Saturday, October 21, 2017

After my stress-free visit to Precision Hydration, where they kindly made me sweat without me having to barely lift a finger, he next stop was not going to be quite so easy.

I headed off to meet the sports science boffins from Surrey Human Performance Institute (SHPI) to have my blood lactate levels assessed. Or more accurately, to have the increases in blood lactate measured at different intensity levels.

 

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A couple of weeks ago I took a day off work to visit the Triathlon Show at Sandown park, meet with sponsors and also visit a couple of specialists in hydration and physical testing.

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Last weekend I was fortunate to be invited by the nice chaps at TFN (Total Fitness Nottingham) to visit their store and also meet with Tim from Retul bike fitting specialist, Speedhub.

The shop is something of a mecca for local cyclists, runners and triathletes, with a great selection of bikes, wetsuits, run shoes (although not my favourite Skechers!) and more.  The TFN guys Mark and Martin made me feel very welcome and it was clear to see by their interaction with other customers that TFN is a friendly place to visit, equally attractive to the seasoned pro as much as the first-time triathlete.

Part of the attraction of the invite was the offer of a free bike fit with experienced Retul fitter, Tim Lewington.  Although I’m very happy with my TT bike by Chris Newman at The Triathlon Shop in Bristol, I’d been getting some lower back pain on my road bike recently, so it seemed a great opportunity to have it checked out.

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So, unless I’m very much mistaken, another one bites the dust.  Another coach, that is.  Being dumped by your coach in the run-up to the main racing season isn’t nice. And perhaps it was avoidable. Or perhaps it just goes to show that I am uncoachable.

But am I really that difficult?  Well, looking at things as dispassionately as possible, yes and no.

 

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When it comes to weighing-up my triathlon strengths and weaknesses, invariably swimming tends to get dismissed as “ah, I’m OK, I really need to focus on the run and the bike”.  And it’s a logic that I stand by to a certain degree.  After all, whichever distance of triathlon you’re competing in, the swim is not only the shortest of the respective distances, it’s also usually done and dusted the quickest.  I think it’s true to say that, most of the time, a triathlon is not won (okay, it could be lost) in the water.

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