Training & Coaches
My training follows largely the same lines as most Triathletes with a base phase followed by build up to target events. With a view to targeting three events this year. I still compete in local shorter distance events and use them as high intensity speed sessions (sometime cycling to and from them). None of which I will taper for.
In the last year my maximum hours per week was 24 (actual hours training). The time spent on each discipline was largely broken down along the same percentage of time spent during an Ironman race. But with a wee bit more focus on the bike and swim so that I can take it relatively easy during the race and save some for the run. This worked towards the end of last year, where despite logging less running hours saw my marathon times drop dramatically.
I am very lucky to have two off who I perceive as the best coaches in Scotland to help me with my training;
Ken has been working with me since January 2007 and is responsible largely for my improvement from never having competed in anything longer than an Olympic (1 off) distance race to completing 4 Half Ironmans, 6 Ironmans, 2 ITU World Championships, and qualifying for the Ironman Worlds in Hawaii twice in only two years. (and a 4th place finish at the ITU Worlds 2008)
Ken's approach is scientifically based and yet he is easy going and flexible regarding training plans. (It's had to be to try and fit everything in around work and social time).
Ken is always available to talk things over and bounce ideas off, and receptive to input and feedback from myself with regards to types and planning of training. (Although I'm sure he despairs sometimes when I come up with some race plans like doing a 3/4 & full Ironman 7days apart).
I'm sure I wouldn't have got this far without him, I would probably have burnt myself into the ground as I tend to enjoy hard sessions.
I've been working with Gary since January 2008, he has been truly inspirational in modifying my swim technique to make me firstly more efficient and now faster. In only 6 months I dropped 2minutes of my Ironman swim time (53mins) and also used less energy in the process therefore saving it for the bike & run. (Best ever swim place at Ironman UK70.3 2008 - 1st in Age Group out of the water).
There isn't anything about swimming that Gary doesn't know (as a former Olympian he has the credentials to match). He has devised drills for me to use and always explains what the drills are designed to achieve. Now I understand what all the apparently aimless drills were for that used to bore me when younger!