rode down for swim training which was 200m warm up , 300m of 50 backstroke and 50 free and then 200m x 3 followed by 100m x 3 at threshold ,easy pace  repeated .Followed by another 200m x 2 and then cool down of 100 m .total 2.4km .In the evening I ran a slow easy 4.2 km with Molly in the rain and wind . She enjoyed it more than I did.

Irondog Molly training hard

Molly after Friday Nights run Wet but Happy

Saturday was supposed to be a hills ride but with the rain coming down hard sporadically I decided to opt for a wind trainer session with Iron-dog Molly keeping an eye on the training .Watched a few DVDs and tried to maintain a consistent pace but found it pretty hard at the end. It was a slog of 80kms .The legs were pretty wasted and did have a snooze in the afternoon before cross fit . Another hard session of cross fit but with matching T-shirts from Boris so we at least looked good despite being tired.
Saturdays Storm It session .Got to love Burpee pull ups

Sunday . Legs were sore from the cross fit session and 3 hour wind trainer session but I managed to get out for my run and it was a beautiful day although a little cool in the morning with some wind. But definitely much better than the past few days .I had  my water bottle and shotz .Slow and steady for 18 plus km and then back to take Molly for the last 2kms .Just over 2hours .

Swimming : 2 hrs or 4.8km
Bike:6.5 hours or 160 km
Run: 6 hrs or 65 km ( Molly ran 8kms)
Cross fit : 2 hours
Total: 16.5 hours

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Brad Hoskings ... Kona Bound Again

No doubt one of he legends of triathlon in WA . Consistently good , fast and dedicated . Brad returns to Kona again this year .Here is a glimpse of what it takes. I first met Brad at North Coast Tri Club. He had already got a win at Busselton and a slot to Kona. One of the endearing memories was the Fire Truck parked outside Sorrento Surf Club when North Coast had its annual Max Grieves run with Brad making a quick appearance whilst on duty (I presume) . He has gone on to coach in recent years and the dedication to detail and training is the stand out characteristic I have learnt from Brad .There are many more stories to tell. The memories are of the relentless training and races . As I am maxing out trying to maintain a hard pace on the bike or run , Brad saunters through with words of encouragement . Another great tale is Brads record Painathon result. Besides this small insight into Brad , he has kindly sent me his race report from his first Kona race which I will post soon .It was first posted in the old North Coast website (but has now gone) It is worth re posting for the many who are preparing for Kona or dream of racing there.

1 Full name: Bradley Hosking

2 Age group: About to do my first race in the 45-49 at Kona.

3 Profession: Firefighter.

4 Years in profession: 20

5 Brief Background: Born in Ossie Park hospital, raised in Nollamara, grew up in the same house up to leaving home. Had a fantastic childhood that I wish I could have all over again. Loved sport in general but grew up living and breathing Australian Rules Football.

6 When did I realise I had been bitten by the Triathlon bug? Like most people it was pretty much after my first race, which was the Point Walter sprint distance back in 2006. Besides the obvious fun aspect there is that inescapable element of learning so much with each race and just wanting to come back and put that new found knowledge and experience to the test.

7 Triathlon experience: Now in my eighth year, but the participation factor has slowly been giving way to the coaching side of things over the last few years. Kona will be my 10th IM, I think I’ve done 6 or 7 halves, Long course and OD worlds and a stack of short stuff.

8 Average day training for an IM: Post race when I sit down and collate all my training data, I generally end up with an average over the 18 weeks of around 16 hours per week. At first glance it probably doesn’t seem that much but you’re looking at just shy of 2.5 hours every day for 126 days. Of course there are a bunch of days in there where I am either doing a swim only or stand alone plyometrics type session or having the day off (usually Sundays) completely. So the hours per day of actual training on those REAL training days is somewhat more. I am always trying to keep my training fresh firmly believing that there are many ways to go about a preparation, but in saying that, at the end of the day you still have to swim X, ride X, and run X, so with that in mind I generally try and aim for 2.5 swims per week, 4 Rides (incorporating a brick) and 4 runs (incorporating a brick)

9 Maintaining balance of work, life and family. What life?  A very difficult thing to do indeed and the primary reason why Kona will be my last IM for the foreseeable future. I guess if I chose to step back and just ‘participate’ rather than ‘compete’ then I would certainly enjoy some more longevity in the sport, but I’m not in that place right now, though one day I hope that I can make that transition, because I love the sport and would hate to think that it wouldn’t be a part of my life again. That aside though, the necessity to find the best balance I can,  has forced me to continually assess a way to get the best time effective bang for my training buck. Something I believe I’ve finally got a pretty good handle on.

