Jordan Skelly’s European Triathlon Championships

imageWell here we are 2016 season is now in full swing. Race reports coming in from all directions and everyone cramming in those extra training hours as ‘A’ races swiftly approach.
For me this post race brief comes after my second high priority race of season for the European Triathlon Championships in Lisbon.
Although winter may have been difficult with not being able to enjoy doing the training I wanted to do. My first couple of races hadn’t gone as bad as I was anticipating..particularly to note a medal in the Duathlon Europeans.
In the weeks upto Lisbon I had began to put a good spell of training together. Granted I wasn’t feeling in as great shape as Geneva last year where I got the bronze medal. But it was a level better than at any point in the last 9months.
Arriving trouble free in Lisbon a week prior to the race I could get cracking on with some exploring. Which to be honest is the main reason I do these events as it combines two of the things I enjoy in travel and racing. image
Fellow Britcon race team mate Ben Baugh was racing on the Friday with myself on the Sunday. Which he proved great company as he had similar plans to myself in the days prior with hitting a few swim sets and the odd run to keep ticking over towards race day.
Ben’s race came first with a solid 6th position in his age group. With next up the Elites with 5x World Champion Javier Gomez winning the title. It as ever seemed a age before my race came but by Sunday I was finally ready to go!
The usual 4 am wake up call was a kind one this time, my body was in race mode and knew what was coming in the next few hours.
Fortunately my hotel was only short walk across to the race to join the long 30min pointless wait stood in a start pen with 80 other athletes in the 1st wave. All mentally preparing for the chaos which would begin in the water as soon as the start horn blasts out.

image With minutes to go we all entered the water- a sea water swim with multiple turn buoys (the point you can soon receive a kick to the face). The horn sounds after several minutes chorus of ‘two steps from hell’ (have a listen, it’s the perfect prerace start build up). For whichever reason my plan of a quiet swim start went to plan. Maybe not the quickest line to swim but I wasn’t having to fight 80 other athletes!
imageExiting a comfortable/quiet swim avoiding drinking too much salt water I was happy with how the first discipline had gone.
Onto the bike we were to be hitting the fast out & back up the motorway for 2x laps with only a dragging incline to contend (26.3miles rather than the usual 40k). During the 1hr 5mins on the bike I was more than happy with my progress, coming across names who I had never been close to in previous races….things must be going well went through my mind. With the second lap to the turn looking positive as I had put time into some good level athletes in the race. Yet most importantly I felt in control.
Then question time came, off the bike into transition for the run. I had no idea how well I would be able to run but knew it’d be more difficult than last year’s best races. Onto the first lap, yes I didn’t feel my fastest but it was proving faster than most people. I’d quickly take maybe 5? positions in the opening 2.5k, encouraged on once passing GB athlete Angus Smith that I was in good position it was time to hunt down the podium! The 4 lap run didn’t pay much favours to me once waves behind entered the laps, you just couldn’t figure out where the competition was. All I knew was nobody had came past me and I was running past pretty much all in front of me.image
The final time entering the MEO Arena for the finish I saw a 1.59.?? Damn it the sub 2hrs wasn’t happening on this course but it was great knowing I’m still close to that level of fitness.
It took sometime before we knew finishing positions, but once posted it was confirmed that I’d have repeated the Bronze medal from last year. Which makes a not too bad record at these age group races with hopefully more progress to come.
It was once again another great event with the GBR team in Lisbon and as always I’ve enjoyed meeting up with people you only see at these events 2-3 times a year.
Now having pre qualified for Kitzbuhel-Austria 2017 (now that’s a location to race) I look forward to seeing you all again there.
For any of you aiming to represent GB at these races – GO FOR IT. The whole build up and big race feel at these events is worth working for. Some races also seem to have the added location bonus too.

A special mention to Britcon as a new sponsor for me this year I hope this European Bronze medal goes some way to rewarding them for the support they have shown in me.

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Richard Anness 2016 So Far

Triathlon journey 2016 so far.

