How do you prepare for what is renowned as 1 of the toughest triathlons around? Good question!
Preparation, preparation, preparation. What I have learnt in my time competing at various sports is that there is no substitute for good preparation! So since my last race which went wrong big style, I fancied something a little different, a good friend suggested this would be right up my street and that it will be the best triathlon I ever do! Hmmmm we will see this time next week I will be embarking on what is a 1600m swim in Ullswater followed by a 61km bike taking on some of the biggest hills in the lakes followed by a 15km run up and down Helvellyn. Crazy, absolutely haha.
So a glimpse into some of my preparation for this challenging event.
Swim: The key to swim speed is consistency, so I have tried to maintain my regular early morning pool sessions. In addition to this and something not to be forgotten is race specific training, by this I mean replicating the specifics of the race as much as possible. So in this case that means lake swimming. The beauty of open water swimming is you don’t have to keep turning at each end so some consistent distance where you can get into a good rhythm. I have swam in the lake at least once a week in preparation.
Bike: Whilst continuing to put the sessions in on the Watt bike and weekly spin classes it has again being important to try and replicate the conditions that I am going to face in the event. To do this I have been out to attack the local hills with the addition of a recent trip to Haworth for a weekends training in some very hilly countryside. This certainly got my legs introduced to some serious hills which will hopefully put me in good stead.
Run: How do you replicate one of the highest mountains in the country? Especially around Hull which is pan flat! Well I have tried in a number of ways; the running machine fortunately had an incline so doing reps at various inclines helps replicate the different stresses on the body. In addition and again as previously discussed there is no substitute to real replication. I have done this in a couple of ways. Firstly, you don’t have to travel far to find some hills so getting out around Brantingham and also doing some hills reps is hopefully all helping the body get conditioned to the differing demands placed on the body.
To test that theory and get some real hill training in a group of us from Humber Triathletes went up to Haworth for a weekend training camp. We firstly went up to Pendle on the Saturday morning to do the local park run which had a bit of everything including rain! I used my trail trainers as it was mostly off road and including, fields, trails, woodland and a sharp decent followed by a run back up x2 laps! I was in 3rd place after the first lap and then pulled them back on the second climb into the finish to take 1st place.
We followed the run with a couple of days of cycling, 80% uphill so hopefully this has got me in the right shape for Helvellyn.
Overall training has gone well; additional factors not to be over looked are sleep and nutrition so the body can recover to cope with the demands of training. Of course the benefits of fuelling and recovering with Myendurance products has great benefits in helping my body deal with these demands.
Remember, consistency is key! Wish me luck