After Fiona Qualified for Kona at IM’WA’15 and I went 9:22:18, we took 5 weeks off of training and entered the Transition Phase. We came back to Alice Springs, Australia finished up work and flew to Sydney on Dec 23rd. On Christmas Eve we boarded Explorer of the Seas from Royal Caribbean and went to New Zealand and Vanuatu. We bought the ultimate liquor package and threw our mostly vegan diet out the door. I literally drank as much and ate as much as I wanted.
During the cruise we had a 1:1 with a Certified Personal Trainer and Vegetarian Body Builder. He measured the toxins in our body and said that had he not known that I was an Ironman athlete, he would be very concerned about my health. This after 12 days on the cruise. The scale was screwed up anyway; it had me on 6.5% body fat (I was more like 13% then) , I assured the guy, that wasn’t true. Regardless, we bought the 3 month – 3 stage, $300 detox/cleanse to jump start our mostly-vegan diet when we arrived back in Alice. It was by this point that I felt awful. I constantly felt full, a headache that seemed to always be there, weak, and completely out of shape. After all, I had gained nearly 8KG increasing from 83KG at race weight to nearly 91KG during the trip.
I did actually exercise. Besides walking all over the ship, taking mostly stairs, and running on the treadmill with views of the wide open Pacific Ocean, I averaged just under 6 hours of “exercise” of swim/bike/run. On one day in Tauranga, New Zealand, we even forgo an excursion to do our own; running up the mountain (pic above) that I had seen on a prior cruise 4 years earlier; it was an incredible run with hundreds of runners and walkers. And then while in Sydney, Fi took me to the Olympic park where the 2000 Sydney Olympics were held. We ran around the marshs, ponds, and area, and then went swimming in the very same pool that Ian Thorpe won his 2 Gold Medals (below, duh). Swimming in his lane was a very special experience.
On the plane back to Alice we opted again for the “vegetarian” option which I always do now. We didn’t get the nasty Australian “meat-pie”. I was disgusted with myself. I felt awful and had so much additional water weight on me from all the processed carbs that I felt like I could go a week without eating and still be full; but I didn’t.
Ironman Cairns Prep: Racing for a Cause
Before I go any further, let me quickly give a shout out to my charitable works this season. Now while there are thousands of ways for us to give back in this world, I have chosen to support the Wounded Warrior Project. It’s purpose is to give life and hope to the thousands of Warriors that come back from service to their country with wounds that are visible and invisible. I have further notes on my fundraising page. Please support me in raising $1,406 which represents the 140.6 miles I will cover on June 12th, 2016. The link is here: https://fundraise.woundedwarriorproject.org/rtt/Fundraising/individual/305563030
Three Week Preparation Phase: 48.3 hours of training or 16.1/avg/wk. 18% swim, 57% bike, 25% run, and another 19% of core/strength: 19.7KM of swim, 736KM bike, 116KM run. LTHR Test on bike and run was 151, FTP test was 311 (avg), 16:20 for the 1K swim test. While all these numbers are obviously lower than anything achieved last season, they are way higher than at the start of any prior season and represent where I was mid-season over the IMA and IMWA Seasons. This is the Prep Phase. It gets me ready for the serious training and gives me a baseline.
Of course, we went mostly vegan again: NO: Eggs, Meat, Fish, Cows (Breast) Milk. I am still getting rid of my Whey protein in Endurox R4 and we have had some cheese on enchiladas. But, Fi did make a frittata with no eggs (tofu & Tumeric) which was awesome. I’m already down 5KG over these 3 weeks and down to 10% body fat. I am on the detox although we haven’t noticed a single thing from it, and I am taking Iron and B12 supplements each day.
I’ve become a Prime Member on Strava – look for Kevin Coyle from Alice Springs, Aus, which is getting me highly motivated and I’ve had some awesome training sessions already with local athletes bound for local Sprint, Olympics, Ultras, and Inter state Busselton 70.3, Cairns 70.3, and Ironman Cairns. So a big shout out to: Fiona, Lynn, Deeann, Tamara, Darryl, Pete, Duncan, Chelsea, Tim, Pete T. I’ve also been messaging some top athletes in the world so big thanks to them for giving me the light of day: Jarrod, Joel, Josh, & Rob.
“You need patience to be a high-performance endurance athlete… Patience is the key to consistent training.” – Coach Joe Friel