Jeremy Hopwood

Jeremy Hopwood

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

IM CDA 09 Crash Video - I hope there is an explanation

SO have watched this 6 times and still can't believe it. Thew way I read this situation is as such;
  • Guy Overtakes (Could be he is getting overtaken on the inside (illegal) but this does not seem to be the case)
  • Guy Blocks by slowing down immediately to grab something from his jersey pocket.
  • Guys veers to the inside and body checks other ride
Up to this point it could all be an error and the like, however.

If you just dropped somebody on the asphalt would you not at least stop to check they are ok? I can only awesome in the heat of competition the person though somebody had just ridden into the back of them and it was completely their fault.

I would still hope I would stop in this circumstance at least to check if that rider was ok. Still in shock from having viewed this 10 times.

Birthday Plans for 2010 - Solidiifed

Trying to decide a race schedule 12 months out when your A race is still 2 months away is tough. How I do at IMC will not only decide the following six weeks it will also give feedback to if my race schedule for 2009 worked.

However I have decided I may do a slightly different schedule in 2010 and when I saw the date of Ironman Coure'd'Alene some decisions were made. The race date is June 27th which happens to be my 30th birthday so I will be celebrating this milestone with a day of racing :)

Like any birhtday there is a chance I could throw up, pass out and generally feel like garbage the next day but that is the risk I take. Growing up I never would have guessed I would spend a birthday in Idaho but it will now happen.

Starting to think of my lead in schedule and would definetely like to do Wildflower so may road trip to this one and hopefully suck a couple other people into a post olympics trip. Any race where everybody else is camping and sleeping in cars puts me at a competitive advantage. Lot of hard work to do in 2009 but are also exicted about some of the potential for 2010.

This sport rocks and there is definetely a lot of different options to keep the racing fresh

Monday, June 22, 2009

Victoria International Half Ironman - June 21st 2009

Overall Time - 4:30:26

Swim (1.9km) - 36:56, T1 1:51, Bike (87km) 2:29:02, T2 0:57, Run (20km) 1:21:42

The lead in

Victoria Half Iron was my A half for the season and all was going well with the taper until I strained my hamstring 5 days before race day during a set of strides. After treatment from the awesome Dr Carla Cupido and 4 days of self massage and icing (Lots of icing) I was about 90% fit and a 2.5km “fitness test” on Saturday gave me confidence I could run without further damage.

After driving to the island on Saturday I did a quick shakedown ride on the bike and the aforementioned “fitness test”. Race eve was spent hanging out with Paul Harrison and Jorge and enjoying a home cooked dinner of pizza, salad, pasta with bacon and tomato’s.

Focusing on an injury and if you are or are not going to race (Or in this case do the run portion) takes more energy than you anticipate and waking up on Sunday I was not as excited as I would have liked. My pre race eating went ok although was not super hungry managed to get down a fair chunk of calories and then proceeded to set up transition. Once again was a little skittish in transition although managed to set up everything fine did a couple last minute things then it was “go Time”

Swim - 36:56 (Avg 1:57 per 100m)
Overall 272/459 , Male 195/284, M25-29 15/20

I had a pretty good central position in the swim although in retrospect the reason most people were lining up to the far left was that you could wade out a lot further in the water. Got a good start in and was generally happy with the first 800m as held a line well and managed to keep feet. Had a couple good hydration moments and one elbow to the head but was pretty civil. After rounding the first buoy I started to drift a little left and lost the pack to my right a little then rounded for home.

My tendency is to drift left in open water and here is were I think I lost some time. Next time around I need to make a point of swimming right on the buoys and use other swimmers as my drift control. About halfway back I managed to get my direction back and had a good swim to the last buoy.

Rounding the last buoy was still struggling to keep a line and did my normal thing of kicking harder and swimming till my hands touch the bottom then getting up to run.

T1 - 1:51
Overall 71/459 , Male 64/284, M25-29 9/20

T1 overall was pretty sloppy. I did not really run hard enough from the swim exit to my bike and are still having problems finding my wetsuit cord. I also had not fully unstrapped my bike shoes so had to do this before putting them on and got caught in some traffic towards the exit. Although it didn't feel slow each of these things cost me some time. I also did not have the best transition rack and not sure what the system was for this as did not seem to be organized by age group which is a little annoying. However most of the lost time was down to errors on my part.

Bike - 2:29:02 (Avg 35km/h)
Overall 22/459 , Male 22/284, M25-29 3/20

So after a good mount out of T1 I was out and going paying my respects to the point were I flatted 500m out of Transition last year and started giving it. The bike is essentially an effort to keep pace with those that I can not see further down the road who have a strong swim with the hope I can maintain any gap til the run. The first section went well and I was attacking the descents and the climbs as per my plan. There were a couple wet sections to be cognizant off but nothing untoward.

So was working hard and and passing a lot of people when I saw something fly of my bike :). Not sure what it is with the west coast series but always seem to have something happen. this time it was my elbow pad fitting and all that had just sheared off.

