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  #41  
Old 05-09-2013, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by lanepe View Post
Any recommendations on where to buy a wetsuit from? Like to try some on and get a decent fit.
If you go along to any of the open water swimming venues they'll have some to try on, even if they don't have them to sell to you there and then. Normally limited to a single brand though. Any open water/triathlon event will usually have some to try.

Keep an eye out for ex-hire deals coming up at the end of the season. They often have wetsuits that have been hired out for individual races all year available at a significant discount.

If you're happy to wait until next year (and there won't be many occasions left after the end of this month to wear a wetsuit anyway), the Triathlon Show is on at the end of February 2014 and usually has all the main brands exhibiting with (well this year at least) some decent deals available.
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Old 05-09-2013, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Kemper View Post
Sigma Sport in Kingston used to do wetsuit fitting etc. Well they did a few years back when I bought mine, but that was in their old shop. I imagine they do still do it as it was the only place I found localish that stocked wetsuits at the time.

I've bitten the bullet and signed up for Outlaw Iron next year, and just for good measure and a chance to recce the course a bit the Outlaw Half as well. I must be mad, though I do have a decent level of fitness. Need to really work on my swim between now and then though, am considering getting a coach if anyone knows of a local one or one in Central London.
I can suggest a coach based in Egham if that's any use?

Good luck with the Outlaw!
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:29 PM
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I can suggest a coach based in Egham if that's any use?

Good luck with the Outlaw!
Unfortunately that's miles away from me in Croydon. I'll look at starting Outlaw training next year as I've 2 marathons coming up, just try & keep my fitness ticking over & come up with a schedule. Most of my early focus next year will be getting a good for age time at Brighton marathon, but I'll need to up my swimming.

Good luck at Henley on Sunday, I did consider doing that one, but Sept is a busy time of year for me. Let me know how you get on.
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  #44  
Old 06-09-2013, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Kemper View Post
Unfortunately that's miles away from me in Croydon. I'll look at starting Outlaw training next year as I've 2 marathons coming up, just try & keep my fitness ticking over & come up with a schedule. Most of my early focus next year will be getting a good for age time at Brighton marathon, but I'll need to up my swimming.

Good luck at Henley on Sunday, I did consider doing that one, but Sept is a busy time of year for me. Let me know how you get on.
I have a 12 week plan from trilife which can probably be shifted to later months if that's any help in coming up with a schedule. If I remember rightly you need to have been training fairly regularly and be able to cycle for 3 hours and run for 1.5 hours without difficulty before starting it. Shouldn't be a problem with all your running coming up!
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Old 08-09-2013, 01:48 PM
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  #46  
Old 09-09-2013, 05:58 PM
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I've ticked something off my bucket list by making it round Challenge Henley yesterday.

I don't think I quite realised what I was getting into. Even on the swim, it didn't quite seem real. It struck home pretty early on the cycle though, and didn't go away after that!

The swim was surreal. The water temperature was higher than the air temperature at 6.40am, so it actually felt quite relaxing waiting for the start. I was able to swim back and forward a bit to acclimatise and from then on it was an event-free swim. There was a lot of fog and mist, which caused a bit of difficulty sighting, but with a river swim you can't really go far wrong. The turn buoy on the simple out and back course appeared out of nowhere and the swim back, with the current, was positively joyous. Out of the water in 1:23:47, I was a little over 6 minutes under target and took it easy through T1.

With most triathlons, I don't bother with contact lenses. My sight is good enough to get around without them but given the daunting 112 miles to come, I thought I'd better make a special effort. Add in the struggle of pulling arm warmers over soaking wet skin and my T1 time of 15:05 left a lot to be desired. Still, I was underway and spent the first couple of miles getting into a rhythm and working my way past a few other athletes.

Then disaster. I hit a pothole and the inner tube on my front tyre exploded. I pulled up and switched out the inner tube. A spectator from a nearby caravan site offered the use of a track pump, and figuring the next 110 miles would be better at full pressure I waited whilst he ran off to get it. He came back 5 minutes later with a track pump, but with a schrader valve only, the presta adaptor having eluded him. No use. At about 60 psi I set off, with a 20 minute delay behind me.

I realised at this point that the expo, with the bike mechanics (there would be none on course or at feed stations, so said the briefing on Saturday), was a mile or so detour off course. I immediately turned off, much to the confusion of a gaggle of spectators. Having interrupted the breakfast of the bike guys, they set about getting the tube up closer to 100 psi.

Another disaster - the tube burst. At this point we realised that the first puncture had blown a small hole in the tyre wall and I wouldn't be able to continue on it. To my eternal gratitude, they found me a spare tyre (I wasn't carrying one), patched up my inner tubes and sent me on my way. By the time I got back on the course I'd lost about 45 minutes and I was cycling amongst the half distance riders who were all now coming out of the water. Depressingly, I was riding dead last.

