The Trial Tri

mail

Receiving very exciting mail. I Have DEFINITELY WON!

After receiving confirmation in the mail (totally unexpectedly, mind you) that I had “DEFINITELY WON” lots of money, I took the plunge and quit my job.

I told my boss where to stick it and decided to dedicate a small portion of my first day of freedom to a trial triathlon.

What is a trial triathlon?  Well of course, it’s the swim-bike-run mash-up malarkey I’d been planning on doing prior to my next tri, to make sure I have my transitions figured out and that I can actually survive something close to the distances I need to be able to do. Continue reading

Aldi Love

Aldi Indoor Bike Trainer. Oooooh yeaaaah

Aldi Indoor Bike Trainer. Oooooh yeaaaah

You may already know I love Aldi.  If you didn’t, you do now.  I really like the smaller size of the shops and only having one choice of, for instance, mayonnaise.  It makes the boring grocery shop much quicker and simpler for my impatient and confused self.

And the weekly specials!  I do love popping in to get the week’s food and grabbing a new sleeping bag, wireless doorbell or 3D printer at the same time.  I don’t need a 3D printer (does anybody) but everyone knows the rule that says if you buy it with your groceries it’s just part of your weekly sustenance requirements.  We have to eat.  We have to buy groceries.  Supermarket purchases are basically free.

So I could probably end this post here – you’ve seen the picture above so you can figure out the rest, right?

Well OK, I can’t miss an opportunity to report back on triathlon training progress.  So yes, the Aldi buyers in their infinite wisdom realised that there was a growing need from one of their most loyal shoppers.  A growing need for a bike trainer.  And so they did deliver. Continue reading

Food Glorious Food

The girl in the magazine doesn't actually look like that

It’s all a trick.  (image from Pinterest)

It has surprised me that triathlon magazines, websites and social media accounts etc spend so much time discussing what to eat or not eat – beyond simply discussing what makes good fuel or not.  Not naming any names, but certain sites talk about diets and food with a blatant focus on fat-shaming and food one-upmanship.

Which is a shame because I think we could have kept the two things separate (triathlon and food guilt)

There are so many websites dedicated to making you feel bad about eating certain foods (I reckon you could name any food type and there will be a website claiming you should never eat it) that it seems unnecessary for triathlon sites to get involved in the foray.

We could simply have stuck to swimming, biking, running, shopping and racing.  With maybe some ideas of foods that help or hinder said training.

But no, I find myself bombarded with pictures of green smoothie bowls (WHY is it in an effing bowl?) made with home-grown kale.  Which frankly looks far superior to my giant bowl of Cocoa Pops, because of course it is superior.  And the smoothie pictures always have a smug caption beneath them, along the lines of ‘I managed to gulp down half of this delicious elixir before my 792 kilometre bike ride this morning, but it was just so filling I had to save the other half for when I returned!  I wont be needing any dinner tonight!’

To which my response is ‘Eff you, mother-effer’.

So I thought I’d weigh in with my own thoughts on eating.  They’re very random and possibly controversial, but it’s my blog and I’m just being honest.  Leave your hate-mail messages in the comments and I will take them on the chin.

DISCLAIMER: I will not claim to have all the answers on eating right all the time.  Because I clearly don’t!  But I also don’t care: If you want to eat right all the time, in my opinion you may be insane and this is not a post for you. Continue reading

On Sundays We Are Fit

beautiful

Arriving at Redcliffe on Sunday morning

Ah, remember the days when a Sunday Session meant a few beers (or more) in a sunny beer garden?

In my quest to become a triathlete, many things have taken on new meanings. For instance, ‘a short bike ride’ now means anything less than 90 minutes, ‘I’m going for a run’ is no longer the punchline to a joke I’m telling and ‘doing the laundry’ means untangling 20 pairs of sports socks, 7 pairs of leggings, 2 pairs of cycling knicks, 3 of running shorts, 9 sports bras, 10 fluorescent-coloured lycra tops and a swimming costume, whilst holding your breath to avoid the stink.

