Saturday, 28 July 2012

Olympic Challenge Day 1: 5 miles down 200 to go


    1 mile swim, time 0:58:00, estimated calories 425
    4.2 miles run, time 0:37:30 , average HR 143, calories 355
    Total 5.2 miles, time 1:35:30, calories 780
    Distance to go : 200 miles, 7 miles behind schedule
    Countries honoured : Afghanistan, Albania, Andorra,
    Antigua and Barbuda, Angola

Waking up on the first day of my challenge with a knotted right calf was not a great start.  I now think I probably had a calf cramp during the night which strained my soleus muscle and made it so tender when I awoke. Massage helped but through the day it stay tender so I scrapped my plans for a half marathon distance run, and it rather puts a cloud over the prospects of completing the challenge of 205 miles in the 17 days of the Olympics. 

With a longer run off the agenda and injury recovery my main priority I opted to do go swimming at the McLaren Leisure Centre, with my two youngest children, Gwen and Ellen.  We had an just over an hour at the pool so I did lengths with the girls till they completed their planned 40 lengths of 20m pool (half a mile) and then they went to play while I continued on.  I'm not a good or particularly enthusiastic swimmer, only frequent the pool when taking the girls so rarely do I ever swim 40 lengths, and the furthest I'd swam before is 50 lengths (1km) which I passed in around 35 minutes.

I was deliberately keeping an easy pace, but just how easy was proven when a twenty something swimmer joined me doing lengths - I started getting passed ever half dozen lengths... While my breathing and heart-rate were not being taxed by the swimming my runners physic was starting to show signs of being a bit wimpy, after 50 minutes my shoulders were presenting signs of fatigue. After 58mins I finally hit my target of 80 1/2 lengths, 1610m which just over a mile.

To put this perspective, a quick search of the web tips up a world record for 1500m at 14:34, which is 15:37 pace for the mile, so I think quick can safely that my time of 58mins is rather feeble.  To hammer the point home Ellen finished one length complaining that I was hogging too much of the lane so she couldn't pass me and she's only 8!!  The difference between my swimming fitness and running fitness is rather stark - an easy paced mile swim I'm 4 times slower than the world best, while my easy paced marathon of 4 hours is only twice as slow as the world best at the marathon.  Clearly I'm in need of some serious swimming coaching...

Still swimming 1500m is all that is required for the Olympic distance Triathlon so now I've ticked that distance off for the first time stringing it together with a 40km mile cycle  and 10km run feels much more attainable - as long as I forgo any pretensions of racing.

After evening dinner I squeezed in quick recovery paced run with Ellen on her bike, coming along to be part of the challenge and to take photo's.  We did a 4 mile out/back, my calf felt fine on the way out - the swim obvious did it so good working out some of the tightness.

At the 2 mile return point we stopped to do some playful pictures.  Doing leaps for the camera resulted in a twinge of pain from my strained calf.  Clowning around is part of being a parent, but being a dork w.r.t injury really is no way to complete a big challenge.

On the way back Ellen struggled a little with tired legs so required a few power boosts from Dad, lots of fun for Ellen, not sure about healing injuries though... At the end of the 4 miles run my calf was more tender than was before so am rather regretting the silly antics.

On our return home we watched the Olympic Open Ceremony which was just awesome, thoroughly impressed by the engineering achievement and execution, especially in the industrial revolution sequence.  Overall it was  funny, entertaining, daft, a little bit sinister in turns and ever included a live performance of exerts/reworkings of one my favourite albums Tubular Bells so what's not to like!

I iced and massaged calf during Ceremony, it's tender but doesn't feel torn so I'm optimistic that with care it might heal OK.  Reflecting on the day 1 mile swim, 4 mile run, so 5 miles in total, well behind my required average of 12 miles a day, but every mile counts, 5 down, 200 miles to go!

No comments:

Post a Comment