Thursday, October 24, 2013

Grande Sundae

Life's been big for the past two weeks. The fun kind of big. The kind of big you know you have chosen, yet at the same time it sets you up for a challenge; take it all in your stride. And just like a cherry sets off a sundae, we had the 'Big Brick' session on Sunday to finish off the last two grande weeks.

I guest many of us would liken it it 'busy'. Work, training (the staple two) followed by extra work commitments, meetings, events, yoga classes, work dinners, catching up with girlfriends; well over due yet so great :) supporting sisters launch art exhibitions, hanging upside down at anti-gravity yoga oh and nanna's birthday! We all have stuff to do. And in my case it's all fun stuff. The key then is not to get 'busy' with it all. Sounds good in theory and this is what I tell myself. Do I always have this mind set? Nope, to be honest it doesn't happen all the time, but I can practice and with that I am getting better :)

love a good family dinner out, never a dull moment!
happy birthday nanna xx
Side note: You've seriously got to give anti-gravity yoga a shot! Elle and I headed down to the gorgeous Silver Leaf Yoga School in Merricks to check it out. Neither of us had tried it and before we knew it, Robin had us hanging up side down like little Buddha's, cannon balling through the air and turning inside out into the 'Vampire'. We did loose it complete half way through, trying to suppress our laughter. The sight of grown ups flailing about got the better of us!! 

this is what I've called the little up side down Buddha's.
 picture from
Now as I mentioned earlier, like a cherry atop of a sundae, the Brick session set off the last few weeks with a sting. A Brick session is the closest thing we do in our training that get us in a race environment. Lots of people have asked me if we do the whole race in training, before the race? and the answer is no. Before Ironman, I would have never put all 3 distances of each leg together in the one session! Hence why the brick is such a good measure of how your mind and body will perform on the day. Other than the odd run-off-the-bike effort, it's the only time when we as a crew work our butts on and off the bike into a run. This is were being with an awesome group of people makes it so much more... I'm going to use the word enjoyable! And there is proof in the pudding, since I started training with Clinton, Trispecify, we have been upgrading spaces each Brick session we do to accommodate the growing numbers. This time we took over the Osbourne Primary School hall and from a rough head count I think 40 of us crazy people filled the space then spilling out onto the foot paths!

I do love these sessions. Not only does it give you the chance to test the out body over 4 hours of physical activity. You really get a chance to work on keeping your mind focused, clear and driven over that long period of time. In saying this I was knackered after work on Saturday, and come Sunday morning I really want feeling 100%, unsure if I ate something the night before that didn't agree with me? However with Noosa literally just around the corner, and Shepparton just over the hill, this wasn't an opportunity to sit back and go along for the easy ride.

Our session was broken down in to 3 x sets of Cycle/Run, consecutively. Broken down even further it looks like this: 
45mins - Stationary Cycle with varying efforts, heavy gears, out of the saddle, grinding, and fast paced. 
30mins - Run race pace for 15mins/easy for 15mins, we also had a set of a stinger 1km race pace drills in the middle set!

Thoughts on the drive to training; so I've got my bike,
wind trainer, clip in shoes, runners, 2 x drink bottles,
need to stop to get powerade, got my watch,
heart rate monitor is on, food, towel... hmmm I think that's it!

For this you need energy. On Sunday's set I consumed:
2 x bottle of water
2 x bottle of Powerade
2 x clif chocolate gels
2 x clif bars ( choc chip, white chocolate)
1 x banana
I found that this was just enough for me, I didn't get a stitch, cramp or fade through out the whole set. It's funny chatting to a few of the guys afterwards how every body is so different in terms of what I requires to be correctly fuels. It's all a game of trial and error.

Overall I finished the brick feeling like I had put in my best. The ride component is always hard; keeping focus and effort up on the wind trainer isn't my strong point. My trick when I felt like I was starting to day dream was to zone in on Ben's pedals in front of me and keep pace. By our first run it had already started to heat up outside, good prep for the weather we'll be racing in up at Noosa! I felt strong, running out just under the 4min/kms for the first few kilometers and then held 4-4.10min/kms for the 15mins before running back easy. It's so good to build this quick take off off the bike, I can remember the first training session combining the ride/run last year, and I could barely shuffle, my feet felt like lead!

Gosh the last ride set was a killer, 3 hours in and my legs were now felt like lead! Knowing that we still had a 30min run to finish didn't help much at all either. However it's not to hard to keep pushing though when you see those around you giving it their all and encouraging each other on when it gets tough. When I think I have reach my max, I do keep surprising myself. The last run I took off quick again, not holding the 4.10min/kms like the first run. Yet after 3.5hrs I was happy averaging 4.30min/kms for our last effort. 
rebels in the back row. Keeping the boys in line!
Done and dusted, that was the last big training effort before we head up to race Noose next weekend the 3rd Nov! This week is long slow efforts on the bike and run. Oh speaking of run I have to show off my new kicks! Brooks Glycerin 11. I have literally worn my old pair flat, naughty me had being running in them for around 2 years, I couldn't event tell you how many miles, however they never cause me any trouble so I'm sticking to what I know! And wow I know these guys suit me just fine!
you wont miss me in these!

Maddy Xx

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