Race Week – The Ten Week Ironman

Taper Week

I’m not really sure that I’ve ever done what would traditionally be called a proper taper.  For me personally I generally just do a little bit of everything with the aim to get fully recovered but not stale and sluggish.  I think sometimes people can pretend that it’s a little more scientific than it really is, it’s so individual not only for each person but for each race.

After Sunday’s race the rest day on Monday went down a treat, the legs were a bit sore and I needed some time to get the gear clean and dry ready for the weekend.  My parents were away in Busselton waiting for our arrival so Tuesday I had Leila when normally they would have.  This meant taking her to tennis so while she practiced I hit the trails of Darlington for a forty-five minute trail run and the legs felt surprisingly good.

A Bit of a Surprise

Wednesday evening I was coaching swimming so I got to the pool a bit early to do a session myself.  As I arrive club coach candidate Emma was just leaving and she wanted an opinion on her wetsuit fit so we chatted for a good fifteen or twenty minutes which resulted in me being left with thirty minutes for my two and a bit kilometre swim set.  Knowing that this was beyond my capabilities I thought I would take the opportunity to slip in a little test session to see if I’d made any improvement over the last ten weeks.

The swim test that I prefer is known as a critical swim speed (CSS) test.  It consists of a 400m and 200m all-out time trial with rest in between.  The shorter time is then subtracted from the longer and divided by two to give a CSS pace per 100m, the result often very similar to that of a 1000m time trial but without the pain, or at least for a shorter time.  This is then used in a similar way to what threshold pace is for run sessions or threshold power for the bike, to set training and racing targets.

The last time I performed the test was back in week one of this little adventure and the results weren’t awful with a 6:55 and 3:17 giving me a CSS of 1:49/100m.  Given that I’d only swam fourteen times since then I wasn’t expecting great things but the end result was a 6:19 and 2:59 (I think only the second time I’ve broken 3:00) for a CSS pace of 1:40.  I think at my absolute best I only tested at 1:36 so I’m certainly not going to complain!

The Preparation Gets Serious

Before big races (Ironman and half-ironman if I’ve trained a bit) I can sometimes feel like a bit of a fraud.  I see all of the hard work and dedication of “real” triathletes and the stress they seem to be under worrying about the outcome and I just don’t have the same drive.  One thing I’ve always believed though is that you can fake it until you make it.  Sometimes just acting the part you want to play gets you into the mindset to become what you want, for example it’s hard to feel crappy when you force a smile for long enough.

So how do I fake being a triathlete?  I do the thing I swore I’d never do when I took up this sport almost ten years ago.  I go hairless.  I don’t mean on my head, that’s the normal state anyway, it’s the legs that get the treatment.  Mostly I just shave them but this time Tarn very kindly offered her services in giving them a wax.  Even with the forest-like growth that I’d accumulated I can assure you it doesn’t hurt very much and no matter how stupid it seems it just makes me feel like I belong.

On The Road Again

The plan was to leave home around midday on Thursday but with the wax in the morning and a few other things to do packing didn’t start until around 11:30 so we didn’t pull out of the driveway until around one.  Simone insisted on driving (because I drive like a grandpa apparently) and we had a few issues with the bike rack on the back of the ute which resulted in us arriving at Busselton just after four.

I normally register on the Friday because I don’t particularly care for sleeping with the wrist band but Simone gets a little excited where Ironman is concerned so once we’d parked up and put the bikes inside the house it was down to the expo to pick up our packs and do a tour of the stands.  Nothing of significance was bought but there were certainly a few items put on the “considering” list.

Too Much Socialising

The big race weekends are always very busy for me.  I tend to take an hour to get anywhere because the place is full of people I know and even though I’m very shy (as I’m sure you’ve noticed) I can’t avoid them and have to stop to let them listen to me for a bit.  I love it really but sometimes it would be nice just to be able to sneak around unnoticed and relax by myself.  I certainly wouldn’t say I’m an introvert but sometimes you don’t feel like company.

Thursday night was a catch-up with my parents who are staying, as they do every year, in their caravan at a park just up the road.  Club mate Shane and his two gorgeous daughters joined us for a roast dinner that really hit the spot.

