Archives for April 2013

Essential Triathlon Training Tips: Swim Exit |

Essential Triathlon Training Tips: Swim Exit |

This week, we take a look back at some essential triathlon training tips from the past. In this video, Olympian and 2011 ITU World Champion Helen Jenkins helps you out with some tips on swim exit and transition.

Not quite sure when to switch from swimming to high kneeing it out of the water? Do you know when you should mentally change from one discipline to the next?

Not to worry. Jenkins fills you in on her swim strategy that has helped to two Olympic berths and 11 World Triathlon medals.

via Essential Triathlon Training Tips: Swim Exit |

7 running risks explored – Running Training Articles – Plans and Tips – The Running Bug Community

7 running risks explored - Running Training Articles - Plans and Tips - The Running Bug Community

Can running be bad for your health, your joints, give you bad eating habits and turn you into a selfish, running obsessed addict?

We look behind the headlines, point out the warning signs and remind you why we think running is really rather good for you!

via 7 running risks explored – Running Training Articles – Plans and Tips – The Running Bug Community.

Wiggle Price Drop Sale

Wiggle Price DropWe have a great special offer for you today: The Wiggle Price Drop Sale!

Wiggle are currently doing a “price drop” sale. In this case it means that they are reducing the price on selected items by 1% every day until they are sold out. Click here or on the banner below to be taken straight to the sale page. I’ve grabbed a few bargains myself, so take a look and wait as long as you dare!

Wiggle Price Drop Banner



Plymouth Half Marathon 2013 – Review

Plymouth Half Marathon MedalToday Captain America and Danger Mouse crossed the finish line of the Plymouth Half Marathon Gang Nam style while the crowd roared in approval. Their finish time was just under 1 hour and 48 minutes. Moments later DM’s mask came off as he gasped for air like a stranded fish and tried desperately to think about something other than throwing up. A girl, obviously being punished for something, was offering small cardboard bowls to particularly green looking runners. I averted my gaze and gasped some more.

It all started a few weeks ago when I decided that I didn’t want to run too hard at the Plymouth Half, so I opted to do it in fancy dress and lark about a bit instead. I posted my intentions on the forum and Facebook page of my triathlon club and found another willing volunteer. Chris, or Squelcher as he’s known volunteered to join in. Chris is nursing an injury and opted to tag along dressed as Captain America, much to the amusement of the spectators. We met by the war memorial on Plymouth Hoe and made our way across to Smeaton’s Tower to meet with some photographers. We duly posed and then wandered over to join the toilet queue, bumping into various other members of Plymouth Tri Club on the way. Quite a few of those that weren’t running were either helping the race organisers, or spreading the word about the Plymouth Triathlon in July. At the time of writing it is nearly full, so if you fancy a well organised and fun triathlon then do give it a go. It was my first triathlon in several years in 2012. I had a great time and was surprised at the variety of people taking part.

The portaloo visit was quite interesting as I wrestled my way out of my costume in the confined space. I was glad that I went though as it averted a time consuming pee stop during the race. We then wandered back to the start line and decided to join at the sub 2 hour mark. That should be a fairly easy pace for us to maintain and shouldn’t stress either of us out too much. I lowered my Danger Mouse headgear and waited for the off! We heard the start and then joined the mob shuffling forward. As we made our way over the start line the machines beeped and we started our watches. As we started to jog my DM head bounced and waved. I couldn’t see a thing. Maybe a test run would have been a good idea. I could have shaved my head and used sticky-back Velcro to hold it down. Anyway, I kept it on, with one hand holding it in place until I started to suffocate. I then lifted it up and perched it on top of my head. The accumulated condensation from the heavy breathing trickled down my temples….