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I started planning my 2016 training in the Autumn of 2015, as most of have a bit of relax in the run up to Christmas. I entered the Challenge Wanaka 70.3 event in New Zealand  Feb 2016 and IM Austria in June 2016. To give me some discipline and a structured plan together I joined up with Steve Clark at offthatcouch fitness.  Short term plan to get round Wanaka,  then build for Austria.

With support from Nicola we planned our 3 week trip to New Zealand, primarily to see our son, working there and meet an old friend Moira Tarry. The race was planned for our last weekend. Moira has completed multiple Ironman and Challenge events including IM Bolton, IM New Zealand, Challenge Wanaka, Capetown and Kona!  Even after recovering from Cancer, completing chemo in November I knew I would have my work cut out to beat her.  Our competitive rivalry goes back 30 years!

Swimming was always my weakest discipline, Steve and I worked on this first, I saw big improvements quite quickly in technique, but still needed swim fitness over distance, which has come following the planned sessions. This really helped as I amazed myself with a big PB in the swim leg in Wanaka, in what was the roughest lake I have ever swam. The bike leg was really hard with many hills and a strong headwind, it was amazing scenery. I will admit to having to enjoy the view a few times.  I knew I did not have much left for the run, which is mostly a trail run round the lake and through woods.  I faded badly in the last couple of miles. Lessons learned, need more bike miles and plan better nutrition strategy on the route.   I did beat Moira, but I have to say her journey to the start line was much tougher.

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After returning from New Zealand, a few weeks at home, with the weather starting to improve, started picking up the mileage on the bike. Long weekend rides with the Goole Roadies, plus turbo sessions.

Then it was off to Majorca for Tri camp. I really saw how much I had improved in all disciplines in the past 12 months. The bay was admittedly much calmer this year, but I had more confidence in the water and the cone run was great fun rather than a challenge.  As for going up hills so much more comfortable improved pace. Going downhill, well let’s just say self-preservation kicks in too soon.  Sa Collabra was really enjoyable this year, riding with Stephen Cannings, Dan Ellis, Graham Cowan, we pushed each other up.

12987000_10154307681844349_5093577662937443967_n6149_10154231560924349_4467397370761106528_nWith work I travel around the country, so getting swimming and bike rides during the week has been really hard but myself, Clarky, Hinchy and Crabby did manage to get a tough day in the Peaks a few weeks back (Holme Moss Pic above). I have managed to get swims in the London Olympic pool.  Getting used to 50 meter pool with some of the countries elite swimmers in the higher number lanes was inspiring.  I even had a chat with Tom Daley preparing for his diving session.

The last few weeks has seen competition start.  North Lincs half marathon first, a massive 4 minute PB finishing in 1:39.   Last weekend the Slateman, always an event to get the season off to a challenge. This year I entered the savage, sprint on Saturday followed by long distance on Sunday.  Good test of stamina to compete on consecutive days.  The weather was, Welsh…., all seasons in one day.  A very wet and windy bike ride on Saturday.  A very wet start on Sunday, but the reward of a tail wind down the Ogwen valley and fantastic views of Tryfan and the Glyydrs. The run up the quarries has in previous years been a brisk walk, this year it was a slow run. I am not sure there was any speed difference, but it felt good as I was overtaking people.  Another great time 3:35,  which is 10 minutes quicker than last year, when the swim was cut to 500meters and a massive 30+ minutes quicker than the year before.

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So with 4 weeks to go to Austria. One more race the Leeds ITU Olympic distance, just for fun.

A couple more 100+ bike rides and long weekend runs, then our road trip to Austria begins. I am beginning to get nervous, but know I will get round. I have kept to the plan as much as work has allowed had to switch sessions around a bit but I know without it, I will have not seen my swim, bike run times improve.

Gold for Skelly

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A new season fresh targets but a similar goal to be the best I can be. Last year was most certainly quite a experience, achieving a far greater level of performance than I was realistically expecting.

