What’s next is the question I’ve been asked most since Mallorca. I’m still aiming for Kona ’17 and I have until August next year to qualify so the next question is where will we go to try again (Yes I do still think I can get back into good enough shape to qualify it’s just going to take a little longer than we had anticipated)

There’s a couple of options we’ve been looking at. The first is to go again this year and that would mean picking a North American or South American race probably in November. This would be tough as I won’t really get a whole lot fitter in that short a timescale and would mean having to have a perfect day and get lucky. Quite a big ask.

The next option would be Southern Hemisphere and head to Oz or New Zealand very late this year or early 2017 neither of us fancy that much travel for a race especially one we would be hoping to be in good shape for.

The third option is to go for an early European race like Lanza, France or Austria.

The last one is to head back to Ironman UK where I’ve qualified twice before and I have the advantage of a course and climate that really suits me.

Coming off the buzz of a really enjoyable race in Mallorca I’ve a voice in my head screaming at me to “go again right now!” “And while you’re at it don’t tell anyone so there’s no chance of falling flat on your face if it doesn’t come off”

The sensible voice is arguing for the safe option “go to IMUK, you know how to race there”

The part of me that wants to do some bucket list races is arguing for Lanza but then there’s one more voice. The one that wants a fast number. A really fast number. The fastest one I’m capable of and that would probably mean going to Austria. I don’t feel like I’ve ever had a proper fast race when I’m in good shape and I would love a result starting with a really low 9 or better.

At this stage I think we’ve more or less decided what we’re doing but I’ll hold off saying what it is until we are certain.

So on that note here’s my easy return to training week.

Monday 3 2:35 (4)


Run :50 7k very easy

Bike 1:00 31k turbo heat on. Aerobic intervals.

Run :30 5k easy
The hip flexors and core need a little bit of work but overall I’m very happy how the body held up after all the strength and conditioning with John Belton right through the early part of the year. We will go back to John again shortly. I think winter and the off season is a good time to do some work in the gym.

The two runs were both very jogs with Ais and the dog.

Tuesday 4 2:20 (2)

Swim 1:20 3900m

4×400 faster than IMRP off 15.

2nd set 3×400 off 15 NAC 50m
Turbo pm 1:00 29k including Z2 heart rate 45 mins

Swim splits 7:34, 7:24, 7:26, 7:28, 7:24, 7:32, 7:39
Happy with the swim splits but looking at the drift in times towards the end would indicate that strength endurance is one of my main limiters in the water and that’s just down to not swimming enough this year.

Wednesday 5 2:10 (3)

Run :30 5k easy

Bike 1:00 turbo 28.5k Z2 136-141 45 mins. Found the heat really hard today.

Swim :40 2100m
Splits 7:19, 6:49, 6:41, 6:43, 6:58

Late evening swim after work. I intended going easy but the pool was packed and I ended up going a bit faster than I had planned just to avoid traffic in the lane. As it happened I felt pretty good in the water and had a really good session. Looking at the splits it’s amazing the difference between the 25m local pool and the 50m at the national aquatic centre. This evenings effort was a little higher than yesterday’s but only marginally and I was :30+ seconds faster per 400.

Thursday 6 1:50 (2)

Swim :50 2600m

Run 1:00 12.5k

Main set of the swim was 2×1000 Splits were 18:00, 17:58 which looks like really good pacing but I think I went out harder in the second one and faded a bit. I just happened to finish within 2 seconds of the first making it look like I knew what I was doing. Still averaging 1:48/100 for both felt pretty easy and is getting closer to 1 hour for an Ironman swim if I factor in the benefit of a wetsuit at 8-10 seconds per 100.

The run wasn’t the one Ais had me down to do but I was tired and thought I’d go easy on myself with what felt like an easier session. She noticed too and politely asked why I had changed it. You can’t slip anything past the coach….

Related: Coaching

Friday 7 :45 (1)

Bike :45 20k easy turbo with the heat on. Must get a thermometer for the turbo room, would be interesting to see what the temperature actually is.

Saturday 8 


Sunday 9 1:10 (1)

Run 1:10 12k

Easy run no efforts.

Total 11:00 (13)

Swim 2:50 8600m (3)

Bike 3:45 108.5k (4)

Run 4:00 41.5k (5)

S&C :15 (1)

Accumulated hours sessions 12:30 (15)

Swim 2:50 8600m (3)

Bike 3:45 108.5k (4)

Run 5:30 56.5k (7)

S&C :15 (1)

So that’s a wrap on a fairly easy return to training and despite feeling tired at the weekend I think the body’s recovering pretty well after Mallorca. Very happy with the swimming in particular, all three sessions this week felt really good. All runs have been pretty short and with the exception of Friday they were all easy.

Those of you who have been following the blog might notice that I mentioned heart rate zones on the turbo this week for probably the first time and those of you who know me know I do almost all of my training by feel or in perceived effort. I’ve put the heart rate monitor on this week just to be sure that the body is recovered before we reintroduce any harder or longer sessions. I’ll stick with it for a couple of weeks before reverting back to going on feel.


If you want to check out the training diary in the lead up to Mallorca you can do that here

I’ve written a mini book on how the most successful Irish athletes have gotten so fast. You can learn from them by downloading it free here

If you are interested in contacting us about coaching you can do that here