10 How does an active physical lifestyle tie in with my work? There’s barely a day that goes by where I don’t pinch myself because of how lucky I am to have the job that I do and there’s not a day goes by where I don’t thank the good Lord that I don’t have a 9-5 office job (no disrespect to those that do) I’m a fit healthy and active guy and the fire brigade offers the perfect environment in which to exist along those lines. It demands a level of fitness and is capable at any moment of delivering physical tests to almost any extreme. Our fire stations are equipped with gyms and at certain times during every shift, we are allocated periods to utilise it (fire calls not withstanding) For someone into health , fitness, self challenge etc…you couldn’t ask for a better job.

11 How many years did I train to qualify for Kona? My first triathlon which was the Point Walter sprint, was from memory the fourth last race of the 06 season. That following December I did Busselton IM and was very fortunate to qualify there, so I guess I was around the sport for about 8-9 months at that stage.

12 Standout moments, memories or accomplishments of my triathlon career: I guess for me it will always be the 09 Busselton IM. Whilst it wasn’t a PB, those who raced that day can attest to the conditions that prevailed during the later part of the bike leg and throughout the marathon. I remember hitting the front of my age group before the end of the first (run) lap, so for the first time was racing to hold my lead and fend off any charges. The conditions became pretty brutal and I can honestly say I’ve never taken my mind and body to that place before or since. I held tough for 8th place outright and back to back overall age group win (from 08)  It was a real fitting end to many months of hard work which included the Gold Coast OD world’s and the Perth Long Course world’s.

13 What do I enjoy most about the sport? Without hesitation…the people. I spent my whole life up to starting triathlon around footy clubs and whilst I enjoyed every minute of it and have no regrets, the type of people and accompanying attitudes that exist between the two cultures  are like chalk and cheese. It’s such a positive, healthy and empowering environment…triathlon that is 

14 What is my favourite race and why? At the end of the day, my experience doesn’t really extend that far, but from the sheer fun and enjoyment of running around a course with a stack of your mates and people you know, with even more standing on the side line supporting and cheering you on, then you just can’t go past the Busso full or IM 70.3 and to see how big those races have become in such a short space of time is awesome. I thought the inaugural Mandurah 70.3 was a cracker (again for a lot of the same reasons) but having done Kona, you can really appreciate why it enjoys the status that it does. It’s a special race in a special place and the yanks really do throw on a show. I can’t wait to be back there again.

15 Who or what in triathlon inspires me: It may sound corny, but it always has been and always will be the regular population, particularly the older generation and physically challenged, that get out there and have a go. I never ever miss getting back to the finish line to watch until the last person crosses that line. I hope that I can continue to enjoy the health and motivation that will see me still being both able to and wanting to…challenge my mind and body like that whatever age or circumstance I find myself in.

16 Do I have a favourite workout and what is it? Even though I love to ride and have so many great sessions that I enjoy, I love to run more, so it would have to be a cross country circuit I do up around my place with some max effort hill repeats to finish off with.

17 What is the best piece of advice that I’ve ever been given? I love this story and if you knew the guy who I refer to in it, then it would certainly be a lot funnier than it seems, but in my fourth ever race of my inaugural season of 06 which happened to be the Busselton half ironman, I managed to qualify (as you had to then) for the 07 Ironman Australia which was moving from Forster to Port Macquarie for the first time. I honestly had no idea of ‘Ironman’ at this stage and whilst I was debating the merits of whether I should take the slot or not with my wife, a mate from work who had been in the sport for many years and had chalked up 4 IM’s himself sauntered up. Here’s a chance for some good advice  I thought. So after seeking his counsel, I was met with this blank lifeless stare which seemed to go on for many moments, finally and with a dead pan expression -  he spoke…”I hope your marriage is a good one” And so it shall come to pass…that it is! 

