Nineteen Weeks To Go And Its Already Messing With My Head
Ironman. My feeling is that it’s a long, hard race.
It seems that every couple of days, I get completely spooked out by it.
OMG, what if I don’t make the swim cut-off time? (2h:15m)
What if the bike goes badly - I’ve got to finish that by 10h:45m from race start. That means just 8h:30m to cover 112 miles in the mountains.
Oh, crap. Then there’s the marathon. On the sea front in the South of France. In June. WHAT was I thinking?!
And what about race-nutrition? Gary keeps banging on about this, and looking at me as if I’m some sort of moron when I say I’ve got it sorted. And Barry DNF’d his last two Ironman races through stomach problems on the bike!
I have logical answers to all of these . . .
I’m not a great swimmer, but I WILL be able to hold a pace of 2:30 / 100m, which should get me out of the water by 1h:40m. I have a plan to ramp up the distance to the full 2.4miles, and live right next to the sea, so I’ll have lots of opportunities for open water training too. To make the cut-off time, my pace would be near enough a minute per 100m slower, so there’s plenty of slack between my goal and the worst case that’ll still allow me to continue.
If I get out of the water in 1h:40m, I’ll have 9h:05m to do the bike. That’s an average of 12.3mph. Simples!
My goal is to finish the race, not win it. Worst case, I’ll have 5h:15m to do the marathon - that’s 12-minute miles. I can do that.
I already have a nutrition plan that works for me: Drink some water before the swim; 0.5l of water after, and then 0.75-1 litre per hour of electrolytes on the bike, plus 300 cals an hour in gels & treats; cut the carbs for the last 30-40 minutes; 0.5-0.75 litres per hour of electrolytes on the run, plus 200 cals an hour in gels. Always drink with food, and get to the finish.
It sounds so simple when I write it down. But I’m still quite freaked out! I’ll probably settle down in the next training period - long rides are ramping up to 65 miles, long runs to 14 miles, and the swim distance to 2.5km. I hope so, anyway.