Captain America and Danger Mouse

Thanks to Rich Jordan for the photo

We ran along the front of Plymouth Hoe, and I briefly had time to admire the view. We were chatting easily and made our way through the other runners at just under eight minutes per mile pace. We both felt ok, so we carried on without slowing. The runners weaved their way over the cobbles along the Barbican and a guy in front of us went down. He gathered himself and was up and running again a moment later. Hopefully ok. Before we knew it we were climbing up Elburton Road on our way to the Saltram Estate. I think we stopped at just about every feed station and had a mouthful of water. We drank some energy drink at one, and also grabbed some Jelly Babies from a spectator as we ran through the Saltram Estate. I had already consumed my gel and was beginning to feel a bit tired. I hadn’t rested for the race and had done some hard training yesterday which was catching up with me. We chatted some more as we ran past the fields and woodland, and were soon heading back into Plymouth. The time was simply flying by.

Every time we went past a crowd of people, and there were many, we heard cries of “Go Captain America” and “Go Danger Mouse.” As we ran past the guy pacing the 2 hour runners he looked around and high-fived us both. Squelcher seemed to know everyone, and was continuously calling people out by name. I mentioned that he seemed to know a lot of people and he professed to being a modern-day Victor Meldrew, despite being only 25. A women that we were running past called out that he looked good considering…..

We ran on. Our legs were both getting a bit sore, but it would seem churlish to slow down now. We cracked on and discussed our finishing strategy. Someone from the Tri Club had challenged us to do walking lunges for the last 400m, but we couldn’t face it. Instead we decided to finish Gang Nam style. I lowered my DM head as we returned through the Barbican. The crowds were already screaming and yelling, but at the sight of us they got even louder. I started to suffocate again, up went the DM head. I gasped and slowed down. Squelcher slowed too so that we could synchronise the finish. We climbed the last hill as we turned back onto the Hoe. I lowered the DM head and we settled in to a steady jog, agreeing that we would start at the flags. The cloud clapped and shouted. Ready…Steady….NOW! Legs apart, skipping bow-legged, one hand out in front holding the rains and the other hand up in the air as it twirled the imaginary lasso. The crowed ROARED. What a way to finish a race.

gangnam style

Finishing Gang Nam Style – Thanks Kate Perkins for the pic.

The event seemed well organised, and from our perspective went very smoothly. The spectator support was truly stunning. I would like to thank every single one of you that came along to clap and cheer. Thanks also to the people offering jelly babies to the runners. I usually don’t grab them, but today I needed that extra bit of energy, and it was most welcome. The medals at the finish were really nice as they actually have the year engraved on them, as well as Smeaton’s lighthouse, a truly iconic Plymouth landmark. The goody bag wasn’t too acceptable from my perspective. It had plenty of awesome goodies in it, but every single item of food contained dairy products, so I couldn’t eat any of it. This isn’t a lifestyle choice, unfortunately my body doesn’t tolerate dairy at all well, so something dairy free in there would have been great.

If you have any pictures of DM, or Captain America, or even better a video of the finish then please do send them in. It would be great to see them. I’m sure that in reality our fancy Gang Nam style finish probably looked more like two guys dressed in daft outfits suffering from some kind of spasm…..Regardless, it would be great to see 🙂 If you wonder why I was running in a Cancer Research UK vest then you can find out the whole story here, but in short my Wife is currently battling Leukaemia.

A quick mention for Steve Harvey, he was the bloke running for charity while carrying a fridge on his back. If you google Steve then you wont find that much, however last year he became a deca ironman world champion. That’s ten Ironman distance triathlons in ten consecutive days, and guess when he did his fastest one….That’s right, the very last day, in just over 12 hours. Just a few days ago he also ran over 180 miles in 48 hours on a treadmill…..He is an amazing athlete and a member of our very own Plymouth Triathlon Club.

Finally thanks to every volunteer and a big well done to every single finisher of the race. Extra applause to everyone that was doing it for charity or honouring a loved one. There were many of you out there and it was fabulous to see. I for one plan to be back next year, but it is going to be difficult to find an even more impressive costume.

So much for taking it easy. As soon as I got home I had a bath and fell asleep.

Bike Run Swim Challenge – Update

SwimmingI have shifted the swim to the day before for more favourable tidal conditions, after a friend at the Devon Wild Swimmers gave me a few pointers about the low tide conditions in the Erme Estuary. This means that the challenge will now take place over three days, starting from Bigbury Beach at 10.30am on the 19th July. Go to the full challenge page for more info.