Once I worked out what the hell had happened there was not point in turning back for it as would have just been a part for my jersey pocket so kept riding while trying to think of a solution. I still managed to stay aero but resting your forearm on a broken piece of alloy is not comfortable to say the least so I started to think like MacGyver. My theory was a could use my saddle bag as attachment around my forearm however the Velcro strap was not long enough as I tried to do this while keeping some semblance of pace.

With this solution out of the bag my only other though was to wrap this bag on the aerobar. After pulling over to stop and try this for 5 seconds no joy so back pedalling and just had to deal with the pain and awkward position. Was still making ground on people although chose to climb out of aero and take any technical sections on horns as was not totally stable in the aero position with only two real contact points. Comparing the first 25km where I had the pad to the next time around that section without the elbow pad I figure I lost about 1km/h on the bike for the remaining 60km which equates to about 4 minutes or so.

First lap averaged approximately 35.3km/h and continued to push around the course. Coming through about 55km I was passed by James Fry (Later turns out a Marshall had directed him off course) and tried to stay with him but lost him once we hit the flats at about 70km. In reflection I maybe should have tried to hold the gap as came through the second lap in about 34.8km/h and about 2 minutes down on James over the last 17km.

Are happy with the bike and how I dealt with a non textbook mechanical although the core is definitely feeling the impact today after trying to hold my position for 60km. This wasn't something I could have prevented so was happy with my ride and managed to maintain my output at 80% of max HR for the bike.

T2 - 0:57
Overall 12/459 , Male 12/284, M25-29 1/20

Even with my less than stellar bike position that cost me about 5 to 10 seconds had a pretty stellar T2. Had a pretty good dismount (Still room for improvement) and was very methodical out of transition. A few small things to tinker with but this is pretty competitive.

Run - 1:21:42 (Avg 4:06 min/km)
Overall 11/459 , Male 11/284, M25-29 2/20

Carrying a fresh injury into the race as mentioned my run strategy was to run within myself, take care on the downhills and listen to my body. If my hamstring was to tighten I was going to make the decision to pull out and save my body for another day.

0 to 5km (20:57 - 4:11 min/km)

I started out with this though and tried to shorten my stride and keep my cadence up. The run course is actually quite twisty and turny and a couple times I mis stepped I could feel my hamstring although it was not tighting up. This gave me cause to make sure I ran with a safety first mindset and be careful especially on downhills. The first 5km felt pretty good and I went through this point in

5 to 10km (20:38 - 4:08 min/km)

Same tactic here as before just trying to work cadence without injuring myself. All I can say here is that those who I talked to during the week reminding to remember that the race season is still young helped me out from doing anything stupid and trying to push hard here.

10 to 15km (21:06 - 4:13 min/km)

Don't remember much here but had to deal with a little traffic on the course on the second loop. This is normally were I really start to increase my work rate but just focused on short fast strides.

15km to 20km (19:43 - 3:57 min/km)

Kept running"controlled" until about 3km to go then upped the pace for the last 2km. Felt really fresh at this point and had a good finish chasing down a few people in the last km with a 3:42 min/km and passed Adam Kelly at the entrance to chute.

All in all was very happy with my run. I know I left a few minutes on the run course but it was a prudent thing to do and running with a short stride was good practice for Ironman Canada when utilizing different running strategies can make a huge difference. From a heart rate perspective I averaged 84% of max HR where I know I can push myself to around 90% in a normal scenario as I did in the last 5km.

Post Race Thoughts

Happy with my overall effort and was a well executed race but are positive I will go faster in Vancouver given an injury free lead up. As always room for improvement on the swim and will be focusing on this and the bike in the coming weeks with the hope to gain some time in these disciplines. The run was perfectly executed to my pre race plan and I have to be happy with that. I will need to save a super fast run split till Vancouver.

Nutrition Report

Swim - Plenty of Fresh H20 :)
Bike - 5 GU Roctane, 1 700ml Gatorade, 1 600ml Water
Run - 1 GU, 1 Gatorade, Plenty of Water and two cokes (All in the "mini" cups)

Compared to the Pro's

My new race report feature since Oliver is to compare myself to the winner in this case the ultra fast Jasper Blake.

3:54:59 (Jasper) vs 4:30:26 (Jeremy)
15% slower

Swim 23:48 (Jasper) vs 36:56 (Jeremy) 55% slower

0:44 (Jasper) vs 1:51 (Jeremy) 152% slower

Bike 2:18:34 (Jasper) vs 2:29:02 (Jeremy) 8% slower

0:39 (Jasper) vs 0:57 (Jeremy) 46% slower

Run 1:10:57 (Jasper) vs 1:21:42 (Jeremy) 15% slower

Looking Forward

Next on the agenda is the 4km Canada Day swim at Sasamatt barring a full hamstring recovery before the Scotiabank Half Marathon. From a triathlon perspective the Vancouver Half Ironman is next on my agenda and I plan to go super hard at this one. Although not doing a taper prior I will have an easy week leading in With the course being my playground as a kits resident I plan on attacking this and running down as many people as I can.

