Ironman UK Training Weeks 3, 4 and 5


In Which I Battle The Weather And An Illness

Week 3

This week was quite a good week. Stuck to my training plan close enough as I was still on holiday for the first half of the week. Went back to work on the Friday for a 12 hour shift then ran an hour afterwards.

On the Saturday I worked 12 hours, then ran for 45 mins. I’m a security guard in a shopping centre so on my feet for nearly all the day, so very chuffed I still ran afterwards.

Sunday, however, was different. Sunday was a cycle day. Sunday was only a 7 hour shift day. Sundays weather was like a tornado.

I rode to work in the morning (3.4mile downhill) and then after work I planned on an hour and 45 cycle. I didn’t plan on the wind and rain however, and I took a battering. The wind seemed to be in my face the entire way (out AND back) and I was drenched. This was my first proper outside ride of the year, and it did me in. I turned back earlier than planned as I was drained, and a mile from home I had to nip in a shop to buy a mars bar for some energy. Not chuffed.

Swim: 1.03 mile (01:00:39)
Bike: 37.03 mile (03:02:06)
Run: 17.88 mile (03:02:00)

Total Distance: 55.94 miles
Total Time: 07:05:05

Week 4

Worked the Monday, did no exercise.

Tuesday I walked up to the bus stop (planning on an hour run after work) but instead of being normal my body decided to throw up. Horrible. There was an old woman at the bus stop who started rubbing my back and told me I should go back home, and if a random fairy godmother gives you advice at a bus stop, you listen. Called in sick.

Wednesday, called in again.

Thursday I went back to work (6-6) but still felt off. 30 min run after work.

Friday, sickness strikes back and stays through Saturday.

Sunday was a day off and a day of feeling quite good so went to the gym in the evening and did an hour on the bike and then a 15 min run.

Swim: None
Bike: 17.2 mile (01:00:00)
Run: 4.35 mile (00:43:20)

Total Distance: 21.55 miles
Total Time: 01:45:20

Week 5

Through the night it had snowed and snowed quite a lot. Wanted to get out riding on the road but settled for the gym. 45 min ride (13 miles) then a mile swim. Felt good after the previous week.

Tuesday was a rest day due to a family party so had beer instead of exercise. I regret nothing.

Weds was another 6-6 shift and the snow came down all day. I’d planned an hour run after work, however, and wouldn’t be beaten by the weather. I think a cleaner at work summed it up best when she saw me in my running kit, signing out of work when she said “Are you f**king stupid?!”

Chuffing hell it was cold. Plenty of snow on the ground and plenty more falling down. Surprisingly enjoyable though, never run in the snow before. Slipped a couple of times but nothing major.

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Slow and steady all the way which meant I got a good look at the confused (concerned?) faces of people driving by. Six miles took 01:07:16. Got home to a lovely status:

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Thursday and Friday I worked 10-9 and it was still crappy weather so didn’t get anything done.

Saturday I was off, so went for a cycle outside. It was still chuffing freezing though so wrapped up warm.

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12 nice steady miles done by lunch time, including some hills.

That brings me to today. Worked, then ran home. My training plan called for an easy hour run so figured I’d get around 10k in that time. It actually ended up 10k in an hour and 19 seconds.

Swim: 0.89 mile (00:59:00)
Bike: 24.7 mile (01:58:06)
Run: 12.2 mile (02:07:35)

Total Distance: 37.79 mile
Total Time: 05:04:41

On to week 6!!

Totals Since Training Plan Started

Swim: 2.93 mile
Bike: 116.13 mile
Run: 48.78 mile

Total Distance: 167.84 mile
Total Time: 20:22:24

Want To Sponsor Me?

Doing all this for a reason, and that reason is Ironman UK and to raise money for Scope. Any and all donations are more than appreciated, even if it’s a pound/dollar/yen/silver sickle.

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Ironman UK Training Weeks 1 and 2


In Which I Start In Week 2 Because Week 1 Was Christmas Week
And So Sod That

Week 1 of 29
(Which should be week 2 of 30, see title of post)

Following the Don Fink 30 Day Ironman Training Plan, which is based more on time and heart rate rather than distance.