The Henley bike course is three identical laps. I wanted to make up time and I was pacing myself against half-distance riders, who were inevitably riding faster. In retrospect, it was a big mistake, and the first lap time (the mechanical having occurred prior to the start of the lap proper) of 1:54:49 for 34.6 miles was going to hurt later. It did mean that I caught some other full-distance riders, and it felt good not to be last.

Starting the second lap I knew I was going to blow if I kept up the pace, so eased off. Coming up the brutal Howe Hill towards the end of lap 2 alongside a gaggle of riders on lap 3 was depressing, but I did take on 2 semi-pros and pulled away from them on the 13% section (they came back passed me when it dropped off to 9/10%). I was suffering by this stage and had no clue how I was going to get up Howe Hill on the third lap.

The third lap was all about clinging on, the course having become very lonely by that stage. There were a lot of familiar faces by this stage (the course consisting of a series of out and backs), with a lot of encouragement being shouted all round. The volunteers at the feed stations were incredible with their support. On the final descent into Henley I was elated, but I had no idea how I'd get through the marathon to come. Final bike time: 7:36:11, although actual moving time was a much more credible 6:35:22, allowing for mechanical disasters and toilet breaks. Strava link (which seems to have dropped the GPS signal for 3 miles or so) To view the link you have to Register or Login

T2 was much quicker. I'd spotted the first of my entourage of friends and family coming into transition and it had raised my spirits a little. T2 was a relaxed 4:06 and time for 4 loops of the run course.

I couldn't believe my legs when I started running. They had far more in them than I'd imagined coming off the bike. Again, that meant I started too quickly. The first lap was completed in 1:00:58. Given that the only marathon I've ever run took 4:00:26, I was going far too quickly at 1/4 distance. My legs felt good though so I went with it.

The second lap was slower, but I still felt pretty good. It was the start of lap 3 that the enormity of the distance to go hit me. I was running alongside people on their final lap, and knowing I had an extra 10.5k to complete was not helping my state of mind.

I stopped off for a toilet break at about 12.5k to go. I tried to start running again and began shaking uncontrollably. I'd stayed still too long and the dropping temperature was cooling the sweat on my skin. My legs were screaming in pain and my body started shutting down. I couldn't bear the thought of walking the rest and told myself I had to warm up and get running again. I walked for 300m or so, windmilling my arms and shaking what I could to get warm. It worked and I was able to start running again, but much slower than before. I knew at the end of the third lap that I could get through it, it was only a matter of time now. Light was fading and I wanted to get round quickly.

The first half of the final lap was eerily lonely. I knew there must be others still out there, but they were nowhere near me. I didn't catch anyone else until I was into the last 5k. So close to the finish I found a second wind, and started running 11 minute miles again, ignoring the pain. As I caught others I could hear the cheers from the finish line on the other side of the river. Somehow I picked it up again and there was sections of that last mile at sub-8 minutes per mile. I even found a sprint for the finish, and the photos from that point are fantastic, a huge grin plastered across my face.

The total run split was 4:53:58, moving time 4:40:02. To put it in context, an achilles strain at the end of June had meant that I didn't run at all for 6 weeks and in the past 3 weeks I've only run 27 miles, 8 miles being the furthest. I still can't believe it. Strava link is at To view the link you have to Register or Login, again apparently missing a mile or so on the GPS.

Total time 14:13:10. I was aiming for sub-14, and given the problems on the bike I'm pleased with the final time.

And to top it all off, I'd carried with me on the bike and into the run an engagement ring. I proposed to my fiancee at the finish to top off an absolutely incredible day.

Walking is one hell of an effort today, but after yesterday it doesn't really matter.
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Last edited by StudentEagle; 10-09-2013 at 08:06 AM.
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  #47  
Old 10-09-2013, 07:37 AM
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Fantastic effort StudentEagle. One helluva achievement & congraulations on your engagement.

I enjoyed the read too.
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Old 10-09-2013, 12:04 PM
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Well done StudentEagle a fantastic effort given the misfortune you suffered, congratulations on your engagement too, though you could be opening up your life to a new kind of suffering now.

A mate of mine also had bike issues at Henley, spoke broke on his deep section carbon rear wheel and he had to ride the final lap with it buckled and rubbing on the brake block.
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Old 17-09-2013, 09:47 AM
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Absolutely brilliant StudentEagle. Well done. I presume your partner said yes afterwards.