From a training perspective technique will be swim focus (as always) with Intensity on the bike and continuing my normal run pattern after an easy run week. Really want to teach myself how to "hurt" on the bike so I can pick up a few more minutes in this discipline.

Quick Thanks
(Not just shameless plugs but close)

To Leslie - Your likely to busy to read this with Baby Beluga's and all but thanks for putting up with early alarms, bikes in and around the house etc etc!!!

To Forerunners and all their team and Newton for their ongoing support. The Newton Gravity was super stable around the trails and Forerunners was the perfect place to pick up some last minute GU's.

Thanks as always to Jerry from Forerunners with his help on my run program.

Dr Carla Cupido - You Rock that's all I can say. Would not have been able to run without your treatment and advice. Got injuries needing treatment or want to avoid injuries this is the person to visit!!

Jeremy at Speed Theory for getting me a replacement elbow pad today. Glad nobody can explain why the coupling would just shear. Will ensure I make more prayers to the Tri Gods going forward :)

Calvin for the coffee on Friday. Was good to get confirmation of my run plan in the light of carrying an injury. good to see your leg is on the mend in the lead up to IMC

To all those who read this report and follow me on Twitter. the fact that you read this far means you should get back to work :)

Was this a PR and interesting Facts?

Victoria was my quickest ever Half Iron but compared to Oliver the distances are shorter. Based on average speeds and the like I would have to Say Oliver remains my best race in my triathlon career with Victoria coming second. SO I am not calling this a PR just my fastest Half Iron.

This was my 7th half ironman race and the to this point (touch wood/trees/forests) I have never been overtaken on the run. I plan on keeping this stat even as I exit the bike closer to the front of the field.

Last year my Victoria Half Ironman time was 5:45:18 so have to be happy with the year on year improvement. (Approx 1hr 15 minutes)

Shout Outs

Well this has been an indulgently long post so some shout outs before I post;

Rachel Kiers - 5th WPRO at Ironman CDA - Sweet - way to rock it!!!!
Doug and D0n - Sweet races at IM CDA also. From all reports swim got pretty rough on the second loop so way to tough it out.
Paul and Tony - The Kiwis went 1-2 in the M30-34 Category in Victoria. Paul - one day I will catch you on the run then it will be a death match I sense!!!!
Vincent - 2nd in M20-24 category
Nick - Won the M25-29 at Victoria. Awesome run split. Will try and remember this when I have to push harder in Vancouver :). Was good to briefly chat post race
Gerry - Awesome Race and PR at Vancouver especially for being sick
Jared - Hope the knee recovers but to jog/walk to a pr is pretty impressive
Erin - Congrats on your first Half Iron
Facundo - Congrats on your win at Iron Mountain
Jorge - Impressive debut in the Victoria Sprint.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Victroria Half Iron Race Preview - Race Week isn't meant to be easy!!!

Well its nearly time for Victoria Half Iron and my Ironman Canada rehearsal. Going into this one feeling really good but with a bit of trepidation having "strained" my hamstring on Tuesday night and being in the ice ice baby mode at the moment.

I went out for a quick jog before and after my bike ride and although not at 100% I was not cramping up. Will be icing for the next 60 hours and will likely head out for a jog on Saturday evening and Sunday morning before making a final decision. I can't envisage not having my shoes ready at T2 but it could be an option depending on how these runs go.

So will will be treating this as an A Race but will be prepared to shut it down should I start to cramp on the run. Will be taped up and warm form the bike so don't think this will have to happen but have the plan in my head should things start to go south.

So back to the purpose of this post - the plan.

Swim - Target 35 Min

So race plan is to attack the swim as hard as I can and I am hoping for a sub 35 minute swim. This would be 5 seconds a 100m faster than Oliver but are fresher and learnt a lot about work rate there and in the weeks following so I think this is a tough but realistic target. Aim will be to really attack the first 300m or so and then find feet.

With a big field this shouldn't be an issue and I just need to focus on working hard until the turn for home. Realistically I would be happy with 36 minutes but I want to crush my PR on this swim so are aiming high.

Bike - Target 2:25

Last year I managed to flat and had a subsequent flat disaster out of transition. Hopefully this will not occur again but if it does are a lot more prepared to deal with any mechanical issues as was proved at Shawnigan. Forecast for the weekend is for rain so the bike may be a tough affair and a cold bike bike combined with questionable leg may lead to me wearing the skins for the whole race.

Looking at last years bike times the fastest split was 2:16. Based on my % differential at Oliver I am going to aim for 2:25 bike. My plan will be to ride as absolutely as hard as I can with the thoughts that I may not be running so I am going to lay all my cards on the table and see what I can do on the bike. To do this I will need to attack the hills and maintain momentum on the downhills and flats.

My shakeout ride tonight included 3 x 5 minute TT's on 3 minutes rest. I averaged over 43km/h for these efforts and my heart rate was just over the top of my zone. This will be my approach on race day and see what happens.

