Playing Catch Up

There’s nothing like being told you can’t do something, to make you want to do it! It’s been four weeks since my bike crash. OK – in hindsight, not really a massive deal (I was pretty lucky really). Since it happened, I’ve talked to people who have had much worse crashes and who have kept on keeping on without too much fuss. So, while it did stress me out at the time, I’m grateful that it wasn’t worse.

Anyway, back to my post…

As it turns out the bike crash was the jolt (no pun intended) that I needed. It has made my training-for-another-Ironman motivation skyrocket. Missing a couple of weeks of training has got me all like – no more missing training. I am back on the horse!

Not being able to run or ride (all I could do those couple of weeks was swim – without too much kicking or kicking off the wall initially) has made me discover a newfound like (love is still a way too strong a word for this) for swimming. Who knew that the key to enjoying swim training is, well, swim training! Amazing. Looking at my Strava data recently, I realised I swam 11km in one of those non-bike/run weeks. Wowsers! That has never happened before – might start growing gills if I keep this up.

I’m also finally starting to feel like a swimmer… Well, sort of. I feel like I’m moving through the water more efficiently and with better technique; I finally feel like I’m catching the water and I feel (a bit) faster. NB: Although, this morning I kept being overtaken during the squad session and I was all like – WHY! And then I realised we had a Kona swim fish in our lane this morning. That explains it! Besides that, I’m starting to understand what it means to ‘feel the water’ too, but I still can’t tumble turn fo’ shiz! (Sorry coach) But I figure unless I have to tumble turn going around the pier at Busso… How necessary is it? I mean, really? (Just kidding)

I’ve also been going along to a couple of swim technique sessions (for an article I’m writing for the mag). The first one I tried was a session run by Dan Weekes from Process_3. It was well worth it. One small change to my stroke/swim (as it turns out, Shakira was right – your hips don’t lie) and I’ve been told that I’m starting to look like a swimmer. I think the exact words from Dan were: “It’s like there’s someone else in your bathers.” I’ll take that. Check out a screen shot I took of a video posted on the Process_3 Instagram account:

This morning after squad I had a freestyle correction session with Brenton Ford from Effortless Swimming. An hour of swim assessment and video analysis resulted in further improvements to my stroke (this time my arm position) and much, much better swimming/position in the water at the end of the session, compared to the start. Brenton sent me away with some great feedback and recommendations.

If you’ve ever thought about having someone take a look at your stroke and analyse your swim, I’d highly, highly recommend looking into swim services available to you. Well worth it. Now, it’s time to start practising, practising… And practising these recommendations in the pool, when I’m swimming solo or with the squad. Watch out Busso! Watch out lane 2 (swim squad) – I’m coming for ya!

Next up – riding and running.

My knee has felt better and better over the last week. I’ve been doing progressive sessions on the treadmill and seeing how I pull up. I started with 10minutes the other weekend and have been increasing by 10minutes every day or so since. Last weekend I tested out the knee on the road (desperate to get back to normal), and I’m happy to report no real pain throughout the 30minute run, and I pulled up OK afterwards. Happy days!

I’ve been doing similar things with my riding. Since the crash, I’ve been a little scared of riding on the road. And clipping and unclipping was a little painful initially. So, I’ve kept things (mostly) indoors – I have been doing a lot of wind trainer sessions instead. But again, last weekend I decided to get back out on the road, to test the knee. I road to Mordialloc-return (all up about 40km) and had no real issues. Even clipping in and out felt OK.

With everything going well so far, I’m really excited to start building my runs and rides back up. I do have a Melbourne Marathon entry too – hoping to be able to take part in that if I can build back up in time. Stay tuned.

Outside of training – Busso flights and accommodation are now all locked and loaded. It’s starting to feel so real. I’m pumped!

T-minus 12 weeks to go. Let’s do this!

~Margy Margs

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Margaret Mielczarek

Margaret Mielczarek is the deputy editor at Australian Triathlete Magazine and writes the web series 'Shenanigans of a Deputy 2.0'. She is a passionate age-group triathlete and four-time Ironman finisher - currently in training for Ironman number five!

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