18 What’s one unique thing you might find if you peeked inside my training bag? Sorry, nothing to offer you here, just the essential tools for whatever session it may be that I’m embarking on.

19 What’s my favourite pre race and mid race fuel? Pre race (and I know I’m not an island here) is mashed banana with honey on toast or fruit toast…homemade of course and a super chocolatey milo  Mid race? Just the good old tried and tested favourites of Shotz gels, Shotz or Powerbar energy bars and Powerbar gel blasts. Reliable, transportable and they taste good too.

20 Do I have any rituals or good luck routines I do before a race? Nothing with any superstitious context associated with it, just plenty of tried and trusted routine. The days preceding a big race like IM can be a funny / difficult time, even more so if you don’t systematically address the final elements of your preparation i.e. cross the T’s and dot the I’s so to speak. You’ve come too far by that point to not have a routine in place that you can rely on to finish off the work and get you to the start line in the best possible shape to deliver on your race. I’m all about those small one percenters; ensuring every single thing within my power is addressed, so as to remove any doubt, stress or worry. The one ritual I guess I do have, is the day before I race I will always head down to a nice quiet secluded spot overlooking the swim course and sit and meditate/ visualise the coming race.

21 What’s my favourite triathlon discipline to compete at? As I mentioned before, I love to ride, but I love to run more, so superficially you could say running. But as we all know there’s more than three disciplines to triathlon, particularly Long course or Iron distance racing, so in that respect and in all honesty, the part or discipline of ironman racing that I love and thrive on more than anything else, is the testing of my mind and character…the mental discipline!

22 What music keeps me motivated during training? Has anyone met my kids yet?? Let’s just say they are feisty and full of character, oh yea…and they’re loud and they never stop talking  so consequently I have learnt to covet silence over the past few years. Where once I would have always had head phones in my ears, these days I’m all about the silence.  Mmmm… silence! But (and there’s always a but) most times when I’m on the treadmill or doing an ERGO session I’ll revisit all the upbeat tunes from my indie / grunge days to hurry me along.

23 What’s something people might be surprised to find out about you. I’m quarter Italian 

24 When I’m not training or competing, people can find me… planning my next holiday or being involved at some point with my coaching. I’ve also dusted off my trusty guitar from my pre triathlon days (when I had a life) with the intention of having that fill the post Kona retirement hole.

25 What’s one race I haven’t done yet that I would like to do someday? We are so spoilt for choice these days that it’s ridiculous. On the Iron distance front, it would have to be Roth, on other fronts, the Antarctic marathon…actually that’s all I can get my head around at the moment…did I mention I’m retiring 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Week 6 Staying Alive

Saturday's murph

Spring and the weather is definitely looking and feeling better .the days are longer and the sun is rising earlier.

Monday. I split all my runs with a lunchtime run on the Threadmill at the gym in the building. Iam usually the only one around with the odd person working out on the weights so it is an ideal session.I ran 7kms with 3kms at 5 minutes or more pace. In the evening I ran another 6kms at an average 5.30 pace and then had my swim session at terry Tyzacks.We did the usual warm up and then a core session of various paces at 200 and 100 and 50s for a total of 2.3kms.

Tuesday.I got up late and so had to really rush to the cycle session but made it in time . I rode with Cassie and she had to try and stay with me . It was hard work riding alone but managed the full 3 laps possibly a little slower than last week .

In the afternoon , I did a 5km treadmill session and some legs strengthening exercises.In the evening it was Borisfit. A good hard session with burpee clean and jerks and squats and hollowrocks .I completed it in under 40 minutes doing 150 squats and 75 Burpee clean and jerks ( with 25kg weight) and 75 hollowrocks  .

Wednesday : pretty tired after Tuesdays hard sessions so I again had a split run session of 7kms on the treadmill with a warm up and cooldown with 10x 400m at 5 minute or faster pace and a 100m recovery. In the evening I ran a slow easy 4kms and then had my swim session. it was a 300m free and 50 back and 50m breast for the warm up followed by 600m x 3 at various paces for each 200m with 60seconds recovery after each 600m. Finished it with a 100m cool down as I ran out of time.Did 2.3kms again.