Run - Target 1:20

So the plan here is basically an all or nothing one. Being a lead up race to IMC there is no value in limping around this course so I will basically be trying to run at my normal pace and if this is not going to happen I will make the hard decision to suck it up and go eat some early bagels. As much as I do not want to do this this is the smart approach and to be honest I am pretty hopeful I will not have to play this card.

So from a target time here I will be aiming for sub 4 min km's out of transition with the aim to hold this pace for the 20km. The run is normally my given coming into the race and given that my leg improves as planned I think I can still deliver a good split.

Overall - A Goal 4:20, B Goal 4:30, C Goal (3 hour Swim/Bike Split)

So the main focus on this race is to give the swim and the bike as hard as I can and see what the run can produce. If all goes to plan A goal will be sub 4:20 with a B goal of sub 4:30. I am realistic in the possibility that the run may not be there so I have set my C goal around the Swim/Bike Split.

As always the overriding goal is to race hard and have fun and I hope to see a lot of people from around Van and Vic at the post race festivities. For those racing CDA this weekend particularly Doug, Rachel and Don good luck and rock it. For those racing Victoria lets hope for clear skies and rock race hard, it will be fun out there.

Enough blog time, back for continued rehab and recovery to try and get the leg right.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Ahh the Taper Monster has got me!!!!!

This weekend is the Victoria Half Iron and I have been approaching this as somewhat a IMC rehearsal. So volume has decreased and I have put a focus on my sighting in Open Water swims while reducing volume in bike and run while keeping the intensity.

So last night I had a track workout and about 15 minutes from the end while doing a circuit started to get really tight in my right hamstring. Did not pull anything or the like but was not getting any looser so had to shut it down and "limp" home as such.

After a night of icing on 2 to 3 hour intervals (Waking up ice on an alarm is always fun) and dreaming of the tightness having completely dissipated by morning I woke up still tight but better than the night before. Off to work and in my lunch box instead of food I had 4 Ice Gel Packs and continued to ice for 15 minutes on and 20 minutes off for the duration of the day before heading to Dr Carla Cupido (My super chiropractor) for an assessment and treatment.

So looks like is a hamstring strain. For someone who likes to make up ground on the run this is not the best news but nothing to stress about in the whole scheme of things in life. Good news is should still be able to race hard however will need to prepared to shut it down on the run should I get tight in the first 15km or so to prevent further injury.

Treatment went well today and had a mix of ART, Graston followed by my first experience with Kinesiotaping. Continuing to ice over the next few days and just having a pretty chilled training lead in (It is a taper - pass me a cookie you Taper monster!!!) and will do a shake out run on Friday night or Saturday morning to see how the legs are recovering. If all bodes well will be hitting elk lake at 6:50am attempting to swim, bike and run as hard as I can.

So what to take with this recent dance with the taper monster - it would appear that after a bit of post injury analysis with Jerry from Forerunners and Carla is that it could be related to me having easy weeks!!!! What this means is that because I am fresher during these weeks my perceived effort level is skewed and when I do a smaller workout at normal intensity I am working harder than I perceive. When this comes to strides and reps this means going faster (unintentionally) and hence potentially stressing my body more than intended. Then before I know it the Taper Monster has struck!!!!!

One reason I was doing a pre IMC rehearsal was to identify what works and what doesn't work for when I taper for the big show in August. How I approach easy and taper weeks is now something that I can take out off this and ensure that when I do my "hard" workouts in these weeks I dial back the effort to adjust for the level that I perceive the effort.

So is picking up an injury prior to Victoria a good thing?? With a ironic smile I say yes (glass half full baby!!!) as it has picked up a risk factor in my training cycle. Add to this that I will definitely now by ripping the swim and bike as hard as I can due to the small potential I may need to abort the run so will get to learn a lot about maximal effort/potential on race day as I know I can run on tired legs as proved in Oliver.

So for those out there - beware of the Taper Monster and how he can effect you!!!! Looking forward to racing hard this weekend and I think by shutting down my workout early last night will still be able to give er come race day in all three disciplines.

Icing, Icebaths and popsicles await.

If your from Vancity read this little testimonial

If you are based in Vancouver and looking for someone to work with on injuries, injury prevention and the like I can't speak highly enough of Dr Carla Cupido. Having never been to a chiropractor before I was a little sceptical at first when I first tried it out in March but can not speak highly enough of Carla.

Working with somebody who understands running, cycling and competing is awesome and if I am told to "rest" I know it is the right thing to do not just a standard answer that everyone gets. Carla is super energetic and really up to speed on the latest treatment options available (including ART, Graston, Kinesiotaping) and you have a practitioner who will work with you to keep your body on track to achieve your goals.

Add to this Carla is genuinely interested in your progress, goals and results and is an actual joy to work with. So if your looking for somebody to work with on a ongoing basis or to just try something different check out her website at and pay her a visit.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Blood donation

So Vincent posted this on his blog and I have re posted to try and raise awareness as well. In Australia I used to always donate but got of the habit in Canada.

