Tag Archives: pyramid session

Some extra recovery followed by two days of intervals

25 Jun

After my long swim on Sunday, I was meant to go swimming with the Tri Club on Monday night… however, I had a fun night out planned with some former work colleagues. I tried to find a way to fit a swim in, but I would have had to get up very early to do it before work, and my lunch break was sandwiched between meetings on different campuses, so in the end it just wasn’t feasible. I know that people will say that if you want to find a way, it’s always possible to make things work, but I was feeling absolutely exhausted and thought that a little bit of extra time in bed and a chance for my arms to recover wouldn’t be a bad thing.

Yesterday, I had to spend the day in London for a work event. Luckily, the meeting didn’t finish too late, so I was able to get home in time to be able to do some of my training. I was meant to do a 45 minute bike ride, but I only had time to fit in 25 minutes before my track session. If I’d been better organised, I might have found a bit more time, but I’m not too worried about it (I cycle to and from work every day, so missing out on 20 minutes on my bike isn’t as bad as it might seem).

After cycling, it was time for my weekly track session with the local tri club. Huw was away, so the session was led by Steve, who’s also a really good coach. We were told to do the usual warm up (a one mile lap of the sports centre), but I still had to change from my bike shoes into trainers and lock my bike up, so I took a short cut. I’d assumed that I wouldn’t be able to catch the group, but I think that with a bit of effort, I would have made it.

After the warm up, we were told to do a deceptively simple pyramid session:

  • 1 minute run; 1 minute recovery
  • 2 minute run; 2 minute recovery
  • 3 minute run; 3 minute recovery
  • 4 minute run; 4 minute recovery
  • 4 minute run; 4 minute recovery
  • 3 minute run; 3 minute recovery
  • 2 minute run; 2 minute recovery
  • 1 minute run; 1 minute recovery

We were told the runs should be done at ‘steady’ pace, which was then modified to 5k pace. My best parkrun (5k) time in 2014 is 27:40, but I’m still aspiring to get a PB, so I tend to think of 5k pace as being 5:00/km. I managed an average of 4:53/km (moving pace), which means that I managed to achieved what I wanted to.

This evening, I had a choice between doing an RR10 (local off-road race) or doing a specific run as set by my coach. I didn’t finish work until after 6pm, so I decided that it would be best just to do the work out set by Coach Ant. However, I also combined it with a run with my friend, Teri. I ran to her house, and then we did a 10 minute warm up before alternating between 90 seconds at ‘race pace’ (5:00-6:00/km) with 2 minutes of jog recovery after each one. It was hard to run quickly as I’m very tired, but I managed all of the intervals at the appropriate pace.

I think I would have found it a difficult run, if I hadn’t had Teri for company. We would start discussing a topic, and then my Garmin would beep to warn me that it was almost time to run hard again, so we’d agree to pick up the narrative in our next jog break. Teri’s a much faster runner than me, so she went ahead on the intervals, but we regrouped for the jogs.

Tomorrow, I’ve got an aquathlon. Last time, I was still struggling with my arm, so I did the novice distance. This time, I think I need to tackle the sprint distance, but I’ll try to hold back a little as I’ve a triathlon on Sunday. On Friday, I’m cycling and swimming and then I’ll finally have a rest day on Saturday.

This evening, I watched an interesting video from CTC (Cyclists’ Touring Club). It’s part of a campaign to make cycling safer in the UK. I fully support it, but I’m not sure that all of the proposals will be practical:

If you’re in the UK and could like to support this campaign, please visit the website.

Possibly the longest transitions imaginable…

16 Apr

My employer is very generous, so as well as having Good Friday and Easter Monday off work, I also have today and Thursday off, which means that I have some time to catch up with training, blogging, coaching planning and housework.

My new coaching schedule said that I needed to do 90 minutes of swimming, 90 minutes of cycling and an hour of running today, so essentially, I had to do a triathlon, but I decided that there was time for some breaks in between each element.