Monday 29th Dec: Rest Day

Tuesday 30th Dec: I signed up to a Spin class at the gym I goto and got there a few minutes early because I’m a swot. Spin class is a high(er) intensity (than a stationary bike) stationary cycle workout. There was only 9 of us in the class so nowhere to hide from the instructor.

He had us spinning at different speeds (RPM) and alternating between sitting and standing, and changing the resistance on the bikes when ever he said. It was quite brutal and felt a bit sick at one point, but managed to keep up well enough.

Straight after the class my training plan called for a 15 min run so hopped on the treadmill and got it done. Very tired at the end.

Wednesday 31st Dec: 30 mins on a gym bike, holding 100+ RPM gave me 8 miles cycled. Afterwards I’d signed up to a ‘Boot Camp’ gym class of 45 mins.

It started with a job around the class to warm up (I was already chuffing warm!) and this was followed by 4 stations of exercises. Medicine balls, kettle bells, burpees and crunches. Each section was 4 x 20 secs of the exercise with 10 seconds to recover between each, and then moved to the next station and did 4 x 20 secs on that one, then the next then the next, then ALL of it again, then a mixture of kettle bell swings and squats.

Damn near killed me.

Thursday Jan 1st: New Years Day could’ve been New Tears Day as I was soooo achy from the day before, but had a 45min run scheduled. Took it nice and steady and saw quite a few runners out and about, a few of who nodded or smiled. The others were chuffing miserable gits.

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Friday 2nd Jan: Three mile run to the swimming pool, followed by a mile swim. Not great at swimming and still doing breast stroke so it took an hour. (30 mins for the run.) The pool was full of resolutioners, good for them!

Saturday 3rd Jan: An hour on the bike. I was tempted to go out on the road but it was chuffing freezing so plodded back up to the gym. Headphones in, music on, legs turning. The best thing about doing a long time on the bike (or treadmill) is ‘seeing off’ people that use the machine next to yours. Also, when you can see them looking at your stats. *smug*

Had to really push near the end of the hour to get up to 17 miles! (120 is the RPM, held that for about 5 mins)

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It was only when I got home that I realised I should’ve done 90 mins, not 60… Pushed quite hard though so that must kinda even out? No?

Sunday 4th Jan:Hour run. It was still cold out, ice on the pavements, so went to use the treadmills. Again, nice and steady, and did 5.6miles in the 60 mins.

Weekly Totals:
Swim: 1.01 mile
Bike: 37.2 miles
Run: 14.35 miles

Total distance: 52.56 miles
Total Time: 06:27:18

Bring on week 2!!

In Other News
Gone and signed up to this again, third year in a row!

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My Year This 2014 Which Year Is Near To Over


In Which I Do A Brief Year Review

🎶It’s here, it’s here, it’s the end of the year! 🎶

(There’s emojis in that, so if you can’t see them then that’s why. Because: emoji)

WordPress has emailed me a Year In Blogging Review email but it seems to lack warmth, lack heart and lack love. So I’ve taken the bits I’ve deemed important enough and added more stuff that I like.

(The pic-texts are from WordPress, the texts from me.)

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Also, recently, I hit over 100’000 blog views. And 3’600 subscribers. I’m working on how to get you all to do my bidding.

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I didn’t even know there WERE that many countries! Doubt I could name that many anyway!

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Can’t believe I wasn’t following any of you kids… I am now. (Internetly, not stalkerly!)

That’s the basics! But these are the more important facts:

1. Finished a heap more 10k runs and one more marathon (marathon total is now 3).

2. Knocked a massive 21 minutes off my marathon PB, bringing it down to a more respectable 04:27:30.

3. Entered, and finished, my first ever (short course) triathlon in Skipton.

4. Visited New York with my lovely wife Sarah and brought her home, along with this:

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5. Wore above hoodie out in public, didn’t get ridiculed.

6. Entered IMUK / Ironman UK for July 2015 and started training, and realised spin classes and Boot Camp classes chuffing hurt! My sponsorship page can be found here: FUNDRAISING Continue reading

100th Post And A BIG Announcement


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In Which I Update You With What’s Been Happening, And With What’s Going To Happen..!

