It’s been a long while since I wrote something on the blog. Quite frankly I’ve had a shit load to do and last on the list of priorities has been to write. However if you follow me on instagram or strava you’ve noticed that I haven’t turned soft, quite the opposite. Since the Vasa Ski Race I’ve had an average of 11 hrs of training per week, evenly spread among the three disciplins with an emphasis on cycling since it’s now possible to cycle outside in Sweden.
I’ve had two form checks; the first one three weeks ago with a simulated olympic distance triathlon and the second one this past weekend with a 2 hr tempo ride at 80 % FTP followed by a 1 hr brick run at HIM-racepace. What I’ve noticed this year is how much my swimming and running has improved. This really showed during my olympic distance race. Although I did the swimming in a 25 m pool with my new wetsuit (Mavering Pro from Roka… really awesome!), I did 1500 m in 20:50,32 (1:23/100 m). It’s not completely comparative to an outdoor race but given I had no one pushing me from the side of the pool and that the suit got a bit warm, it atleast gives me an idea of where I could land if I have a good day (1900 m @ 26:17 one can always dream)… The average pace on the 10k finishing run was 3:56 (39:20), which when taking my pb of 39:12 into account is really awesome!
I have struggled maintaining FTP while slowly reaching target optimum race weight. This has been somewhat a psychological rough patch for me since I’m used to being a strong cyclist. Now I have actually come to peace with the understanding that my cycling form isn’t quite where I would want it to be and my race planning is doing the bike split in a ”controlled manner” to be able to finish strong with an awesome run split rather than pushing my limits on the bike and being forced to forfit on the run. I tried the concept this weekend where my 2hr bike split landed quite comfortably on 248 W Np, which in theory would give me a 2:34:01 bike split (calculated with Best Bike Split) in Aix-en-Provence, and the average run pace landed on 4:12/km which would give me a run split of 1:28:36. Now this was, as I said, rather comfortable which leads me to believe that this is actually a pretty solid goal for me on the race next sunday.
So… given the above reasoning I’ll set my goal race time on 4:28:54 (26:17; 2:34:01; 1:28:36) + transitions. However, this is highly irrelevant. My main goal is to do a solid race and secondly, grab a slot to the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Mooloolaba.
At the moment I’ve entered the oh so welcome taper period. Most triathletes usually post images during these periods with warning signs saying stuff like ”WARNING! Tapering triathlete, approach with caution”, but actually I welcome this phase. The idea of doing the same intensity of the workouts I usually do, but reducing the duration is awesome. I get to feel strong and confident during and after all of the workouts…. not something very usual during thos really hard weeks, where I sometimes feel quite useless at the end of a session.
In terms of optimal race weight, I haven’ quite reached my goal of 84 kg. However, I’ve come to the conclusion that eating a low carb diet is something that really works for me in general. I’m really eating as much as I like and I’m still loosing weight. I wouldn’t say that I’m eating the LCHF diet since I’m getting carbs from sweet potato, pumpkin, parsnips, turnips and other veggies rich with fiber, but I’m not eating any refined carbohydrates or veggies with a high GL like potatos. I’ve spoken about That Sugar Film before and now I’ve just received their new book ”That Sugar Guide” with a boat load of new recipes which really seem awesome! Since I love cooking this really helps me to keep on track, not falling back into old habits. The other benefit of eating like this is that when using gels and sports drinks during race simulating training sessions it feels as though my motor just keeps running when it should go out of gas. It’s an amazing feeling!
11 days to go until the first race of the season… I can’t wait!