where the fuck is the strudel???

Triathlon Training Blog, Thursday, July 21st, 2016

Im kinda half awake. i’m at the fair ground on the big wheel. Whirring around. It must be raining as i can hear a drip drip dripping. Its eerie. i’m lying on the floor

I’m awake . i’m on the floor. I can see straw. My disc is whirring away ,i’m not moving. there’s a tap tap tapping. I cant see.

I’ve crashed. I’m on a lonely mountain in Bavaria. I like Bavaria its warm here . Comfy.

I need to move. It seems to take more effort than it warrants. Wow, i’m really heavy today. Sluggish. This wasnt in the brochure. I sit up. i’m leaking. blood pours out from my visor where it had been collecting. That explains the dripping. bothering me that noise was. it woke me up.

Smiling . I remember. It must’ve looked funny . Nobody saw. Thats a big drop. I gotta move. This dream like state is nice and all. But i cant stay here all day. I’ve got things to do. Have i?Its quiet. What could he possibly want? Yeah i’m good mate. this is what alright looks like. Its a good job my new tri suit is red the old white one would be fucked.Not even mum would be able to get that mark out. Thank the lord for small mercies i chuckle ,to myself. Was there someone here a moment ago?

Smashed into the straw bales. User error on the mountain descent. The bale took the hit ,got away with that one ,until i saw the scaffolding pole. This isn’t going to be good news. Bang ,jesus, this is very very real, i’m holding ,going, black, i’m down ,i’m leaking. no one can see. bike and all over the barrier.
He seems concerned ,give me a minute mate. I’m…..groggy . Can u stop looking at me like that. No, you carry on.He seems reluctant to leave.

No ones coming to get me are they? I’m alone ,i’m in trouble. this verse keeps going over and over. its the 12 inch extended remix.

11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

still working on the second part. no ones coming.

Man up fucko .time to go.time to move.

FFS what now? Ha ha the bikes making this noise. Like a skeleton wanking in a biscuit tin. Wasnt like that before . Must have been that crash i had , was that today? Surely i would’ve noticed it before. When was that? Fuck knows , could’ve been this morning. definitely not before the swim. the swim??its still this morning
Anyway , this cant go on . bloody noise. Whats this red shit on my visor?Someones going to have to clean that up and no mistake.
The light dances through the trees as the wind stretches her bows. Is that edelweiss? Such a pretty flower. i’m sitting again on the grass .I think i might have fallen again. Such a pretty flower i’d like to take it with me. Am i going anywhere? But she seems happy there.content
I’ve moved, 100 meters . The bikes been damaged. The front derailleur is rubbing . fix it , move on.100 meters Not fixed it. stop again. take it off.moved a long way up the autism scale in the last few minutes. Wish this bloody dripping would stop . Still at least i dont have to cycle the next 80 miles in the big ring. Apparently there’s some sort of run on after that , might go and watch it. what is it that i am doing here?

I’m no doctor but i’m pretty sure i’m not in the right frame of mind to make any major decisions right now.
I passed him ages ago. where’s he going? follow him, find out.

The suns come out, or rather the grey has lifted. Right, I’ve crashed . It cant be too bad i’m moving.No idea how much time i’ve lost. The bleeding has stopped i think. What now? Go hard or go home. I feel sick. Foods not going down well at all. Vision is a bit blurred. That mescalin shot i had before the start probably hasnt helped.

Chase. All or nothing now. Power chart out the window. Its balls deep all out effort. The 9.15 i was hoping for is slipping away ,thats if it hasnt gone already. Other riders are being caught and dropped. One by one i claw my way back to the group i was with before. 50 miles it takes before i recognize someone from before. 20 miles to go. I go through the 100 in 4.12 . Thats off the garmin .I can only judge my actually time by the time of day and my start time 6.35 am.Its hurting now. The last 20 power drops off i’m done with the bike today but i am still passing other competitors.

Into t2 . I’m mobbed . Again ‘ are you ok!’ i’m still in a daze.Its already been a tough day.

‘Yes, i’m fine , i cut my face open every race just to know what it feels like’ Off the bike the pain on my right side becomes more apparent. A chuckle. If it hurts that much now imagine how its going to feel tomorrow?Uncertain faces in T2 . They seem to be debating whether to pull me out. I think now is the time to mention the war. We didnt build an empire and win two world wars with the ‘we cant carry on attitude’ I think better of it. Clearly i’m still not fully functional then. I havent seen my face . How bad is it i ask? She cleans me up. Once all the mess had gone my cheek is split but looks alot better. I have a quick look in my helmet visor . Is that it? It looks like when the helmet took the impact from the scaffolding pole it pushed the visor down and into my cheek splitting it open. I’m marginal disappointed with the cut. I feel like shit. Is there any point. None of this has taken long. I look at the clock. After an ok swim and all the trials and tribulations of the bike i’m still coming out of t2 in just under 6 hours. I’ve used a lot of energy though. On paper, going into this race i’m capable of running at 3.20 or faster ironman marathon. I’ve done it before more than once Having said that paper usually is only any good for wiping your arse.