*Stands Up*
“My names Marc Hemingway and for the past few weeks, I’ve been lazy.”
*Cat looks at me funny so I sit back down*

Me and Sarah went to New York in November and had a lovely time. We had five days and four nights of busyness and sightseeing and eating and it was great.

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We did all the sights, Empire State Building (see above pic, view from it), Statue Of Liberty, Rockefeller, Central Park and everything in between. Also had a bit of a go on the subway!

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(I won’t force you to see all the pics because this isn’t a travel blog, but if you want to they’re on my Instagram: Zepalm )

I was, as you’re thinking, signed up to a 10k run in Central Park while we were there. I recorded a DNS. (Did Not Start.) That’s because:
1. We were staying further from New York than we thought and so travel time was around an hour to an hour and a half, and:
2. It was CHUFFING FREEZING! Like minus 4 freezing! Plus wind chill brought it down a few more points so nope.

Anyway, since we’ve got home I’ve done very little in the way of exercise, if any! Any what with it being Christmas and everything I’ve over eaten and over drunken and over overed and have put a fair bit of weight back on which isn’t good!

So how do I get motivated? By entering this:

IRONMAN UK 2015

And here’s the proof:

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2.4 mile swim
112 mile cycle
26.2 mile run

One after the other, no breaks, 17 hour time limit. (………oh shit!)

Training is 5/6 days a week with an average of 12-15hrs per week. Plenty to be getting on with!

My original plan was Ironman Lanzarote but I’m still not a great swimmer (only having learned how to swim last year) and Ironman UK is swum in a reservoir where as Lanza is in the sea. Plus, IMUK is a LOT closer to home!

Another factor is that Ironman Lanzarote is £380 entry but for IMUK I can (and have!) enter through a charity called Scope so it cost me £50, so long as I raise a minimum of £1000.

(Want to be the first to sponsor me? 🙂
http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserPage.action?userUrl=MarcHemingway&pageUrl=2 )

So there you go! That’s what I’ve been up to and that’s what I’m aiming for.

Can’t chuffing wait!

In Other News
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
I wasn’t allowed this:

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Maybe next year!

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Ironman UK (Bolton) Spectator Re-Cap


In Which I Become A THREE TIME IRONMAN…………….. event spectator

3rd August

With Ironman Lanzarote not being enough of a challenge in May, Father In Law Tony had also entered Ironman UK. Two in three months.

Everyone went over to Bolton to check into the Premier Inn sometime on the Saturday afternoon. I was working until six, so made my own way there via Manchester and McDonalds. I thought everyone would’ve eaten by the time I got there, but they’d been waiting an hour for a table in the restaurant so Sarah text me pictures of the menu and I then text Sarah my food order. (Technology is MARVELOUS!)

Everyone was fed, I had a few beers, then it was off for an earlyish (not at all) night.

4th August – Ironman Day

We got up early. And I mean EARLY. When we watched Iron man Lanzarote the event began at 0700. That meant we got up around 0600 – 06:15 and had a short walk down to the beach to watch the swim start. For what ever reason, Ironman UK starts at 0600. And we were staying nowhere near the swim start. Luckily, the events organisers put on coaches for the athletes and supporters. The coach left at 0515. Ugh.

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Going In

The Ironman UK swim course is in a lake thing called Pennington Flash. It’s a two x1.2mile lap course, and the athletes have to start in the water. Before the gun goes, they have to tread water for 5-10minutes or so which must use some much needed energy. After the first lap, they have a run of about 80m before doing the second lap. Pretty much every athlete that ran out of the water slipped on the mats. Not very safe.

Coming Out

Coming Out

Tony came out of the water in just under 41minutes then got straight back in for his second lap. After we’d cheered him on, we moved up the course towards where the bike part would start. We got a good spectator spot and waited for him to run passed. We were also keeping an eye out for another family(ish) member. I think he’s my Wife’s cousins cousins husband. Or something… Anyway, while we were waiting for Tony, we heard “And coming out of the water, Martin Stoney!” and because that’s my wifes cousins cousins husbands name, we looked out for him. I think he’s done marathons and such, but this was his first Ironman event. A minute or so passed, and then he ran passed looking strong.

