Today is Taper Day

Posted on June 12, 2014. Filed under: Austria, brain training, ironman, Ironman Austria, ironman regensburg, Klagenfurt |

“You have to forget your last marathon before you try another. Your mind can’t know what’s coming.”  

So said Frank Shorter, the gold medalist in the marathon at the Munich Olympics.

 

I have the ridiculous tan lines.  I have piles of stinking, worn out training kit.  I have the inconveniently sized thighs that only cycling can give you.  I am ready.  And I have forgotten.

 

20140611_143356Yesterday I did my last long ride.  My fourth century ride of this campaign.  During six long, windy hours on the road I concluded that I have no desire to do a third Ironman.  Did I feel the same before Ironman Regensburg?  No idea – my brain has allowed me to forget.  I checked the blog that I wrote just before I set off for Germany; something was significant as I read it – I didn’t know.  I was a chirpy fecking optimist and I didn’t know what happens during an Ironman.  Even when I think back now my day in the rain in Regensburg is viewed through a misty, sepia filter – it was the jolly boys outing to Bavaria.  But.  But.  But, if I think about it really hard it comes back.  And then I am Colonel Kurtz in his cave “The horrors…..the horrors…..I’ve seen horrors”.  Even still, I am ready.

 

Back in October I nailed my nuts to the mast and set out why I wanted to do a second Ironman, what I aspired to achieve and how I planned to do it.  I am pleased that I pretty much stuck with the plan; ideally I would be lighter but I think my legs are stronger than I ever expected.  More importantly I set out my targets; and day one of taper has given me pause to reflect on those.

 

My plan, like me, was incredibly simple.  Finish the 140.6 mile course in under 13 hours.  I think I’m close.

 

My target swim time was 59 minutes.  I have done a really comfortable 1:09 in the pool.  I’m a swimmer – if there is one thing I should be able to put in the bag now it is the swim.  My prediction is target time plus or minus 2 minutes, obviously dependent on nose bashing.

 

My target bike time was 6:30 and fit to run.  I have done century rides between 6:45 and 7:20.  Yesterday’s windy and hilly ride was comfortably 6:40 pace – I think the course in Klagenfurt will serve me well.  My prediction, dependent on not getting the trots or turning into bacon in the sun is 6:40 on race day.

 

My target run time was the balance after transition – 5:14.  I’ll be honest with you, the thought of running a marathon after getting off my bike has left me a bit lukewarm recently.  I am ready for a death march in the afternoon sun, shuffling my way around the course like Frankenstein’s monster.  However, I also have a tested strategy to get in around 5 hours.  Can my body do it?  Hell yeah.  Will my brain let me?  Time will tell.

 

It’s close.  Damn close.  I’ve trained for it – the only variable I can’t control is the weather.  It’s been in the 30s for the last week.  I’m Scottish (but not ginger).  The implications are simple.  In that case a finish is a finish.

 

It’s nearly time.

 

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10 Responses to “Today is Taper Day”

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All the best with your Ironman. Good reading and will be following with interest.
Smash it

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Cheers James. I am nervously looking forward to it now.

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I’m not much of a betting man, but if I were, I’d put the over-under around 12:45 and not at your goal of 12:59:59. If you are able to work your plan 90 percent as well on race day as you did for six months on end, everything you can control will take care of the rest of what the day brings you.
Good luck to you.

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Go get it!
May the odds be ever in your favor! 😉

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Good Luck Dougie, always enjoy reading the blogs (even though I can’t recognise with most of it!) p.s Nowt wrong with being a ginge! Hope to catch up up with you guys sometime over the summer.

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Thanks chap. It will definitely be an SPF50 event!

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Good luck Dougie! You are Physically & Mentally Strong! Enjoy the Journey,
Gerry

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Thank you Gerry! I hope all is well in the states.

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Thanks for the read, it’s been good hearing another persons stories. I’ll hopefully see you on the finish line. Go give it hell!!!

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Good luck for your race! Just concentrate on finishing the marathon, as you said, your body can do it. I listen to motivational tapes while running if I want to stop. It is great, it puts me through the ace all the time.

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