That being said there were still many weaknesses to address in my race, which gave the platform for motivation during the dark winter months.
Not always do your plans go quite as you hope though.. with a difficult period from September-March where through injury I had a long spell of either no running or failure in attempting to do so.
Thankfully since getting into this sport I’ve surrounded myself with people of great knowledge to solve such issues. And I have to thank Andy Coulson for what work he has done with me to help resolve my pain. Even if the problem isn’t his specific area he gave me contact to who can solve the source of pain.
Unfortunately due to these issues I couldn’t start my season as originally planned. Missing several races I hoped to compete in but couldn’t risk further damage before the ‘A’ races came.
Finally a break through in March came by a visit to Riverside Clinic (Osteopath) from Andy’s recommendation. And within a few weeks I felt I could complete a race even if not going at my ‘best effort’.
Cardiff Half Marathon was a race on my list with its World Championship status this year. With the aim to just run at ease without risk I have to say it was to my delight to hit the finish through the torrential rain in 1.15.16. A new PB of over 2mins without really testing myself and not really being able to run for 6 months… I wasn’t complaining!!
Confidence taken from Cardiff I knew in a few weeks even if not at my best, I’d go to Germany for the European Duathlon Championships able to still manage a respectable time.
In going to Kalkar, Germany I would be missing the Mallorca training camp my Offthatcouchfitness coach runs. Which was a shame as it’s the best fun I’ve ever had out on the bike in those mountains. But representing GB/having a crack at the podium had a good appeal to me.
After a day of travel on the team coach to Germany it would be safe to say the venue was no Mallorca. Or even comparable to my last European race in Geneva by any stretch. A converted power plant into a ‘theme park’ set a peculiar scene.
Pre race day mostly consisted of a load of meeting new faces amongst your team mates. As well as course bike/run recce & testing the wind across the vastly flat course. And of course the usual contradictory race briefing.
So bike racked, race number 142 attached to all the appropriate areas and it was soon time to get things going.
My race had a nice 10.30 start (we need more of these) which would then lead to a 10k run 40k bike 5k run.
If pre season had gone to plan I would aim to hit this race in top form but this time there were more questions about my fitness than I was used to.
Regardless to that my aim was simple suffer as smartly as possible to cross the line in the best time I could.
The 1st run was comfortable and for my level of effort a 33.57 apparently ‘long’ 10k was a good start point. Although I have no idea of my time split in the race as I wear no watches.
1st run so far so good, coming in 3rd overall with good gaps into the field behind.
Onto the bike and my new machine a Giant Trinity courtesy of Giant store Lincoln was running perfectly. 90% of this course was perfect tarmac with only in the park a questionable light cobble like surface where most of your turns would be.
The 4lap bike gave me a good view of the competition and although I’ll admit my biking ability won’t give the fastest splits a worry. It was a peculiar sight to see that no one was really claiming any time back. A 40k solo ride with a few twinges of cramp and I would still come in with a split of 1hr 34secs.
Hitting the 5k with a lead over my age group was always going to be hugely in my favour. Even with my form feeling awful without having trained at this intensity much recently. The last 5k was still the 3rd fastest split of the day in 17.47.
I would cross the finish line to the finish commentary announcing ‘Jordan Skelly you are a European Champion’. Those few seconds right there are the moments that hours of hitting the tarmac training go into. It’s a feeling you can’t get enough of!
The evening medal ceremony was another feeling I could get very used to. Stepping up onto the podium to a vast roar from the GB team to collect a Gold medal with cameras and lights pointing at you in all directions, it’s simply a incredible moment I’ll remember for a long time.
A Gold medal in my age group, 6th overall and fastest GB athlete…not a bad result without being at my best level.
So now looking forward it’s onto Lisbon and another European Championships I’ll look forward to enjoying.
Especially now I know that even without the ideal training, Steve has managed to keep me in good shape and fairly strong through my winters training.IMG_20160415_185937

Jane Taylor ETU Duathlon Championships.

Kalkar 2016

ETU Duathlon Championships.

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The only word for the experience is surreal.  This was because 1) it seemed utterly bizarre to be representing GB to the point where I never really believed it was happening and 2) the setting was so extraordinary.  The GB Hotel and HQ had to be seen to be fully comprehended but had the quality, not exactly of a dream, more of a nightmare. We spent a lot of time hanging about Wunderland and it never lost its strangeness.  Both Suzanne and I had opted for accommodation off site and I think it is to this choice that we owe returning with our sanity largely intact.

