"The goal is to become the unique, awesome, never to be repeated human being that we were called to be." -Patricia Deegan

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Look, mum, I didn't drown!
I'm swimming again! Well, if 500 metres in 28 minutes is "swimming," then that's what I'm doing. I think I have created my own sport. It's 20 metre sprint interval front crawl at max HR, recovery at end of pool for 20 seconds, and repeat for 25 lengths. Unless you're on the side of the pool with the steps and you can't get right to the end. Then you have to do 2 more lengths as bonus to make up for the lost distance.

Somehow, I remain the most inefficient front crawler in the world. Thus, it's not that I'm TRYING to get my HR to its 172 bpm max, it's that I have no choice. I don't know what I'm doing wrong, but after 20 metres across the pool, I'm completely puffed and my heart is leaping through my chest.

Trail runner training tool in the kids' park!
For now, I don't mind, since it's giving me a good workout during the TransAlpine taper. But one day it would be nice to learn how to real people swim.

I also found a great trail runners' proprioception tool at a local park here in Charing, Kent. I'm sure that's what they put it here for! Getting across the tyres hanging on ropes is particularly fun!

11 days til race day and we get one more "big" run. Today was a flat, fun single track tempo 10k in the woods. Tomorrow we ferry across the channel and drive to Belgium, where I have sourced a lovely little village called La Roche-en-Ardenne. We will base ourselves there for the night and get in a 3 hour run in the Ardennes forest. From there, it's on to Aarau, Switzerland, where we'll base for a few more days and try to find some altitude again.

It's not just my swimming that's driven the 'waterlogged' theme of this blog post. It's also the name of Tim Noakes' new 448 page book all about over-hydration in endurance athletes. He's causing quite a stir, with one apparent assertion in the book that no one should take electrolyte/salt pills - the body will regulate itself. I'm very keen to read his argument on this and other hydration-related issues. I've ordered a copy and will get into it after TransAlps. In the meantime, if you'd like to do a little light "research" of your own, you might enjoy the two-part blog/interview by iRunFar here and here.

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