Let the carbo load begin

Friday afternoon Simone and I caught up with a mate, Sam, who you have heard about before.  It’s going to be awesome to see him do his first Ironman tomorrow and he really seemed in a great headspace for it.  A huge transformation from just a few weeks ago and one he should be very proud of.  Then we were off to the Vasse for dinner and to catch up with the Perth Hills crew down here to race the full or half ironman or just as importantly offer support.  It’s a great club and one I’m very proud to lead.

Saturday morning was the regular pilgrimage to what I consider to be the premier event of the weekend, Ironkids.  Watching them race is just brilliant as they couldn’t care less about times or anything other than getting to the finish line and getting their medal.  I think it’s something we should all probably try and capture in our own sporting lives.  It’s funny too watching all the dads and mums who are doing the half or full the next day having so much more joy and pride in their kids race than they ever will in their own.

That afternoon Simone and I went to The Goose to meet a good friend Pete and his better half for a beer, it’s kind of a tradition for him and I pre-race.  To my immense surprise my closest friend showed up too and I had absolutely no idea she was going to be here at all.  In fact I very nearly sent her a message earlier in the day to give her curry about not wishing me luck or coming to cheer me on!

Training and Race Readiness

Well there’s not a lot to tell here.  A couple of open water swims and a shortish ride on the bike to check that there were no issues are all that’s been done.  Unfortunately there’s been too little use of sunscreen and I now have a slightly red glow about me but it’s too late to do anything about it.

A little KISS in transition

Saturday after the last ride the spares, stickers and other final touches went on to the bike.  The bike and run bags were packed, along with the stuff I need to take into transition on race morning.  The bike has now been racked, the bags put in place and a brief walkthrough of transition done in readiness for the morning.

Ready to go!

Que Sera Sera

As Doris Day sang, whatever will be, will be.  There is nothing more that I can do other than get a decent night’s sleep and wake up ready to swim, ride and run for the best part of a day.  If you want to get some context of what this is that we are all embarking on imagine jumping into the Swan River at the Causeway bridge then swimming to the Narrows.  Now get out and ride your bike down to Bunbury for a bit of fun.  Once you’re there, throw some runners on and jog your way to Busselton.  That is roughly the equivalent of what Ironman involves.

Eight years ago I thought anyone who would even consider something like this, let alone do it, must be super-human.  Now as I’m about to embark on my ninth I want you to know that whoever you are reading this, it’s not beyond you.  Maybe you’ll need more than ten weeks of training to get there but with determination and a sensible approach it’s yours if you want it.

See you at the finish line,

Coach Trav (aka Stikman)

*Missed the series?  Head to back to week one

Fun and racing on the coral coast

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It was a fantastic road trip for the wolf pack with lots of family fun and podiums at the Allbarnone Jurien Bay triathlon.

The weather was warm and windy with bonus kms on the bike course but this was made up with the run course being a few hundred metres short. It seems the stingers were out to play (but thankfully no sharks!) with a few people copping a sting or seven.

Coach Peta thought it was a cracker day.

“One of the highlights of the day for the pack was supporting each other, all the big smiles and high fives throughout the race in spite of it being a pretty tough challenge,” she said.

“Turquoise Bay is a tough course, particularly the bike, but I highly recommend getting behind it and getting your clubs down there. It’s a terrific course and a great place for a weekend away.”

Big congratulations to Brett on his first medal, to Ian and Alex on their first full Olympic and young Caitlin who had her OWS race.

Podiums

Brett McCrum – BRONZE in the Male 50-59 Fun

Caitlin Gray – GOLD in the Female 14-19 Fun

Jenny Watson – BRONZE in the Female 40-49 Novice

Matt Snell – SILVER in the Male 40-49 Olympic

More medals at Bunbury Sufferfest 2018

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It was a flat, fast and furious course at the 2018 Bunbury Sufferfest and the perfect course to showcase your speed. The swim was flat and calm, the ride course had some head wind offset by a long road of tailwind and a scenic run course with some dragon boat obstacles. And after taking out some medals there is no doubt the wolves will be back for this next year.

  • Emma Moon – GOLD Olympic 30-39
  • Sue Thomas SILVER Aquabike 50-59
  • Peta Woodland SILVER Half-Ironfest 40-49
  • Leanne Dingle – SILVER Sprintfest 18-29

Massive turnout at Mandurah interclub tri

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It doesn’t get any better than this. The 25th annual Mandurah Tri Club interclub championships were an absolute blast with Perth Hills Tri Club showing how it’s done.

