IRONMAN LOUISVILLE 2017 TRAINING
WEEK 12 – June 5 > June 11
I first dipped my toe into the triathlon waters in 2012. I really had no idea what I was getting myself into, but I certainly was a newbie to the sport. And I had some trepidation about it all, especially the swim.
As each season passed I gained a lot more knowledge and confidence. Finishing Ironman Wisconsin in 2013 certainly did wonders for my confidence, both in the water and on the bike, taking me distances I had never covered in either discipline.
But I sometimes still have some things holding me back somewhat. I’m prone to having to use my wetsuit in open water, as it eases my anxiety a little. It’s sort of a security blanket for me. In addition to the wetsuit, I have also played it safe with using my full disc aero cycling wheel.
As you start out in triathlon, you tend to make do with what you have or invest in the entry level stuff, with the thought that if you don’t want to continue doing the sport you haven’t invested your life savings into it. But as I grew to love the sport I eventually graduated from my road bike to a tri bike, a regular road helmet to an aero helmet, an off the rack tri kit to a full custom kit, and from standard cycling wheels to aero wheels. And then I bought a full disc aero wheel.
The full disc wheel goes on the rear of the bike and thanks to some aerodynamics that are beyond my scope, is supposed to make you faster. I certainly did notice a difference, finding myself hitting speeds easier than when I used my normal set up. I also found out on the first few rides that any sort of wind made for an adventure for me. One windy day I was nearly blown off the trail with it.
I recently read some posts online regarding using the full disc wheel on the Ironman Louisville course that I will be doing in October. A guy advised that there was absolutely no reason not to use it. I saw some other comments saying that it was less about the full disc and more about the front wheel when it came to feeling the wind, mainly due to the rider weight distribution. After thinking about it a little, I decided I should ride with it more often and this week seemed like as good a time as any.
I rode with it on Wednesday for a short 45 minutes and a Thursday ride of an hour, both with a little bit of wind but nothing to difficult. Then came Saturday. It was windy. I was a little concerned because my route is mainly open farm roads with very little wind buffer. But I figured this would be a good test. So I did it. And it wasn’t too bad. I found myself leaning into the crosswind a little more than usual, but I never felt like was jockeying around too much. So I decided to race with it on Sunday in a sprint triathlon. That went really well, helping me to hit a 21.5 mph average over the 14.7 mile course.
So there you go. I have now graduated from being over-conscience about using the full disc. I’ll be training with that sucker as much as I can leading up to IM Lou.
I also graduated from having to use the wetsuit for every open water swim, doing without it at the ET Batavia Sprint triathlon. It’s a short 400 yards in a man-made sandy bottom swimming hole, but the water is usually too cold for me. Today’s race day water temperature was 73 degrees, so I decided to do a swim warm up and test out my tolerance for swimming without it. I acclimated quickly and found myself swimming comfortably.
I’m starting to feel good about testing my limits. We’ll see where that takes me in this crazy sport.
You can read my ET Batavia Triathlon race report here: 2017 ET Batavia Triathlon Race Report
3 Swims – 4600 yards this week / 30800 yards total
4 Bikes – 89 miles this week / 859 miles total
7 Runs – 23.5 miles this week / 337 miles total