Based on the below information and challenge I will also donate although after race season also. As a result I pledge to donate blood by October 31st, 2009.

As Vincent does below I would challenge you to repost this and set a date for your donation if you have a blog. If not feel free to post your donation deadline on my comments for this blog.

Original post from Vincent at


Blood Donation

At school, I work in the Life Science Institute at UBC, sharing the 4th floor with me is the Center for Blood Research. As a consequence of this domestic arrangement, we often are invited to talks put on by the CBR. The allure to these talks is typically the free wraps and pizza, however, once in a while you get a very interesting talk which makes you think.

Typically the talks are research based, however, a few weeks ago we had a talk by Dr. Dana Devine on the past, present and future of the Canadian Blood Services.

What I learned from this talk.

In Canada there are roughly 33,654,000 people. Of those, there are something like 12 million eligible donors. How many do? Somewhere in the range of 600 000. That works out to only 5% of eligible donors, and even those are not donating to their full potential.

Some more fun statistics. If there was a world crisis and we ran out of needles to extract blood. The reserves would last only 4 days! Ok, that doesn't mean all blood would be gone that fast, AB positive would last weeks, but the O negative would be gone almost instantly. There is a major shortage.

Another interesting factoid. When asked, 78% of Canadians agree that there is a blood shortage, however, when that same population was asked if ever they were in an accident, would they expect to get blood, 84% said they would.

That math doesn't work out. Somehow we assume that we are important enough to get the blood, but not donate.

Yikes, this is quite the guilt trip here. You would think I donate all the time. However, my shame is now being exposed. How often have I donated. Sadly,


I'm terrified of needles, and pass out any time I have to give blood. Most blood test I've taken however, have had to be on an empty stomach. Low blood sugar is supposed to make you lightheaded when giving blood, so I think that with some juice boxes in hand I should be able to do it.

With that statement, I'm declaring that I will by the end of 2009 give blood! I will wait until the end of race season (Sometime in September unless I do another marathon), and then will take my 2 weeks recovery and then donate.

As it stands today that would mean I am going to donate by the 27th of September. YIKES!

With a little research done, I discovered that there are alternatives for people as wimpy as me. Whole blood is hard on the system. Leaves you feeling drained. However, you can also donate platelets, and plasma. When you donate plasma they even supplement you so you don't get a low blood pressure reaction.

So I think I will start with one of these before taking the plunge.

For more information on the types of donations, check this page out.

But just a recap of what is says.

Whole Blood donation every 9 weeks

Platelet donation every 14 days

And can donate plasma every 6 days,

And Finally, I know there are going to be some of you telling me, I can't donate blood, I've been blocked by Canadian Blood Services. I lived in the UK, or I've been to Africa in the last 90 days. Well, today is your lucky day. Its true, you cannot donate for blood transfusions, HOWEVER, you can donate for research purposes. There are hundreds of diseases which require more blood research. And to do that they need blood samples. And surprise surprise, there is a shortage there as well. Many labs have their friends come in and donate so they can do their work.

Donating for research purposes is not as easy, for that you need to contact your local Canadian Blood Services and find out the location of a clinic. They are usually near Universities. Dr Dana Devine is the person to contact if you wish to locate you local clinic.

To contact Dana, send an e-mail to

Now that I've declared it to the Interweb, I guess there is no backing down now.

I encourage you to copy this post and put it on your blogs. Try and get as many people out there.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Last Couple Weeks in Review

So based on writing race reports and the like I did not get around to posting the week in review and week plan last Monday so now is time to look back on the past two weeks. I will post my week plan with relation to the Vic Half Ironman and goal times tonight or tommorow

June 1st to June 7th

This was my second hard week in a row culminating with the Oliver Half Iron.

Total Training - Approx 18 hours (Swim - 3:00, Bike, 11:50, Run 4:10)

- was my 1/2 rest day with the club swim in the evening. Got some really good technique work done.
Tuesday - I got in the pool for 40 minutes or so at lunch and did a 1:10 run from work home with 30 minutes of long intervals in the middle followed by 30 minutes of drills.
Wednesday - was a 40 minute swim at lunch followed by an hour workout with forerunners revolved around hills
Thursday - was and hour ride which included a little crash so I did not ride the extra hour on top that I had planned.
Friday - I took as a recovery day except for a 30 minute spin on my Tri bike to see everything was operational (Body wise)
Saturday - was an epic 160km from oliver to keremeos via oysoos with a bit of the out and back then back to Oliver via keremeos. Ended up being about 160km of riding across about 5:30 in winds up to 45km/h. This was a good way to get accustomed to deep dish wheels :)
Sunday - was the Oliver half iron where I unexpectedely crushed this "c" race

June 8th to June 14th

This was an easy week on the schedule after two weeks of hard training followed by a race.