The GB support team were terrific and managed to calm us all down after a confusing and contradictory briefing on the Friday.  For instance, at one point we were told wheels had to be UCI compliant which I knew my Zipp 60s were not (I learnt this after the proposed change to Sprint drafting rules). I was glad I’d packed my Campagnolos in case of high wind but was even gladder when I bumped into Joan Lennon (Age Group liaison person) who said it was rubbish and didn’t apply to this competition.

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We joined the official course recce on the bikes Friday morning and attempted to walk the run course in the afternoon when the heavens opened.  After sheltering by a (closed) ice cream kiosk for a while we retreated back into the hotel.  Later Jon and I completed the run route although it wasn’t at all clear where the turn point was.

20160415_180808[1]The parade of nations in Kalkar that evening was blessed with glorious sunshine.  The square filled with Brits quaffing and guzzling.  (Actually, I went and bought a mug from a very beautiful cookery shop. Ever since we had boarded the ferry we had had nothing larger than a thimble to drink out of – unless you wanted alcohol.) 17 nations were represented and we felt very proud to be with our fellow competitors if also slightly hysterical.20160416_203034[1]

Race day dawned but we didn’t bother to see the dawn as is usual with competition days.  The Women’s Sprint was the last of the day and not due to start until 7:15pm!  This was an improvement on the original 7:30pm start.  Concern about the lack of light led to the moving of the start time.  So, a whole day to fester.  Thankfully we had been allowed to register on Friday rather than between 8am and 12noon on race day. Racking was between 1pm and 4pm so Suzanne and I arranged to meet up at 2:45pm.  A slight mishap with the route due to road closures and then we were there in the midst of heated combat.  We arrived just as Mark York completed his magnificent event, finishing 4th in his age group and then saw Jordan Skelly and learnt he had won his age group with a massive lead of 3 minutes!

We racked the bikes in the indoor transition area and looked for ways to pass the time.

Overnight we had become persona non grata in the GB Hotel with fierce frauleins keeping us out. It was only with the help of a team mate that they were persuaded to let me in to see the physio.

At long last it was time to warm up and we found Ruth Wilson on the same mission.  And then the big moment came and we lined up.  Or, as Alan Woodcock described it: “There were all the women jostling to be at the front, elbows out, and there were you two standing lah-di-dah out the back”.  First run was not good with no bounce in my legs even at the very beginning, so grit your teeth and do what you can time.   The second lap was a little better and I vied with “SuperMum” Wilkinson all the way round.  Onto the bike in reasonable shape and off.  Apart from the boil and the chill making my hamstrings tighten as we went along, the bike went quite well.  I left SuperMum behind and overtook quite a few others.  20160416_191407[1]The course was 2 laps, mostly flat and straight with right angle turns and a dubious bit cycling over paving and around cones and barriers in and out of the site.  I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that Suzanne did not pass me on the bike for the first time ever!  Back into transition.  Things seemed to be going ok until I realised I was running with my helmet on!  A marshal took it from me and I was out of the hangar and onto the last lap.  As usual with duathlon it was just keep going, every step is one nearer the finish, and then there was the finish and a great shout.  That was a sweet moment. Mark you were great cheering us on through the runs.

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Suzanne came through shortly after and we were pretty chuffed with ourselves and each other.

We found Ruth who had put in a fantastic performance finishing 4th in her Age Group.  I was 6th in mine about 3 minutes behind the winner I was told (I am now thinking 3 minutes is a tiny margin even though it is more substantial in the Sprint than Jordan’s Standard) and Suzanne 7th in hers so not a bad showing from Lincsquad.

Congratulations to Jordan, Mark and Ruth.

Sam we really missed you and still wish you had been there.

A big, big Thank You to Jon and Rys for being so patient and supportive.

And Suzanne – you were the best race buddy ever!

