Goodbye Off-Season- My 2016 Goals and Training Plan.

Its the most wonderful time of the year… And I don’t mean the sparkly red, green and white ornaments that have been adorning Costco since Oct 1st. It is officially time for me to re-set and re-focus on what the 2016 race season has in store for me.

If 2015 taught me anything its that you can’t plan for everything, and at the end of the day all you can do is put in the work and then make it rain* (pun intended, re: IMCAN ) on race day!

Brick Wall

Goodbye 2015- Looking forward and focused on 2016.

This year I am choosing to focus my efforts on the Long Course, also known as 70.3 or Half-Iron distance. By focusing in on the shorter distance I hope to continue to get faster and stronger and more efficient at racing.

With the help of Sean Geuvremont owner of  The Commune I have set some pretty specific goals. Sean is going to work with me on the strength side of things as well as the speed and overall programming so that I am peaking when I need to peak. He has a ton of experience working with athletes and I am pretty lucky to have him as a coach and a mentor.

Here’s a look into the next couple months:

November’s programming is all about the base… building that is: 2 workouts a day starting out with mostly moderate effort and skill building stuff as well as some supplemental strength and yoga. Getting my feel back for all the elements-run, bike and swim, while taking the time to mentally get into the head space I need to be. Training for an endurance sport means training your brain as well. As Sean pointed out in our meeting yesterday, if I start pushing too hard mentally already and allowing myself to get anxious about racing, I will wear out my mind before I wear out my body.

December will look similar to November but with a bit more volume and slightly more intensity.

January will be GO-TIME– Speaking with Sean we will start this month off with some testing and get my plan set for the next couple months. With my ‘A’ race set relatively early in July. This will be a fluctuating schedule of volume and intensity training, with a focus on my main areas of opportunity- strength on the bike, more speed on the run and a faster swim.

Looking back to last years race season, it feels like it flew by. What I know is that up until now I have really just tried to figure things out along the way, and so far things have gone well. I know I can achieve what I set my mind too and I’m not afraid to set those BHAG’s (Big Hairy Audacious Goals). But I know what I don’t know and I feel excited and focused to have some new coaching support on my side. I am looking forward to updating on my progress, the wins and the misses as the 2016 season approaches!

GOALS for 2016 race season: 

PB at Victoria 70.3 on June 12, 2016.

Qualify for the ITU Long Course World Championships at the Great White North Triathlon July 3rd, 2016. 

PB at Calgary 70.3 on July 29th, 2016 (if it is still happening) 

Top 5 in my age group at Challenge Long Course on August 28th, 2016. 

 

Great White North 2015- Race Recap

Well race #1 of the season is done!

The Great White North Long Course (Half-Ironman) distance triathlon took place on Sunday July 6, 2015. As always this race proved to be a fantastic day with amazing volunteers and a race staff!

This was my 4th year in a row completing this race. It was my first ever half-iron distance race, well my first triathlon ever in 2012 and it will always hold a special place in my heart. That first year I went out ‘just to finish’ and finish I did in 6hours and 20min. Fast forward to this year, I finished in 5hrs and 14minutes. A 10min PB from my race last year! My 2 biggest wins being my swim time and my run. The 20km headwind on the majority of the bike course made things a bit slow heading out on the 1st part of each loop, but was a huge help coming back in to Stony Plain each time.

The morning started off cool and windy, the nerves were there, but not like they used to be. I felt confident in my training and strong. The water for the swim was warm and I mad sit through with little to no thrashing from my fellow race-mates which is always a bonus. The bike was a tough rolling hill course with 2 loops, I managed to hold a pretty steady pace even with the headwind and my legs felt strong. The run started off with some pretty numb toes coming off the windy and chilly bike, once I got the feeling back I was happy to maintain a solid pace enough to bring me in for an 1hr 40min run split. Coming off this run I feel like I have a better idea of what sort of pace I can maintain at Ironman.

Photo courtesy: Ken Anderson Photography.

Photo courtesy: Ken Anderson Photography.

I felt strong the whole race and felt like I was able to really leave it all out there, something I’ve never really done before. I felt so comfortable on my bike, in large part thanks to Nicole Zacharias at National Spine Care in Calgary for her painful  (but helpful!) IMS sessions that have my hips and traps in working order again so I am no longer seizing up on my climbs!

Overall, this race has left me feeling ready for Ironman, I know I am stronger than I was in 2013, and I am excited to see what I can leave on that course. The butterflies have definitely started and I am hoping for a relatively nice day. Although after pushing it through the wind at GWN I feel more confident that faced with not so decent weather in Whistler that I have the strength of mind to take it in stride.

As I prep the rest of this week and into next I have the words of RC in my head: “You’ve got this”.