Triathlon is mostly an individual pursuit but once a year we compete club against club. Our little club had 30 participants (that’s more than 40% of eligible members) and a huge support crew out for this fun club event.

The weather was perfect with temps in the high 20s, calm waters and a light breeze. A new transition area and run course provided plenty of entertainment for the spectators (not least of all the competitors trying to navigate the last km of the run leg).

Abdul and James had a great day, backing up from Saturday’s Power Station tri and the novice crew gave a great showing with Alex, Crystal and Trish making it look easy. Trish took a spill on the bike course and got herself some gravel rash to show for it but she powered on for a strong finish. All of our coaches were on course with Coach Yanti still recovering from a 10km open water swim the day before and Coach Peta having a great race in prep for Busso.

Top male finishers: Matt Snell, James Maycock, Mike Burns

Top female finishers: Emma Moon, Peta Woodland, Floora De Wit

 

Sports Nutrition Seminar – 10th of November 7pm

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Perth Hills Triathlon Club is very proud to be bringing one of Western Australia’s premier sports nutrition experts David Bryant to the hills region to help you maximise your racing and training performance through his tried-and-tested dietary advice.  This session will be specifically targeting the needs of triathletes but will also be suitable for those single-sport athletes wanting to improve their knowledge.

David is an Accredited Practising Dietitian and Sports Dietitian with Catalyst Dietitian.  He is currently working with WAIS world class athletes to improve their dietetic skills and has helped hundreds of his clients achieve their sport-specific, weight loss and dietary goals without resorting to extremes.  You can find out more about what David has to offer by clicking his logo above but this is what some of our current members have to say about him:

“When I went to David I weighed around 94 kilograms which isn’t huge for someone as tall as me but there was a fair amount of useless fat in that.  I had been to other dietitians before with some short term success but regaining the weight when I lost motivation to continue their prescribed regime.  David worked around my goals, lifestyle, likes and dislikes to provide me with the tools that I needed to lose 10kg and keep it off in the two years since.  He also helped me develop a race nutrition plan that has worked to help me set new personal best times at all distances up to Ironman.  I would highly recommend David’s for anyone looking to make positive changes to their sport through diet.”  –  Travis Bentley

“David was able to individualise my pre-race & race nutrition in order to satisfy my sensitive stomach and ensure that I was in top condition & running as quickly at the end of the race as I was swimming at the beginning! Diet & nutrition should never be the reason that you don’t do well in a race and since I have been working with David I’ve never had to worry! ”  –  Peta Woodland

“When I started out with triathlon I had no idea about endurance based nutrition especially in regard to daily nutrition required to sustain daily training.  All my previous experience had been with high protein low carb nutrition required to sustain 3-4 strength workouts a week.  After a couple of months triathlon training I hit the wall.  David showed me how to balance my nutrition for endurance training and to maintain race weight using everyday seasonal fresh food.  His knowledge and understanding of triathlon training and it’s impact on the body is excellent.  I highly recommend him.”  –  Mike Burns

Topics covered in the hour long seminar will include:

  • Body composition
  • Daily nutrition to support training and recovery
  • Nutrient density and diet quality
  • Race preparation and taper
  • Fuelling on race day

The nutrition session will be held at Hillside Farm Education Centre at Lot 41 Hayward, Martin (Gosnells.)  Follow the signs on arrival.

Entry is $10 including provision of healthy snacks, however as part of our members benefit program all Perth Hills members secure FREE ENTRY if they RSVP by email before the 6th of November.  All others please pay cash at the door.

RSVP by email to seminars@perthhillstri.org.au

Show Us Your Kit

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Ever wished you could be a model with people throwing cash and gifts your way for doing nothing but looking amazing?  Well now you can!

Triathlon WA has just launched its Show Us Your Kit competition and it’s your opportunity to demonstrate the undeniable fact that Perth Hills Tri Club has the best looking kit in WA, if not the world.  As well as winning a Fly6 rear light and camera if your photo is chosen as the winning image you will also get $200 cash and the club a further $300.  How good is that!!!

