Last week I was saying it was just the swim I need to worry about. Hmmm. Good news and bad. The good news is I bought a clicky ring lap counter. You wear it like a ring and click it every length (otherwise you quickly lose count.) After my first swim in 4 years, when I was quietly pleased to complete 40 lengths (two thirds of a mile) I thought I’d up it to 50 lengths this time. I forgot I was only clicking every time I got back to the shallow end. I was getting changed into my gym bunny kit when I suddenly realised, “hang on, that’s 100 laps!”  A bit over one and a half miles! On my second swim!  Well pleased with that.

The not so good news is I’ve had to cut right back on the running. I’ve been getting warning pains up the side of my shins. Not bad, but enough that I’m scared of getting a proper injury.

Instead I did a two mile run on the treadmill (after the 100 length swim and 25 minutes on the gym pushbike.)

Rather than irritating the injury I’ve been beasting myself on the turbo trainer. 3x hour+ long sessions this week. That is some graft!  Also, thanks to me losing my sense of taste last March, and this training, I’ve gone from a jammy doughnut shy of 12 stones, to 10½ stones. So that is great. Less weight means less effort to drag my lardarse around the Outlaw. 


More exciting news is I’ve been forced to go on a spending spree.

Bought a new Ironman GPS watch. 12 hours of GPS battery. So, once you get out of the swim and transition (not GPS), you’ve got 12 hours of battery (enough to finish the race) to tell you how you are doing and how much further you have to suffer.

Amongst the features that attracted me to it (other than that it’s designed for Iron distance tri’s, obviously) is that you can choose how many lines of information to display on each screen. This means, if you choose just one line, you get a big, clearly visible, display. I’m getting to the stage where reading glasses are no longer an option but a necessity, making my old watch illegible.


Also I’m totally moving the turbo trainer to the shed. I sweat so much I have to clean up puddles off the mat when I’m finished. This is not making for a pleasant house smell.

The thing with that is, I’ve currently got it facing my PC to take my mind off my misery as I train. So I started shopping for a refurbished laptop. The online opinion is that refurbs are a pig in a poke though.  In the end I’ve got a cheap, new, Chromebook. A laptop built on a Google platform and down to a budget.

After ages spent reading the reviews of what I can get for my money I plumped for a Samsung Chromebook 3 as my best bet. Then I couldn’t get it in the UK. Of course. Anyway, after the excitement of the reviews, the tracking down of my best option and the buying thereof, I think I may have gone massively over spec for what I actually need. I’ll give Wendy a go, if she prefers it, I’ll just use her current tablet, she can have the Chromebook. Either way, get outside, with a big arse fan, and I’ll be sorted.

Also I bought some tri (aero) bars as I was getting back ache from crouching in my drop handlebars. I’ve been doing my turbo sessions on them quite comfortably.


To stay in the aero position I’ve had to order some bar end shifters (the standard gear shifters are built into the brake levers, flick them to either side to shift up or down.) The bar end shifters will fit, as the name implies, into the end of my aero bars so I can maintain my position through the gears.

I’ve yet to buy a big arse fan, but other than that I’ve bought everything I could possibly want now.

Oh, one thing. One of the reasons I want a computer for turbo training is the bike has a device that connects to the internet. You can then run videos of scenic rides, races, your own routes, get a virtual speed and distance, and then either compete with others or your previous best. Also, it can vary the degree of difficulty on the trainer for hills and such.


Can I buggery get it to connect. I’m to-ing and fro-ing with the company by email at the moment.  Most irksome. The only feature I’ve got at the moment is a resistance trainer set to god knows how hard, that I pump around for an hour or so.  To be fair, I bought it just as resistance trainer, and it is goddamn awesome at that. The rest will just make it more interesting to use.


In other news, I went on my awareness course today. It was raining but in case of traffic I went on my motorbike. There was a guy there, a bit older than me, wearing a Harley Davidson hoodie with “Hogfather” across the back (Harley’s are called Hogs. Terry Pratchett did a book called Hogfather. You see the hilarity.) Also he had a Harley Davidson coat with the logo on the back and the sleeves. And a manbag. I couldn’t make out details but I’d bet a pound to a pinch of shit it was Harley Davidson one. The biggest clue of all was that he’d come in a car.  How I laughed.


I put the car through it’s MOT on Friday. It passed with a £30-£40 advisory. The amount it gets used, that can wait.


I’ve booked my lovely red VFR800i Honda in for the forks to be done on the 8th. Then I’ll MOT it early and get it sold with a 12 month ticket. I couldn’t in all conscience sell it without alerting the buyer to the iffy front end, but get that sorted and it is a gorgeous bike for the money.

I’ll just keep my ratty old VFR750. It’s a solid, bike that should last forever. To be honest it seems I’ve only got enough energy to compulsively obsess about one thing at a time, and right now it’s triathlon. The motorbike isn’t really getting  a look in. Plus my close call with the coppers has taken the shine off of it. If I can’t have fun, why the hell am I doing it? It’s cold, wet, and dangerous, verging on suicidal. If I can’t thrash it about between the traffic and enjoy myself, what’s the point?

I’ll doubtless get over my sulk when the warm weather gets here.  If I can fit biking into my training regime.