Reset: The October Stoke…

20 10 2012

I would opine I didn’t have a very good season. I had a couple of good results in sprints along the way, but UK70.3 kicked my ass, and the attempt at riding London to Paris <24 hours took over 25 hours. I could blame the weather, in different ways, for both of these but also my heart and my head have not really been in it this season. Read the rest of this entry »


Riding London to Paris, in 24 hours…

27 04 2012

~24 hours on a bicycle. 2:16 on a train. Why am I riding?

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My first IronMan, by Iain MacNaughtan aged 28 ½

9 02 2012

I wrote this quite a while ago, but sort of forgot about it. Here it is, 3,470 words about my first IronMan, at IM UK in Bolton; it’ll probably take you as long to read it as it took me to do it, but there’s an exciting twist at the end so it’s worth reading just for that…

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Dear Brain…

7 12 2011

Dear Brain,

Please stop being weird.



Or, in more detail…

So after a couple of weeks of feeling pretty miserable about everything I concluded it was time to buck up my ideas. Do something proactive about next year and have some goals; after a conversation with my Mother (hello Mum!) and some consideration I decided to enter IronMan UK 70.3, a half-iron distance race at a place called Wimbleball. I’ve done it three times taking 6:55 (’08), 6:22 (’09) and 5:48 (’10). Last year I took the year off, and I missed the event.

After entering the change in motivation was almost instant! I finally had a goal again, and I got on the training like a tramp on chips. 

Honestly, this is fun - Wimbleball 2010

And this was followed by another slump. I’m not sure what brought this one on, conversation with my coach was that it was just “another one of those weeks” I was very mildly ill, not even worthy of the term Man Flu, but skipped sessions as a result. I have the remainder of this week and next week with some pretty light training, enough to keep me sane and to keep my body moving, then I’ve got two weeks away where I’ll be active every day with skiing and the like, but won’t be training specifically. I’m looking forward to this break, the only focus during this time will be to keep up with the exercises the physio has given me, and see what, if anything, else I fancy doing. 

I’m finally feeling optimistic about next year again, I’m starting to think that training isn’t such a bad thing, I just need to get my body fixed up and go from there. 

Oh yeah, the weird brain thing…

Apart from this up and down changes in feelings about the task ahead, there’s also the dreams! I had an incredibly vivid dream the other morning that I was in the Transition area for IronMan UK, but suddenly I noticed it was all a bit quiet around me. Everyone was already swimming. I got to the water, with my wetsuit on, and I was an hour late for the swim; the commentator looked at me and said “Well, give it a go, jump on in, but I’m not sure I like your chances” and as my face went under the water I woke up. Cut off time’s 2 hours 20 minutes and I swam 1:07 there, so I’d like to think I would have made it. But where did this come from?!? There was a similar story (though only about 10 minutes late) on The Age Grouper Podcast recently, that might be it.

So come on brain; stick with the optimistic outlook on the training, stop having weird dreams, and maybe we can improve on 2010’s 33rd in Age Group next year…

 (Oh, and don’t let me catch you looking at the Ultra trail du Mont Blanc website again, you silly brain!)

Sur les Traces des Ducs de Savoie

30 09 2011

In the footsteps of the Dukes of the Savoie

Warning: this is 6,955words long. That’s LONG

Warning 2: Contains profanities, from early on, but not huge in number.

Col du Joly, >80km run, vert. climbed ~5,530m, alt. 1,989m, running time ~19.5 hrs

26th August 0424, text from Dad:   “Daylight soon ”
26th August 0430, reply:     “Can’t come soon enough, this is fucking grim…”

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The IronMan Cometh…

28 07 2011

I’ve not written on here for a while; I’ve been trying not to think too much about the IronMan, I’ve been trying not to be whelmed by it. I’ve succeeded some times, I’ve failed at others; I’ve had weird dreams where I’ve missed swim starts and others I’ve woken up falling off my bike.

It’s been a long journey, but the time is coming; soon I will take part in my first IronMan.

In early 2007 Triathlon had been in the back of my mind for a little while, when a girl in a queue for a nightclub seemed impressed that I “did” triathlon it wasn’t long before I entered my first sprint and was in awe of even the idea of an IronMan. Each part of it seems like a pretty big undertaking:

  • 2.4 mile swim (equal to 152 lengths of a pool, but in a lake, with about 1,800 other people)
  • 112 mile bike ride
  • 26.2 mile run

No breaks, just change of footwear/headwear and from one to the next.

 The world record stands at 7:41. The cut off time is 17 hours. I intend to be somewhere between them.

My Argon-18 E-114 with some borrowed wheels, which I sadly won't be using because they don't fit 😦

 The plan is to paddle, pedal and plod. Enjoy the good bits, and remember in the bad bits that “this too will pass”.

 How do I feel?

I’ve missed most of the last week and a half’s training, I’ve had a cold, Man-Flu some would call it, but feeling really light headed and nauseous in any significant efforts – climbing the stairs has been about my limit. So I would summarise how I feel with:

  • Fat
  • Tired
  • Snotty
  • Underprepared

But I’ve read several times that it’s better to turn up for a race under trained than over-trained, and I certainly don’t feel over-trained!

How should the day pan out?

The perfect day would be a 1:10 swim, a 6:59 bike and a 3:49 run, just sneaking under the 12 hour mark. First time out I think I’d be pretty pleased with just completing it… though I know I expect more from myself than just completing it.

You spin me right round baby, right round…

11 07 2011

Or, “How I placed 2nd in my last race…”


“In public relations spin is a form of propaganda, achieved through providing an interpretation of an event or campaign to persuade public opinion in favour or against a certain organisation or public figure”

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