Swim, bike, run, write.

The Training Diaries: Ironman Zurich 2019 - "Winter Miles for Race Day Smiles"

8 weeks down, 20 weeks to go - Ironman Zurich I am coming for you! I've got that proper end of training block feeling, of being simultaneously knackered and chomping at the bit for more. On the one hand, I'm already feeling fitter and stronger than ever before. The numbers are looking good (totally kicking last year me's arse) and I really do feel like I can step things up a notch this year, to race like I've never raced before. On the other hand, I have peanut butter in my hair right now and I just told the tumble dryer to F off because it had the audacity to you know... beep to let me know it was done. Ironman-induced mood swings are totally a thing.

It's been a really good, solid 8 week block of training. We've had everything from snow, to gale force winds, to 20 degree sunshine (in February, our poor planet) but there's been no excuses. Too icy to run on the road? Go and run in the woods (I have my fiancĂ© to thank for being my sherpa and making sure I don't get lost in Woburn forest). Too dark for an early morning bike session? Go Zwift yourself! One of the (many) things that Ironman training has taught me is that you'll always be able to find an excuse not to train - and there will be days where your excitement and motivation go off on a little holiday. Those are the days where it comes down to grit, consistency and relentless determination. This year I've found myself really embracing "the hard". It's not supposed to be easy - that's the thrill of this whole Ironman thing. If a session feels tough - well, good, it's going to be make me that bit stronger come race day.

Whenever that little voice in the back of my head (or maybe it's in my poor aching quads!?) wants to quit, or slow down, or take that shortcut home - I picture myself on the last 10km of the Ironman marathon. Am I going to quit then? Hell no. So I'm not going to quit now. Train hard, race easy. When I cross that finish line in Zurich, I want to be safe in the knowledge that I've given it everything. That I've done everything in my power to be at my very best. It's about the process as much as it is about the actual race. And honestly? I'm loving training this year. Even on the hard days. I'm so excited to crack on with Phase 2 of Project Toblerone and see what I've got. And you know what comes with big brick sessions, big rides and longer runs? More chocolate milk and more peanut butter. I am most definitely on board.

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