We are regularly asked in both the bike shop and through our coaching should I train using power? In my opinion the answer for most people is no (it’s important to remember that I’m also selling power meters, so there’s a potentially large sale at the end of a yes answer) despite this the answer more often than not is still no.
But why am I reading everywhere that training by power is the most effective and efficient method of training?
I’m not for one minute saying it isn’t efficient and effective. What I’m saying is that it’s not necessarily the right tool for most athletes.
So how do I know if I’m better off with or without a power meter?
I feel like I’m straining against an invisible leash. My legs saying ‘to hell with it let’s go’, my head saying ‘don’t be a clown’. I pass the three-kilometer marker. My legs have settled after the cycle and every part of me is grateful to be upright and not crouched down over my tri-bars. I shake my arms, working out the stiffness from the bike and my Garmin beeps to tell me I’ve done another kilometer. That was quick, I think. My pace is now bang on target but it still feels way too easy. I tell myself to have patience but the fear of being caught is building inside me again. I look over my shoulder, but there’s still no one close to me. Read More
One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned for Ironman is that your training should teach you how to race, not just make you fitter. To this end a lot of our training sessions are designed to not just improve fitness but also to teach you an aspect of Ironman racing. Be it pacing, nutrition, how to deal with fatigue, self control or some other part of racing.
The problem with either “racing” or just completing Ironman is that most of us only get to do it once a year and some don’t even get to do it that often. So how do you learn how to race a distance that is probably twice as long as you go in training and that maybe you only get to do a couple of times in your life?
In our own training and in our coaching we focus on the main areas that people struggle with in racing and try to design sessions to mimic what you will encounter on race day. Of course there are parts of Ironman that you will only experience on race day and will find impossible to replicate in training without frying yourself.
So what are the most important lessons to learn for Ironman racing?
We had another two Irish athletes take not only Kona slots but also an Ironman trophy and a spot on the podium.
Click on through to see who are the latest members of the Irish 2018 Kona contingent. Read More
This race was the culmination of almost two years of work. My aim was to qualify for the Ironman world championship in Kona. I’ve qualified and raced there twice before, in 2012 and ‘13 but then I had back surgery in 2014 which took me out of the sport for over a year. I raced a couple of Ironman races in 2015 but wasn’t really fit enough to enjoy them and promised myself that if I did another I would be fit enough to race it. Read More
There were no sharks, I didn’t drown and I was more or less on time getting out of the water. So in all of those regards the swim was uneventful, thankfully nothing really went wrong. Oh, except that I’m still slow. I exited the water not knowing that I was in 275th overall and in 45th place in the age group. This did not bode well considering I needed to be top four in my AG and probably top forty overall for the Kona slot I was chasing. Read More
I’ve been asked to post any old race reports I have and I’ve put a couple of them up over the last few months. Here’s my first Kona experience in 2012.
It’s hard to know where to start with this one. I’ve been waiting to get to this start line for 15 years or more and its all exceeded any expectations I’ve ever had.
We had two local athletes qualify for Kona in the last month. We may do well to try and “adopt” them under the “granny rule” that is common in international football especially as they are both fast. You can never have too many fast athletes representing at Kona. One of them took a slot at Ironman Wales, the other at Ironman Italy. Click on through for details Read More
You eventually reach a point, or at least I do, when you’ve had enough of the training and you feel ready to race. Maybe ready isn’t quite the right word, maybe I just feel like I’m at the limits of what I can do to get ready for this one.
I sometimes think I almost love the training and lifestyle more than the race itself but at the end of the day the race dangling out there in the distance is what motivates and drives me to keep on pushing when I might back off if I didn’t have the pressure of an event hanging out there. Read More
In 2017 we had a record amount of athletes race the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii. Before the start of November and only two months into the current qualification period we already have 3 athletes qualified for the October 2018 race.
Click on through to see who has ticked the Kona box so far…