It's been a long, long race season for me this year. Certainly a tough one, and one that finished on a great high with Reading Triathlon, which pretty much goes thrgouh my village. A perfect day, no need to travel (it was a 15 minute roll downhill to the start) and a great course, as well as plenty of people in the race who I knew, giving it a bit of a competitive kick...
This really has been a year of cycling for me...to date I've racked up approximately 7,000 miles in the saddle, even taking into account the atrocious weather conditions in January and February. I've managed to drag myself from being an OK cyclist, to one who can reasonably expect to finish in the top 5-10% of any cycling event I choose to attempt (so long as it's not an off-road one...I've learnt painful lessons regarding that!)
So what have I done this year? It's a fairly long list of events...
1 - Reading Half-Marathon
2 - Merchant Taylor Olympic Traithlon
3 - Fritton Lake Olympic Triathlon
4 - Deloitte Ride Across Britain
5 - Dorney Lake Sprint Triathlon
6 - Bournemouth Olympic Triathlon
7 - London Olympic Plus Triathlon
8 - Woodcote Sportive
9 - Vitruvian Half-Ironman
10 - Reading Olympic Triathlon
Given that last year was my first season of triathlon, and I only did a single olympic distance event (which, in case you're not sure, is a 1.5km swim, 40km cycle and 10km run) to get myself upto half-ironman distance is fairly good, even moreso given that I've had real trouble with my knee.
I'm now officially in my off-season, and I intend to take a couple of weeks taking it easy, and let my body start to repair the various niggly injuries I've inflicted on myself. once thats done it will be looking ahead to next year, and working out the best way of improving my times. The most obvious areas will be my neglected swimming and running, and building up core strength and ability in those areas. I'm also going to give rock-climbing a go, hopefully as a way of improving my flexibility and upper-body strength a bit (which should all improve the swimming). My ideal goal should be to trim 3-4 minutes off both the swim and run legs, while keeping my cycling in it's current form, which should then see me edging towards 2:20 times for an Olympic triathlon, which is normally considered a good time.
For now though, it's a fortnight of laziness, relaxing and (probably) painting models...