Total Training - Approx 12 hours (Swim - 4:00, Bike, 4:00, Run 4:00)

Monday - Swam for about 40 minutes at the club swim then watched the good guys to get some technique updates
Tuesday - 40 Minutes of Running Drills in what was essentially a rest day.
Wednesday - 1:10 Run with forerunners focussed on cruise intervals
Thursday - 1:20 ride with 10 minutes of hard hard riding and a variety of technique work followed by at 40 minute swim.
Friday - 35 Minute Swim at kits pool
Saturday - 1 hour swim with club, 2 hour 60km ride with drills and two 6km intervals at TT pace and 5km progression run. TT times at Iona where sweet were I as was averaging about 39.5km/h inot the wind and about 43km/h on my return interval.
Sunday - 1:10 swimming at Sasamat lake including a practice swim exit and a 1:40 trail run at SFU which included about 1800 feet of climbing.

Friday, June 12, 2009

The 100 day Plan to IMC

Those around me know of the 100 day plan and and some aspects however I haven't got around to documenting it so it here it is.

Currently it is 79 days to go.

What is the 100 Day Plan?

The 100 day Plan is a the focus on the lead up to Ironman Canada and it is about controlling the factors that I can control in the leadup to allow for the best performance come race day.

My 2009 and 2010 Plan is to qualify for Kona in this window and the 100 day plan is part of this. I also hope that some of the habits I develop through this I can take into my day to day routine to undergo the ongoing benefits.

The 100 day Plan


Connecting with Friends - Working 40+ hours a week, training 20 hours a week and eating (it just takes time) can lead you to neglect not "athlete types". I am making the conscious effort to connect with these people on a regular basis as in the end these people offer me a lot of support and just because they don't think training 20 hours is normal they shouldn't be neglected.

Say Thanks - I have some awesome people around me and is important not to take them for granted and say thanks when I get the opportunity.

Have Fun - This is what we do this for right? Big focus of my sessions is to make sure I have fun. Whether it be enjoying the scenery on long rides or enjoying the company of people I train with as I have got to know some pretty awesome people through this sport.

Positive People - Surround myself around positive people. Life is to short to put up with to much negativity.


Alcohol - Only one day a month were I can indulge in a few beers and the like. The main driver behind this is to drive some weight loss without compromising my calorie intake to allow for productive training.

I have no specific weight goals and are already about 5 pounds lighter than my racing weight last year however I want to be as lean as possible coming to the start line at IMC.

Eat Well - Just trying to learn and focus on nutrition a lot more and eat on a regular basis throughout the day. In addition to this try and stay hydrated.

Coffee - No Coffee from Tuesday to Friday. Trying to decrease my caffeine tolerance and drink more water and/or green tea.


Focus on the process - Trust in the process and the results will come.

Remember the goal - As I approach decisions that could compromise training or health consider the question - Does this get me to Kona? This is not a be all and end all question but can make decisions around what I eat, when I sleep etc a lot easier.

Visualise - Visualise Success and achievement. especially when having a hard day. Envisage the last 2 mile of a run as the the last 2 mile of IMC and you are chasing somebody down for a Kona spot. This type of thinking will help you achieve your training goals.


Sleep -
Big Focus on getting enough sleep, whether that be Nana naps or just making sure I get to bed earlier.

Recovery is Key - Whether t be Ice Baths, standing in the ocean, stretching, balance board and wearing my skins recovery is a key focus. Anytime spent recovering is likely to reduce the risk of injury and allow me to hit my hard workouts hard.


Swim - Swim lots. Aim is to swim 100 times during the 100 day plan. Will start to incorporate double swim days in when the time is right. I have a pool 10 minutes walk from my desk at work so really have no excuses for not getting in 30 minutes at lunch. This port is my limiter so is the one with most potential for gain.

Technique - technique is King - Big focus on making sure technique evolves for swimming, biking, running and transition.

Hard is Hard
- If a workout is meant to be hard - Work it hard.

Easy is Easy - If a workout is easy take it easy and say hi to everyone as they cruise can smoke by them on your hard workouts.


Race and Learn from racing - Aim is to race hard, try different things and race as often as makes sense. Part of this is respecting the level of race. Is it is a C race then you still ride and run the days before as per the plan. Also look to try different things in these raises like working the swim harder, pushing the bike, dialling in nutrition etc.

Go sub 4:25 in a Half Iron
Original goal was 4:40 but nailed this in Oliver at a C race with a long bike course, swim course and T1. Have adjusted goal now and it is to go Sub 4:25 in Victoria or Vancouver.

Pr Scotiabank Half Marathon
- Need to run sub 1:19 or so which on a fast course should not be a problem. Have lots of friends racing this day so should be fun.

Qualify for Kona!!!!! - Day 100 is all about this. Race hard, commit and push yourself to what is required to get that spot. This will mean taking risks especially on the run at the risk of blowing up but learning that line is what all the above points are about.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

2009 Persona Oliver Half Iron Triathlon Race Report

Persona Oliver Half Iron Triathlon

Overall Time - 4:36:40 (New PR)
24/901 Overall, 24/534 Male, 5/33 M2529)

Swim (2km) - 38:36, T1 3:02, Bike (93km)- 2:28:44, T2 1:03, Run (21.1km) - 1:25:16

The Preamble

The Persona Oliver Half Iron was a late addition to my calendar in March as I decided to throw another race into the May to July Half Iron Season. Based on a good performance at Shawinigan Lake and with Victoria upcoming I decided to turn this race into a training weekend.

