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November Training Diary of a VERY average athlete

7th December 2017

Beginning of the end or end of the beginning?

I’d hoped that this would be the month that I’d find out whether I’d qualified for the World Aquabike* Championships next July, held as part of the ITU’s 2018 Multisport World Championships in Denmark. As a new category the qualification criteria are still a little unspecific and so whilst I thought I’d made the cut I still wanted it in black and white before I told anyone (and published this post!)

Assuming that I had qualified, I’d planned that November would be first of 2 months of preparation ahead of formally rejoining Perry Agass’s coaching.

With just the 2 disciplines I was keen to simply establish some routine around running ETE and my training, with a focus on swim volume. So when I found myself on an Icelandic glacier on the 30th October I was already worried that November’s plans would fail at the first hurdle.

Pinch, punch, first of the month: the next morning I was at the open air 50m pool at Vesturbæjarlaug for 6:00am. Over the next couple of days I scored some surreal early morning easy (eney buoy) sessions: busy lanes, just above freezing, spotlit, and lashing rain as the steam rose form the geothermal hot tubs all down the side of the pool. Definitely some of my stranger swims!

50m Swimming Pool

Through the month I managed to keep some good structure to my swimming, interspersed with some of my favourite TrainerRoad sessions on the Kickr. So far, so good.

The 2nd camp of the season came and went in mid-November and was a great success. There was a lot to do around ETE’s social media and some of the new opportunities that we’re exploring with MokaPot and maybe that’s why my cycling trip to Southern Spain crept up on me. Too late I realised I’d just not done any specific training.

We were staying at the amazing Finca Avedin in the beautiful Pueblo of Gaucin and as the under-powered hire car crawled up the 650m winding climb from the river below it was clear that we were going to be doing some serious climbing. And so despite the excellent guiding by Rafa from Ride Granada, I spent the whole weekend getting my arse kicked on various climbs, including the 14k Cat 1 grovel from Estapona to Penas Blancas. Great riding, great friends, but a real lesson. As I threw my cycling kit into the washing machine back at home I swore to hit the hills ahead of next year’s return!

Overall: this month has been a lot of fun and has really got me fired up but December needs to be a lot more consistent. And still no news on that Aquabike place.

Nov Stats

  • Enjoyment: 9/10
  • Progress: 6/10
  • Key lesson: Don’t get complacent

*ITU please come up with another name. I’m tired of explaining that Aquabike is neither based around pedalos or exercise bikes in a swimming pool. What’s wrong with Swim-Bike?

Posted By Julian Hucker
Date 7th December 2017