Martin

Martin

Not too long after, we saw Tony running up towards us and he stopped for a quick chat before running up to Transition 1 (where they get changed) and then he was off on his bike.

Sarah Helping Get The Wetsuit Off

Sarah Helping Get The Wetsuit Off

It’d be AGES until we saw him again due to the course set up. We got on the free bus back to the hotel, and we all had breakfast. (Which was our Transition 1.)

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After about an hour we made our way to the train station and got on a train (obviously) to the centre of Bolton. Only took about 10minutes and so that wasn’t enough time for the conductor to come round and sell us a ticket. When we got off they had a couple of guards checking tickets so we went up the counter next to them where you could buy a ticket for the journey you’ve already done. I think if they’re too lazy to come round with tickets, it should be free. But it’s not.

When we were waiting a scruffy lad tried to run down to the platform but Guard 1 stopped him because he didn’t have a ticket.

Guard 1: “Tickets please.”
Bloke: “My f***ing trains there, I don’t have time for an f***ing ticket.”
Guard 1: “You can’t go passed without a ticket.”
Bloke: “That’s f***ing stoopid. My f***ing trains there.”
Guard 1: “You still need a ticket I’m afraid.”
Bloke: “F***ing F***ing F***ing F***ing.”
Guard 1: “The ticket counter is over there.” (Bloke goes to ticket counter, f***ing all the way)
Guard 2: “He could use the machine, no ones using it.”
Guard 1: “He’ll be too stupid to use a machine.”

The bike course for Ironman UK starts where the swim finishes, but ends about 6 mile away from the centre of Bolton. This meant that we could make sure we were in plenty of time to see Tony and Martin on their run. The bike course is a point to point 14 mile ride, before then going into a three lap route that starts at Adlington in Lancashire and takes in quite a few hills and villages. It then finishes at a high school where Transition 2 is waiting, after a total of 112 miles riden on the bike.

Our Transition 2 was the pub.

Finishers Chute

Finishers Chute

There were plenty of splits on the bike course so it made it easy for us to track Tony and Martins progress on the Irontrac App. (Lanzarote only had one split so had to be more vigilant.) Plenty of splits on the run course too, which makes it much easier as a spectator. Looking at the App, we saw that Tony had finished the bike section in 6:44 and Martin in 7:11. The Marathon for Ironman UK is a six mile run into central Bolton, followed by a three lap course for the other 20 miles. The first split the app tracks is at 10k, but then they’re every 1-3k or so. We thought that the first split was near where we were stood, but it wasn’t. We were expecting them to run passed us at anytime, but it turns out that we were closer to the 4th split, so didn’t see them for almost an hour later than we expected. And it poured down.

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Before long though, we saw Tony running up towards us and he stopped for a few words. Then he was off again. With part of the run being 3 laps you see the person you’re cheering on six times. (With the last time being the finish.) We figured out which splits were which and made sure we were at the road side in time to cheer. (Inbetween was a combination of McDonalds and a pub. Or two.)

When they were on their final laps we made our way to the finishers chute and got a place in the stands. Again, using the Irontrac app, we had a good idea of when they’d be finishing. Martin came passed first to finish in a time of 14hours 17minutes. As we were waiting for Tony, the big screen broke and didn’t get fixed until after he’d crossed the line which was a shame as you could’ve got a brilliant picture of him finishing. Maybe next time.

Tony came down the chute and we all cheered. Susan had made her way to the front of the barriers and Tony stopped to give her a hug, before going over the finishers line in a time of 14hours 24minutes, (almost half an hour quicker than Lanzarote) and becoming a Triple Ironman.

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5th August

After breakfast we went and had a look at the Ironman Expo. It was a LOT better than Lanzarote, with loads on sale. I bought myself an Ironman training book as motivation. Hmmmm……

Tonys Medals

Tonys Medals

When we got home we went and got this:

Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily

Our new kitten. Indy seems to be tolerating her so far, so that’s good.