Archives for September 2012

Hever Castle Triathlon Preview

This weekend I’m off to the biggest triathlon that I’ve ever competed in. The Hever Castle Triathlon. It is the final round of the Markel Castle Triathlon Series at Hever Castle and it’s sponsored by Wiggle. There are nearly 1000 people in the Olympic distance race alone and there are four races across the weekend. That’s a massive organisational undertaking, but I get the impression that it’s gone pretty well in the past and it is considered the flagship event of the series. All that and it’s in the grounds of a castle. How dramatic do you want it? There are some amazing pictures over on the event website  I’m really looking forward to it and I hope to set an olympic distance PB. This shouldn’t be too hard as I totally fluffed the swim in my last Olympic event. Read on to see my race day plan and tips. [Read more…]

Bath Challenge Distance Triathlon Review

Taken by Marcus

I was given a fairly late start of 9.50am for the Bath Challenge Distance Tri, but due to the travel involved this still meant a 5am wake up to give me time for breakfast and the two and a half hour drive. It looked to be a busy weekend for the event organisers, Naked Strength, as this was a part of their Triathlon & Multisport Weekend, all held around Colerne Airfield. The weather on Sunday was pretty terrible, with a 15 mph crosswind end a steady drizzle of rain. The temperature was pretty low too and at one stage I couldn’t steer the bike in a straight line as I was shivering so much. Read on to find out how it all went. Update 27th Sept: I’ve just added a lot more pictures to the gallery at the end of the article. You can assume that any good pictures were taken by Marcus Cardiff and that any that are less than perfect were taken by me. They really show the atmosphere around the event. Enjoy. [Read more…]

What music do you listen to before a race?

I’ve been trying to decide whether to upload this for several days, but hey if it makes one person feel good then I’m happy. I probably shouldn’t be trusted with a video camera early in the morning, or at all. Before you watch it some minor corrections:

    • I meant Bat Out of Hell 2, you know, the good Meatloaf album, not Bat Out of Hell 3, which wasn’t.
    • I also have a large playlist filled with 80’s rock that comes in handy when the mood takes me.

Watch the video below to find out what I like to listen to while I’m on my way to a race. It comes with a health warning in that my taste in music is rather variable.

This video was filmed by Bob, who isn’t imaginery. I certainly wasn’t filming myself on my mobile phone while driving. Drive safe, remember to use those handfree kits and pay attention.

Outdoor Fitness Magazine – A tale of love and loss

Outdoor Fitness MagazineI discovered Outdoor Fitness magazine during its second issue. I think I picked it up in a branch of WHSmiths. At first glance it struck me as quite the inspirational magazine, containing articles about people getting outside and doing some amazing things. Articles such as “Surviving the Arctic” and “wisdom from explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes.” It only came out once every two months, but it was something to look forward to and it was one of the few magazines that I would read from cover to cover. The pictures in it were amazing and the real life tales of daring do from largely normal people really made me want to get out there and have some fun. In many ways it helped to inspire the Bike Run Swim tag line of “Getting fit, having fun, and enjoying the outdoors.” Unfortunately things are no longer looking so rosy as one of the most promising outdoor adventure magazines on the market has gone mainstream.

A few issues ago Outdoor Fitness announced that it had been so successful that it was going to come out monthly. Unfortunately what they didn’t say is that they would be padding it out with dross along the lines of “burn fat faster,” “improve your stamina,” “avoid running injuries” etc. To be honest if I want those kind of articles then I would buy a running magazine. It’s also why I don’t subscribe to any running magazines…. [Read more…]

Compressport – Man in compression gear – Family horrified!

Compressport UK

While at the Bath Multisport Weekend yesterday I bumped into Tim Williams, the director of Compressport UK. We chatted for the best part of an hour and I ended up coming away with a pair of R2s and a pair of FourQuads. These can be used during and after events to protect specific muscle groups and aid recovery through enhancing blood flow through tired muscles. I nipped into the changing rooms and came out wearing them under my jeans. It was a slightly odd sensation as only my calves and quads were covered, so only parts of my legs could feel my jeans. I soon got used to it though and I kept them on for the three hour drive home. I didn’t feel like sleeping in them, so I took them off and put them back in this morning. When my family came down for breakfast it was some time before they stopped laughing, in fact my 6 year old son kept giving me a look that was a cross between horror, uncertainty and general disaproval. He then insisted on following me around for twenty minutes to make sure that I didn’t put any other daft clothes on.

I’m going to try the R2s during my first offroad marathon in a couple of weeks, as well as using them for recovery in the meantime. Once I’ve had a chance to assess them fully I’ll post a proper review.