As expected, I got my arse kicked in Geelong last weekend, but it wasn’t all bad. In fact, it was a fantastic last major workout for my Ironman New Zealand preparations and will stand me in good stead come March 2nd.
Anytime I drop around 90 seconds to a swimmer like Clayton Fettell, I have had a decent swim. I am somewhat limited by my anatomical characteristics in the water, so I am totally satisfied with that outcome.
With so many ITU and 70.3 specialists in the field, the swim was frenetic from start to finish. Sometimes there is a lull after the initial madness of the start, but on this occasion, the rage was maintained until the bitter end. I had to bust my balls on one or two occasions to prevent a lonely solo swim. It was fun though.
As I hadn’t been doing anything over 270W in training, which is a tempo effort for me, I was expecting to be a bit off the mark. Half Ironman racing requires some functional threshold training (around 310W for me) and no doubt some over threshold work at the elite level as well, so I was pretty much underprepared for the demands the cycle leg, and it showed.
I was never comfortable at any stage on the bike, I lost time with each passing kilometre and it just turned out to be a chore. I did, however, push for the full 90 kilometres, as I knew it was going to be of benefit to me further on down the track.
I was expecting to feel a little better on the run than I did, but I guess the cycle leg took it’s toll. The pleasing aspect for me was that I felt most comfortable in the last 6 kilometres of the journey, and pushed all the way to the finish, knowing, again, that it would be of benefit at a later stage.
I like the Geelong course and it would be nice to return some day with some specific half ironman training under my belt.
My focus is now on IM New Zealand on March 2nd in Taupo.
IM NZ was my first ever Ironman event back in 2002 and I was lucky enough to finish in 4th position. Naturally, I am hoping for a similar result this time around.
I fly out on Sunday the 24th and am very much looking forward to spending some time in Taupo, it is a beautiful town.
Janette Blythe assures me that it won’t be raining this year. Yay!