This race turned into unexpected breakout in terms of performance and as a result I have indulged in a pretty lengthy race report. As always thanks to Les for putting up with bikes throughout the house and early morning alarms, those people who I train with, Jerry Ziak from Forerunners for his advice on my running and Forerunners and Newton Running for their support thus far in 2009.

The Race Week Taper and Prep

Preparation for this race was not typical or something I would want to fully repeat. Thursday I went down in a group ride and got to know the road a little better and spent most of Thursday Night and Friday Icing and making sure my wounds were clean. Then it was into the Wagon and off to the Okanagan and Oliver.

As this was a training weekend I ventured out onto the Ironman Canada course on the Saturday and put in a ride from our campsite in Oliver to Osoyoos up Richter and to Keremeos. Saturday was “windy” and this being my first ever day riding deep dish rims was a learning experience. Not wanting to test my skills in big gusts coming down yellow lake I decided to return back the way I came over the rollers and back to Oliver via Osoyoos.

So on the traditional bike check in shake out ride I rode 160km in big crosswinds which was about 50km more than planned (Not to mention my hope for a calm day). Never less registration was pretty quick and headed to a Pub opposite our campsite for dinner and had one of the largest caeser salads I have ever seen and a steak and baked potato with another side caeser salad.

After a quick stop at the supermarket in OK Falls headed back to camp, downed a little chocolate milk and a mars bar and then went to the campsite lake to ice down. Having crashed on Thursday I was a little nervous of how the concept of swimming would sit so after about 10 minutes of psyching myself up dived in did about 5 strokes with no pain and got out of there.

After sorting my bags for transition and race morning got to bed around 9pm and crashed out pretty quickly.

Race Morning

I woke up at about 5am or just before and began eating food. First on the agenda was a banana followed by two small tubs of yogurt and a Lara bar. After this cleaned a prepped my wounds paying special attention to the skin on my hand and after packing up the tent headed down to the transition about 80 minutes or so before race start.

After checking tires and loading on my nutrition (GU’s and a frame bottle of Gatorade. On my bike I set up my shoes and bike gear and headed down to transition. On the 600m walk from my bike to the swim start I had a GU and upon reaching the beach did some stretching, had half a can of red bull some more water then went for a 100m warm-up swim.

Swim (2km) – 38:36 (PR) (Avg 1:56 per 100m)

(364/901 Overall, 257/534 Male, 26/33 M25-29)

After a 10 min delay the race was underway and I tried to push the first 100m and really then started to concentrate on a long stroke and good pull. After about 500m I managed to find a small pack and held with them till the first turn at 800m. In the turn I lost the group I was swimming with and worked to find another group, I think in this section I could have pushed a bit harder and felt my stroke getting a little sloppier. Upon the turn for the exit and the final 500m I started to work of some people from a later wave and increased my kick and swam all the way to shore.

Was a new PR for the swim and 2 minutes faster than my previous PR at Shawinigan which was 100m shorter. Was stoked with this and while there is plenty of improvement to come sub 35 min at Victoria or Vancouver could be possible if I keep working on technique and time in the pool.

T1 (650m) – 3:02

(16/901 Overall, 16/534 Male, 2/33 M25-29)

This was a long transition with a 650 metre bare foot run with some stairs thrown in for good measure. For whatever reason I forgot to unzip my wetsuit straight out of the water and lost about 10 seconds looking for the strap and another 10 seconds as did not get a good strip due to this as well.

I then executed my plan of just giving through this section and even though I didn’t have my Newton’s for this the concept of barefoot running held true and I got onto my forefoot and made up 79 places overall, 54 in the Male and 7 in my age group. Hitting the bike I went pretty methodically and got out onto the road.

The run obviously aided my transition and I now have some small takeaway’s to improve which may include practicing having my shoes on the bike to save some time from this perspective and getting better and getting rid of my wetsuit.

Bike (93km) – 2:28:44 (PR) (37.5 km/h)

(24/901 Overall, 24/534 Male, 5/33 M25-29)

Hitting the bike my legs were still a little stale from the riding the day before and I decided to just push as hard as I could and try not to let any one pass me. My HR monitor didn’t kick in after the swim so I worked on feel and tried to maintain a high cadence. My first time check was at 14km and I went through this section at about 42.2km/h it was now time for two full loops and the journey through the vineyards of Oliver.

I made a point of really punching the climb up Black Sage road and attacking the descents as much as possible started to gain as many places as I could. At 54km in I had been averaging 38.7km/h and was working hard to keep Simon Ree (I think) who was running a disk in sight. Coming up Black Sage Road a second time I started to hit some riders on their first loop and worked hard to push the hill while staying seated.

