In the last two months I’ve seen some improvement in the Achilles. It’s still stiff in the morning and sore to pinch (especially after running) but I no longer have the acute pain I was experiencing after tempo runs that would leave me limping. Saying that, I havn’t done a lot of running. But I have done a couple of Parkrun ‘tests’ in recent weeks. The first building effort over the 5km, and the second more optimal. Both left me with some soreness but I was OK the following day.
The 5km times were actually not bad and on a par with my times from this time last year (pre tendonitis). I’m told that I’m not as springy as before. But that’s because I’m consciously trying to flatten out my foot fall and not toe-off so much, putting pressure on the Achilles. I feel a bit more ‘robotic’ BUT the gains I’ve made in aerobic fitness and strength thanks to Zwift/eRacing and the gym respectively have made a big impact.
The second of the Pakrun events last SATURDAY (30 MARCH) was run in honor of Vic Tarrant, a famous local running coach and brother of the ‘Ghost Runner’ John Tarrant. Both guys were an inspiration and I really do recommend THE GHOST RUNNER book.
I’ve not made any significant improvements in my bike fitness over the last two months, but then most of my Zwift racing has been a bit more tactical. I’ve tried to develop my finish sprint to feature a bit higher in the overall tables. And one obvious way to do that is simply hold back on the effort and draft the pack as much as possible in the race. I took part in the National eRacing Championships on 24th February and finished 65th on the day. Before the event I decided top100 would be a good target, and despite a rubbish start I managed to work my way up the field. Looking back on it and seeing the names that finished above me I could have probably finished higher. But it’s all good fun and experience for future races. I am starting to wind down Zwift a little now as I approach the outdoor/real racing season! I have set up a YOUTUBE CHANNEL with some of my recent races (including the National champs).
I recently joined the Ludlow Cycling Club as I plan to take part in their Time Trial League over the Spring/Summer. It takes place every Tue night. Trying to get myself race-fit for these time-trials off the back of the weekend races will be an interesting test.
My first race of the season is the Hereford Duathlon on 14 April. I then have the Ludlow Storm the Castle Duathlon two weeks after on 28 April, and the Worcester Lakeside Triathlon on 12 May (which is also the week the time-trials start). I’ve been working hard to get the hours up in recent weeks which has knocked me out with a period of over-reaching and currently a chesty cold. So I’ll now be winding it down to the Hereford Duathlon as I want a good result there to kick the season off.
Apart from changing over a couple of tires that have been worn down from Zwifting I’ve not had to do a lot to the bikes. In fact the time-trial bike is almost straight out of the box! I’ve literally done about 15mins, testing out the Edco monoblock on the disc wheel.
Generally I’m in pretty good shape. I’d go as far as to say I’m as fit as I was 8+ years ago and in some respects, over shorter distances, even stronger. Lets see what happens.