2011 was all about Ironman Wales, the training was all focused on this race, and I really went for an all my eggs in one basket approach by not racing at all apart from this.
By the essence of what I was up against that day, the race was a (partial) success. With some issues that I'll need to go back and address.
But, the danger for 2012 was an onslaught of post Ironman blues. Which is one of the reasons I has 2012 planned out as early as possible
The 2012 race season was to be based around my A race of Cotswold 113, coupled in with the Celtic Tri championship races where I could squeeze them in
The first race I'd set myself a target for was one of the Swansea Bay 5K races, which is a series of races operated every summer along the Swansea seafront. The race profile is pan flat, so perfect for getting good times.
The target I'd set for myself was to get sub 20 minutes, a tall ask seeing as my PB prior to this was 21:51, and that was a few years ago.
My tactic for the race was
- Run the first mile really hard
- Give everything I've got for the last mile
- And in between... run hard
I knew at the turn around point, that it was gonna be tough to crack the 20 minute barrier. And I really could feel myself fading as I reached the end of the run. My finish time was 21:02, so I didn't break the 20 minute barrier; but I did break my PB which had stood for 5 years
My next target was another running race, and it is to break my age for 10km distance. So at the age of 44, I am looking to run it is less than 44 minutes. My previous PB was 44:51, which also had stood for 5 years (2007 was obviously my glory year for running)
The race in question was the the Llanelli 10K, a mainly flat route with a couple of undulations. My strategy was to try and keep a steady pace of just under 4:30 kilometres. Whilst I was clearly pushing myself during this race, I was running within my abilities.
My finish time was 43:51!
So I'd hit my age target and got a new PB to boot
Next up was my A race for the year; Cotswold113. The time in question 5 hours and 30 minutes - the time achieved 5 hours and 34 minutes.
Close but no cigar, I will be back in 2013 to correct this failing.
Next up was Tuska Sprint Tri, I'd raced this previously and finished in a time of 1:32, so I set myself the tough target of 1:25.
A perfect day for racing, the wind was negligible and the forecasted rain was holding off. I smashed this race, and feel that it was the best I've ever raced, finishing in a time of 1:21. I honestly don't think anything could have gone better on the day.
A last, but not least - The Neath Valley Triathlon. A short sprint race, which meant I'd be going hard for a good hour or so. The target I set was 65 minutes.
I was just outside this, with a time of 66 minutes (I blame the wind and the rain).
So all in all, not a bad season, not a bad season at all. To top it off I appear to be the runner up in category 2 section of the club championships (yes I am the runner's up runner's up)
I'm in a happy place in regards to the individual disciplines:
- My swimming seems to have improved, no doubt all due to my fantastic new Snugg wetsuit
- I'm making grounds with my cycling. But there is still room for improvement here, hopefully #turbovember will help build a base
- I've set PBs at both 5K and 10K this year, so my running is in a good place
- I've finally got my head around manageing my time in transition
- Race day is all about #GoHardOrGoHome
2012 has been a reasonably successful year, so in summary, I think I'll award myself a