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Chase 2 Race Your Dream Recipe book is here

Put good fuel in to get good performances out

Click here to get your copy

My idea on nutrition is simple; eat a quality and varied diverse diet from as many fresh, image1 (1)whole foods as possible. It’s nothing new but it amazes me how many people maybe do this or follow a fad diet for 1-2 weeks before they fall back into bad habits. So I’ve decided to put this simple, easy to follow 100 recipes book together to help people eat well, live well and sustain it.

Also in the book I list the supplements I used that helped me on my way to winning my age group Gold medal at the European championships and I recommend what meals to eat in the book on non training/exercising days and what to eat post workout.

As well as the 100 recipes within the book I also offer a guide to hormones, as understanding how hormones work and how our lifestyle choices affect our hormones levels is vital if we want to get the best results possible.

Click here to get your copy

March Fat Loss Challenge

Are you with me???????       IMG_4023So race season is nearly upon us and I also have a Triathlon camp in Mallorca coming up so I’ve decided to try and drop my body fat % to help me hit 2016 lean and ready to race

 

As you may be aware I’ve been working on a nutrition, lifestyle and recipe book for some time and i’m delighted to say the 132 page booklet is now finished. In the book I also talk about what happens to the body when we eat, how hormones effect the body, how insulin spikes make the body react. What to eat on rest days and big training days.
So my challenge is for the whole of March I’m going to commit to my books 100 meals and it’s simply easy to follow rules and get some fat loss results that can be maintained through a lifestyle change and not just a fad diet.

To join me and commit to this challenge where you will have full email and social media support from me all you have to do is purchase my book for just £10 form my shop page here and email me to add you to my March Challenge List below

Challenge On Board List

Steve Clark, Emily Clark, Rachel Crisp, Ben Richardson, Carol Blacker, Ric Longcake, Richard Anness, Emma Watts, Rebecca Urry, Lindsay O’Connor, Chris Bates, Katie Bates, Laura Parker, Darren Scutt, Dan Ellis, Isabel Turkington, Jo Findlay, Wayne Norton, Matt Horsman, Alan Stanworth, Graham Cowan, Darren Scutt, Chris Derzy, Rob Wood, Rachel Bullas, Jane Taylor, Vicki Wilson, Marc Shrimpton, Rob Marshall, Anna Gibbs, Dave Gibbs, Shakey, Ed Lidgett, Andi Croft, Lindsay Croft, Erica Carpeter, Hazel Stevens, Mel Nicholson, Simon Wild, Karen Wild, Gary Baugh, Ali Baugh, Rob Ayton, Sue Couch, Jayne Kenny, Sam Ritson, Scott Barley, Kath Green, Alex Bailey, Gary Horner, Sharon Cotton, Jon Conroy, Nicky Robinson, Clair Dolby, Steve Dolby, Lesley hattersley and Zoe Bainbridge.

Get your Lifestyle Change Book and Join us Now

Off That Couch Fitness Supplements

Supplements shop
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 I’ve been asked so many times “Steve what supplements do you take to help you look after your body” and for years I’ve told people to look after my body I’ve used the following Omega 3,6,9 oils, Glucosamine and Vitamin D3 (Vit D3 since my stress fracture in 2013). I’ve used all the above along with energy drinks, gels and a little whey protein after hard sessions and that’s it. So I’ve decided to have my own made and so I went direct to a few GMP certified manufactures (Good Manufacturing Practice within the UK) and have developed the following products.

Whey Protein plus B vitamins

Endurance athletes tend to focus on carbohydrate intake and pay little, if any, attention to protein. As a result, protein deficiency appears often among endurance athletes, with its inevitable negative effects on performance and health. Serious endurance athletes do need considerable amounts of protein, because maintenance, repair, and growth of lean muscle mass all depend on it, as well as optimum immune system function. Low dietary protein lengthens recovery time, causes muscle weakness, and suppresses the immune system. Chronic protein deficiency will cancel the beneficial effects of your workouts; instead, you will become susceptible to fatigue, lethargy, anemia, and possibly even more severe disorders. Athletes with over training syndrome usually have protein deficiency.