Thursday was a hard day .Got to the office at 5am and found that I had a flat .I change the tube pretty quickly and used a  gas canister and it felt soft  but ridable. It was hard going doing laps and staying with the girls on the efforts which were about 10 minutes .Did 4 of them for the hour session and rode back to Venn Cafe.The best part of the session.After coffee I found the tyre was pretty flat and so that explained the really hard session. I cycled the 1km back to the office but the tyre was pretty flat by then. I pumped it again with a canister to see if it was a leak and by the end of the day it was completely flat.

In the evening , Cross fit was a short session but by far my toughest.Boris called it HOPE . Really meant NO HOPE. How hard can 15 minutes of exercise be. Simple exercises for a minute each .

  1. Burpees 
  2. Snatch 25kgs
  3. Box jumps
  4. Thrusters 35kgs
  5. Pull Ups
I was so tired that by 9.30 I was asleep . I did have a sore throat for most of the day so that may have slowed me down . My right arm is still hurting from the Pull ups ,snatch and thrusters .

Friday I couldn't get to swim training in the morning .In the afternoon I ran 7km on the treadmill at Lunchtime . I did not run before the swim session just to have a break . The swim session was pretty good.Lots of new swimmers so I ruled lane one for the first time in a very long time. Did 400meters warm up and then 600meters of drills all in fins and the main set was 8 x 150 meters at different paces and a 200 meters cool down for a total of 2.4km.

Saturday and Sunday turned out to be a bit of a non event. The bad weather on Saturday morning meant no ride .I wasn't prepared to get wet or fall. I already had a sore throat and a runny nose. I did make it to cross fit .It was a hard session called Murph with 1.6km run and then 100 pull ups , 200 push ups and 300 squats followed by a 1.6km run .I did it in 1.08.50 s . Pull ups were hard and I could only manage one at a time as my arms were so sore from Thursdays session.

I was going to ride on Sunday but had a head cold and flu and just decided to rest.

Swim: 3 hrs or 7km
Bike: 4 hrs or 90km
run:  4 hrs  or 38 kms
cross fit: 2.20 hrs
total: 13.20 hrs

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Week 5

Double Paganoni Celebration at Metrios

Running In the Gym

Monday Feeling a little tired so it was a rest day

Tuesday . Early cold start .left home at 5am and I was riding to Nedlands by 5.20 am . It was an hour hard and I rode in a small group of four but soon I was on my own and then managed to jump onto the faster group for 5kms before getting dropped at the climb to the round a bout .It was a hard session but managed a respectable pace. Still a long way to go but feeling stronger .

At lunch time it was a 5km run on the thread mill and running at 10 to 12kph but the HR was kept relatively low.

In the evening it was Cross fit weights.I was late but managed to hang in there for an hour.

Wednesday .I ran at Lunch time on the thredmill and then again after work for a total of 13km and swam in the evening .With drills and warm up did 2.1km of swimming.

Thursday .I skipped the morning ride and ran at Lunch time and went for the cross fit session. Friday I made my first morning swim session.With some parts with fins I swam 2.6km The main set was 200s ,100s and 50s at different paces.I ran again at lunch doing a 5km session and then in the evening did a wind trainer session and ran for 6km .

Saturday I was tired so decided to skip the Hills and just did a wind-trainer session .I went down to Metrio for coffee and to see the Kona bound Exceed triathletes complete their Double Paganoni challenge which was 200km and 1 hour of running before 12 noon. Great achievement in very trying weather on Saturday and Rodney had 4 punctures.