To enter all you have to do is:

  • Follow Triathlon WA on Instagram (@triathlonwa)
  • Share a photo to Instagram showing off your club kit
  • Include the hashtag #showusyourkit2016 and tag Triathlon WA using @triathlonwa

Terms and conditions

  1. The Show Us Your Kit competition is being run by Triathlon Western Australia (TWA).
  2. Entries for the Show Us Your Kit competition open on the 20th October and close at 5pm on the 17th The winning individual and winning club will be announced on the 21st November.
  3. The competition is open to all current TWA members and triathlon clubs affiliated with TWA.
  4. To enter the Show Us Your Kit competition individuals need to follow Triathlon WA on Instagram (@triathlonwa), share a photo to Instagram that shows off their club kit, include the hashtag #showusyourkit2016 and tag Triathlon WA using @triathlonwa.
  5. Chance plays no part in determining the winner. An independent panel will assess all competition entries on creativity and originality.
  6. The individual who submitted the winning entry will be awarded a Fly6 rear LED light with built in HD camera, RRP $199, and $200 cash (total value $399). The affiliated club that the winner belongs to will also be awarded a prize of $300 cash.  The total value of the prize pool is $699.
  7. The Show Us Your Kit competition is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by or associated with Instagram.

Training for the week beginning 4th of April

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Less than a month to Busselton 70.3 and it’s time to be putting in some key sessions to be ready when the big day comes.  A week of mild weather bodes well to put some solid training in the bank, knowing that there is time for rest and recuperation after the race.  This weekend there are two races on Sunday at Coogee (Olympic distance) and Hillarys (sprint) with athletes split between the two so our usual Sunday ride will be moved to Saturday to allow those not racing to head to either venue for moral support.  The club marquee will be heading to the sprint for maximum exposure, make sure you drop in and say “hi” whether you’re a regular, new to the club or just want to see what we’re all about.

Tuesday April the 5th:  Run intervals

Meeting at 6pm, Riverside Park in Woodbridge for another session of quality intervals.  As always there will be something for athletes of all levels and kids are welcome as there is a fantastic playground and plenty of space to run and play.  As it is getting dark fairly early we would recommend bringing a torch or head lamp so that you don’t need to cut the session short on account of light.  The surface is flat and paved so very safe.

Thursday April the 7th:  Turbo brick session

Our stationary bike interval session starts at 7pm sharp so arrive by 6:45 to give yourself time to set up.  BYO turbo trainer and bike, limited additional trainers are available but as numbers are increasing please contact us to reserve one for you.  Total session time around 1hr finishing with a 5-15min transition run to get the legs used to running off the bike.  No chance of getting dropped, no traffic and very low probability of falling off makes this a great training session for the novice and strong rider alike.  This week we have a change of venue:  10 Lindsay Street, Kalamunda.  Park in the front yard under the big tree and walk around the back of the house to the patio.

Saturday April the 9th:  Flat freeway ride

Meet at Deep Water Point near the boat ramp, ready to roll out at 6:30am.  You will be spending a lot of time down on the tri-bars at Busselton so this is a perfect opportunity to replicate that and practice race pacing and nutrition.  As this ride is straight out and back you can turn around at any point and go at your own pace or stick with a group.  This location is perfect for a run off the bike and coffee afterwards too.

Perth Hills Tri Girls tackle Busselton 70.3 for MDWA

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On Sunday 1 May 2016, our team from Perth Hills Triathlon Club, the Perth Hills Tri Girls – Sharnie Gater, Piera Otness and Renee McMahon – will take part in the SunSmart Ironman 70.3 Busselton and combine TRI FOR SOMEONE WHO CAN’T.

Their goal is simple. To raise as much money and awareness for Muscular Dystrophy WA as possible, while doing what we love most….. IM70.3 Busselton. They will take on the 1.9km ocean swim, 90.1km bike ride and 21.1km run which is a huge challenge for these inspirational women but nothing compared to the challenge faced every day by those with muscular dystrophy; their muscles waste away, they are confined to wheelchairs and put simply, are NOT ABLE to enjoy the luxury of completing a TRIATHLON.

Muscular dystrophy is a neuromuscular, genetic disorder which results in the progressive deterioration of muscle strength and function. There are in excess of 70 types of MD affecting more than 20,000 Australians. Currently, there is no treatment or cure for muscular dystrophy.