Omega 3 6 9 Fish Oil 

Omega 3,6,9 is recommended for helping to reduce the risk of heart disease. It is also thought to help with pain associated with joint and muscle tension due to it’s anti-inflammatory properties.

Omega 3,6,9 are the most essential fatty acids DHA and EPA are distilled to remove unhealthy, saturated fats, cholesterol and pollutants.

Glucosamine

Glucosamine is naturally produced by the body to support the growth of healthy joint tissue. As we age, it is common for our body’s ability to produce and store Glucosamine to reduce. Excess stress and injury can also cause Glucosamine levels to decline. Therefore, many people find high quality Glucosamine Sulphate tablets to complement a healthy diet and support the body’s natural supply of Glucosamine.

High Strength Glucosamine Sulphate 1000mg is one of the best selling joint supplements in the UK. Each tablet is produced to the highest GMP approved manufacturing standards. To ensure that each tablet is consistently of the highest quality, Glucosamine is combined with low levels of potassium chloride (2KCl). This acts to stabilise the Glucosamine, and has been proven in clinical trials to be the most effective type of Glucosamine in supplement form.

Vitamin D3

Frequently referred to as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D3 is essential for everyday health and well being but it’s not always easy to guarantee your daily dose. Vitamin D3 helps to maintain strong bones and teeth. This is why I was recommended to take it in 2013 when I had my stress fracture in my tibia and I’ve taken it ever since. It’s also known for supporting normal function of the immune system, normal cell division and normal muscle function.

  Get Your Supplements by
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Karen Marklands 1st year in Triathlon

What a difference a year makes!

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Like most, I’ve come to triathlon pretty late in life.  Having tried endless sports different sports from netball, football, volleyball, to gymnastics, diving, climbing even trapeze – I knew triathlon was the one for me from my first bash at it in the Drax Goole Sprint Tri last year. I’ve been hooked from there on in.

I was pretty chuffed with my first attempt – placing 9th female with a time of 1:11:44. Not bad I thought for someone who’d only bought a road bike 8 weeks earlier and still regularly toppled over when trying to stop quickly and not managing to get my feet out the cleats!. 

I was so excited I went the night before to get my race pack and was so glad I did – the set up was nothing like I’d imagined. A really helpful bloke (who I now know to be Steve Dolby –  cheers Steve!) showed me where to rack my bike etc the next morning. I remember thinking how friendly everyone was and a year on that is one of my over-riding impressions of the sport 

In my race goody bag was an Off that couch fitness leaflet and I saw they offered Triathlon coaching.  I thought I would give it a try – I only expected to have a couple of sessions of coaching initially – I thought “how much can there be to learn about swimming; riding; and running?”.  From the very first session I’d answered that question – “Erquite  lot actually!”.  In my training to that point I had only ever gone out and ran, swam, or rode as hard as I could for as long as I could I am sure I would have given up by now had I continued like that – for the boredom if nothing else.

I’ve learnt tons from Steve over the last 12 months – I thought I was a pretty good swimmer anyway but I’ve come on loads with technique training – and the open water sessions made a big difference.  I’ve learnt how different types of training (endurance, interval, hill sessions etc) not only help you build speed and endurance but also mix it up and keep you motivated.  Each week, like a geek!  I eagerly await my training plan for the week – it generally appears in my Training Peaks app on Sunday’s – I then set about matching with my work diary and childcare jiggling stuff around so I can fit it all in.

For extra motivation and a bit of company and coaching I usually head to Scunthorpe a couple of times each month for 1:1 coaching.  

I can’t believe the difference it made – I’ve always been pretty fit but I am now way fitter than I ever been.  By the time of my second triathlon – Grantham Sprint Tri in May this year – I’d knocked a minute and a half of my 5K PB and another 30 seconds off my swim time.  I came 5th female (missed out on 4th by seconds – 1:07:05 – Oh the importance of slick transitions!!!).  I’d also by then tempted my husband into having a go (he too is now hooked!)

Throughout the season I managed to make it down to a few of the Burringham Duathlon sessions – great practice for me as my bike is by far my worst discipline and a really friendly crowd.