My knee and hip troubles have cancelled me out of late season tri's, put it down to IT band trouble and now getting busy with a foam roller. Will spend the winter on a tacx roller in the garage, strengthening leg and hip muscles in the gym and learning how to do front crawl. Does Lanzarote have any Olympic try races or sprint races at all?
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Old 17-09-2013, 06:22 PM
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MasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietMasterYoda came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy diet
Well done Student Eagle - welcome to the club (although you were faster than I was)
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Old 26-09-2013, 09:08 PM
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2014 events booked so far . . .
April: Brighton Marathon
May: London to Brighton Challenge 100K run
July: Long Course Weekend, Tenby (Iron distance events but over a weekend!)
October: Brighton Triathlon Race Series 70.3

(+ for 2015: Ironman Cairns!)
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:20 AM
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2014 events booked so far . . .
April: Brighton Marathon
May: London to Brighton Challenge 100K run
July: Long Course Weekend, Tenby (Iron distance events but over a weekend!)
October: Brighton Triathlon Race Series 70.3

(+ for 2015: Ironman Cairns!)
A big year in store then!

I'm trying to pick short distance events for next year.

So far I think I'll have my usual trip to Windsor in June, the London triathlon in August and then fill in some sprint distances in May and July, hopefully up at Dorney. I want to try the flat course on a proper TT bike and see just how fast the bike leg can be.
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Old 10-10-2013, 11:21 AM
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2014 events booked so far . . .
April: Brighton Marathon
May: London to Brighton Challenge 100K run
July: Long Course Weekend, Tenby (Iron distance events but over a weekend!)
October: Brighton Triathlon Race Series 70.3

(+ for 2015: Ironman Cairns!)
Nutter. You deffo got the try bug now

Good luck with all those. Been to Cairns twice, beautiful part of the world but what a place for an Ironman! Watch out for the salties and box jellyfish on the swim leg Well recommend staying at Palm Cove, a few km north of Cairns.

Got over 2 month IT band injury with much rolling and looking forward to improving times doing lots of sprints next year so i don't finish last at every event. Did Aquathon this week at Lea Valley White Water Centre so can now say I've swum and ran in an Olympic venue!

Lots of people do Windsor events which Im considering next year. Flat but windy?
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Old 16-10-2013, 04:13 PM
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Nutter. You deffo got the try bug now

Good luck with all those. Been to Cairns twice, beautiful part of the world but what a place for an Ironman! Watch out for the salties and box jellyfish on the swim leg Well recommend staying at Palm Cove, a few km north of Cairns.

Got over 2 month IT band injury with much rolling and looking forward to improving times doing lots of sprints next year so i don't finish last at every event. Did Aquathon this week at Lea Valley White Water Centre so can now say I've swum and ran in an Olympic venue!

Lots of people do Windsor events which Im considering next year. Flat but windy?
Windsor is good fun. Expensive but well organised. No closed roads but the junctions are all controlled and I've never had to stop for cars.

Bike course isn't flat but nothing worse than rolling. There's a phenomenal straight(ish) downhill drag to the finish where the high end bikes tend to be rocketing along at 40mph. Generally a pretty quick bike leg.

Run leg is flat except for one bastard hill straight up and down in front of the castle. You go up and down it 3 times on the run course.

My updated plan for next year is:

Ballbuster Boxhill duathlon in March
Something at Dorney in May
Windsor in June
London in August
Hyde Park in September

With perhaps 2 - 3 smaller sprints scattered between June and July. I'd love to try one of the French Castle series ones. I did Hever Castle last year but it comes at the end of September and the water was the coldest I've ever swum in, it was absolutely horrible.
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Old 06-01-2014, 07:17 PM
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Considering doing this in the middle of July (not entirely sure why)

Now I realise it's nothing compared to what some on here do but I'm an awful swimmer and an even worse runner.

Anyone got any tips for me on how to get started?


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Old 08-01-2014, 08:58 AM
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Considering doing this in the middle of July (not entirely sure why)

Now I realise it's nothing compared to what some on here do but I'm an awful swimmer and an even worse runner.

Anyone got any tips for me on how to get started?


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Just saw this - good luck!

Best way to get through a triathlon is to be strong on the bike, you'll be glad to hear. If you can get through the bike with something in your legs you can force your way through the rest.

For the swim, try open water swimming before the day, especially if you're going to wear a wetsuit. It feels very different to swimming in a pool. Although end of July and a short swim you might get away without needing a wetsuit!
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Old 08-01-2014, 09:04 AM
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spunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy diet
Cheers Alex, slight change of plan, im now aiming for the crystal palace triathlon in May, longer swim but its indoors, if i really enjoy it ill do that one too, would like to attempt an olympic distance on next year if this doesnt kill me first
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Old 08-01-2014, 09:59 AM
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I much prefer open water wetsuit swimming to pool swimming. As in I actually almost enjoy the former and hate the latter
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Old 08-01-2014, 11:23 AM
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spunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy dietspunky came here looking for the peace and quiet; the healthy air and the healthy diet
I'm sure i'll have a similar opinion in a few months time
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Old 08-01-2014, 12:29 PM
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I much prefer open water wetsuit swimming to pool swimming. As in I actually almost enjoy the former and hate the latter

In July and August I agree.

I am dreading the cold of May, though.
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