And so it is that, thanks to triathlon, the phrase Sunday Session now involves less beer* and actually refers to training sessions of a Sunday nature, which means that they are a bit longer, or require a special journey to get there, or are conducted in a group I can’t catch up with during the working week due to clashing schedules etc.

*I won’t claim zero beer is involved in these new Sunday Sessions, but there is definitely less beer. Continue reading

Extreme Excitement

Walking the dog

Extreme excitement whilst walking the dog

I spent a lot of time feeling very nervous and unsure in the lead up to the baby Bribie Island Triathlon (see here, for example) and I have an inkling that things will go down in a similar fashion when we get close to the Straddie Salute Triathlon 2016.  The nerves, as you know, are already kicking in.

And when writing a blog, you write about your feelings (may explain why I seem to have more female readers than male, because FEELINGS are generally terrifying for the male population) which means that, the closer we get, the more likely this blog will reflect my feelings of uncertainty and anxiety.  Sorry about that.

So as I walked Matilda the dog this morning and said to myself ‘I just can’t wait for the Straddie Salute to be here!’ I decided I should make some effort to blog about these moments of extreme excitement.  You know: share the good feelings as well as the ‘bad’ feelings.  Just in case some of you were starting to get the impression that this triathlon gig is all about stress, fear and nervous poops.

SPOILER ALERT: It’s only partly about those things! Continue reading

So, Maybe There Is Something Wrong With Me?

mask-style goggles

My current swimming garb

Swimming.  Ah, the enigma.

I haven’t grown to love the swimming part of triathlon – yet.  I remain ever hopeful that the day will come; I’ve had glimpses of it to tempt me (see here and here) and the gossip among ‘the swimmers‘ aka the dolphins is that there is serious fun and enjoyment to be had.  So swimming love exists apparently, I just have to wait until I can stake my claim.

In the meantime, I have approached my swim sessions with something like unease and trepidation.  Especially the open water swims, which I frankly dread.

The feeling I get after a swim makes it all worthwhile, so I can’t go so far as to say I hate it.  Finishing a swim produces a certain feeling of relief that I can only compare to being at your in-laws’ for dinner then hearing your partner say that it is time to go home.  Cue: absolute ecstasy.  Except with swimming you’ve also done a workout, so it’s even better than that.

Plus, I simply can’t allow myself to hate swimming.  I have already set my heart on some stupid triathlons that require me to swim stupid distances in the stupid sea.  So I have to think positive, embrace the challenge and keep at it, because as humans we tend to believe that with practice and hard work, comes improvement.

And that’s the thing.  Where is my improvement?  Aren’t I overdue? Continue reading

The 14km Run

A brain snap occurred

That face you make when you come up with a much better plan…

We all knew that the run I planned for Thursday (yesterday) wasn’t going to happen.  Because that is life.

I ended up doing a bike ride session on the indoor bike at the gym instead (for various reasons – namely that I got home a bit late and then my elderly neighbour came over to see me about a problem with her phone and it took me a while to understand the issue as her English is not very good, which also meant that she failed to understand that I really didn’t care about her phone or that I needed to go for a run, which resulted in lots of hand signals and a charades-style discussion about fishing – yes, fishing – before I realised it was dark and Shane banned me from going out in the pitch black)

SIDENOTE: For interest’s sake, I’ve been documenting my completed workouts on the same calendar as I put together and posted a few weeks ago, so that when we get to The Straddie Salute tri you can see just how wrong and off-schedule my training goes – almost every day.  I think it is good to see the reality of how you can adapt and go with the flow.  Stay tuned!

BUT the run needed to happen this week, because I will then have 4 weeks to practice it and have it down pat before THE TAPER starts for Straddie.  So today had to be the day.

SIDENOTE AGAIN: For those who are new to my super-dooper triathlon lingo, according to trainingpeaks.com, ‘The taper is the controlled decrease in training load required to bring an athlete to that pinnacle of a focused mind, and a body that has shed all fatigue and is fresh to go’. I can’t wait! Continue reading