The week;
Swim: 2 hours or 4.7km
Run: 3.5 hours or 34 km
Bike: 4 hours or 100km
cross fit: 2 hours
Total: 11.5 hrs

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Gaye McKean

Gaye McKean

I first got to know Gaye when we finally met up  at Ironman Lanzarote in 2011. I had found out from Rob Parry that she was competing at  Lanzarote ( Rob got to know Gaye through the Marathon Club  when he was doing Ironman Japan and Gaye had qualified for Kona winning her age group at Ironman Japan then held at Goto)

She is the thinking persons Endurance triathlete. She is methodical and like many of the women Triathletes I know thoroughly dedicated , passionate and single minded in achieving their goals.The week at Lanzarote in Gaye and Kate Bevalaqua's company was one of the Highlights of the trip.I was a sponge absorbing all the knowledge and experience that comes from someone who has been to Kona 3 times . In the interview I learnt she came from a small farming community Meckering in WA .It is interesting that Gaylene Clews , a  little know Australian World Champion triathlete (in the OD distance) who dominated women's triathlon racing in the 80s , also grew up in a farming community in WA .It must be said that there is something about Country WA and producing some talented athletes.

Full name

Gaye Mckean

Age Group: 



Interior Architect & Certification Mgr

Years in profession:


Brief backgound :

Where you grew up and were you into sports when you were younger?
Grew up in Meckering on a 5th generation farm. Went to boarding school from 12yrs of age ; participating in all sports. 
Particular interest in hockey and scuba diving. Continued playing ‘A’ grade hockey when I left school.

When did you realize you’d been bitten by the triathlon bug? 

When I could no longer play hockey I looked for another sport. Sucked at swimming, running by itself was boring then a friend recommended triathlons. Just had to learn to ride a bike as never had one as a child. I found that I was pretty good which fueled the fire to continue.

Triathlon experience: A brief outline 

Researched & read everything about Tri’s then participated in a number of sprint & Olympic races. Won heaps of TOTY awards ; nominated for Masters Sports Women of the Year. Have completed 9 x Ironman’s including 3 at Kona. Have had 2 podium finishes at Hawaii. Broken 2 x IM course records

Walk us through your active lifestyle.  What is an average day when you are training for an ironman 

Rise at 4am to make lunch & do stretching/ strength exercises. Morning swim or cycle training, work  then evening run/ ride or gym session. Weekends combine all 3 sessions during the course of the day plus boring housework & shopping. To bed by 8.30pm each night

When taking on such an event, how do you maintain your balance of work, life and family? 

Poorly – no social life- thank goodness my friends are my training partners

How does an active physical lifestyle tie in to your work ?( if at all)

I am renown for falling asleep in presentations when they turn the lights down
& sitting  down all day hurts when you stand up (or is this age?)

How many years did you train before you qualified for Kona? 

Participated in tri’s for 3 years & then qualified for Kona from my first IM at Forster

Tell us about the one or a few inspirational moments of your Triathlon career. Are there any standout moments  or memories or accomplishments you are most proud of?

Running down the finish chute at Kona with crowds that are 5 deep on each side
Getting up on stage at Kona in front of 4000 people
Winning at Japan by 40mins on my 50th birthday & being 11th overall female
Completing some really hard training sessions such as 6hrs/ 200km on the WT; doing 5 x entire repeats of Welshpool Rd & riding up Crystal Brook Rd in my big ring
What do you enjoy the most about our sport

The motivated people that you train with & of course doing well in races

What is your favorite race and why?
Any really hard Ironman that I have given 100% effort regardless of the results

Who or what in Triathlon inspires you?

Anyone that can swim/ cycle or run fast with perfect form ;
Anyone who talks to me – love hearing their stories


After Set Up

Before Set Up
 The goal of Retül technology is to assist bike fitters in making objective and accurate fit decisions, as a proper bike fit is one of the single most important factors for optimal performance and efficiency, injury prevention, and comfort on the bike. A proper bike fit will not only provide a rider with the most economic means of expending energy, but will also prevent pain that is common in the knee, hip, and lower back, particularly with riders who are trying to adapt their bodies to the bike they already have purchase
After having the Specialised S-Works for 4 years with the same set up I decided to have a proper assessment of my bike fit . I meant to do it last year but just found it hard to organize. I saw Al Nichols at Als Cycle Surgery and  whilst there is a fine balance between comfort against power , the changes were radical and at least for the short spurts made a difference in output and efficiency. I still need to build up my core and strength .The position is more aggressive and I will need to build my core strength to tolerate riding in the position for 180 kms. Time will tell if it works and there will be another trip to tweak the set up in coming weeks.