Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Pre-Race Report - The Rocky Road to Shepparton

Confidence is knowing what to do when you don't know what to do.
                                                                                                                            - Alan Brunacini

I feel like I know what I'm doing. I'm in tune with my body and I am realistic with my expectations of what I can get out of it. I'll be digging deep on Sunday, no question about that

Since the announcement -heck, let's be honest, it was before the announcement- that the 2014 Ironman 70.3 World Championship would be coming to Mont-Tremblant, the goal for this year was always going to be getting myself a M25-29 ticket to the big dance.

So, racing a few 70.3 events here in Australia was logical. I contemplated Port Macquarie, but decided it would have been too early to have a good race. After hearing a lot of good things about Shepparton Tri Club's running of the Shepp 70.3, it seemed like a good fit - particularly given I wouldn't need to rush back for work or uni.

I signed up early - back in the New Year - to guarantee myself an entry. Little did I know, I would have a crappy winter. A stress fracture in May meant squat-all running for 6 months. In fact, I've done one long run of 17kms in the last month. Heck, one month ago, I was running 20km a week if I was lucky! After a few OK run splits at Nepean and Husky where I managed 3:48/km and 3:46/km paces for the respective run legs, I'm confident my run legs are still there - for short course at least. We'll find out Sunday just how out of shape I am, as there's no way to hide poor fitness in a Half-Ironman.

Poor fitness? Yeah. I've averaged only 10hrs/week over the last few months and haven't done a long ride (4hrs+) since September (I think, from memory). Simply put, I'm going into this race way underdone on the back of the most inconsistent training period I've had in the past four years. It's a gamble, but I haven't necessarily been able to control the circumstances which prevented me from nailing the important long sessions. We'll see what happens. No excuses, but I may be looking at these factors for answers.

Come Monday, I'll be analysing the rest of the year's plans pending the result. I've already made plans to work with someone going forward, who will hopefully be able to help me get a plan of attack for 2014 and beyond - stay tuned for that!

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