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My first open water swim tri was the Lincolnshire Edge Sprint Tri in JulyThe swim seemed to fly by. I couldn’t believe it on exiting the water when Steve announced I was the second female out.  But by the time I was exiting T1 Ruth Wilson was hot on my tail.  As I expected she quickly caught up and came past me on the bike (as ever with encouraging words – thanks Ruth).  I was thinking – come on keep going, don’t let anyone else past and you will finish top 3 female.  But half way on the bike course, I saw plaits ahead!  It spurred me on and I managed to pass the woman who had exited the swim first – I was thinking “OMG I’m second!.  I know my run is pretty strong – but was it strong enough to hold her off?   It was! Wahooo – second female and 1st Age Group (1:32:18).

A couple of weeks later I competed in my local Goole triathlon.  A smaller, very chilled out affair with lots of local support and a river swim in the Derwent. My first female win – and a huge trophy to add to my growing collection!

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Hubby and I then decided to have a bash at the Allerthorpe Olympic Distance Triathlon at the end of July.  We camped overnight – stunning weather.  Swim was awful, 100 people in a wave and I found out what all the fuss was about with swim starts I was punched, kicked and ducked under till spluttering! After losing quite a bit of time getting googles back on – I took the outside edge and played catch up and managed to beat hubby out the water by a few seconds.  I was pleased with my bike leg, I knew the course well and averaged around 20MPH which for me was phenomenal.  The second half of the run was tough but managed a decent top 20.  Reckon I can go under 2 hours 30 next year!

That set up me nicely for my final tri of the year – the Drax Sprint – a year on anniversary of my first tri.   I was over the moon to knock 6mins 13 secs off my time the previous year.  3rd female and 1st in age group (1:05:31).

My final challenge for the season was my first half marathon.  I entered the Bridlington Half a couple of weeks after Drax – having never ran more than 12 miles I was astounded to post a 1:37:44.  That’s it now – Half Ironman next year definitely I’m thinking maybe the Vitruvian – I think a few smallish hills work in my favour!

I’ve loved this year – it has been amazing – and whilst I am hardly knocking on the doors of the elite athletes for me it is an incredible achievement and something I never thought I could do.  

After a couple of weeks of well-earned rest I’m now gearing up for another winter of training ready for next year who knows what difference another year can make?  It’s a tall order, I’m not sure how much more I have left in me but reckon there is more in the tank (especially on the bike!) but if I can make half the improvement this coming year as last year I reckon I will be knocking on the door of GB Age Group Qualifying!  Something to aim for at least! 

November Get Back On It Challenge

November Eating Clean, Training Mean & Getting Lean Challenge

Join me In my November Eating Clean, Training Mean & Getting Lean Challenge

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As my end of season fat month comes to an end this is when I need to get back to some sort of decent training before another short break at Xmas before the real work starts in January. So to keep myself focused I’ve decided to go all November with NO Chocolate and NO Crisps and everyday I’m going to do 60 abdominal exercises and 60 seconds held plank. The 60 60. I’m also going to get in the pool 5 times each week to get my swimming back up to scratch.

Sounds easy but can you do it ?? if so join me for all or some of it ?? (as I know not everyone who reads these emails is a swimmer. Non swimmers can commit to do 5 fitness sessions per week instead)

So far a few have joined me and committed so I’m naming them on here to show they are on board!!!

NO Choc & Crisps November and 60 60 challenge signed up list

Steve Clark, Gary Baugh, Ben Baugh, Marie Wilson, Richard Ogden, Isabel Turkington, Richard Stenton, Neil Buchan, Ben Richardson, Paul Mcewan, John Chambers, Sam Ritson, Chris Gibbs, Lesley Hattersley, Rob Carpenter, Kev Fish, Alexa Fish, Jane Taylor, Daz Sharpe, Lindsay O’Connor, Nicky Robinson, Aiden Grocock, Jordan Skelly, Jacqui Saxon and Hope the Dog

Throughout Nov all those on board keep posting your tips and pics to Off That Couch Fitness’s Facebook and Twitter @offthatcouchfit

Good Luck and time to get Lean