We urge you to take a moment out of your day to reflect on what so many of us take for granted… physical independence, choice, the ability to make our own seemingly mundane decisions every minute of the day. For those living with muscular dystrophy this choice is often lost and with it comes a reliance on other people, or equipment to undertake those daily tasks that most of us do on autopilot.

Please click the button below and give generously then share with your friends and family. Your assistance will help Muscular Dystrophy WA provide help for today and tomorrow.

DONATE NOW

Busselton 70.3 MDWA Team Challenge

MDWA Teams Challenge

Looking to do your first Ironman 70.3? Not quite ready to do it solo? Would like to enter as part of the team but may not be able to afford the entry fee??

Here is an opportunity to aid Muscular Dystrophy WA and be part of  our club team in the MDWA Teams Challenge at SunSmart IRONMAN 70.3 Busselton 2016!

What is the MDWA Teams Challenge?

In 2016 TWA are continuing the MDWA Teams Challenge in support of their official charity partner, Muscular Dystrophy WA.  Currently, there is no treatment or cure for muscular dystrophy.  Those with muscular dystrophy face daily challenges; their muscles waste away, they are often confined to wheelchairs and put simply are not able to enjoy the luxury of completing a triathlon.

How will the MDWA Teams Challenge work?

Triathlon WA will allocate one FREE entry to every affiliated TWA Club to compete at the SunSmart Ironman 70.3 Busselton teams event held on Sunday 1st of May 2016.

Please note these entries CAN NOT BE SOLD OR TRANSFERRED and are only available for TWA CLUB MEMBERS to enter.  The entry cannot be used to refund a team that is already entered in the event.  It needs to consist of people who have not entered.
The MDWA Teams Challenge participants will compete in a separate category for TWA affiliated clubs, with the fastest team being awarded the TWA Fastest Club Trophy.  In addition to this the team that raises the most amount of money will also receive a trophy and fantastic prize pack for their club.

So I have to fund-raise?

A minimum of $500 must be raised to be eligible for the MDWA Teams Challenge, this is barely the cost of a normal team entry.  TWA and MDWA will assist clubs in setting up a fundraising webpage via everyday hero.  TWA will also be provide Perth Hills with a fundraising guide with ideas on how to get our fundraising started.  You might be racing as a team of three but the fund-raising team consists of the whole club.  You won’t be doing this alone.

What do we need from you, our members?

Please nominate your interest to us ASAP but by Monday 7th March (latest) at petaw@perthhillstri.org.au  Also let us know which leg you are interested in doing (with a backup plan should someone already have put in dibs on your preferred leg).  First come, first served so if there are a few of you that are keen to do it together then please get on board quickly!

The sooner the team can be put together, the better so that TWA can assist us in setting up our webpage and getting started on fundraising.

Training for the week beginning 15th of February

Interval run training

Interval run training

It’s looking pretty warm for the first half of the week so again please take care out there. We’ll do what we can to ease the effects for you at our sessions but remember to slip, slop, slap and sip while modifying your session if needed.  Here are some tips on training in hot weather from Matt Fitzgerald of Triathlete Magazine.

Tuesday 16th: Run interval training

Ray Owen Reserve at 6pm for a warm-up, some solid intervals to be finished by 7.  There is no minimum fitness level required as the session will be modified based on your individual requirements.

Thursday 18th: Indoor cycle training

BYO turbo trainer and bike. 6:45pm for a 7pm start. 37 Brunswick Bend, Jane Brook. Total session time around 1hr finishing with a 5-10min transition run to cool down. Limited additional trainers are available, please contact us to reserve one for you.

Friday 19th: Fremantle Tri Club “Splash and Dash”

Fremantle Triathlon Club have invited all members and associates of Perth Hills Tri Club to join them in their “Splash and Dash” (swim/run) race at Coogee. Registration starts at 5:30 with the kids and juniors race kicking off at 6pm. Entry is free to all Perth Hills members and $1.50 for non-TWA members to cover insurance costs.

Sunday 21st: Perth Triathlon at Elizabeth Quay

The tent will be up so come along and join the fun by supporting if you’re not racing.  Post race bragging and excuse making is actively encouraged!

 

To plan your coming weeks sessions head over to our training calendar.