I didn’t want to get up too early, but as my hay fever is still making it difficult for me to breathe, I ended up getting up just after 7am. My plan was to do 90 minutes of swimming before meeting Chris for a bike ride. Unfortunately, I wasted some time at home and didn’t get to the pool until nearly 9am, so I decided to curtail my swim to 60 minutes. I had thought that I’d manage to keep swimming at a reasonable pace for the full duration of my session, but I’m clearly much more tired than I thought. I found it really difficult to swim more than 50m without a break, so instead of focussing on speed or distance, I decided to work on my technique, making each length of the pool as efficient as possible.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve been in the Uni pool (not since some time in 2013!), and I had forgotten how cold it feels. Fortunately, the pool was very quiet, so I was able to do the workout of my choosing. I started in the middle lane, as there were only two other people there. However, towards the end of my session, some other people joined the lane, so I switched to the slow lane which was empty. My Garmin recorded 875m, but I know that’s not correct as I got in and out of the pool at the same end! I think I may have done 1000m, which isn’t much, but I was feeling absolutely shattered. Upping my swimming is clearly having an effect on me.

I rushed home from swimming, but got stuck behind someone who decided to drive at 20mph down the main road, which was incredibly frustrating. I picked up the essentials and got out on my bike as quickly as possible.

It was the first time that I’ve worn my Champion System Embrace Sports bib shorts, but I thought it would be a good opportunity to try them out. I also decided to try out the Bellwether mitts that I bought last year. I’ve thought about trying the mitts before as they look lovely, but my Claude Butler mitts are so comfortable, that I don’t want to try anything else!

I managed to meet Chris just after 10:30am, and we headed off down the Avenue towards Chilworth (the posh part of Southampton). Along the way there are a couple of big hills. I think I’m making progress as I managed not to brake at all whilst going downhill on today’s ride 🙂 The weather was absolutely gorgeous, but there seem to be a lot of road works going on, so we had to stop frequently at traffic lights. Chris planned and timed the route perfectly (I had suggested roughly 30-35km in 90 minutes) and was great company. When we got back to the Bellemoor, we stopped for a drink in the sunshine.It was nice to see Meg and Maz go past with their babies.

Tamsyn and Chris

Post ride drink at the Bellemoor

The new bib shorts were very comfortable. The elastic around the legs is a little tight (not in an uncomfortable way, but in an unsightly way) and they have more padding than I’m used to, but they were fine for a short ride –  I think I prefer the minimal chamois in my Team SOAS tri shorts. The new mitts were slightly tight, so after riding for an hour, I found that the fingers started to pinch. I think I shall use them again for short rides, but I won’t be using them for anything over 2 hours.

After I came home, I spent a bit of time tidying and dealing with emails etc. My training schedule said that I needed to go out and do a club running session, but I didn’t feel very motivated.

The weather is nice here, so it’s definitely shorts weather. When I opened my drawer, I saw these lovely green shorts that I bought at the end of last year. I’ve only worn them a couple of times, but they’re very comfortable and I love the colour. unfortunately, they don’t have a draw string, so I worry about them falling down, and they’re also a little bit short for my chubby legs. I rummaged around in my t-shirt drawer and managed to find a green t-shirt that Stuart gave to me last year. I think it coordinates perfectly with the shorts… I just need some matching shoes.

I decided that I would got to the session and if I struggled with running then I could be Ben’s assistant or a back marker. We did a warm up and then a few exercises that were quite fun to do. The main part of the session was a pyramid with 4 minutes of running anti-clockwise, a two-minute break and then 4 minutes of running clockwise. we then repeated this with 3 minutes, 2 minutes and 1 minute. It was quite tough going, but I managed to complete the full set and felt quite pleased with myself but exhausted). I’m also really pleased that I managed to run 1km in 4:54, at the end of the session, which is better than I’ve managed for a long time! Next Wednesday evening will feature a cross-country race, but after that, I’ll be back at Ben’s training session.

Run done!

Run done!

Tomorrow is a relatively easy day as I’ve got a triathlon on Friday. I only need to do one hour of cycling tomorrow… but there’s plenty of housework and laundry for me to do!

What are your plans for the Easter weekend?