On the decent down to Highway 97 I got overtaken by Simon Ree again and couldn’t keep up with him in the final parts of the decent and put my head down trying to push the pace as hard as I could along the highway. I managed to do this pretty well but lost a little momentum a couple times where I should have been pushing a bigger gear.My last 39km averaged at 36km/h including a conscious effort to spin as much as possible in the last 5km to get ready for the run.

Really happy with my bike performance and a new PR for average speed by a long way especially for it being on tired legs. I learnt a lot about how to push hard on the bike. In the end I made up 241 places overall, 162 in Male and 12 in M25-29 on the bike and was only passed by two people.

Still think I left some speed on the course and that will be a key focus in upcoming races.

Nutrition plan worked out well on the bike going through 2 bottles of Gatorade, 1 water and 6 GU’s

T2 - 1:03

(24/901 Overall, 18/534 Male, 2/33 M25-29)

To be honest wasn’t that happy with my T2. Found my rack real easy but had problems dumping my spare kit and I dismounted with my bike shoes on as have not really practiced this since last year and ended up dropping my GU and decided to go back and grab it.

Also had the weird sensation of being far enough up in the field that had an official watching my whole transition with “steely” eyes which was a first. After getting my Newton Distance S Racers on I ran the 100m or so to the transition exit and began the run in 40th place overall having made up one spot in T2.

Run (21.1km) – 1:25:16 (PR) (4:02 min/km)

(10/901 Overall, 10/534 Male, 2/33 M25-29)

So off to my favorite part the run. Having ridden faster than I ever have before in my life and coming off a big day of training in the previous 24 hours I did not know what to expect coming out of T2. I focused on high cadence and pushed the pace with the hope that I could govern my effort effectively.

I clocked through the first 5 km’s in 20:22 losing a little bit of pace when I hit gravel trails. From about 2km onwards I started to see the leaders coming through on the end of their first loop and my plan was to try and go with them if they caught me on their second loop. As I continued on I started to see a few more of the pro’s and top age groupers and picked some targets to work on over the next section.

At 10km I had held my pace and went through this section in 40:54 (20:32 for the second 5km) and focused on making sure I got some Gatorade down and kept cool with water over my head. I was steadily picking off people at this point and feeling good.

The next 5km gave me a good ego boost seeing the leaders returning on their second loop and I had only lost around 400m to them in 10km. I took 20:39 for the next 5km and was feeling good with the thought to try and give it with 5km to go. The course was getting more crowded now so the only way to pick targets was on the out and back based on who was running fast. Had some extra support on the run course from an Aussie who I run with at the Wednesday Forerunners clinics who was cheering on some friends as well as seeing a few people I knew out on their first loop.

So 6.1 km to and I was feeling good. The next 5km went by quick and with about 3km I started to overtake some more people on their second loop. At this point I was flying a feeling good and went 19:51 for the 5km. So with 1.1km’s to go it was all about work rate and with a loop course it was hard to tell if there was anyone catchable ahead. In the end I finished the last 1.1km in 3:52 (3:32 min km pace) having made up 17 places overall, 17 in Male and 2 places in M25-29 on the run.

Negative Split the run and finished strong, ended up being a solo time trail for long sections so I was happy I kept the pace up and feel that with a rested approach can go even faster in my upcoming races. Newton’s were perfect for the surface and really felt the benefit when running on tarmac of the shoes and my stride mechanics which I have been working on in 2009.

Post Race Thoughts

I came into this race with no expectations and after the lead up week of crashes and hard training I would have been happy with sub 5 hours. My race plan was to just work hard on the swim and bike and see what happened on the run.

My swim was an awesome improvement on last year and even two weeks ago. I learnt a lot about how to push hard on the bike and are confident I can give it on the bike very hard and still have a strong run and make up positions on the field. From a run perspective I thought I executed this very well and the only take away I might have is try and not have any km’s above 4 minutes in my upcoming races in order to get more competitive in this aspect.

In terms of goals although I had not set any for this race explicitly around time this is an A+ result and now resets the baseline for Victoria Half Iron in two weeks and Vancouver Half Iron in July. The other aspect of this that is a huge positive is in relation to Ironman Canada in the fact that this race was done on tired legs it did not translate to a poor run. Lots of training from now until then, however this would indicate the process is working.

Key focus for the next couple of weeks will be swim and resting up for the Vancouver Half Iron which I am focusing on like an Ironman Canada rehearsal.

Compared to the Pro’s

So after every race I am now going to compare my splits to the winner. Here it is for the Persona Oliver Half Iron in which Tome Evans took out the overall win;


4:06:42 (Tom Evans) vs 4:36:40 (Jeremy)

12% Slower


24:32 (Tom Evans) vs 38:36 (Jeremy)

57% Slower


2:15:47 (Tom Evans) vs 2:28:44 (Jeremy)

9.5% Slower


1:22:31 (Tom Evans) vs 1:25:16 (Jeremy)

3% Slower