Lets head out and see what happens. Its a nice day the sun is shining the birds are singing , i’m having a ball. Out of t2 i trudge . A long day is set to become even longer. It can take me upto 6 miles to get into the run especially after a hard bike. Its 6 miles out 6 miles back down the first leg of the run. Its hot and we are running down the canal path. A lot of people are passing me. Eating is now becoming a concern the heat isnt helping. Waves of nausea crash over me, accompanied with a over whelming heat flush. Hmmm. Running this off isnt going to be straight forward. One kilometre at a time. Manageable chunks.At 10 k i stop to use one of the delightful toilet facilities on route. I open the door. There’s a china man in there taking a shit. I wasnt expecting that. Neither was he by the looks of it. It looked like he might have been reading a book in there. Just passing the time of day. I wondered if the book title was something along the lines’ how to run an ironman marathon when u are completely fucked’ I might need to read it after him. I’ll check in on the way back. He looked like he may be there for the day. Judging by the picnic hamper. Wonder if the wife and kids are in there with him. Nice spot. Up to the turn and through a nice little village. Everyone is out having a beer in the sunshine having a fine olde time. I, for one, really couldnt be happier for them. No, really , i could not. I’m suffering. this little mermaid has no tears to cry

“Suffering has been stronger than all other teaching, and has taught me to understand what your heart used to be. I have been bent and broken, but – I hope – into a better shape.― Charles Dickens

Not sure what shape i’m going to be soon , an unnatural one probably

So i think about killing them all, or joining them. On i trudge. This second wind is taking its time. 10 k done . well its 10 k back now .walk it or run it its got to be done. the clock painfully ticks on unrelenting. The china man has gone. Fancied a change of scene i suppose. Maybe a toilet with views over the canal.I reach 20k . I laugh at the sign. ‘finishing is your only fucking option’ i’ve seen it before. A german girl is standing with a placard ‘call me 07097 etc etc’ was amusing. People are still looking at my face and it makes me feel tough. Or maybe they cant believe how good looking i am? Most likely they are looking at the guy behind me.most likely.half way.No this second wind ,this’running it off ‘ isnt coming today. its just not there. I’ve no idea how long i’ve been out here but it feels like a 5 hr marathon job.

On the plus side there doesnt seem to be a re occurrence of that left half calf injury that ballsed up kona last year. Now, i’m no expert , but that could be down to the fact that its being masked by the stroke like symptoms i am displaying down my right hand side.

The half way point psychologically is a like a milestone. Well, on reflection ,not only is it like one it is one. Its a 13.1 mile milestone. Now, in, whats left of my head, it becomes manageable. I convert the number of remaining kilometres into miles then make that distance ‘fit’ onto a regular run i do back home. So with 13 miles to go . Its ‘just the run around the freshwaterwest loop’ done it loads of times. Head down trudge on. The final turn. There’s a fat bird dancing to the PA . So i stop and have a dance with her. She didnt seem that thrilled tbh. Ungrateful . you would think she would be thrilled. Why wouldnt you want a dance in the sun with an 11 stone short welshman covered in sweat and blood , i cant remember if i’d pissed myself but lets chuck that in as well as its highly probable.Why would nt u? 6k to go. Just the run to the beach and back. This takes a lot longer than my usual 23/25 mins. into Roth . there’s no joy in this. no feeling of achievement as i cross the line.

Dejected- downcast, downhearted, despondent, disconsolate, dispirited, crestfallen, cast down, depressed, disappointed, disheartened, discouraged, demoralized, crushed, desolate, heartbroken, broken-hearted, heavy-hearted, low-spirited, in the doldrums, sad, unhappy, doleful, melancholy, miserable, woebegone, forlorn, long-faced, fed up, wretched, glum, gloomy, dismal;

woebegone is my favourite .

10 hrs and 5 mins. It felt a lot worse. the marathon wasnt actually that bad. 4 hours. It wouldnt have surprised me if it had been 5. it felt like 6. What can u do when there’s nothing left to give?But still my slowest marathon ever by a long way.

Sometimes your best performance isnt your fastest. This wasnt one of those times. But still my second fastest IM.

My fastest was Austria 2014. 9 hrs 44 mins. Going into that race my fastest 50m tt was 1 hr 58 . going into roth I was 5 mins faster . 1 hour 53. My running times this year had improved by a fair margin also . My plan was .1 hour swim , 4.30 bike .3.30 marathon .I’m not sure that was ever achievable . Actual times were. 1 hour 4 swim. 4.54 bike .4 hour marathon. My actual bike time was 4.42 off the garmin. How much the bang to the head affected my performance is pure speculation.

On reflection , after the crash i metaphorically and almost physically lost my head. What i should have done was stick to the plan. That was hold 220 to 230 watts for the first loop then see whats what for the second. I held 230 at kona last year no problem. This may have meant i came out of t2 in better shape for the run.But rinsing 250 to 270 watts for 50 miles took its toll and i was spent before the bike was even finished. No point in thinking the 9 hour ironman was on. It wasnt on the day and i did what i did.

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