Monday, 9 July 2012

100 days ago......

Well today marks a multitude of anniversaries (of sorts).

100 days ago I was still a smoker and this blog along with the help of support of my family and friends (both real and virtual) have helped me be a non smoker for 100 days. That's nearly a third of a year. Or more impressively nearly 9 million seconds.

The first 95 of those days was a doddle but recently I have been struggling with cravings but I am determined to remain strong and not undo all the good I have done in the last 100 days.

I went back to the doctors and got prescribed another two weeks of champix to get me over this slight bump in the road. The doctor told me to make them last for four weeks or more which is equivalent to half of the prescribed dose.

I still think I am doing bloody well and only wish I had something to show for all my hard work. Oh wait............

I do:
  • an increased lung function
  • healthier outlook on life
  • more energy
  • some new friends
  • most importantly a new passion in triathlon. I really can't believe how much I look forward to the training. I'm really missing the running at the moment but I'll get to that a little later.
Today also marks 20 days until my triathlon debut. I know I shouldn't be nervous but I am a little. It's not fear of distance as it is only a sprint but is the fear of the unknown in transitions (the 4th discipline). This is the one element of my training I haven't practiced but this is the point of this triathlon so that I don't come a cropper in London which is a lot bigger and thus daunting.

The distance involved in the London Triathlon doesn't even faze me as I know I can do all the elements separately. 1.5km swim (done), 40km bike (done both on the turbo and on the road), 10km run (done but I slightly broke myself). Altogether may prove a little difficult but I have 11 weeks to sort that out and as stated previously I am doing these triathlons to complete not compete.

Now for the injury update.

I went to the doctors and he said it was probably (how can doctors be so vague when you want a definitive answer) tendon related so as I had booked the physio as well I decided to go for a second opinion. After telling my physio the symptoms he had a wry grin on his face. I asked why and he said from my description he thought he knew what was wrong but wanted to do some tests.

After the tests (which involved contorting my foot into different positions) he said he was correct and I had aggravated a tendon underneath my heel, hence the shooting pain in front of my ankle on walking. Bonus I now knew what was up.

He even gave me a treatment regime which involves contorting my foot to stretch the tendon and rolling a can of beans under my foot (Chickpeas will have to do). He told me not to run for another week and see how I got on. Then next weekend to do some hill runs (which do not sound fun). Might have a VERY gentle jog on Thursday to see how it feels. I know why he has prescribed hill runs. It is because it is impossible to heel strike when running uphill as you will fall over.

This then led to a discussion on minimalist running. I explained how I used to run on my toes and how heel striking feels alien to me. He said it would be better for me to remain injury free if I could transition to minimalist running as there is less impact. However he said to complete this seasons two triathlons by heel striking as this is what I have practiced and then in the off season to get some training on midfoot striking which will involve strengthening different muscles and retraining myself.

Retraining myself to run. Bit late at 30 but apparently it will lead to less time injured, which is a bonus.

If anyone is considering minimalist running, I can only recommend Born to Run by Christopher McDougall as a superb read on the subject. It really will open your mind to the possibility and also dispel a lot of myths.

On leaving the physio, it was time to drop my Madone off for her first service as the gears were starting to slip. Me and the wife then went to look at some transitions bags for my birthday present and she lovingly bought me a Huub transition bag (which even Mary Poppins would be proud of) and I bought some Compressport running socks. The real reason for the trip to TFN was to look at some Pearl Izumi Fly IV shoes (which I was disappointed with as they didn't fit).

I then went to pick my bike from Rotherham and decided to look at their bike shoes. After 20 minutes looking at boxes I noticed they had a pair of triathlon shoes by a company called Polaris and the only pair they had were in my size. Fate? I tried them and they were so comfy. Needless to say they were purchased.

My new shoes
We then went home and didn't do much for the rest of Saturday apart from chill out.

Sunday was spent completing the weekly 40km on my bike using the turbo trainer as I didn't want to have any mishaps so I practiced unclipping and clipping back in in my new bike shoes. They really are so much more comfy than my old ones. Okay so they're a little on the green side and don't match my bike but the comfyness makes up for that.

I completed the 40km using intervals and decided to see how fast I could go. I managed to pedal to a top speed of 80.2km/h and I would like to apologise to my neighbours for the guttural scream that I emitted when pedalling to this speed. I nearly scared myself. My cadence was a blistering 166rpm at this speed. That nearly three revolutions a second. I actually shocked myself with this. The total time  for 40.24km was 01:09:32 and my best 5k was 00:06:53 which is 43km/h. WOWSERS

All in all a positive weekend even with the bad news about my foot.

That's all I've got to tell you for now apart from the fact I have now reached my first target of £600 for Cancer Research.

Thanks for reading and for your constant support,


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