Pleased to finally see the back of this year and start to concentrate on a brand new season. After the first race of 2013 at the Green Man Ultra it’s been a battle against various injuries (mainly hernia related). I had been unable to complete a race without issue. I won’t lie, I had considered ‘retiring’ from competitive racing on more than one occasion, mainly to take the pressure off. Whether I could continue to train at a much lower level to keep myself healthy and the weight in check is another matter. I train to race, simple as that. Take the competition, personal bests and challenges away and I would struggle to find enough motivation. I can understand why some people retire, and at the same time I can appreciate those who continue to fight hoping they will find their form once again. The good news is I’m recovering well, getting some form back and should be starting my first year since 2010 without health issues.
December has seen some good improvements. After getting back down to circa race weight, I started to increase my training run intensities and durations. Lets just say I’m now running twice as far in my sessions and at a much faster pace. I have continued with the regular swims (I have a 5km wetsuit swimathon on 22 March, looking for <75min), and gym training. I have been working a lot on my core and balance work in recent months. Plenty of strength training, plyometric and proprioceptive work to prepare myself for more technical off-road running in the coming months. It’s been going very well. I’m still a little way off the level of fitness I’d expect at this time of the year but I’m moving in the right direction, so fingers crossed.
I have most of January to continue working on my fitness and bringing in some long-distance tempo runs before heading to Lanzarote at beginning February for a week of solid training – sea swims and off-road running. My first event of 2014 will be a return to the Green Man Ultra in March. I had a good race last year but I’m keen to see what I can do in full health. I’m still confirming races for the rest of the season but have already lined up some big races and challenges. See events.
Now the season has come to an end I must also express my deepest thanks to Likeys and Eladon who have supported me throughout the year despite my lack of racing. They are both my sponsors and my friends and I feel privileged to be involved with them. Please check out their websites.
This year I have also been lucky enough to become part of the 9-Bar racing team. I love their product and look forward to munching through stack loads of 9-bars in 2014 as I train and race.
Finally, check out the Fat Man to Green Man book by Ira Rainey, a good read for all those wanting to start training, get a little fitter and/or lose some weight in the new year. Never too late.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!